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A popular component of retirement savings plans, some of these funds are decidedly riskier than others.
By Stan Luxenberg, TheStreet
During the volatile markets of recent months, many target-date funds delivered disappointing results.
When the S&P 500 ($INX) dropped 13.9% in the third quarter, Goldman Sachs Retirement Strategy 2040 (GRNAX) lost 17.7%, while DWS LifeCompass 2040 (TGTAX) declined 17%, according to Morningstar. The showing was especially painful because target-date funds are supposed to protect assets in downturns by holding diversified mixes of stocks and bonds. But not all target-date funds trailed the S&P 500. During the quarter, Invesco Balanced-Risk Retirement 2040 (TNDAX) returned 2.3%, while PIMCO RealRetirement 2040 (POFAX) lost 9.7%.
The report from Automatic Data Processing showed that private-sector hiring was stronger than expected in October.
The Automatic Data Processing (ADP) employment survey was stronger than expected in October, showing that private sector employment rose by 110,000 -- above consensus expectations for a 100,000 increase.
In addition, the September numbers were revised up to a gain of 116,000 jobs from the initial report of a 91,000 gain.
Surprise: Individual investors are keeping their cool even as markets get wild.
By Morgan Housel
Meet Nancy Stein.
Nancy is a retired real-estate agent from Illinois, and she's had it with the stock market. Unnerved by market volatility, she sold almost all of her investments earlier this year. "I felt the people buying were people inside the market. They weren't the investors of the past who wanted to protect what they had or see it grow a little bit," she told The Wall Street Journal, which interviewed her for a story on investors cashing out of stocks. "Across the country, investors are fleeing the stock market for the safety of cash," it wrote.
Now meet Fritz Dixon.
Shares of Career Education, which runs Le Cordon Bleu, plunge after the chief executive resigns.
Updated: 4:55 p.m. ET
Shares of Career Education (CECO) got slaughtered Wednesday in response to a perfect storm of bad news, and other for-profit education stocks were pulled down by the drama.
Career Education, which runs Le Cordon Bleu North America cooking schools, saw shares plunge 47.8% to $8.32. Before the steep drop, shares had lost about 23% year to date.
Mike Mayo says compensation practices at Citi, SunTrust and KeyCorp are still out of line.
By Pallavi Gogoi, The Associated Press
Mike Mayo is at it again.
Mayo is the Wall Street analyst who has been a thorn in the side of banks for years. Outspoken, blunt, volatile and prickly, the 48-year-old has been ridiculed by his peers, shut out of industry conferences and slighted by CEOs. In 2000 Mayo was fired from Credit Suisse (CS) months after he wrote a negative report that exhorted investors to sell all bank stocks.
Investors drawn to double-digit yields from mortgage REITs and other instruments commonly overlook some major risk factors.
By Tom Aspray, MoneyShow.com
The sharp decline in the stock market this week has once again caused 10-year Treasury notes to drop back to the 2% level after reaching a recent high of 2.4%. While the safety of government paper is reassuring, the yield does not keep pace with the inflation rate.
This has caused some investors to turn to mortgage funds, which are generally structured as real-estate investment trusts, or REITs. As I pointed out on Aug. 4, I am not sure most investors understand the risk involved.
The financial giant says debit card spending helped it achieve double-digit earnings and revenue growth.
MasterCard (MA) shares soared almost 8% in early trading Wednesday after the credit card processing company reported better-than-expected earnings.
Despite catastrophes in Thailand and Turkey, funds pegged to the countries' markets have managed to move higher.
By Don Dion, TheStreet
Many investors have had their sights focused on the ongoing economic and political sagas facing developed regions like the European Union. However, in other parts of the globe, Mother Nature has been playing a major role in driving sentiment.
For months, Thailand has been working diligently to defend itself from rising waters brought on by heavy monsoon rains. According to Bloomberg, the flooding is the worst the nation has witnessed in 70 years.
Strong growth and a generous dividend boost the prospects for the chip-maker.
