Why stocks are in for a rough ride this week
Stocks in for a rough ride this week

Longtime market bull Jeremy Siegel says investors could realize the market is behind the curve on interest rates.

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While investors of all stripes have been whipped into a frenzy by this stock's rise, headwinds are mounting.

By Anthony Mirhaydari Feb 15, 2012 3:47PM

One of the few bright spots out there has been the dramatic, nearly vertical rise in Apple (AAPL) stock over the past three months. Spurred by huge iPhone sales, excitement over new overseas markets and chatter that the company's $100 billion cash pile will fuel a dividend, shares have jumped nearly 40% into Wednesday's high. With that kind of action in such a popular, familiar and widely held name, who cares about Greece or the eurozone or the budget deficit?

 

Well, not anymore. Issues are looming, such as a dispute in China that threatens to slam the brakes on iPad exports out of the country. There's also the small matter of Apple's massive market capitalization dominating the Nasdaq 100, which will require a rebalancing to prevent buyers of the Nasdaq from simply gaining exposure to a single stock. Last time that happened, taking Apple's weight down to 12.3% from 20.5%, shares dropped 7% in the week that followed. In midday trading, Apple at one point accounted for 9.5 of the 10.8 point gain in the index. 

 

But here's the thing to really worry about: Apple's parabolic, speculative frenzy isn't being supported by other stocks in its sector. Previous examples of this marked major market turning points.

 

These companies are targeting profitable and fast-growing market niches within the technology sector.

By TheStockAdvisors Feb 15, 2012 3:08PM
Image: Woman with camera (© Corbis)By Andy Obermueller, Fast-Track Millionaire

In my latest screen, I looked for profitable and debt-free U.S. companies with a market cap of $900 million to $1 billion.

Here's a look at three technology stocks that made my final list: Shutterfly (SFLY), Sourcefire (FIRE), and LogMeIn (LOGM). 

Canada bank stocks are attractive for their relative stability and safe dividends, but some look to be in line for short-term corrections.

By MoneyShow.com Feb 15, 2012 2:33PM

Image: Canada (© Royalty-Free/Corbis)By Tom Aspray, MoneyShow.com


The impressive gains in financial stocks have certainly helped fuel the rally in the S&P 500. The late-day reversal on Tuesday and strong close set the stage for further gains early Wednesday. This makes a rally to the 1,360 or 1,370 area clearly possible for the S&P 500.


Apparently, gains in the very depressed European bank stocks have revived some of the largest hedge funds, whose performances had been disappointing. The Financial Times reported that these funds had gains ranging from 3% to over 14% since the start of the year, which is mainly attributed to their investments in bank stocks.

 
Tags: BNSRYTD

Long shunned by Wall Street, shares of Big Steel are attracting fresh attention as a turnaround bet.

By Gene Marcial Feb 15, 2012 2:22PM

Image: Bull (© Photographers Choice RF/SuperStock)Once the formidable giant of the steel industry and the world's fifth largest integrated steel manufacturer, U.S. Steel (X) has been among the worst victims of the global recession.


Its stock has been badly battered, down more than 50% in the past year, to $27 a share, as the company's sales and earnings crashed in 2009 and 2010. At its peak in June 2008, shares of Big Steel traded as high as $191.96 a share.

 
Tags: X

New movie-streaming ventures could mean serious trouble.

By Trefis Feb 15, 2012 1:59PM
Image: Hollywood (© Comstock/SuperStock)While Netflix (NFLX) hopes to expand further into international markets, it looks like the online movie-streaming company will face more competition at home.

Verizon
(VZ) recently announced a joint venture with Redbox to launch a streaming service, and now Amazon (AMZN) seems to be planning a stand-alone video-streaming service.  

When an American appears on the cover of Sports Illustrated's swimsuit issue, stocks have a great year.

By Kim Peterson Feb 15, 2012 1:42PM
Between the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue and the New York Giants, this should be a very good year for stocks.

This year's swimsuit cover model is American Kate Upton. And when an American is on the cover of the annual issue, stocks do better than when a non-American appears.

Yes, it's completely silly. But hey, this will give you a business reason to buy the magazine. 

Although management expects costs to increase next quarter, we still see untapped revenue sources for the future.

By Trefis Feb 15, 2012 12:54PM
Image: Woman Paying the Bill (© Fuse/Getty Images)Last week, we summed up OpenTable's (OPEN) fourth-quarter results in OpenTable Shows Resilience Despite Tough Climate. Although the report showed a good performance for the period, shares of the online restaurant reservation company tanked 11% after the release.

The market clearly responded to the bits and pieces of information provided by the company during the earnings call about ongoing changes to its business model. These changes, coupled with the outlook presented by management for the year, warrants a reduction in our price estimate for the company's shares from $65 to $55
Tags: OPEN

After declaring equities safer than bonds and gold, the billionaire sets an example with several purchases.

