A Mexican wave for Big Oil?
Mexico opens way for Big Oil

New legislation is allowing foreign companies to finally invest in the country's vast oil reserves.

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While there will always be a place for desktop computers, powerful handheld devices are pushing the entire notebook category into long-term decline.

By Jim Cramer Sep 24, 2010 8:57AM

jim cramerBy Jim Cramer, TheStreet

 

The netbook giveth, and the netbook taketh away. That was my conclusion last night after I did some reading about still one more tech disappointment, the never-can-shoot-straight Advanced Micro Devices (AMD).

 

The notebook category, for all intents and purposes, is finished. It is in secular decline, a victim of handheld devices that are so powerful they make netbooks look like relics.

 

That's one of the main reasons Intel (INTC) is not doing so hot. It's why no one liked Texas Instruments (TXN) even after it announced it would buy one-quarter of the company, and why Hewlett-Packard (HPQ), which has a great netbook franchise, has slipped. It's another reason HPQ and Intel are frantic to pick up new business away from netbooks, which was, just a few years ago, the savior category. It could be the source of many problems for SanDisk (SNDK), which is relentlessly going down.

 

Abbott Labs has two important, yet under-recognized, growth areas in its nutritional and emerging-market businesses.

By Jim J. Jubak Sep 23, 2010 5:45PM

Jim JubakAt current prices, I think you're getting two of Abbott Laboratories' (ABT) most interesting growth opportunities at a deep discount. 


Abbott is a good mainstream pharmaceutical company. Its blockbuster drugs include Humira (for rheumatoid and psoriatic arthritis, $5.5 billion in 2009 sales); Kaletra (for HIV/AIDS, $1.4 billion in revenues last year); the TriCor/Triplex combination (for cholesterol and cardiovascular disease, $1.3 billion), and Lupron (for prostate cancer, $800 million) The patent on Humira doesn't expire until 2016. Pharmaceuticals accounted for 53% of operating revenue in 2008. 


Abbott's vascular products unit -- 9% of operating revenue -- is on a new-product roll with the release of its new Xience drug-coated stent. Launched in 2008, Xience is the leading drug-coated coronary and carotid stent in the U.S.

 

Everyone wants AAPL, but how can you protect yourself?

By Jim Van Meerten Sep 23, 2010 5:38PM
I once heard Mrs. Fields say she didn't sell cookies, she sold warm memories of your childhood and the smells coming from your grandma's kitchen. 

To say Apple (AAPL) is a computer company also isn't enough.  When I go to the mall, the Apple store is packed and everyone, young and old, is standing in a line to get a hands-on experience.

All other companies just produce laptops, computers and PCs. Apple produces devices with wonderful-sounding names that you've just got to have before anyone else does. Other companies are just the present; Apple has the mystique of being the future.
 

After an impressive start to the month, the market looks ready for losses.

By Anthony Mirhaydari Sep 23, 2010 4:28PM

MirhaydariSeptember is traditionally one of the worst months for the stock market. And of course, earlier this month, investors were wringing their hands in despair at the thought that stocks, which were already down nearly 14% from their April highs, would drop further. But that didn't happen -- which is what I expected based on what was happening with market breadth. (See blog posts here and here.)

 

Stocks roared ahead, with the S&P 500 gaining more than 9%. Then, starting last week trouble appeared as the demand for stocks started to weaken. Fewer and fewer stocks were participating in the rally just as stocks neared significant overhead resistance from the June and August highs. This was part of appeared to be a large inverse "head-and-shoulders" reversal pattern that measured back to May.

 

Analysts up their forecasts for next year, and retailers make room on shelves.

By Kim Peterson Sep 23, 2010 4:18PM

Credit: (© Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Caption: Apple iPadApple (AAPL) investors, take note: The iPad is becoming a bigger part of the business faster than anyone thought.