This year, Intel (INTC) has rewarded investors with a rare blend of rapid growth, a generous dividend and impressive share-price action.
Several drivers suggest Intel can keep providing investors a few of their favorite things. Indeed, only three technology stocks in the S&P 500 Index yield more than Intel's 3.4%, and the company raised its dividend in August.
Buy any one of these mutual funds and sleep tight at night.
By Frank Byrt, TheStreet
So, let's get this straight: The stock market slid in September, rebounded in October and now it's . . . tanking again?
Most recently, the S&P 500 Index ($INX) fell 2.8% yesterday, extending a two-day decline to 5.2%. Is it any wonder individual investors are checking out?
A larger world population means more demand in certain areas, providing simple and logical investment strategies.
By Tom Taulli, InvestorPlace
While investors try to anticipate next quarter's earnings results or even examine the big picture in Europe, it's really important to stand back and look at the even bigger picture. It might not be easy, but it's what top-notch investors like Berkshire Hathaway's (BRK.A) Warren Buffett do. It takes guts and patience, but the payoff can be big.
Pimco's Bill Gross and Schwab's Liz Ann Sonders say political infighting may put a damper on the stock market.
By Robert Holmes, TheStreet
Individual investors will be up against political gridlock as the economy grows slowly next year, prospects that may damped stock market gains even if Congress pushes through a trillion-dollar budget cut.
A "relatively toxic political environment" next year will "get uglier," said Liz Ann Sonders, a chief investment strategist at Charles Schwab, during the Schwab Impact 2011 investment adviser conference in San Francisco late Tuesday.
Industrial executives crave certainty from Washington and, cynical as it sounds, view the election as a distraction that could prevent the president from interfering with business.
Can this economy turn without help from Washington, D.C.? Can it turn even with Washington hurting it? Those are the two questions I am asking industrial CEOs, and the answers are a little surprising.
First, many of the industrial CEOs I deal with actually see a turn happening in this country's economy. They see it in nonresidential construction, which can be a real driver of the GDP growth. They see it in autos, where a 13 million auto build, once dreamed of, is now a reality. They see it in larger orders for trucks and generators and construction equipment.
With a stealth rally under way in its shares, now is the time to start buying them.
By Chuck Carlson, The DRIP Investor
Wal-Mart (WMT) deserves some love. Yes, I know the stock is trading where it was 10 years ago. I know lots of people view it as the quintessential evil corporation. And I know it's hard to grow a company with revenue near half a trillion dollars.
But I also know the stock is beginning to put on one of those stealth rallies that investors ignore at their own peril. In my view, it's time to put Wal-Mart stock in your shopping cart.
Sony forecasts a fourth straight annual loss. MasterCard's profit jumps on a rise in credit card use. Concast posts higher profit and revenue.
By Andrea Tse, TheStreet
Sony (SNE), the Japanese electronics giant, reported a fiscal second-quarter loss of 27 billion yen ($346 million) and said it expects an annual loss for the fourth year in a row. Sony said it expects an annual loss of 90 billion yen; it previously expected a net profit of 60 billion. Sony shares were down 5% to $18.72.
MasterCard's (MA) profit rose 38% on a jump in credit card use and new deals with other banks to issue debit cards bearing its logo. Net income was $717 million, or $5.63 per share, on revenue of $1.8 billion, exceeding expectations for profit of $4.81 per share on revenue of $1.7 billion.
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It's been a rough road for the car-rental company. Analysts downgrade the stock after the news.
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[BRIEFING.COM] The S&P 500 remains near its flat line, while Treasuries hover on their lows (10-yr yield +4 bps at 2.44%) following the recent release of the FOMC minutes from the July meeting.
While the market has slipped from its high, sector standing has not changed much with respect to the S&P 500. Consumer discretionary (+0.3%), financials (+0.1%), and industrials (+0.9%) continue showing relative strength, while consumer staples (-0.2%), health care (-0.2%), and utilities ... More
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