The $19 billion WhatsApp deal could become the Facebook founder's legacy . . . or his albatross.
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Citi hasn't had as much negative attention as its larger rival this year, but investors should be just as leery.
Plenty of ugly headlines have been written about Bank of America (BAC) lately.
There's the galling hubris of CEO Brian Moynihan, stating that the public is too quick to criticize such an altruistic bank. There's the panicked race to recapitalize, including $5 billion from Warren Buffett and the sale of a roughly $10 billion stake in China construction bank. There was an infuriating plan to gouge BofA customers $5 a month for a debit card, which has since been replaced by a less obtrusive campaign to nickel-and-dime them to death.
The company can leverage HBO's premium content and healthy subscriber base with new broadcast platforms.
HBO subscribers can now watch popular shows and movies on PCs, mobile devices and tablets in addition to the television through partners like Comcast (CMCSA) and Dish Network (DISH). This is a good move by Time Warner to leverage the premium content and healthy subscriber base of HBO.
The SPDR S&P Retail ETF is a good way to take advantage of the start of the holiday shopping season.
Here are five ETFs to watch this week.
1. Market Vectors Agribusiness ETF (MOO)
Food prices have run into headwinds as looming economic turmoil has weighed heavily on investor confidence in the global growth picture. In November, this factor has caused the futures-tracking PowerShares DB Agriculture Fund (DBA) to retreat to previous 2011 lows, returning all of the gains in October.
The global pressure has had less of an impact on the equity-backed MOO. Over the past month, this product has managed to pull ahead and maintain a comfortable lead over DBA. The shortened week ahead will be an important one for MOO with top holding Deere (DE) slated to report earnings on Wednesday. Representing more than 7% of the fund's index, the firm's performance and future outlook will likely play a major role in directing its mid-week action.
The nature of what's about to occur could be horrifying. But then maybe the European Central Bank will come to the rescue.
Each day the odds get slimmer for a resolution in Europe that doesn't immediately destroy trillions in capital. With the Germans seemingly unwilling to come to the aid of the profligate nations, there simply aren't many ways out.
What's the most likely one? The sovereign nations want to save themselves and the depositors at their institutions. That means they have to play hardball with the owners of the equity and the debt of the European banks.
The Aden sisters, resource specialists for 30 years, look at the prospects for stocks, bonds, gold & silver.
Caution remains the watchword, as stocks are not yet out of the woods. We recommended selling stocks on August 4 and we’ve been out of the stock market since and continue to feel that it’s best to stay on the sidelines to see how things evolve.
Meanwhile, gold, bonds and the U.S. dollar continue to be the main safe havens, so stay with them.
The company is finally producing and delivering planes. Still, the stock has become very difficult to value.
The company adds a vocal critic to its board, which may help it regain the faith of the investing community.
The directors of Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) are making changes after years of being described as blundering, pathetic and a "bunch of clowns." In an effort to please investors, the board has done the unthinkable: brought in an activist investor.
It could be a couple of weeks until we know the true effect of the latest US debt debate in the markets, but there are still no clear signs that a year-end rally has been written off.
By Tom Aspray, MoneyShow.com
Stocks had a pretty rough week. Fitch’s warning about the risks that US lenders could face if the Euro debt contagion spreads shocked the markets before the close on Wednesday. The selling continued on Thursday, but stocks traded in a narrow range on Friday and the close was mixed.
The financial sector came under further pressure after the report, as the Select Sector SPDR Financial (XLF) finished the week 9% lower. As I discussed in “Stick with ’Green Light’ Sectors”, the weekly relative performance, or RS analysis continues to suggest that this sector is underperforming the S&P 500.
The company has waited 15 years to hit this milestone -- and its toehold in the business market is what got it there.
But that number has been a long time coming for Apple (AAPL). The company finally passed 5% of the world PC market in the third quarter, analysts say. It hasn't hit that mark for 15 years.
For years, Apple's worldwide market share was stuck at a measly 2% to 3%, according to this chart from AppleInsider.
After weeks of blithely ignoring the eurozone debt crisis, investors are scrambling for the exits.
Stocks have been working extra-hard over the past two months to throw as many people off the scent as possible. There was the harrowing decline into the early October low, which created one of the deepest oversold conditions in market history. Then there was the epic rebound into the late October high that average investors caught only the tail end of based on sentiment and fund flow data.
The precious metal may be building a base for the next rally, although folks who don't already own it may be best served by waiting a little longer.
By Tom Aspray, MoneyShow.com
The $54 decline in the February Comex Gold contract Thursday took the futures to two-week lows, while SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) lost 2.5%. The rather steep decline did not seem to drive headlines like it would have a few months ago.
Most analysts seem to be pointing to the drop in crude oil prices and the firmer U.S. dollar for gold’s decline. Another factor may be the missing $600 million in MF Global customer funds, which has jarred the confidence of futures traders around the world.
The investor surprised many with his IBM purchase. But a number of tech stocks actually have very Buffett-like characteristics.
Warren Buffett caught the investment world's eye this week, revealing that Berkshire Hathaway(BRK.A) has been building at least a $10 billion position in tech giant IBM (IBM) over the past few quarters as well as a smaller stake in Intel(INTC).
The moves were a surprise to many, since Buffett has long resisted tech investments, preferring instead to target firms with simpler, easy-to-understand businesses. In Berkshire's 1999 letter to shareholders, he explained his tech-sector reticence this way:
While investing heavily on projects to stimulate domestic natural gas demand, the producer has also been moving to increase higher-margin liquids production
With gas prices forecast to remain in the doldrums for the short- to medium-term, Chesapeake has launched a two-pronged strategy to tackle the low margin environment.
A flat or smaller US defense budget would hurt these contractors.
By Lindsey Bell, TheStreet
Defense-industry stocks such as General Dynamics (GD) and Lockheed Martin (LMT) may suffer a double whammy if Congress fails to pass a budget for the Department of Defense and the so-called supercommittee trims costs.
FBR analyst Patrick McCarthy said there's a chance the Department of Defense may operate under a "continuing resolution" next year, meaning funding would remain little changed or fall. That's never happened before.
Forgoing bonds for high-yield stocks amid the current volatility isn't as safe as you might think.
By Jeff Brown, MainStreet
With interest-bearing accounts paying practically nothing and bonds paying little more, many income-oriented investors are turning to dividend-paying stocks. But a fresh look at the numbers shows investors tread this path at their peril.
"More than $18 billion has poured into the Lipper Equity Income category . . . through September 2011, the largest amount of cash flow of any Lipper equity fund category year to date," the Vanguard Group reported earlier this week. "This seems to suggest investors may be looking beyond bonds in search of income."
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The apparel chain takes a hard hit after blaming the weather for its quarterly sales decline. But cold temperatures don't explain the drop in full-year sales as well.
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[BRIEFING.COM] The major averages finished the Tuesday session near their lows with the Russell 2000 (-1.0%) leading the slide. The S&P 500 lost 0.5% with nine sectors ending in the red.
Equities indices started the day with modest gains and spent the first two hours of action in the neighborhood of their flat lines. Although the early trade lacked clear sector leadership, that could have been overlooked due to the strength among heavily-weighted sectors like health care (-0.3%), ... More
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