Arrow pointing down. (© Getty Images)
Get your defensive plan ready

Indexes might not be in correction territory, but they're getting closer. Now's the time to consider what moves to make.


As news of a buyout propelled JCG shares 16% higher Tuesday, investors were already looking for other potential takeover targets.

By Jim Cramer Nov 24, 2010 9:40AM

jim cramer of thestreet.comWith 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.

By Kim Peterson Nov 23, 2010 4:17PM

Credit: © Christie's, Ho/AP
Caption: the first Apple computer, and the first personal computer with a fully assembled motherboard, at a London auction on Nov. 23One 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

By InvestorPlace Nov 23, 2010 3:43PM

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.


Even amid a global pricing battle, Yingli Green Energy keeps its margins strong.

By Jim J. Jubak Nov 23, 2010 2:17PM
Jim JubakWhile the United States has dithered over how, when and whether to invest in the energy industries of the future, solar cells and panels have become a commodity business. And that gives a huge edge to China's solar manufacturers, with their significantly lower labor costs.

Morningstar estimates that it costs 20% to 30% less to produce a solar panel with traditional solar panel technology in China than in Europe. (Notice, please, the word "traditional." Thin-film solar technologies are an entirely different ballgame.) 

That has led to a global price war at a time of an uncertain demand for solar panels as companies try to grab or maintain market share.

This video game leader is heating up.

By Motley Fool Pick of the Day Nov 23, 2010 12:29PM

Video game © CorbisToday we kick off a new Motley Fool feature on Top Stocks that's geared to what every investor is really looking for: stock recommendations! We'll be highlighting actual recommendations -- backed by solid reasoning and analysis -- from the Fool's top investing minds. Today we start with some fun and games, as Stock Advisor analyst Jason Moser shows us how we can make money off the world's obsession with gaming.


Rex Moore, Motley Fool Top Stocks editor


I admit I'm not totally up to speed with today's video games. For me, it pretty much starts with Galaga and ends with Donkey Kong (and Ms. Pac-Man fits in there somewhere). Don't get me wrong, I enjoy playing video games. I even have a PlayStation 2 at home. Granted, I haven't put many miles on it since my stint in the coldest regions of Kazakhstan, but I still have it.


A survey shows the new smart phone is helping RIM finally compete with the iPhone on customer satisfaction.

By InvestorPlace Nov 23, 2010 9:35AM

Kim here you go:
Credit: © 2010 Research In Motion LimitedBy Jeff Reeves, Editor of


The much-anticipated BlackBerry Torch 9800 from Canada smart-phone company Research In Motion (RIMM) made a big splash when it debuted in August. Now that consumers have had a chance to play with their new RIM smart phones, has the Torch rekindled their love for BlackBerry gadgets or left them cold?


According to a November smart-phone survey by ChangeWave Research, the BlackBerry Torch was well received and could spark a resurgence in much-maligned Research In Motion.


Leading names like Boeing and Caterpillar are bargains if they can deliver on their 2011 forecasts.

By Jim Cramer Nov 23, 2010 9:33AM

jim cramerIs the market expensive? No. Are there cheap stocks? If you don't think that JPMorgan (JPM), Goldman Sachs (GS) and US Bancorp (USB) are cheap, you are nuts.


The whole industrial complex that is Boeing (BA) (presuming Dreamliner in 2012), Caterpillar (CAT), Eaton (ETN), United Technologies (UTX) and Emerson Electric (EMR) isn't expensive if the companies deliver on their 2011 forecasts. And I think they will do far more than that.


The coals and the oils are dirt cheap. The retailers were cheap going into last week, but they have made a move and can be considered fairly valued. Tech? I think the analysts aren't factoring in anything that Tech Data (TECD) said Monday. It is at historically low multiples. Drugs? I can't believe you can buy an Abbott Laboratories (ABT) at such a huge discount to its growth rate.


Despite the Irish bailout announcement, the eurozone's woes are set to continue.

By Anthony Mirhaydari Nov 22, 2010 4:43PM

Over the weekend, Irish politicians succumbed to the inevitable. In the face of dwindling investor confidence, they agreed to negotiate a bailout package with the European Union and the International Monetary Fund. Estimates put the total figure around $136 billion, of which Germany and the United Kingdom will be the largest contributors.


The initial reaction was positive. The euro rallied. European stocks moved higher. But then the truth became clear: The rescue, which follows on the heels of the $150 billion rescue of Greece earlier this year, won't be enough. And that's because Europe's deeply indebted and uncompetitive economies like Ireland and Greece are faced with an impossible task.


The nation is under intense pressure to raise its corporate tax rate, and US companies are worried.

