Geopolitical crises are taking a toll on stocks as we head into the seasonally weak month of August.
- Moody's: RadioShack is running out of cash
The retailer may not have a financial cushion to fund its turnaround plan.
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Why all the gloom and doom? US businesses are enjoying massive profit margins and robust sales.
By Chris Stuart, TheStreet
That's what headlines from the past couple of weeks are saying. For example:
"Shiller Sees 'Substantial' Probability of Recession"
"Nearly Half in US Think New Recession Is Coming"
"We're on the Verge of a Great, Great Depression"
What's everyone so worried about? Jobs, housing, consumer confidence, Greece -- the list goes on. But the pundits are ignoring one big fact: Corporate America is alive and well.
Keep an eye on funds tracking transportation, the Swiss franc, emerging markets and technology.
By Don Dion, TheStreet
Here are five ETFs to watch this week.
Many investors turn to FedEx's reports for a read on the global economy. A strong report and outlook would indicate that consumers and businesses are becoming more confident.
Investors are way too skittish. Stay long this week
It was not easy by any means, but the market managed to finish last week with a gain. The fractional increase in value ended a six-week losing streak.
The gains were a bit of a mirage.
The major indexes may have closed higher, but many stocks traded lower. Technology stocks in particular were hit hard. Losses in that very important industry suggest that investors are still skeptical about the economy and future corporate profits.
Much of the weakness can be attributed to worries about the debt crisis in Greece. There is very real fear that a default will create a chain-reaction collapse in global finances. Until that fear subsides, stocks will struggle.
I will never sell stocks based on fear. As such, the ETF to buy this week is the iShares S&P North America Technology and Multimedia Fund (IGN).
The charts are signaling that the only way to go from here may be down. Oil shares are the most vulnerable.
Sometimes you just have to own how really bad this market is. When I went through the S&P 500 ($INX) charts this morning with an eye toward the collapse of Greece and the new battleground of Italy that's developing, I couldn't help but notice two things:
2. The charts are screaming that we are headed into a second recession that's going to be a real doozy.
I want to write from the outset that I don't see things that way. I see many companies reiterating strength, and I see many companies that haven't seen strength about to get some, notably the companies that buy commodities.
But the stocks are signaling total calamity, and it is important to know that.
Sanford Bernstein downgrades Research In Motion. GE reaches a labor agreement. Boeing gets a 6-jet order from Qatar Airways.
By Andrea Tse, TheStreet
Updated at 9:20 a.m. ET
BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (RIMM) has been cut to "underperform" from "market perform" by Sanford Bernstein. Shares were falling 1.8% to $27.25.
Conglomerate General Electric (GE) and its two largest unions have reached a tentative four-year labor deal that affects more than 15,000 GE workers. GE shares were down 0.7% to $18.37.
Qatar Airways said it will order six Boeing (BA) 777 jets, with a total value of $1.7 billion. Boeing heads into the Paris Air Show on Monday with more orders this year than rival Airbus.
Indicators are mixed, and events next week could tip the scales to the bears or bulls, but sideways trading in the short term seems likely to be followed by a solid rebound.
Boeing will increase production as it ups its expectations for aircraft orders.
The stock slips on worries that revenue growth is slowing. So is it time to buy?
The stock has slid 24% since peaking at $642.97 intraday on Jan. 19, and now is pretty much where it was three years ago. Its forward price-to-earnings ratio is a mere 13.8, and most analysts think the stock is undervalued.
Google hasn't become a slow-growth company, but the stock market is treating it like one. So is it time to buy Google shares?
Let's go over some of the reasons investors are disappointed in the company:
Donor pays $2.63 million to eat steak with Buffett. Dick Bove calls out Cohan for "hot air" comment. J.C. Penney shares take a wild ride.
By Gregg Greenberg, TheStreet
5. Lunch lunacy
What kind of value investor forks over $2.63 million for a steak lunch?
The anonymous bidder who ponied up this outlandish amount to charity will get to dine with the king of all value investors, Berkshire Hathaway's (BRK.B) Warren Buffett.
One of the company's largest stakeholders criticizes management and says he's dumping half of his holdings.
Not long ago, it seemed the company could do no wrong. Its BlackBerry device was a must-have for business and a status symbol for executives. RIM had the business world in its palm.
But the company and its stock has been on a devastating downward spiral, punctuated by disappointing quarterly earnings like the report we saw Thursday (Charley Blaine has the gory details here).
And now, even some of RIM's top investors are publicly bashing the company.
Bargain-hunters return after one of the worst sell-offs in decades.
Investors have suffered a crisis of confidence over the past few weeks as all the negative factors I started discussing in my columns and blogs months ago -- the eurozone crisis, inflationary pressure, high gas prices and Japan's supply-chain problems -- replaced an air of confidence and optimism with fear and distrust.
As a result, by some measures, stocks fell to their most oversold levels since 1999, as I discussed in my most recent blog post. And then they continued falling.
But now it appears that the turn I've been writing about is finally at hand as the economic fundamentals improve and bargain-hunters enter the fray. You could see this in Friday's report on leading economic indicators, which jumped more than expected, thanks to an increase in the yield curve (the subject of my previous column), consumer expectations and permits for new housing. And you can see it in the way bullish investors have initiated new uptrends in solid companies like United Technologies (UTX) and Kraft (KFT) by bidding shares up and over their 18-day moving averages.
This is just the start.
The consumer-review website is reportedly getting ready to file in August.
The website publishes consumer reviews about plumbers, roofers, mechanics and other service providers and charges users a membership fee. In the Phoenix market, for example, the fee is $39 for one year. The company also gets revenue from advertising.
Perhaps I shouldn't dismiss Angie's List at first glance. Perhaps the company has huge plans that warrant an IPO. We'll know more when it files its paperwork to go public. The company has picked Bank of America (BAC) to lead the IPO, Bloomberg reports.
What is Pottermore, and what does it mean? Rumors abound of a new venture.
What's next for Harry Potter? Rowling's people say it's definitely not a new book. An editor at the Harry Potter news site HPANA got a sneak preview of Pottermore and said it's "breathtaking in scope, detail and sheer beauty."
Check out this video report about the mysterious new site and what it means for Harry Potter fans.
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Their stocks have held up surprisingly well and could lead the market's next leg higher. These 3 might be worth a nibble.
The critics nuke Duke, and Pandora's out of the box.
By Rick Aristotle Munarriz
Stupidity is contagious. It gets us all from time to time. Even respectable companies can catch it. Let's take a look at five dumb financial events this week that may make your head spin.
Wait a minute. Weren't these the same four analysts that took the Wi-Fi hot-spot operator public at $13.50 just a month ago? Oh, they were.
Despite its profitability and slow yet determined growth, shares of Boingo Wireless were smacked down to $7.65 before Monday's orchestrated CPR session. There's nothing dumb about standing behind the poorly received stock that these four analysts helped take public, but why did Pacific Crest issue a price target of $13?
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[BRIEFING.COM] The stock market punctuated July with a broad-based retreat that sent the S&P 500 lower by 2.0% with all ten sectors ending in the red. The benchmark index posted a monthly decline of 1.5%, while the Russell 2000 (-2.3%) underperformed to end the month lower by 6.1%.
To get a better feel for what led to today's retreat, we'd like to look back to Wednesday, when the market had ample reason to rally, but did not. Instead, it ended basically flat after a sloppy day of ... More
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