Stocks are hot again, but as in 2000, not all of them are reaping the benefits.
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This video game leader is heating up.
Today we kick off a new Motley Fool feature on Top Stocks that's geared to what every investor is really looking for: stock recommendations! We'll be highlighting actual recommendations -- backed by solid reasoning and analysis -- from the Fool's top investing minds. Today we start with some fun and games, as Stock Advisor analyst Jason Moser shows us how we can make money off the world's obsession with gaming.
Rex Moore, Motley Fool Top Stocks editor
I admit I'm not totally up to speed with today's video games. For me, it pretty much starts with Galaga and ends with Donkey Kong (and Ms. Pac-Man fits in there somewhere). Don't get me wrong, I enjoy playing video games. I even have a PlayStation 2 at home. Granted, I haven't put many miles on it since my stint in the coldest regions of Kazakhstan, but I still have it.
A survey shows the new smart phone is helping RIM finally compete with the iPhone on customer satisfaction.
By Jeff Reeves, Editor of InvestorPlace.com
The much-anticipated BlackBerry Torch 9800 from Canada smart-phone company Research In Motion (RIMM) made a big splash when it debuted in August. Now that consumers have had a chance to play with their new RIM smart phones, has the Torch rekindled their love for BlackBerry gadgets or left them cold?
According to a November smart-phone survey by ChangeWave Research, the BlackBerry Torch was well received and could spark a resurgence in much-maligned Research In Motion.
Leading names like Boeing and Caterpillar are bargains if they can deliver on their 2011 forecasts.
The whole industrial complex that is Boeing (BA) (presuming Dreamliner in 2012), Caterpillar (CAT), Eaton (ETN), United Technologies (UTX) and Emerson Electric (EMR) isn't expensive if the companies deliver on their 2011 forecasts. And I think they will do far more than that.
The coals and the oils are dirt cheap. The retailers were cheap going into last week, but they have made a move and can be considered fairly valued. Tech? I think the analysts aren't factoring in anything that Tech Data (TECD) said Monday. It is at historically low multiples. Drugs? I can't believe you can buy an Abbott Laboratories (ABT) at such a huge discount to its growth rate.
Despite the Irish bailout announcement, the eurozone's woes are set to continue.
Over the weekend, Irish politicians succumbed to the inevitable. In the face of dwindling investor confidence, they agreed to negotiate a bailout package with the European Union and the International Monetary Fund. Estimates put the total figure around $136 billion, of which Germany and the United Kingdom will be the largest contributors.
The initial reaction was positive. The euro rallied. European stocks moved higher. But then the truth became clear: The rescue, which follows on the heels of the $150 billion rescue of Greece earlier this year, won't be enough. And that's because Europe's deeply indebted and uncompetitive economies like Ireland and Greece are faced with an impossible task.
The nation is under intense pressure to raise its corporate tax rate, and US companies are worried.
Companies have long made Ireland a home away from home, funneling revenue and profits through the country because of its tax structure. Ireland's 12.5% corporate tax rate is the lowest in the eurozone.
The question now is whether Ireland can afford to keep that tax rate so low. With the country accepting a bailout package of more than $100 million, its credit rating, at Aa2, faces a "multi-notch downgrade," Moody's Investors Service said.
The shortened Thanksgiving week is usually positive for the markets, history says.
That's the opinion of the Trading the Odds site, which crunched the numbers to see how this week has performed in the past. The key thing to note is that on Friday, Nov. 19, the S&P 500 was positive in all of these categories:
- The past week
- The month to date
- The quarter to date
- Semiannual to date
- Year to date
The video rental company will offer a $7.99 subscription for streaming services, matching Hulu's rate.
By Jeanine Poggi, TheStreet
Netflix (NFLX) is going punch for punch with Hulu by matching the Internet video company's streaming prices.
The movie-rental company said on Monday that it will offer its lowest subscription yet, a $7.99 deal for its streaming services only. The plan, which will allow subscribers to watch streaming movies and television shows, is now available to all its customers.
Netflix also raised the price on its plan for unlimited movies (one DVD out at a time) and streaming videos to $9.99 from $8.99. Prices for plans that allow customers to receive more than one DVD at a time are increasing too.
Keep close tabs on the ETFs tracking agribusiness and retail this week.
By Don Dion, TheStreet
Here are five ETFs to watch this week.
Throughout the second half of 2010, one of the most closely watched stories has been that of rapid food price increases. This week, investors will gain more insight into how the jump in agricultural commodity prices has affected the farming industry when equipment supplier Deere & Company (DE) reports its quarterly earnings performance Wednesday.
