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They're surging as we enter a strong seasonal period. Here are 2 solid performers to buy on pullbacks. Plus: A lucrative play from last year that may pay off again.

By MoneyShow.com Oct 14, 2011 11:16AM

By Tom Aspray, MoneyShow.com

As stocks continue to push higher, investors looking to increase their equity exposure are faced with a tough choice: look to buy stocks in sectors or industry groups that have not yet participated in the stock market rally, or look for good entry points in the strongest areas?

For me, this decision is generally made easier if I look at at two different factors. The first is how an industry group or sector is doing relative to a major average such as the S&P 500. It is the trend of this relative performance, or RS analysis, which is most important. Second, I look at the seasonal trends of certain industry groups or sectors.


Times are tough, but they're toughest in these fields.

By InvestorPlace Oct 14, 2011 10:21AM
By Jeff Reeves, InvestorPlace.com

Here’s the financial news understatement of the century: It’s a tough job market out there right now. Layoffs have slowed down, but hiring has yet to heat up to a strong enough pace to meet the demand for employment.

A recent look at the ratio of unemployed per job opening shows that the number of applicants still is uncomfortably high. There were 4.6 unemployed people for every job opening in August — up from 4.3 in July — according to recently released Labor Department numbers. The ratio is down from its recession peak of almost 7 but still is pretty ugly and twice the 2008 ratio.

Tags: BAChsbc

It's the only company that boasts the full Internet trinity of mobile, social and cloud.

By Jim Cramer Oct 14, 2011 8:55AM

the streetWhen you have a quarter as amazing as Google (GOOG) reported last night, you can stiff analysts over and over and refuse to tell them anything they want and still get away with it.


Yep, it was that amazing. Suddenly every initiative is working. Suddenly Google+ looks like it is a serious challenge to Facebook. Suddenly YouTube has become a money maker of such proportion that the acquisition now looks ingenious.


Suddenly we see that Chrome -- which, along with Apple (AAPL) iOS, is dominating the growing smartest phone market -- will be boosted significantly by the Motorola Mobility (MMI) acquisition.


Sure, JPMorgan Chase is one of the strongest banks in the long run. But the long run doesn't matter to investors right now.

By Jim J. Jubak Oct 13, 2011 4:45PM
The market isn’t going to cut even the strongest banks any slack -- or look beyond the current quarter.

That’s the message in the market’s reaction to JPMorgan Chase's (JPM) third-quarter earnings report, released before the New York market opened. The bank reported better than expected earnings -- on a one-time accounting adjustment -- but said revenue grew by just 0.1% from the third quarter of 2010.

JPMorgan Chase shares closed Thursday down 4.8% to $31.60.

The embattled company is still spending, despite angering customers with some bizarre business decisions recently.

By Kim Peterson Oct 13, 2011 4:34PM
Cash flow problems? Ha! Netflix (NFLX) doesn't see it that way.

The company has struck another pricey deal to add more shows to its video-streaming library. This time, Netflix gets more than 700 hours of old episodes that ran on The CW Network. 
Tags: cbsNFLX

A 3-day BlackBerry outage is just another stumble for the tech world's Inspector Clouseau.

By InvestorPlace Oct 13, 2011 2:22PM
By Tom Taulli, InvestorPlace.com

It's hard to believe that just a few years ago shares of Research In Motion (RIMM) were trading at $144. Now they are at a miserable $23.

It's easy to point at the dominance of Apple's (AAPL) iPhone and iPad as reasons for the fall, but that is far from the whole story. The mobile industry as a whole is growing at hyperspeed, and numerous players are showing success, such as HTC, Samsung (SSNLF) and even Amazon (AMZN), whose Kindle Fire is gaining lots of traction.

In other words, RIM's problems are mostly self-made. And especially lately, the company has become the Inspector Clouseau of the tech world. The latest mega-blunder was this week's worldwide outage of RIM's BlackBerry service.


An analyst says a more affordable model could be in the works for early 2012 that could challenge Amazon's Kindle Fire.

By TheStreet Staff Oct 13, 2011 2:22PM

By James Rogers, TheStreet TheStreet


Apple (AAPL) may be planning to launch a low-price "mini" iPad in early 2012, according to Ticonderoga Securities analyst Brian White, who says that the tablet could present a challenge for Amazon's (AMZN) new Kindle Fire.


"Our research is pointing to the unveiling of a lower-priced iPad in first few months of 2012," White explained in a note. "That is aimed at expanding the company's market potential by tapping into a more price sensitive consumer segment."


"Essentially, this 'iPad mini' will also fend off the recently announced Amazon Kindle Fire that addresses the low-end tablet market with a $199 price tag," he wrote.


The move could coincide with the launch of a competing service from Hollywood studios.

By Kim Peterson Oct 13, 2011 1:00PM
Offering movies in the cloud has long been a dream for Apple (AAPL). Imagine buying a film on iTunes and then being able to play it on any of your Apple devices.

The company may be close to its goal. The Los Angeles Times says Apple execs are finalizing deals with Hollywood studios to allow movies to be accessed on any of its devices. The service may come out later this year or early next year.

