Since she joined in July 2012, CEO Marissa Mayer has acquired dozens of startups.
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Holiday sales and turbulent events in Europe and Asia will be on investors' minds.
By Don Dion, TheStreet
Here are five ETFs to watch this week.
The Korea ETF saw roller-coaster-like performance last week as tensions between North and South Korea came to a head. There is a strong chance that this type of wild performance will continue as long as strains remain high between these two nations.
The Korea crisis once again serves as a reminder of the risks in investing in emerging markets. When venturing into EWY or any other fund focused on the developing world, you must keep a close eye on the macro picture as well as the state of the fund's underlying holdings.
Despite worries from overseas, history points to a solid finish to 2010. We might even discover that the US economy is in the midst of a robust rebound.
What happens if this is the week when we start thinking about the U.S. as a comeback country? What happens if the economic data this week -- the employment and supply-chain management reports -- kick into higher gear?
What happens if we are about to see an extension of the unemployment benefits that are about to expire, an extension that is incredibly important to the lower-end retailers that keep powering higher?
All of these possibilities are playing in my head and should be playing in yours. As Barclays put it so eloquently in a recent note, since 1961 there have been 28 times when the market was up 5% or more between Jan. 1 and October, and of those years the market has been down only twice in November and December. That statistic alone should buoy you even as it antagonizes the morbidly negative.
The debt crisis in the eurozone shows no signs of ending as politicians clash and investors cash out.
Despite some positive developments over in Europe on Friday, with the Portuguese parliament formally approving its 2011 budget and word that Ireland's bailout could be finished over the weekend, traders were in the mood to sell. And sell they did.
As they sold Spanish bonds, the interest rate surged to highs not seen since 2002. The cost to protect against the default of debt issued by Spain, Ireland, Portugal, Greece, Italy, and even Belgium all jumped substantially. The euro plunged.
The catalyst was chatter that parts of the Irish bailout package being put together by the European Union and the International Monetary Fund could result in defaults on Irish bank debt as soon as early next week. Adding to concerns were rumors Portugal is being pressured to take bailout money. The situation is quickly going from bad to worse.
The automaker plans 66 dealerships in emerging cities.
By Eric Rosenbaum, TheStreet
Ford (F) plans to add 66 dealerships in China before the end of the year, according to a Ford document reviewed by The Wall Street Journal. The 25% expansion of Ford's China sales effort will focus on what are considered the tier-two and tier-three cities in western and northern China.
In all, Ford will have added approximately 100 dealerships in China with its partner, Changan Automobile, by the end of the year. The total number of Ford dealerships in China will be roughly 340 by year's end, according to the Ford statement reviewed by the Journal.
The tier-two and tier-three cities in China include Nanning, Shijazhuang, Harbin and Anyang, cities with populations of more than 1 million. Car demand isn't the only consumer trend being tapped in the Chinese tier-two and tier-three cities. It's part of a much larger trend in China, including education, health care and real estate, as the tier-one cities become saturated.
TSA security frenzy quickly becomes holiday yawn. Record profits at US companies aren't leading to new jobs. Dick's called 'anti-Christmas' by Christmas advocacy group.
5. Non-news event of the week: TSA security opt-outs
The hullabaloo surrounding the Transportation Security Administration's use of full-body scanners reached a fever pitch this week, thanks to “National Opt-Out Day.” The idea was that flyers, outraged by their privacy being invaded in the name of safety, would say no to scanning and pat-downs on one of the busiest flying days of the year.
Why this train is worth jumping on.
It's the day after Thanksgiving, and our thoughts naturally turn to leftovers. We try to extract as much value out of our turkey meal as we can by eating the scraps -- and Michael Olsen shows us the same works for investing. (Sorry, I stretched that analogy as much as I did my stomach yesterday.)
Rex Moore, Motley Fool Top Stocks editor
Blame Warren Buffett, that octogenarian superinvestor of Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A) fame. A few years back, he let the cat out of the bag: Railroads are tremendous businesses. Our folksy friend's blessing drew investors to railroads like cats to catnip.
I hate him for it.
Retailers are attempting to one-up each other ahead of Black Friday, but will these deals move the top line?
By Jeanine Poggi, TheStreet
But will these deep discounts, Black Friday ad "leaks" and offers of free-shipping really woo customers and boost the top line? The goal is to capture consumers' dollars before their holiday budgets run out, but these promotions might have the opposite effect -- desensitizing shoppers to discounts.