By Kim Peterson Nov 22, 2010 2:21PM
Europe © Corbis U.S. companies are keeping an anxious eye on Ireland's financial crisis. Why? Because a tax policy change there could cost big money.

Companies have long made Ireland a home away from home, funneling revenue and profits through the country because of its tax structure. Ireland's 12.5% corporate tax rate is the lowest in the eurozone.

The question now is whether Ireland can afford to keep that tax rate so low. With the country accepting a bailout package of more than $100 million, its credit rating, at Aa2, faces a "multi-notch downgrade," Moody's Investors Service said

The shortened Thanksgiving week is usually positive for the markets, history says.

By Kim Peterson Nov 22, 2010 1:15PM
Credit: (© Kate Mathis/Getty Images)
Caption: Thanksgiving turkeyThe markets are usually happy during Thanksgiving week, and this year shouldn't be any different.

That's the opinion of the Trading the Odds site, which crunched the numbers to see how this week has performed in the past. The key thing to note is that on Friday, Nov. 19, the S&P 500 was positive in all of these categories:
  • The past week
  • The month to date
  • The quarter to date
  • Semiannual to date
  • Year to date

The video rental company will offer a $7.99 subscription for streaming services, matching Hulu's rate.

By TheStreet Staff Nov 22, 2010 12:00PM

Credit: (© Paul Sakuma/AP)
Caption: Netflix DVDBy Jeanine Poggi, TheStreet


Netflix (NFLX) is going punch for punch with Hulu by matching the Internet video company's streaming prices.


The movie-rental company said on Monday that it will offer its lowest subscription yet, a $7.99 deal for its streaming services only. The plan, which will allow subscribers to watch streaming movies and television shows, is now available to all its customers.


Netflix also raised the price on its plan for unlimited movies (one DVD out at a time) and streaming videos to $9.99 from $8.99. Prices for plans that allow customers to receive more than one DVD at a time are increasing too.


Keep close tabs on the ETFs tracking agribusiness and retail this week.

By TheStreet Staff Nov 22, 2010 10:54AM

Tools for your stock portfolio © CorbisBy Don Dion, TheStreet


Here are five ETFs to watch this week.


1. Market Vectors Agribusiness ETF (MOO)


Throughout the second half of 2010, one of the most closely watched stories has been that of rapid food price increases. This week, investors will gain more insight into how the jump in agricultural commodity prices has affected the farming industry when equipment supplier Deere & Company (DE) reports its quarterly earnings performance Wednesday.


There are several funds ETF investors can consider when looking for exposure to the agriculture industry. MOO provided investors with access to the companies responsible for supplying farmers with the machinery and chemicals needed to produce adequate yields. Deere represents the largest position within MOO's portfolio, commanding more than 8% of the fund's assets.


The holiday season should bring considerable gains for stocks.

By InvestorPlace Nov 22, 2010 10:27AM

By Jamie Dlugosch,

Exchange-traded funds have been popular all year, and the holiday season should be no different.

There are certain times during the year when I feel very comfortable being aggressive in the market. We are entering one of those periods in which stocks are likely to make considerable gains. Can you say Santa Claus rally?


This market will pay up for F5, Apple, Deckers,, Chipotle, Amazon and Netflix.

By Jim Cramer Nov 22, 2010 9:18AM

jim cramerWho can? FADS CAN! I am talking about this market's obsession with uber-growth stocks and how much it is willing to pay for them. I call them FADS CAN, as in "FADS CAN make you money." It's the acronym for F5 (FFIV), Apple (AAPL), Deckers (DECK), (CRM), Chipotle (CMG), Amazon (AMZN) and Netflix (NFLX).

These are the stocks that go down hard on days like last Tuesday but snap back harder, as there's so much earnings momentum that analysts view any dip as a reason to talk about them and re-recommend them.


They don't all go up at once, but the action Friday was instructive of the power of FADS CAN. Take Chipotle. On Thursday, Raymond James (RJF) downgraded Chipotle on valuation. It was the only FADS CAN name that was down. Now take a look at it. Valuations are no good reason to downgrade fast-growing stocks -- at least that's always been my observation of what growth money does. Sure enough, this stock was the first in the green on Friday. They couldn't resist.


Examine the costs and benefits of stretching your IRA

By InvestorPlace Nov 19, 2010 3:51PM

By Chuck Epstein,

Mutual funds information and IRA information is becoming a hotter commodity by the day.

Too many New Year’s resolutions never get realized, but if you want to increase your odds of attaining a more fruitful financial future for you and your heirs, you should consider a stretch IRA.

The tax laws governing Individual retirement Accounts (IRAs) are very specific, but by applying a different type of strategy you and your beneficiaries can reap some significant benefits. This strategy is called a “stretch” IRA and it can be done by almost anyone who owns an IRA.



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