The move comes just as Apple has released its iCloud online storage service that lets people access music, apps and photos from any device. The service also keeps email and calendars up to date on all devices. 
Tags: AAPL

This biotech's Soliris drug treatment can cost $400,000 per patient.

By TheStockAdvisors Oct 13, 2011 12:42PM
By Nicholas Vardy, Global Bull Market Alert

As we enter the start of earnings season, it's time to up your bets on stocks going into what traditionally has been the strongest quarter for the stock market.

Among the fast-growing major biotechs announcing earnings in the coming weeks is our latest buy recommendation, Connecticut-based Alexion Pharmaceuticals (ALXN).

Despite the market pullback, ALXN has risen steadily on expectations of more approved uses for its only drug on the market, Soliris. 

Despite rampant bearishness, major indexes are showing a market bottom.

By MoneyShow.com Oct 13, 2011 12:41PM

By Tom Aspray, MoneyShow.com

The stock market rally from the October 4 lows has been impressive, and those on the short side were likely squeezed a bit more on Wednesday when the Spyder Trust (SPY) and E-mini S&P 500 futures slightly exceeded the September 20 highs. 

For most, the recent rally has not changed their negative outlook for either stocks or the economy.  The recent strength is viewed by many as a bear market rally and bearish sentiment is still very high. Over the past few weeks, I have commented that the prevailing negative view of both the stock market and the economy was more consistent with a stock market bottom, not the start of a major new decline.


Expanding the cafe menu could help bring more afternoon traffic and repeat customers.

By Kim Peterson Oct 13, 2011 12:26PM
Starbucks(SBUX) as a juice bar? According to news reports, the coffee giant may soon add smoothies, wheatgrass and acai to its menu.

The New York Post reports that Starbucks has just hired Yohana Bencosme, the former manager of the trendy Manhattan juice bar Liquiteria. Bencosme's new job is to train staffers in Starbucks' Seattle headquarters.

One source tells the Post that Starbucks' chief executive, Howard Schultz, made many visits to Liquiteria and other juice bars in the area. "He spent a lot of time checking out the juices," the source says. "Then he went in for the kill and hired Yohana." 
Tags: SBUX

Rumors of a plan to partner with Yahoo show CEO Tim Armstrong is worried most about his legacy.

By InvestorPlace Oct 13, 2011 11:43AM
By Jeff Reeves, Editor, InvestorPlace.com

AOL  (AOL) CEO Tim Armstrong reportedly has been meeting with top shareholders to push the idea of a sale to Yahoo (YHOO). The scheme allegedly would allow the partnership to stop competing against each other and start dominating digital publishing.

But AOL shareholders shouldn’t be fooled. This is just the latest boondoggle from Armstrong, a quick fix meant to prove that he has accomplished something in his tenure in the corner office -- or at least provide a smokescreen so he can make a quick getaway.

Don't take my word for it. Take the words of an inside source quoted as saying that Armstrong views AOL as an "afterthought" and that he doesn't want to be doing his current job.


The iPhone and iPad maker beats out Coca-Cola, Microsoft, Google and IBM, according to new research on brand valuations.

By TheStreet Staff Oct 13, 2011 10:15AM

the streetBy James Rogers, TheStreet


Apple (AAPL) is the world's top brand, according to research released Wednesday by brand-valuation specialists Eurobrand, comfortably beating out second-place finisher Coca-Cola (KO).


Eurobrand rated Apple's brand value at more than $96 billion, well ahead of Coca-Cola at nearly $76 billion.


Apple, however, was not the only tech company with high brand awareness. Microsoft (MSFT), Google (GOOG) and IBM (IBM) rank third, fourth and fifth, ahead of McDonald's (MCD), AT&T (T), Procter & Gamble (PG), Pepsico (PEP) and Philip Morris International (PM)


A sector specialist highlights his scale-in buying strategy and his favorite gold and silver picks.

By TheStockAdvisors Oct 13, 2011 9:30AM
By Curtis Hesler, The Professional Timing Service

The recent pullback in gold has been an opportunity to accumulate precious metals positions.

However, the window on low-risk, longer-term precious metal investing is going to close. The time to accumulate is now. Here's a look at some of our favorite positions. 
Tags: gold

Despite TARP's success in the US, people still despise it as a bailout. No wonder European politicians aren't eager to support something similar.

By Jim Cramer Oct 13, 2011 9:27AM

the street"Why don't they just do TARP over there, for heaven's sake?"


You keep hearing that. I keep hearing that. It shows you how memory can play tricks on you.


No one in this country wanted TARP -- not the proposers, not Congress, not bankers, not investors. We didn't even know what it was going to do at first. The thought was maybe the money would be used to create a two-way market in the debt that was clogging the system. Turns out much of it was not debt but synthetic positions that weren't worth anything and couldn't trade.


We thought it might shore up balance sheets. But most banks said they didn't need to have their balance sheets shored up.



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[BRIEFING.COM] The stock market continued its strong start to the week with a broad-based Tuesday rally that sent the S&P 500 higher by 0.5%. Nine of ten sectors registered gains while the benchmark index extended its week-to-date advance to 1.4%.

Equities received an opening boost from a pair of economic data points that crossed the wires this morning. An in-line CPI report suggested inflationary pressures remain contained, while a better than expected Housing Starts report ... More


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