The iPad's strong performance has led analyst Gene Munster to up his forecast for iPad sales next year to 21 million from 14.5 million. He called the iPad "the first Apple product that will be a success in the enterprise," according to AppleInsider.

Apple shares surpassed $290 for the first time Thursday, perhaps in response to Munster's report, but closed at $288.92.

 

The former vice president sees his investment firm quadruple its profits.

By Kim Peterson Sep 23, 2010 2:02PM
If anyone knows how to massage a portfolio, it's Al Gore.

The former vice president has founded an asset management company that almost quadrupled its profits last year, The Wall Street Journal reported.

The company, Generation Investment Management, was started in 2004 by Gore, a former Goldman Sachs (GS) executive named David Blood and Mark Ferguson, whose father manages England's Manchester United soccer team.

And though some investment firms had a tough time in 2009, Gore's firm worked out the knots in its strategy and reported $50 million in pretax profits.  

Now that the video giant has filed for bankruptcy, will it emerge a stronger company or fall into oblivion?

By TheStreet Staff Sep 23, 2010 12:56PM

thestreetBy Jeanine Poggi, TheStreet

 

Now that Blockbuster (BLOKA) has finally filed for bankruptcy, what will become of the video giant?

 

Blockbuster said business will go on as usual as it whips out its $900 million in debt. This means that Blockbuster's 3,000 stores and kiosks and its by-mail and digital business will all continue to serve customers.

 

More than 80% of the company's senior note holders have agreed to support the plan and provide $125 million in debtor-in-possession financing to help support Blockbuster's operations while it undergoes the restructure. Under the Chapter 11, bonds will be converted into equity.

 

The company behind Olive Garden, Red Lobster and The Capital Grille is a favorite value pick among analysts.

By TheStreet Staff Sep 23, 2010 12:51PM

By Jake Lynch, TheStreet

 

Darden Restaurants (DRI) ranks among analysts' favorite restaurant stocks.

 

But unlike Panera (PNRA) and Chipotle (CMG), Darden is a value stock rather than a growth stock. Darden owns Olive Garden, Bahama Breeze, Red Lobster, LongHorn Steakhouse, Seasons 52 and high-end steakhouse The Capital Grille. Yesterday, it announced fiscal-first-quarter results, beating analysts' earnings consensus by 3%.

 

The billionaire investor has his own definition of the word and does not agree that the downturn ended more than a year ago.

By Money Staff Sep 23, 2010 11:21AM
Warren Buffett. Credit: (© Paul White/AP)Reuters

Billionaire investor Warren Buffett said the U.S. economy remains in a recession, disputing an assessment by a leading arbiter of economic activity that the downturn ended more than a year ago.


"We're still in a recession," Buffett told CNBC TV in an interview broadcast today. "We're not gonna be out of it for a while, but we will get out."


On Monday, the National Bureau of Economic Research said the world's largest economy ended an 18-month recession in June 2009 but cautioned that its assessment does not mean normal activity has resumed.

 

Despite being a cleaner fuel than oil or coal, it has few supporters in Washington, making it a risky investment.

By Jim Cramer Sep 23, 2010 8:59AM

jim cramerBy Jim Cramer, TheStreet

 

The Senate is at it again. Harry Reid is trying to get the Clean Energy Fuels Subsidy Act passed, this time in a new, stand-alone bill filed Wednesday. Oops, excuse me for being so obvious, but this bill is about giving money back to people who buy truck engines that burn natural gas -- engines made typically with technology from Westport Innovations (WPRT) with its partner Cummins (CMI), an ActionAlertsPlus.com name.

 

Clean Energy Fuels (CLNE) is the nifty little company that owns a huge chain of natural-gas filling stations, a decent business that would go into hyperdrive if this bill passes.

 

But "if" is the big operative word here. Clean Energy and natural-gas backers have tried strenuously to get these tax breaks through, but the subsidies have been trapped within larger unpopular and controversial energy bills. The hope is that this stand-alone bill will be able to slip through without the baggage of environmental regulation.

