Analyst Articles

It was September 2008, and the stock market was in chaos. The Dow Jones industrial average experienced its largest point decline, plunging 777 points in just one session. The support of the 50- and 200-period moving averages were slashed like a hot knife through butter, while the Volatility Index (VIX) rocketed through technical resistance as if it wasn’t even there. The… Read More

It was September 2008, and the stock market was in chaos. The Dow Jones industrial average experienced its largest point decline, plunging 777 points in just one session. The support of the 50- and 200-period moving averages were slashed like a hot knife through butter, while the Volatility Index (VIX) rocketed through technical resistance as if it wasn’t even there. The financial media was full of pundits declaring a complete technical breakdown in the stock market.#-ad_banner-# Many were left asking what it all meant. Part of what it meant was that the once esoteric quasi-science known as technical analysis had gone mainstream. In the days before the personal computer, practitioners of technical analysis used quotes out of the newspapers or quote books to draw charts and make projections. Intraday data were very difficult to obtain outside of… Read More

Consumers have an insatiable appetite for new and better products and services, and they tend to reward the companies that fulfill their desires. However, shifting consumer preferences can erode brand loyalty at even the best-loved companies. When this happens, expenses are slashed and dividends are cut as the formerly high-flying company struggles to remain relevant in the ever-changing consumer culture. Once the dividends start to be cut, yield investors will start to dump the stock,… Read More

Consumers have an insatiable appetite for new and better products and services, and they tend to reward the companies that fulfill their desires. However, shifting consumer preferences can erode brand loyalty at even the best-loved companies. When this happens, expenses are slashed and dividends are cut as the formerly high-flying company struggles to remain relevant in the ever-changing consumer culture. Once the dividends start to be cut, yield investors will start to dump the stock, sending share prices downward. The key to avoiding these “dividend trap” stocks is to look for a weakening fundamental and technical situation when the dividend yield is staying steady or climbing. Here are two stocks that may become “dividend traps” due to the changing consumer landscape. Garmin (Nasdaq: GRMN) This manufacturer and marketer of GPS equipment pays a hefty dividend yield of 5%. Generally, this would be a positive, but in this instance, it signals trouble.#-ad_banner-# The… Read More

We are finally seeing signs of life in this critical U.S. industry. Rocked by overspending, hubris and economic crisis, this once mighty segment of the economy was reduced to a mere shadow of itself.  Fortunately, things are quickly changing for the better in this nearly left-for-dead sector.#-ad_banner-# In fact, January 2013 was the industry’s best January since 2008. U.S. sales soared 14% to more than 1 million units compared with the year-ago period, while individual companies reported between 16-27% sales gains during the same period. Total unit sales hit more than 15 million in… Read More

We are finally seeing signs of life in this critical U.S. industry. Rocked by overspending, hubris and economic crisis, this once mighty segment of the economy was reduced to a mere shadow of itself.  Fortunately, things are quickly changing for the better in this nearly left-for-dead sector.#-ad_banner-# In fact, January 2013 was the industry’s best January since 2008. U.S. sales soared 14% to more than 1 million units compared with the year-ago period, while individual companies reported between 16-27% sales gains during the same period. Total unit sales hit more than 15 million in the first month of the year, signalling an even better year than 2012, granted sales continue on this trajectory.  The surging stock market, with the S&P 500 posting its top-performing January in more than 12 years, combined with a slow-but-steady improvement in the U.S. employment picture have fuelled the rebound. Clearly, this industry rises and falls in lock step with the U.S. economy, so it’s often viewed as a proxy for the entire domestic economy.  In case you haven’t guessed it… Read More

Smartphones are exploding in popularity. What was once considered a tool just for the tech-savvy or on-the-go business professionals has become a ubiquitous tool in communication.  Even the most pessimistic estimates project 400 million units being shipped in 2013. This is up from a little more than 50 million in 2006.   This high demand has launched a marketing war between the various handset makers. Leaders in the space — Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL), Samsung (OTC: SSNLF) and Nokia (NYSE: NOK) — spend billions on research and development, and marketing efforts to create and popularize the next hot smartphone.#-ad_banner-#   They… Read More

Smartphones are exploding in popularity. What was once considered a tool just for the tech-savvy or on-the-go business professionals has become a ubiquitous tool in communication.  Even the most pessimistic estimates project 400 million units being shipped in 2013. This is up from a little more than 50 million in 2006.   This high demand has launched a marketing war between the various handset makers. Leaders in the space — Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL), Samsung (OTC: SSNLF) and Nokia (NYSE: NOK) — spend billions on research and development, and marketing efforts to create and popularize the next hot smartphone.#-ad_banner-#   They know that by gaining the loyalty of customers, it’s likely that they will remain customers for life, creating a long-term income stream.    While people can make money by investing directly into the smartphone makers, savvy investors can step above the market share war and profit handsomely.   The way to do that is by simply asking, “What are the common ingredients used in all smartphones?”   Obviously, every… Read More

The most epic and motivational U.S. corporate success story may have just ended. Not only is Apple’s (Nasdaq: AAPL) share price in the process of being decimated, its fall from grace is likely to adversely affect its major suppliers.   But as you’ll see later in this article, one of Apple’s major suppliers has been able to dodge the bullet.  Before I get to the stock, here’s why Apple’s demise has opened this incredible buying opportunity… After launching successful product after successful product the world embraced, the stock… Read More

The most epic and motivational U.S. corporate success story may have just ended. Not only is Apple’s (Nasdaq: AAPL) share price in the process of being decimated, its fall from grace is likely to adversely affect its major suppliers.   But as you’ll see later in this article, one of Apple’s major suppliers has been able to dodge the bullet.  Before I get to the stock, here’s why Apple’s demise has opened this incredible buying opportunity… After launching successful product after successful product the world embraced, the stock shot from under $100 at the start of 2009 to $700 in August 2012.  Take a closer look… Now, the rug under investors has been pulled out. The stock has plunged all the way down to the current mid $400s. In fact, with a $413.89 billion market cap, the company has just lost its title as the world’s most valuable company to No. 2 , giving the title back to oil giant Exxon (NYSE: XOM), which boasts a market cap of $416.50 billion.  And it’s… Read More

The only constant in life is change. This fact is doubly true when it comes to the fickle world of fashion and retail. Fads will come and go as stores open and close. Consumers are always looking for the next hot item.  It’s a constant struggle for fashion retailers to stay one step ahead of the curve and know what customers want before they even know. Many retailers are constantly looking for the next fad — which are good for business as they’re fast sellers — just to keep customers happy (think mood rings… Read More

The only constant in life is change. This fact is doubly true when it comes to the fickle world of fashion and retail. Fads will come and go as stores open and close. Consumers are always looking for the next hot item.  It’s a constant struggle for fashion retailers to stay one step ahead of the curve and know what customers want before they even know. Many retailers are constantly looking for the next fad — which are good for business as they’re fast sellers — just to keep customers happy (think mood rings or the Silly Bandz).#-ad_banner-# So it’s no wonder that in this Internet era where consumers are much more retail-savvy, traditional retailers are struggling for survival.  And this well-known retailer, which has been operating for more than 100 years, is a great example. I’m talking about JC Penney (NYSE: JCP). This once-leading retailer has been struggling to get out hole for a long time. In the third quarter of 2012, despite many business-transformation measures implemented throughout the year, the company still posted a loss of $123 million, after booking a $186 million profit in… Read More