Archive for March, 2010

Earnings Reports Coming – What Does Less Trimming Mean to Investors?

Wednesday, March 31st, 2010
Earnings Reports Coming – What Does Less Trimming Mean to Investors?

The Wall Street Journal, in “Strong Earnings Season Appears Baked In” (Ahead of the Tape, by Kelly Evans, March 30, page C-1), describes an unusual pattern leading up to this quarter’s earnings reports: Both analysts and corporations are trimming expectations less than usual. (Each group typically trims its forecasts near quarter end to avoid... »

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Bears Get Nervous as Their Arrows Dwindle – The New York Times Misses the Mark

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010
Bears Get Nervous as Their Arrows Dwindle – The New York Times Misses the Mark

The New York Times is notoriously late in recognizing a stock market trend change. On Monday, they published a bearish article that is a valuable read. It shows how empty the bears’ quiver has become. The article, “Stocks Soar, but Many Analysts Ask Why” (The New York Times, by Javier C. Hernandez, March 29,... »

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Money and Drugs – What Health Care Charges, Like AT&T’s $1 Billion, Mean to Investors

Monday, March 29th, 2010
Money and Drugs – What Health Care Charges, Like AT&T’s $1 Billion, Mean to Investors

Following the passage of the new health care plan, many companies are announcing earnings charges. The end points appear ominous: New health plan –> Higher company expenses. Actually, the charges are one-time adjustments of a balance sheet asset that contains an unusual income tax benefit previously booked as earnings. Here is how that benefit... »

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Housing Indicators Show Stability and Improvement Ahead of 2010 Selling Season

Friday, March 26th, 2010
Housing Indicators Show Stability and Improvement Ahead of 2010 Selling Season

Housing is a hot button for many investors. They do not see how the housing market could improve this year, and a number believe prices could fall further. Today’s write-up expands on yesterday’s article (“Housing Problems Are Dissipating and Fragmenting – Think About Buying“) by taking a look at housing’s indicators. »

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Housing Problems Are Dissipating and Fragmenting – Think About Buying

Thursday, March 25th, 2010
Housing Problems Are Dissipating and Fragmenting – Think About Buying

I just saw an article saying the stock market’s run-up is ignoring housing’s problems. That supposition is wrong on many counts. »

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52-Week Highs in Today’s Stock Market – Commonplace, but a Useful Buying Tool

Wednesday, March 24th, 2010
52-Week Highs in Today’s Stock Market – Commonplace, but a Useful Buying Tool

Do a search for news reports containing the phrase, “52-week high,” and you will get about 5,000 hits. Check the latest Barron’s for new highs and lows (March 22, “Market Laboratory – Stocks,” page M-46), and you will find sixteen columns of companies in small type font. The count: »

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Investor Interest in US Stocks Is Awakening

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010
Investor Interest in US Stocks Is Awakening

Last Friday I described the potential bull market that could come from investors showing an interest in US stocks. And I mentioned an article that indicated such a move could be starting. Two more articles just came out, providing further support. »

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These Three Economic Gauges Read “OK”

Monday, March 22nd, 2010
These Three Economic Gauges Read “OK”

Investors, analysts and pundits can look at the same economic measures and come away with opposing views as to the economy’s health and future. The economy’s “trees” can range from vibrant to blighted, allowing differing economic “forest” diagnoses. As a result, we see predictions of economic normalcy and growth side-by-side with reversal and collapse.... »

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‘Bull Market’ Getting Closer as Name for This US Stock Rise

Friday, March 19th, 2010
‘Bull Market’ Getting Closer as Name for This US Stock Rise

So, when is the announcement going to take place that we are officially in a bull market? Doesn’t twelve months of significantly rising prices qualify? Judging by an internet search for “bull market,” the phrase is rarely used – at least in a positive way. An example of an alternative use is a CNBC... »

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Out-of-sync, Negative Pundits Are Getting Louder – So, Stay Positive

Thursday, March 18th, 2010
Out-of-sync, Negative Pundits Are Getting Louder – So, Stay Positive

It’s called “fighting the tape.” In this market, that means bearish advisers and short-sellers who refuse to admit that they missed the boat. Good news and positive trends are dismissed or ignored, and new negatives are touted as the drivers of the next smashup, just around the corner. Here is one example… »

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Pier 1 Imports – An Example of How Percentage Gains Can Mislead

Wednesday, March 17th, 2010
Pier 1 Imports – An Example of How Percentage Gains Can Mislead

An investment manager was once asked how he liked being judged by performance numbers. He replied that he was fine with it – so long as he got to pick the beginning and ending points. We’re seeing articles written that do just that, particularly since we are now one year from the stock market’s... »

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Avoid ‘Pre-news’ Whipsaw – Be Patient and Apolitical

Tuesday, March 16th, 2010
Avoid ‘Pre-news’ Whipsaw – Be Patient and Apolitical

What do the health care plan, Chinese currency exchange and Wall Street regulation have in common? They are all popular “pre-news” stories. Negotiating stances, trial balloons and political posturing are reported as news, but they are preliminary pronouncements that precede the real news – i.e., the final conclusion. Congress’ health care plan activity is... »

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Sunrise at US Factories? Strategy for New Economy: Bring Production Onshore

Monday, March 15th, 2010
Sunrise at US Factories? Strategy for New Economy: Bring Production Onshore

The saying “You can’t go home again” doesn’t apply to US corporations. Caterpillar’s latest announcement is that it is bringing some major equipment production back to the US. What on earth is going on here? And what does it mean to the US economy – and to investors? Well, this is upbeat news and... »

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Closed-End Funds – Structure and Price Discount Add to Potential Returns

Friday, March 12th, 2010
Closed-End Funds – Structure and Price Discount Add to Potential Returns

Yesterday, I listed four closed-end funds that invest in China. Such funds are well suited to specialized investing, like developing/emerging markets. In addition, there are market environments when closed-end funds in general offer price advantages. I believe now is one of those times. »

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The Chinese Yuan’s Anticipated Rise – Investment Implications (Part 3)

Thursday, March 11th, 2010
The Chinese Yuan’s Anticipated Rise – Investment Implications (Part 3)

The last two days we have reviewed the Chinese yuan exchange rate, it’s anticipated rise and how that presents an opportunity for owning Chinese stocks. Funds seem to be the best route, and here are criteria for selecting a promising one. »

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