Retailers have spent the past year unintentionally "training" shoppers to hold out for the best deals. Now, they want consumers to open their wallets earlier. But shoppers are savvy, and most realize these sales (and potentially some even bigger deals) will still be there as Christmas approaches.
Country club memberships, use of a company plane, a free car and other perks -- all in a day's work at Tyson Foods.
No, we're talking about Don Tyson, the former chief executive of Tyson Foods (TSN), and his son John. Don Tyson, you'll recall, was busted five years ago for taking $3 million in company perks for himself, his family and other friends.
He used $20,000 in company funds to buy oriental rugs, $18,000 for antiques and $15,000 for a London vacation. He made personal use of company-owned homes, as well as a boat, in Cabo San Lucas and the English countryside. He used $425,000 worth of time on the company jet.
The company beats estimates in its fourth quarter, but projections for next year are disappointing.
Consumers are ready to come back in a big way, and these shares are positioned to rise with holiday spending.
By James Dlugosch, Stockpickr
For all the bad-news bears out there, stop reading now. This article is not for you. Instead, let us celebrate the spirit of the holidays with stocks to buy in advance of what I believe will be a truly spectacular Santa Claus rally.
All signs indicate that 2011 will be a turning point, even if the industry isn't quite ready for it.
By Daniel Dicker, TheStreet
2011 is going to be the year for natural gas. Stories keep crossing the wires, subtly pointing to the inevitable fact that natural gas is our guaranteed energy future, whether or not the industry or even Washington is ready for it.
The only thing left for a savvy investor to do is to get on board this train before it leaves the station and builds up too much speed.
Another avalanche of reports appeared this week, all pointing to the same theme: Natural gas is ready to explode. Check out these recent stories:
Corporate social responsibility is in this company's DNA.
On this Thanksgiving eve, we'll visit the world of socially responsible investing. Alyce Lomax shows us what it's all about by recommending a company she believes can do well, while also doing some good in the world.
Rex Moore, Motley Fool Top Stocks editor
My real-money portfolio is all about social responsibility, so it's fitting that my inaugural buy recommendation should have corporate social responsibility at its heart for quite some time. This month's pick is Timberland (TBL).
As news of a buyout propelled JCG shares 16% higher Tuesday, investors were already looking for other potential takeover targets.
With the J. Crew (JCG) deal opening people's eyes to the fact that Gymboree (GYMB) was not a one-off and that many retailers are selling at ridiculous prices to their long-term growth rates, the frenzy is on to find the next one to go.
Staples (SPLS), Urban Outfitters (URBN), Big Lots (BIG), Abercrombie & Fitch (ANF), J.C. Penney (JCP), Radio Shack (RSH), Gap Stores (GPS) and Macy's (M) are all rallying on hopes that they can be next.
I love a good sympathy rally, but let's take a look at some of these. Urban Outfitters fits the pattern of J. Crew in that it is undervalued, selling at a multiple that's relatively equal to its growth rate. It has been an aggressive buyer of its own stock, and it has terrific international expansion plans as well as several divisions, including Anthropologie and Free People, besides its flagship, so it's got a lot of opportunities.
One of Apple's first computers is sold in London.
One of the first computers from Apple (AAPL) was auctioned today at Christie's for $210,000. An Italian businessman and private collector made the winning bid.
This computer, the Apple I, carries some serious history. It debuted in 1976, and was the only personal computer to ship ready to use with a fully assembled motherboard, The Associated Press reports.
It sold for $666.66, and was discontinued a year later. Only 200 such models were made, the AP reports. Buying a computer for $667 and selling it for $210,000 more than three decades later? Not a bad investment, even when taking inflation into account.
Single Shares will be more accessible now
Exchange traded funds and mutual funds often possess fees and investment minimums, and it is important to be familiar with these figures.
The Vanguard Group has reduced the investment minimums for its share class called the “Signal Shares.” The previous requirement was $1 million to $5 million in assets depending on the client and account type.
The changes will make Signal Shares more accessible to financial intermediaries, advisors, and select institutional clients, including investment-only defined contribution plans, defined benefit plans, endowments, and foundations.
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John Stumpf acknowledges that growth has been slow, but he says he's still optimistic.
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[BRIEFING.COM] The major averages spent the entire session in a steady downtrend, but despite persistent selling pressure, today's losses were limited in scope. The Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq shed between 0.2% and 0.3% while the Russell 2000 lagged, falling 0.9%.
The underperformance of the Russell 2000 was likely owed in part to tax-loss selling, which tends to pick up this time of year. Small-caps often feel that pinch in a stronger fashion than large-cap issues since individual ... More
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