You can still find small-cap superstars
Small-cap superstars still abound

There are some picks in this sector that have excellent valuations and strong earnings growth.


A $500 price target for the stock looks too low, given the company's strong sales of iPhones and iPads.

By Jim Cramer Jan 25, 2012 1:45PM

By Jim Cramer

The story arc is remarkable. Less than two years ago, Apple (AAPL) introduced a product that nobody initially seemed to be able to figure out what to do with, the iPad. It didn't take long for people to figure out that the iPad pretty much did everything anybody would ever want it to do, serving as a text tool, a movie screen, a tv screen, a records keeper, a teaching tool, you name it.

As soon as the other companies figured out how revolutionary the iPad was, they instantly copied it and offered what many critics said were superior products.


Is the beleaguered maker of heavy construction material a buyout target?

By Gene Marcial Jan 25, 2012 1:42PM

Image: Construction workers (© image100/Corbis)The U.S. construction industry continues to be in the dumps, and companies like Texas Industries (TXI), a maker of heavy construction materials that has been losing money since 2009, remain under tremendous pressure. For fiscal 2011, Texas Industries posted another loss that was worse than analysts had expected. 

Its stock -- which dropped from $46 a share to a 52-week low of $21 in November 2011 -- has since been moving up, closing at $31 on Wednesday. But analysts who track the stock remain bearish, with none of them recommending it as a "buy." They expect TXI to remain on the ropes and continue to rate it as "underperform."

Tags: TXI

The tech giant's market cap jumped $37 billion after record fourth-quarter results, and the board has a mountain of cash to put to work.

By The Fiscal Times Jan 25, 2012 1:04PM
Apple EconomyBy Suzanne McGee, The Fiscal Times

After the death of Steve Jobs Apple (AAPL) investors wondered if the company would continue to thrive.

That question was answered resoundingly late Tuesday when Apple reported a blockbuster fourth quarter -- the best on record for both sales and revenues. Total revenue soared 73% from year-earlier levels, meaning that the company booked more in sales in that fourth quarter than it had in the other nine months of 2011. 

Starbucks is upgraded while McDonald's is downgraded. Zynga is initiated with a 'buy' at Goldman.

By MSN Money Partner Jan 25, 2012 12:25PM
Information provided by

Wednesday's noteworthy upgrades include:
  • Starbucks (SBUX) upgraded to Outperform from Perform at Oppenheimer
  • CSX (CSX) upgraded to Outperform from Neutral at RW Baird
  • Regions Financial (RF) upgraded to Outperform from Sector Perform at RBC Capital
  • Brinker (EAT) upgraded to Buy from Hold at KeyBanc
  • Watson Pharma (WPI) upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at Morgan Stanley
  • Alkermes (ALKS) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at MKM Partners

A huge quarterly performance sends shares of the company up 6%.

By Kim Peterson Jan 25, 2012 12:07PM
Image: Arrow Up (© Photodisc/Photolibrary)Updated 5:20 p.m. ET

(AAPL) smashed through its former 52-week high Wednesday to once again become the world's most valuable company -- for less than a day.

Investors are still reeling from Apple's truly momentous earnings report for the final quarter of last year. We were expecting big numbers, but nothing this big: Profit more than doubled in a year to $13.1 billion, and revenue soared 73% to top $46 billion.

And Apple's cash holdings have grown to almost $98 billion. Its cash alone is worth more than all but 52 companies on Earth, notes Dennis Berman of The Wall Street Journal. 

EU officials uphold original decision: ViaGuara sounds too much like Viagra.

By Jonathan Berr Jan 25, 2012 11:44AM
A European Union high court on Wednesday ruled that a Polish company can't market a sports drink under the name ViaGuara because it is too similar to Pfizer's (PFE) famous little blue pill that treats erectile dysfunction, Viagra.

Warsaw-based Viaguara SA applied for an EU trademark in 2005, but was refused. The company appealed the decision to the EU General Court, which upheld the earlier decision. Despite the ruling, the company still advertises ViaGuara on the web. 
Tags: PFE

For both growth and income, here are 3 attractive tech stocks with dividend reinvestment plans.

By TheStockAdvisors Jan 25, 2012 10:57AM
Maciej Frolow/Brand X/Getty ImagesBy Chuck Carlson, The DRIP Investor

In our latest special report, we featured three favorite investment ideas for 2012 -- all from the technology sector.

Here's a look at Cisco Systems (CSCO), Motorola Solutions (MSI) and Qualcomm (QCOM). These three stocks each offer dividend reinvestment plans and are attractive ideas for the coming year. 

Hang in there, Kodak. Bankruptcy doesn't have to mean the end.

