Image: Bank Vault (© Corbis/Corbis)
Up next: Biggest bank IPO ever

It's no Alibaba, but the Citizens Financial Group offering is important to the market.

VIDEO ON MSN MONEY

That level would represent one of the most extraordinary recoveries from a bubble bust in stock market history.

By MSN Money Partner Sep 12, 2014 12:27PM
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on April 30, 2014 in New York City. The Dow Jones industrial average closed at a new record high Wednesday after the Federal Reserve said it would reduce its bond-buying program
© Spencer Platt/Getty ImagesBy Howard Gold, MarketWatch

Until this week, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index ($INX) seemed to be setting another record every day. It first reached the 2,000 milestone a month ago.


And the Dow Jones Industrial Average ($INDU), which topped 17,000 for the first time in July, has stayed near that all-time high ever since.


Only the Nasdaq Composite Index ($COMPX), that great bellwether of the 1990s technology and dot.com boom, hasn't surpassed its record high yet.


At its absolute peak in March 2000, the Nasdaq closed near 5,049, capping an amazing decade in which it skyrocketed over 1,300 percent. The Nasdaq, of course, then tumbled, losing 78 percent of its value in one of the worst busts in history.

 

A lot of good stuff is happening on Wall Street because it costs so little to borrow money.

By Jim Cramer Sep 12, 2014 10:44AM

A businessman pushing down interest rates © Ilya Terentyev/Getty ImagesMaybe it's as simple as enjoying it while it lasts. When I look at the stock market today and I see what's moving, I know a lot of the good stuff is happening because it costs so little to borrow.


Each day that cheap money makes something good come true. Today, for example, Vail Resorts (MTN) spent $183 million to buy another resort, Park City Mountain Resort (PCMR) in Utah. The ski business has been really tough, as attendance has been dropping. If you just wanted to rely on the earnings of Vail Resorts, you wouldn't be in the stock. But you then wouldn't have been able to take advantage of the 10 percent gain you would have gotten instantly on the announcement of that acquisition. Yes, 10 percent! But the money's cheap and the expansion makes the stock much more attractive.


Speaking of free money, how about Twitter (TWTR) borrowing $1.5 billion for ridiculously low rates in a convertible debt deal that will allow the company, which makes no money, to make acquisitions that could help it grow. That wouldn't happen if rates were higher. But it did, and it is one of a long string of these kinds of deals that allow, for very little interest, a company to be able to accelerate  its business to a profitable critical mass. 

 

But the real party begins next week when the Federal Reserve issues an important policy statement.

By InvestorPlace Sep 11, 2014 7:15PM

Credit: © Lucas Jackson/Reuters

Caption: A trader points to a stock chart on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange shortly before the closing bell in New York July 2, 2014By Anthony Mirhaydari


Stocks finished mixed on Thursday, with the Standard & Poor's 500 Index ($INX) finishing its third day below the 2000 level. Since shares rallied out of the early August low, things have been quiet.


Too quiet.


For the last four weeks, the Dow Jones Industrial Average ($INDU) has been contained in a 161-point range with multiple tests of support at 17,000.


Thursday was the second intraday breach of that critical level -- a possible sign of weakening market support. That's corroborated by narrowing measures of internal breadth I've been seeing as fewer and fewer stocks participate to the upside.


However, that's all set to change over the next week, starting on Friday.

 
Tags: $INDU$INX

Can't get a piece of the hottest offering of the year? Try buying the right calls in one of its largest stakeholders.

By MSN Money Partner Sep 11, 2014 4:10PM
Credit: © Hong Wu/Getty Images
Caption: The Alibaba Group headquarters in Hangzhou, ChinaBy Steven M. Sears, Barron's

For the average investor, getting a piece of Alibaba's initial public offering is as likely as winning the lottery.


The underwriters of the Chinese e-commerce giant's IPO will allocate shares to institutional customers who generate significant fees. 


Those customers are apt to sell for a quick profit in the aftermarket where less well-heeled investors, seduced by Wall Street's get-rich-quick marketing machine, will buy Alibaba's stock at price-earnings multiples that might give angina to disciplined investors like Warren Buffett.