By TheStreet Staff Feb 15, 2012 12:38PM

By Robert Holmes

 

Warren Buffett recently said stocks will outperform gold and bonds, calling them the safest asset by far. He's putting Berkshire Hathaway's (BRK.B) money where his mouth is, buying up shares of DirecTV (DTV) and IBM (IBM).

 

In a Fortune article published last week, Buffett offered investors a preview of his upcoming annual shareholder letter. Buffett said equities will "prove to be the runaway winner," with the Oracle of Omaha talking down investments in gold and bonds. Regarding the latter, Buffett said bonds are a dangerous asset because they are currency-based and exposed to interest-rate risk.

 

Safeway is upgraded to 'outperform,' while Bank of America is downgraded to 'market perform.'

By MSN Money Partner Feb 15, 2012 12:08PM
Information provided by Theflyonthewall.com

Wednesday's noteworthy upgrades include:
  • Safeway (SWY) upgraded to Outperform from Neutral at Credit Suisse
  • Watson Pharmaceuticals (WPI) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Buckingham
  • Fidelity National (FIS) upgraded to Neutral from Underweight at JPMorgan
 

Hoping to offset soggy cereal sales, the maker of Corn Flakes and Froot Loops will pay $2.7 billion in cash for Procter & Gamble's crispy potato snacks.

By Jonathan Berr Feb 15, 2012 11:40AM

Cereal maker Kellogg (K) announced Wednesday that it plans to buy Pringles from Procter & Gamble (PG) for $2.7 billion in cash. The move will help Kellog offset softening sales in its core century-old cereal business.

Indeed, during the fourth quarter, Kellogg's cereal business in North America was a laggard, posting an anemic sales growth of 1.5%. Internal net sales in Kellogg's North American snacks unit, meanwhile, rose 8.1%, and revenue at the North America frozen and specialty channels surged by 13.5%.

 
Tags: KPG

It stands to earn hundreds of millions of dollars from licensing agreements if it wins its latest round of lawsuits.

By Trefis Feb 15, 2012 10:58AM
After playing defense for months, Google (GOOG) looks to be on the offensive in the patent wars, with its acquisition target Motorola (MMI) providing much-needed ammunition. The targets of these first assaults are Google's two main rivals, Microsoft (MSFT) and Apple (AAPL).

Motorola has already tried to block the sales of the iPhone in Europe, but its lawsuit was rejected by a German Court last week. However, it may get lucky with its patent lawsuit against Microsoft. It is targeting Microsoft's top moneymakers – Windows 7 and Xbox 360 – and some other products with patent infringement lawsuits. (Microsoft owns and publishes Top Stocks, an MSN Money site.)  

With a growing fleet and rising earnings, this is a high-quality, high-yielding play on global trade.

By TheStockAdvisors Feb 15, 2012 10:57AM
By Mark Skousen, High-Income Alert

Seaspan (SSW) is one of the world’s leading charter owners of container ships. Virtually all of the company’s vessels are leased at long-term fixed-rates.

Today, Seaspan has a fleet of 72 vessels, with seven more scheduled for delivery through 2014. All seven container ships already are committed to fixed-rate time charters between 10 and 12 years in duration from delivery. 
Tags: SSW

Two of these could drop big on a market downturn.

By InvestorPlace Feb 15, 2012 10:40AM

By James Brumley


While the market is still technically in an uptrend, things are getting uncomfortably frothy, and a pullback might be closer than you think. A dip would whack ETFs, too -- some of them more than others.


Here's a closer look at the market's most overbought exchange-traded funds, and exactly why they're so vulnerable now.

 

Experts explain their stock picks in the consumer services and technology sectors.

By Zacks.com Feb 15, 2012 9:53AM
Possible investments in consumer services and technology? The Zacks panel of experts offers its stock picks in both sectors in the following video post.

Stocks discussed include Coinstar (CSTR), Netgear (NTGR) and Zynga (ZNGA). Plus, find out what the panel thinks of the latest Greek financial reforms and how they will affect markets. 
Tags: ZNGA

Investors are worrying more about the mismanaged bank now than when the financial situation was much worse.

By Jim Cramer Feb 15, 2012 9:51AM

The downgrade of Bank of America (BAC) Tuesday strikes me as ill-considered. When Citigroup (C) turned lukewarm on the name, I thought that if you are bullish on the market and housing in general, you would have a hard time getting back into this one.

 

I have to admit that Bank of America is the worst of the worst -- the most poorly run of all the major financials. People may hate Goldman Sachs (GS) more, but that's born of jealousy more than incompetence. I also expect earnings in the near term won't be anything to write home about.

 

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[BRIEFING.COM] The major averages posted solid gains ahead of tomorrow's policy directive from the Federal Open Market Committee. The S&P 500 rallied 0.8%, while the Russell 2000 (+0.3%) could not keep pace with the benchmark index.

Equity indices hovered near their flat lines during the first two hours of action, but surged in reaction to reports from the Wall Street Journal concerning tomorrow's FOMC statement. Specifically, Fed watcher Jon Hilsenrath indicated that the statement ... More


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