By InvestorPlace Jan 25, 2012 10:29AM

Cory Docken/Spots Illustration/JupiterimagesBy Jeff Reeves

Eastman Kodak (EKDKQ) surprised few investors by declaring bankruptcy last week. It was clear to many business insiders back in September that Kodak was headed to zero after a panicked move to tap its credit line. As those who have watched the corporate history of Kodak know, years of big debts and a lack of innovation have been weighing on the iconic photography company for quite some time.

So is bankruptcy the end of Kodak? Will the brand disappear forever?


The company's Yi platform could be instrumental in maintaining its dominant search market share in China.

By Trefis Jan 25, 2012 10:15AM
Baidu (BIDU) gained significantly from online advertising growth in China in 2011, and its eyes are now fixed on expanding beyond its home country.

Stopping this advance could be Google (GOOG), which is looking to reboot its relations in China after making its much publicized exit from Chinese soil. This could be especially important for Google given the explosion of Android-powered devices that use Google as the default search option. 

Even amid restrained consumer spending, the retailer has shown revenue growth as it expands product lines.

By Benzinga Jan 24, 2012 7:14PM

Image: Credit card (© Burke/Triolo Productions/BrandX/Getty Images)By Jay Wong, Benzinga Staff Writer

Coach (COH) announced a positive earnings report Tuesday, with second-quarter profit of $1.18 a share beating analyst estimates of $1.15. The company also reported sales of $1.45 billion, surpassing estimates of $1.43 billion.

The company has shown strong revenue growth since emerging from the recession, as it has expanded product lines with more affordable accessories and a larger men's collection. In its earnings call, the company stated that the men's business is on track to double sales this year.


Don't blindly accept market multiples as evidence of value.

By Motley Fool Pick of the Day Jan 24, 2012 6:18PM

By Dan Caplinger


The first thing most investors learn about valuation is that a low P/E ratio means that a stock is cheap. But the next thing they learn is that buying a stock based on the P/E alone is fraught with potential disaster -- and if you don't understand what's behind both a stock's price and its most recent earnings, you're liable to make huge mistakes picking stocks.


Nothing beats a cheap investment
Recently, a report from Bespoke Investment Group said that stocks are cheaper than they've been since at least 1990. The report looked at a number of valuation measures, including ratios of price to earnings and price to book value, as well as dividend yields. In particular, the report pointed to several facts:


The company beats expectations on revenue and profit.

By Kim Peterson Jan 24, 2012 6:04PM
Updated at 9:40 a.m. ET Wednesday

(AAPL) is back to its pattern of blowing away analyst estimates.

The company beat Wall Street expectations Tuesday for the December quarter, reporting record profit of $13.06 billion, or $13.87 a share, up from a profit of $6 billion, or $6.43 a share, a year earlier. Revenue was a record $46.33 billion, up from $26.74 billion a year earlier.

Analysts had expected $10.14 a share in profit on revenue of $39.1 billion for the quarter ended Dec. 31. Shares were up about 6% Wednesday.  

The stock is extremely volatile. And while that's not unexpected, it is a reason to sell into the current rally.

By Jim J. Jubak Jan 24, 2012 4:22PM
On Dec. 9, Titan International (TWI) told Wall Street to expect 2011 sales of around $1.4 billion (slightly below the Wall Street consensus of $1.48 billion) and 2012 sales of $1.7 billion to $1.9 billion (consensus stood at $1.82 billion).

Nothing wrong with those numbers -- or with Wall Street’s estimates of a whopping 194% increase in earnings for 2011 from 2010 or with the 59% earnings growth rate projected for 2012.

Which companies got praised or panned the most following their earnings reports?

By Kim Peterson Jan 24, 2012 3:47PM
Image: Woman with computer (© Don Mason/Blend Images/Corbis)Earnings season is in full swing, and already we're seeing some stocks emerge with a nice share price boost while others get hammered.

Apple (AAPL) will give one of the most highly anticipated reports of the quarter after the close Tuesday. Expect some buzz after Yahoo (YHOO) reports later Tuesday as well.

Bespoke Investment Group has a nice roundup of the best-performing and worst-performing stocks so far this earnings season. These are the stocks that saw the biggest gains or losses in the day following the earnings report. 

While the fourth-quarter results are encouraging, it may be too soon to say that banks are set to soar this year.

By The Fiscal Times Jan 24, 2012 2:57PM
bank earningsBy Suzanne McGee, The Fiscal Times

Wall Street analysts like Barclays Capital's Jason Goldberg went into the new year predicting that bank earnings would jump.

Now that biggest in the business have reported their earnings for the fourth quarter of 2011, the numbers suggest there's at least some hope of that happening.  


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[BRIEFING.COM] The major averages ended the midweek session on a flat note after spending the day inside narrow ranges. The S&P 500 hovered near the 2,000 mark for the majority of the trading day, but slumped to new lows during the last hour of action. The index then returned to its flat line, where it settled for the day. For the third day in a row, participation left a lot to be desired with just 487 million shares changing hands at the NYSE.

Equity indices opened with slim gains, ... More


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