There are several funds ETF investors can consider when looking for exposure to the agriculture industry. MOO provided investors with access to the companies responsible for supplying farmers with the machinery and chemicals needed to produce adequate yields. Deere represents the largest position within MOO's portfolio, commanding more than 8% of the fund's assets.
The holiday season should bring considerable gains for stocks.
By Jamie Dlugosch, InvestorPlace.com
Exchange-traded funds have been popular all year, and the holiday season should be no different.
There are certain times during the year when I feel very comfortable being aggressive in the market. We are entering one of those periods in which stocks are likely to make considerable gains. Can you say Santa Claus rally?
This market will pay up for F5, Apple, Deckers, Salesforce.com, Chipotle, Amazon and Netflix.
Who can? FADS CAN! I am talking about this market's obsession with uber-growth stocks and how much it is willing to pay for them. I call them FADS CAN, as in "FADS CAN make you money." It's the acronym for F5 (FFIV), Apple (AAPL), Deckers (DECK), Salesforce.com (CRM), Chipotle (CMG), Amazon (AMZN) and Netflix (NFLX).
These are the stocks that go down hard on days like last Tuesday but snap back harder, as there's so much earnings momentum that analysts view any dip as a reason to talk about them and re-recommend them.
They don't all go up at once, but the action Friday was instructive of the power of FADS CAN. Take Chipotle. On Thursday, Raymond James (RJF) downgraded Chipotle on valuation. It was the only FADS CAN name that was down. Now take a look at it. Valuations are no good reason to downgrade fast-growing stocks -- at least that's always been my observation of what growth money does. Sure enough, this stock was the first in the green on Friday. They couldn't resist.
Examine the costs and benefits of stretching your IRA
By Chuck Epstein, InvestorPlace.com
Mutual funds information and IRA information is becoming a hotter commodity by the day.
Too many New Year’s resolutions never get realized, but if you want to increase your odds of attaining a more fruitful financial future for you and your heirs, you should consider a stretch IRA.
The tax laws governing Individual retirement Accounts (IRAs) are very specific, but by applying a different type of strategy you and your beneficiaries can reap some significant benefits. This strategy is called a “stretch” IRA and it can be done by almost anyone who owns an IRA.
Google is reportedly the latest company interested in grabbing Groupon -- and for good reason.
AllThingsD reports that Google is in discussions with Groupon about a deal -- at a price "well above" the $2 billion to $3 billion figure thrown around last month when Yahoo(YHOO) supposedly had an interest.
What makes Groupon so hot, any why would Google and Yahoo be interested? Too many reasons to count, but let's go over a few:
GM enjoys a tax-free holiday. American Airlines tells customers to drink up. Buffett gives thanks to Uncle Sam.
5. For GM, every day is a tax-free day
General Motors (GM) charged back onto the scene after being delisted by the NYSE a year and a half ago, with an initial public offering price that just kept going up and up. Its stock closed its first day of trading at $34.19.
Though some stations are missing, for $29.95 a month you can enjoy popular channels. Will Comcast follow suit?
For consumers who feel they are spending too much for cable television channels they don't use, Time Warner Cable (TWX) may have the perfect solution.
Time Warner will begin offering a new lower-priced television package called TV Essentials. The package will be offered Monday in New York City for $39.95 a month and in northern Ohio for $29.95 a month. The reduced package is aimed at lower-income customers who have dropped their cable service because of rising prices and extraneous channels.
Unfortunately, some key channels are missing.
Names like F5 and Salesforce.com are on a tear, and you could buy them at a discount as China's inflation plan slows the market.
But that didn't happen.
It is too bad because we were building up a legitimate head of steam. Now we could be back in macro-land unless the dollar stays down and oil goes higher, as the drumbeat is already on for Portugal now that Ireland looks "solved."
For a moment, though, let's bask in some things that have occurred, micro-wise, that do matter.
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For years, Todd Mills pushed Frito-Lay to make taco shells from Doritos. He died from a brain tumor on Thanksgiving.
Top Stocks provides analysis about the most noteworthy stocks in the market each day, combining some of the best content from around the MSN Money site and the rest of the Web.
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[BRIEFING.COM] Precious metals rose along with other commodities today as the dollar index slipped further into negative territory. Both Feb gold and Mar silver lifted from their respective session lows of $1217.20 per ounce and $19.15 per ounce and trended higher as floor trade progressed. Both metals gained further momentum in afternoon action and pushed to new session highs. Gold settled 2.2% higher at $1220.70 per ounce while silver closed at $19.83 per ounce, booking a solid 4.0% gain. ... More
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