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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Despite facing worst-case scenario, Lockheed is flying high.

By Gene Marcial Feb 2, 2012 1:06PM

Plans by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta  to substantially slash the defense budget have  placed contractors, such as the makers of military aircraft and weapons, in a bind.


But the stock of Lockheed Martin (LMT) is still flying high. It closed unchanged at $83.52 a share on Feb. 1, 2012, almost at its 52-week high of $83.72 reached on Jan. 19, 2012. And it's way up from its 52-week low of $66.36, where it tumbled on Aug. 10, 2011.

 
Tags: LMT

A peek at the charts shows there may be a reversal in sentiment coming soon.

By Stock Traders Daily Feb 2, 2012 12:50PM

Image: Arrow Up (© Photodisc/SuperStock)Everyone is embracing a Golden Cross pattern in the moving average of the market, and bullish prognosticators say that when this has happened in the past, the market sees an average 4.6% increase in the following six months 75% of the time (What happened in the other 25%?). 


A Golden Cross occurs when a security's 50-day moving average crosses above its 200-day moving average. In this case, we're talking about the Golden Cross in the Standard & Poor's 500 Index ($INX).

 

Open Text is upgraded to 'buy,' while JDSU is downgraded to 'neutral.'

By MSN Money Partner Feb 2, 2012 12:22PM
Information provided by Theflyonthewall.com

Thursday's noteworthy upgrades include:
  • Dell (DELL) upgraded to Overweight from Underweight at JP Morgan
  • Franklin Resources (BEN) upgraded to Neutral from Underweight at JP Morgan
  • Concur (CNQR) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at UBS
  • Open Text (OTEX) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Stifel Nicolaus
 

A panel of experts explains which buys make sense.

By Zacks.com Feb 2, 2012 11:33AM

The Zacks panel of experts gives its stock picks for aluminum and specialty retail. Stocks covered include Kaiser Aluminum (KALU), Coach (COH) and Hibbet Sports (HIBB). Plus the experts cover the latest GDP data and the Federal Reserve's plan to keep rates low.

 
Tags: COH

As deepwater drilling grows, so will demand for Helix's safety gear.

By InvestorPlace Feb 2, 2012 11:00AM
Scott Gibson/CorbisBy Aaron Levitt

The explosion and resulting oil spill at BP's (BP) Deepwater Horizon drilling rig in April 2010 helps underscore the dangers involved with our new energy reality. As worldwide oil demand continues to grow, finding new sources of supply have become a paramount mission, leading exploration and production (E&P) companies to drill in deeper and deeper waters off our coasts.


The potential payoffs are huge, with some of the most prolific oil and gas fields being discovered in recent times. However, to drill in these deep waters, drillers must pay more attention to safety than ever. With the number of lawsuits and fines for "rulebreakers" continuing to rise, producers will undoubtedly devote more capital expenditures to dealing with these issues. For investors, one small oil services company that provides these safety measures could be a great portfolio play.

 

DirectTV growth has been rapid and there is still potential for more.

By Trefis Feb 2, 2012 10:09AM
Frare/Davis Photography/Brand X/CorbisDirecTV (DTV) and Dish Network (DISH) have been longstanding rivals in the satellite TV market. While the former has flourished, the latter has struggled to hold on to its subscriber base in recent years as telcos such as AT&T (T) and Verizon (VZ) have expanded their fiber-optic pay-TV services rapidly.

Although Dish has started to make some critical investments to make itself more valuable, its current valuation and our estimates for the two companies present an interesting relative view of DirecTV's success compared to Dish's. The two very similar companies have seen a noticeable divergence in terms of their subscriber bases and overall performance, and the magnitude of difference in their growth is astounding. 

Can the luxury home builder maintain its positive numbers?

By Benzinga Feb 1, 2012 7:25PM

Image: Construction Workers Carrying Window (© Steve Hix/Somos Images/CorbisBy Samuel Richter, Benzinga Staff Writer


Thanks to higher construction spending, American home builders received another boost of optimism, with Toll Brothers (TOL) closing up 3% Wednesday.


According to a new report released by the Commerce Department, building outlays increased by 1.5% in December, far beyond analyst estimates of 0.5%. The figures reflect the biggest gain in new construction since August 2011.

 

The hotel chain has outperformed estimates in each of the last four quarters.

By Zacks.com Feb 1, 2012 6:09PM

Image: Hotel maid (© Simon Jarratt/Corbis)By: Zacks Equity Research

 

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide (HOT) is slated to release fourth-quarter and full-year results Thursday before the opening bell. The current Zacks Consensus Estimate for the fourth quarter is 57 cents per share in profit on revenue of $1.4 billion. For 2011, the Zacks Consensus Estimates for earnings and revenue are pegged at $1.79 billion and $5.8 billion, respectively.

