The most likely scenario is that the markets will begin to rise from here -- and that bounce is just beginning to take hold.
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A host of disturbing news about consumers is cropping up, and it could mean fewer presents under trees this year.
By Jeff Reeves, InvestorPlace.com
The consumer front hasn't seen many encouraging signs in the past year or so. The big issues remain unresolved: Unemployment is persistently high, housing markets remain battered, and there's a general fear of more hard times to come.
Most investors have become immune to a lot of these major trends, adjusting their expectations to a "new normal" in which the benchmark is significantly less impressive than in previous years. However, just because you've set the bar lower doesn't mean consumers will easily jump over it. A host of disturbing headlines about consumers have cropped up recently, and they could foretell that a rather bleak holiday shopping season.
The social network and the insurance giant are expected to report losses for their most recent quarters.
By Joseph Woelfel, TheStreet
Updated at 8:30 a.m. ET
Social network LinkedIn (LNKD) is expected to post its second quarterly earnings report as a public company. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expect a loss of 4 cents a share in quarter ended in September on revenue of $127.6 million.
American International Group (AIG) is expected by analysts to post a quarterly loss of 27 cents a share on revenue of $13.6 billion. On Tuesday, AIG paid back the Treasury Department $972 million of the billions it received in a rescue package from the U.S. government in 2008.
The cult Canadian stock is tapping into American tastes with a new line of cheap espressos and cappucinos.
By Jeff Reeves, InvestorPlace.com
Tim Hortons (THI) is an up-and-coming coffee stock focused mainly on the Midwest and Canada. For 15 straight quarters, sales have beaten totals from the previous year. Shares are up almost 20% in 2011 despite the summer volatility in the stock market. Things are looking up.
With an eye at continuing this kind of growth, Tim Hortons announced this week it will branch out from traditional coffee and pastries into lattes and mochas to appeal to more American tastes.
The brewer reported strong earnings in the third quarter. But will the high share price leave you with a hangover?
Boston Beer (SAM) hopped past analyst expectations with its quarterly earnings and raised full-year guidance significantly, sending shares soaring Wednesday.
The Boston brewer, which makes more than 25 styles of beer, reported third-quarter profit of $1.19 per share on $134.8 million in revenue.
The media conglomerate might be looking at buying the team again -- and that's not in the best interest of shareholders.
Fox Sports, a division of News Corp. (NWSA), may be considering a bid for the L.A. Dodgers.
Fox Sports may participate in an auction for the bankrupt team, according to Bloomberg. But CNBC reports that the division has not explored a bid.
More than half of the company's value comes from its iconic phone, and business could grow significantly as it pushes further into the world's largest mobile market.
China is Apple's (AAPL) fastest-growing region by far.
The company clocked record sales of $4.5 billion there, or 16% of the global total, in its most recent quarter. Revenue in China grew to $13 billion in fiscal 2011, up from about $3 billion, or 2% of total sales, in 2009.
Daily-deals site Groupon is expected to begin trading on Nasdaq by Friday. Will investors go for a price range of $16 to $18?
Groupon, the one-time Internet darling, is expected to price its initial public offering Thursday and get listed on Nasdaq Friday under the symbol GRPN.
The bank isn't giving up more than $1 billion in revenue so easily.
By Dan Freed, TheStreet
Bank of America (BAC) may have backed down from its bid to charge users of its debit cards $5 per month, but if you think that's the end of the bank's attempts to gouge its customers, you are living in a fantasy land.
"Eventually they've got to get that money back," Jefferson Harralson, an analyst at Keefe Bruyette & Woods, told the New York Post for an article published Wednesday. "I think you're going to see other types of fees come up."
A popular component of retirement savings plans, some of these funds are decidedly riskier than others.
By Stan Luxenberg, TheStreet
During the volatile markets of recent months, many target-date funds delivered disappointing results.
When the S&P 500 ($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.
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Remy Cointreau says it was 'adversely affected' by China's anti-extravagance policy.
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[BRIEFING.COM] The stock market ended the holiday-shortened week on a mixed note as the Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 0.1%, while the S&P 500 added 0.1% with seven sectors posting gains.
Equity indices faced an uphill climb from the opening bell after disappointing quarterly results from Google (GOOG 536.10, -20.44) and IBM (IBM 190.04, -6.36) weighed on the early sentiment. Google reported earnings $0.15 below the Capital IQ consensus estimate on revenue of $15.42 ... More
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