But investors who want to profit from the biggest U.S. IPO in history and what will almost certainly be one of the hottest deals of the year can consider a backdoor options trade.

 
Tags: YHOO

Tech stocks have fallen so far at the start of the new millennium, it was difficult to imagine that the index could ever make up what it lost.

By MSN Money Partner Sep 11, 2014 3:50PM
Image: Dollar sign on keyboard © Corbis​By Philip van Doorn, MarketWatch

The Nasdaq Composite Index ($COMPX) has outperformed the record-setting  Standard & Poor's 500 Index ($INX) of the largest U.S. stocks this year. 


And it's climbing back to its record high set in March 2000, when the dot-com bubble burst.


The tech-heavy Nasdaq had fallen so far at the start of the new millennium, it was difficult to imagine that it would ever make up what it lost. But as MarketWatch's Howard Gold discusses today, the Nasdaq Composite is close to completing an extraordinary recovery.


The index comprises about 2,500 stocks, much fewer than there were in the late 1990s, and has become less beholden to the tech industry. Such shares now make up 44 percent of the total, down from 57 percent at the end of 2009. Sorry to say that Apple (AAPL) isn't among the best bets this year, even though a tour de force product rollout impressed investors.

 

The country has spurned traditional shopping -- big-box retailers especially -- in favor of online purchases from the company. It's huge, and only getting bigger.

By MSN Money Partner Sep 11, 2014 2:55PM
Credit: © Brent Lewin/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Caption: Taobao, a website of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., is displayed on a computer tabletBy Scott Cendrowski, Fortune

Alibaba started dominating in China, simply enough, by connecting big Chinese manufacturers with big buyers across the world. 


Its business-to-business site, Alibaba.com, went public in 2007 (before going private again seven years later) to great fanfare. The site allowed business to buy everything from Chinese-made mopeds to blue jeans in bulk.


Alibaba's advantage wasn't hard to discern, and it remains the reason the Chinese tech giant's IPO has been mentioned on every news site and TV broadcast for the past week: size.

 
Tags: AMZNEBAY

A fast-food restaurant is not an obvious fit for a brunch gathering. Some speculate the move could signal expanded breakfast hours.

By MSN Money Partner Sep 11, 2014 2:23PM
Caption: A sign stands outside of a McDonald's restaurant in San Francisco
Credit: © Justin Sullivan/Getty ImagesBy Venessa Wong, Businessweek

McDonald's (MCD) might want to put Egg McMuffins into the national brunch discussion. 

The burger giant has applied to trademark "McBrunch," signaling yet another possible approach to boost its late-morning business on the weekends.

Breakfast is the quickest-growing time of day for fast-food sales, and McDonald's has been fighting to keep its lead against an increasingly crowded field of morning competitors. 


More robust food offerings from Starbucks (SBUX) now vie with a new morning menu at Taco Bell and better coffee from Chick-fil-A on the breakfast battlefield.

 
Tags: BKWMCD

The commodity is nominated in US dollars, and the dollar is getting stronger.

By MSN Money Partner Sep 11, 2014 2:04PM
Image: Baker © Blend Images/SuperStockBy Lee Brodie, CNBC

There seems to be every reason for oil to rally. Why is it down? And should you pare down on your energy holdings?


Always an advocate for understanding the environment before you make any big decisions, Jim Cramer believes it's critical for anyone holding energy stocks to get a handle on oil, and why the price is in decline, especially when there would seem every reason for it to go higher.


Common sense would suggest the ongoing tensions in Russia, as well as the threat of an Ebola epidemic in Nigeria and the horrific terrorism in Iraq, would all send oil higher, if for no other reason than they threaten supply.

 
Tags: RDS

Banks are on board, but merchants are still wary of paying for the technology.

By MSN Money Partner Sep 11, 2014 1:55PM
Credit: © Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
Caption: Apple CEO Tim Cook talks about Apple Pay at an Apple special event on September 9, 2014 in Cupertino, Calif.By Daisuke Wakabayashi and Greg Bensinger, The Wall Street Journal

Apple (AAPL) has lined up an impressive list of banks and credit-card issuers to support its new mobile-payment service. Now all it needs is more merchants, and customers.