 

The company's recently released Q2 results show great growth.

By Wall Street Media on MSN Money Sep 22, 2010 4:00PM

Written by Douglas Estadt

 

Ctrip.com International (CTRP) is a web-based, travel service provider that caters to all aspects of a traveler’s needs, from hotel accommodations to flights.  The company’s recently released 2010 Q2 results were more than impressive.  


From our own travel experiences, we have witnessed Ctrip’s presence in kiosks and offices in China’s airports. This company is one among many that stand to profit from China’s booming economy.  


The facts below reiterate why we invested in CTRP today:

 

Brazil's Gerdau is moving ahead with expansion plans in the US and in its home country.

By Jim J. Jubak Sep 22, 2010 3:59PM

Jim JubakBrazilian steel maker Gerdau (GGB) is on the march in the U.S. steel market and back home in Brazil. 


In August, the company acquired the remainder of the shares of its 66%-owned U.S. subsidiary Gerdau Ameristeel. That gives Gerdau a wholly owned platform for expanding in the U.S. market. (The acquisition of the remainder of Gerdau Ameristeel will also reduce that company's cost of capital, since parent Gerdau pays only half as much as the subsidiary in the capital markets.)  


The company didn't let much moss grow on that deal: On Sept. 15, Gerdau announced it would acquire TAMCO, a California mini-mill that produces long-steel products, such as rebar, used in construction. 

 

One investment firm blames its poor earnings on low trading volume. Are other firms susceptible as well?

By Kim Peterson Sep 22, 2010 3:46PM
trader © Comstock/SuperStockStock trading always slows in the summer, but this summer it was especially dead. Blame the rush out of stocks, the poor economy, the newfound interest in saving and a host of other factors.

For Wall Street firms that make significant income from these trades, the summer slowdown is translating into ugly third-quarter earnings. Case in point: The investment banking firm Jefferies Group (JEF), whose quarterly profit was nearly cut in half (shares are down 5% Wednesday in response).

Revenue fell by 22%, mainly due to a steep drop in principal transactions, the Associated Press reported. Needless to say, Jefferies did not meet analysts' expectations. The chief executive said that "trading volumes across the board were painfully slow." 

Some advice for dealing with the sudden price changes that can hit a stock.

By Kim Peterson Sep 22, 2010 2:57PM
Gaps are always interesting on a stock price chart. For whatever reason, something happens that causes a price to suddenly jump up or down.

Often, that occurs when a company announces good or bad news after the bell. The next day's trading opens with a gap, and some investors strategize around it.

Investopedia has a nice breakdown on how to play the gap, and describes the four gaps that are often seen. Some show up at the end of a price pattern, before a new trend breaks or in a last-gasp attempt to jump higher or lower. 

Anheuser-Busch will offer free samples at trendy bars and restaurants in hopes of gaining younger fans.

By Kim Peterson Sep 22, 2010 1:17PM
Beer © CorbisAt one time, Budweiser may have held the title "king of beers." But no longer.

Consumer loyalty has plummeted. Sales are alarmingly low. The under-30 crowd has simply ignored the brand, USA Today reports. When you can't get noticed by one of biggest beer-drinking age groups, you have a problem.

So Anheuser-Busch InBev (BUD) is using the ultimate attention-getting weapon: free beer. Starting next week, Budweiser will begin offering free samples at trendy bars and restaurants, writes USA Today's Bruce Horovitz. 

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[BRIEFING.COM] The stock market ended the Thursday session on an upbeat note with blue chips showing relative strength for the second consecutive day. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (+0.4%) and S&P 500 (+0.3%) settled ahead of the Russell 2000 (+0.2%) and the Nasdaq Composite (+0.1%). It is worth mentioning the benchmark index posted its fourth consecutive gain, registering a new record closing high at 1992.38.

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