 

The current Zacks Consensus Estimates for the fourth quarter and fiscal 2011 reflect year-over-year growth of 9.82% and 42.92%, respectively.

 
Tags: HOTMAR

Revelations that the company has been betting against the homeowners it has refused to help warrant the firing of its ineffectual overseer.

By MoneyShow.com Feb 1, 2012 5:44PM

Image: Home with foreclosure sign in front yard © Ariel Skelley/Stockbyte/Getty ImagesBy Igor Greenwald


You know that embarrassing relative you can't quite disown and most certainly can't control? It turns out Uncle Sam has a couple of those, known as Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.


Freddie and Fannie are a power couple all right, with seemingly unchecked power to generate regret.


For conservatives, they're proof that the housing bubble and subsequent financial crash were the fault of the government.

 

The prospect of an operating loss for the current quarter was enough to cause investors to throw up their hands in disgust and walk away from the stock.

By The Fiscal Times Feb 1, 2012 5:40PM
Image: young woman reading from Kindle (© Reggie Casagrande/Photographer)By Suzanne McGee, The Fiscal Times
 
Investors have a zero-tolerance policy for companies that disappoint these days, and that's why they spent much of Wednesday unloading shares of Amazon (AMZN) after the company's lackluster fourth-quarter earnings report late Tuesday. (The shares opened below $174 after closing the previous session above $194.)

It’s not so much that the company’s results fell dramatically short of expectations -- they didn't -- but that the contrast between higher revenues and sliding profits appeared more dramatic in light of Amazon’s somewhat bearish projections for the first quarter. 

Does its appearance in the charts say much about where the market is headed?

By Kim Peterson Feb 1, 2012 5:23PM
Image: Crystal ball (© Brand X Pictures/Jupiterimages)Traders are rejoicing that a "Golden Cross" briefly appeared in the Standard & Poor's 500 Index ($INX). But does it actually mean that much?

Some think so. In fact, the Golden Cross seems to be a better indicator about where the stock market is headed than the other side of the coin, which would be the "Death Cross." The S&P 500 usually gains about 10.2% in the 12 months following a Golden Cross, The Wall Street Journal reports.

The Death Cross? Despite its terrifying name, it leads to an average 3.5% gain for the S&P 500.  

Changes to the company's privacy policy promise to exchange value for information.

By Motley Fool Pick of the Day Feb 1, 2012 4:23PM

By Tim Beyers

 

Skeptics and cheerleaders alike have long wondered when Google (GOOG) would become Big Brother. Mark Jan. 27 as the day it happened.

 

Four days ago, the Big G announced changes to its privacy policy that, in effect, allow all of its distinct products to actively share and act upon data comprehensively. You can look at this in one of two ways:

 

This monthly scan is helpful for identifying which stocks may be too risky for new buying. It also turns up a pair of compelling 'buy' candidates.

By MoneyShow.com Feb 1, 2012 3:24PM

Image: Arrow Up (© Image Source/Photolibrary)By Tom Aspray, MoneyShow.com


The stock market's best January performance since 1997 has certainly changed the outlook of many investors. 


In January 1997, the S&P 500 gained 6.1% versus 4.4% in 2012. In 1997, the S&P 500 rose another 4% and peaked on February 22 before starting a seven-week decline that took the index below the prior year's close.

 

All investors can do is wait and see after the online retailer reports lackluster sales.

By Jim Cramer Feb 1, 2012 3:05PM

By Jim Cramer

 

Amazon (AMZN)? Buy? Sell? I know you may not want to hear this, but I don't know. When I finished that conference call, I was scratching my head. Big-time.

 

First, I expected that the company, which told us that it would spend to win, would blow out the revenues. Nope. It posted unexciting revenues and made me feel that its growth is slowing.

 

EU regulators may have killed the merger with Deutsche Boerse, but the NYSE remains a very attractive business -- and an inexpensive stock.

By The Fiscal Times Feb 1, 2012 2:58PM
NYSEBy Suzanne McGee, The Fiscal Times

The stock price of NYSE Euronext (NYX) sank 1.8% in trading on its own exchange Tuesday as traders and investors braced for word that the European Commission would block the company's proposed merger with Deutsche Boerse AG as being anticompetitive. Their fears were realized as the EU ruled against the merger Wednesday.

Strictly speaking, the regulators are probably right: In the short run, at least, the merger would have left investors with fewer independently owned trading platforms. But does that really matter in the global financial world we inhabit? And should investors really respond to the prospect of the failed merger by dumping their holdings in NYSE Euronext? 

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