Apple hopes its service, Apple Pay, will prompt shoppers to ditch their wallet and make purchases with an iPhone. The system relies on a technology known as near-field communication, or NFC, that has had trouble winning acceptance from merchants.


Merchants must install a reader at their checkout line for so-called tap-and-go payments. NFC readers are being used by fewer than 10 percent of merchants, according to Gartner analyst Mark Hung.

 
Tags: AAPLAMZN

The songs are showing up in some user libraries as purchased, with or without their approval.

By MSN Money Partner Sep 11, 2014 1:22PM
Credit: © Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP Images
Caption: Apple CEO Tim Cook, left, smiles next to U2 members, The Edge, Bono, and Larry Mullen Jr. during an announcement of new products on Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2014, in Cupertino, Calif.By James Cook, Business Insider

While Bono and Tim Cook (pictured) might be excited about the release of U2's new album, not everyone is sharing their enthusiasm

Toward the end of Tuesday's Apple event, Tim Cook and Bono announced that every iTunes user would be given the band's new album for free. 

While that might not sound like a bad thing, many people are angry over the way Apple chose to "gift" the album. 

U2's new album, "Songs of Innocence," shows up in iTunes libraries as purchased, whether users have chosen to buy it or not. That has made a lot of people angry, as it's nearly impossible to get rid of the album.
 
Tags: AAPL

When people want what a company makes, you get a secular growth product story that dazzles.

By Jim Cramer Sep 11, 2014 1:19PM

The Apple Watch was unveiled at the product announcement in Cupertino, Calif., on Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2014 © David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty ImagesWiseguys finish last. I am talking about how all of the wiseguys were out there dissing Apple (AAPL) even as the stock was going down. Not because of the high price of the Apple Watch but because we are again playing the parlor game of Fed watch and the word "considerable" -- as in a considerable time might have to pass before rates are raised -- might be coming out of the upcoming statement.


To me this is common sense. I mean, hasn't a "considerable" amount of time passed since they said a considerable amount of time would have to pass before the Fed raises rates? No matter. Pavlov's dog plays a role every day -- my new name for sellers who come out of the woodwork after any chatter, legitimate or otherwise, that the Fed has to raise rates, and, unfortunately, Pavlov's dog surfaced right when we were hearing about the Apple Watch's beautiful design.

 

Apple has handed over its leadership -- and all the excitement -- to this 3-D printer company.

By Traders Reserve Sep 11, 2014 12:56PM

Caption: A 3D printer MakerBot Replicator 2 produces a sculpture
Credit: © Fabrizio Bensch/ReutersBy Jamie Dlugosch


Apple's (AAPL) big product announcement on Tuesday was oh-so-anticlimactic. The moment came and the market yawned. After a brief spike higher, Apple shares finished lower.


I hate to break it to the Apple fanatics, but there is a new king of innovation, and it is not Apple. Nope, the new king of innovation is in the 3-D printing space.


The name of the company is Stratasys (SSYS).


I know, that's a bold statement. But it's true.


Apple lost its innovation leadership with an emphasis on design . . . a big mistake. It's one thing to have a cool product and then layer on design after market acceptance. What Apple is doing now is the reverse: "Let's make it cool-looking and hope people will buy."  

The chain plans to introduce the new topping, made with bamboo charcoal, next week in Japan.

By MSN Money Partner Sep 11, 2014 12:40PM
Image credit: Burger King Japan
By Michael Kitchen, MarketWatch

Japan is a nation known for its love of culinary oddities, and starting Sept. 19, Burger King (BKW), plans to indulge that love with black cheese.


That's right, Burger King Japan has announced the latest iteration of its "Kuro" burger ("kuro" meaning "black" in Japanese), first introduced last year. 


The buns are black, the sauce is black, and this year, the cheese will be black as well.


According to the gaming site Kotaku.com, the buns and the new cheese addition get their coloring from bamboo charcoal, while the accompanying onion and garlic sauce is prepared with squid ink, and the hamburger patties are made with black pepper, just for good measure.

 
Tags: BKW

The yoga-apparel maker beat Wall Street expectations for earnings and revenue Thursday.

By MSN Money Partner Sep 11, 2014 12:23PM
Credit: © Andy Clark/Reuters

Caption: A customer enters the Lululemon store in downtown Vancouver, British Columbia November 8, 2013By Myles Udland, Business Insider

Lululemon (LULU) shares were up more than 15 percent Thursday after the company reported second-quarter earnings and revenue that beat expectations.

Early Thursday, the yoga apparel maker reported earnings per share of 33 cents, topping expectations for 29 cents. 


Revenue in the second quarter totaled $390.7 million, beating estimates for $376.8 million. 


Lululemon said total comparable store sales were flat in the second quarter, and on a constant dollar basis comparable store sales were down 5 percent. 

 
Tags: LULU

Investors are cheering the latest earnings report from Lululemon but buyers should beware.

By TheStreet.com Staff Sep 11, 2014 12:15PM

The logo of Lululemon is pictured on a store front in San Diego, Calif. © Mike Blake/Newscom/ReutersBy Brian Sozzi, TheStreet


Investors rejoiced over Lululemon's (LULUbetter-than-expected second-quarter earnings, which hinted that the beleaguered yoga-apparel brand finally was turning around amid investments in people, processes and more compelling merchandise.


But investors who are buying into this notion could end up motionless on their yoga mats given three key aspects to Lululemon's second-quarter performance.


Lululemon reported second-quarter EPS of 33 cents, 4 cents higher than consensus forecasts. Lululemon's bottom line also surpassed its own guidance of 28 cents to 30 cents a share it provided in June. Total comparable-store sales, which include direct-to-consumer (online) sales, were unchanged in the quarter compared to guidance which called for a decrease in the low- to mid-single digits percentage range. Comparable-store sales at physical locations declined 5 percent, and net revenue for Lululemon's online business rose 29 percent.

 

DATA PROVIDERS

Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.

Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.

STOCK SCOUTER

StockScouter rates stocks from 1 to 10, with 10 being the best, using a system of advanced mathematics to determine a stock's expected risk and return. Ratings are displayed on a bell curve, meaning there will be fewer ratings of 1 and 10 and far more of 4 through 7.

124
124 rated 1
266
266 rated 2
452
452 rated 3
702
702 rated 4
671
671 rated 5
604
604 rated 6
640
640 rated 7
495
495 rated 8
267
267 rated 9
158
158 rated 10
12345678910

Top Picks

SYMBOLNAMERATING
AAPLAPPLE Inc10
ABBVABBVIE Inc10
ATVIACTIVISION BLIZZARD Inc10
CTSHCOGNIZANT TECHNOLOGY SOLUTIONS10
LUVSOUTHWEST AIRLINES CO.10
More

Trending NOW

What’s this?

RECENT QUOTES

WATCHLIST

Symbol
Last
Change
Shares
Quotes delayed at least 15 min

ABOUT

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.

Contributors include professional investors and journalists affiliated with MSN Money.

Follow us on Twitter @topstocksmsn.

MARKET UPDATE

NAMELASTCHANGE% CHANGE
There’s a problem getting this information right now. Please try again later.
NAMELASTCHANGE% CHANGE
There’s a problem getting this information right now. Please try again later.
Market index data delayed by 15 minutes

[BRIEFING.COM] S&P futures vs fair value: -6.60. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: -14.50. The S&P 500 futures trade seven points below fair value.

Markets across most of Asia ended on a lower note, while Japan's Nikkei was closed for Autumn Equinox.

  • Economic data was limited: 
    • China's HSBC Manufacturing PMI ticked up to 50.5 from 50.2 (expected 50.0) 
    • Singapore's CPI eased to 0.9% year-over-year (expected 1.2%; previous ... More


Currencies

NAMELASTCHANGE% CHANGE
There’s a problem getting this information right now. Please try again later.