Posted by & filed under Economic Analysis.

Description:  The market’s got a lot of investors scared, but the fundamentals are good, says Liz Ann Sonders, chief investment strategist at Charles Schwab. The environment has been volatile, but smart, long-term investors can take advantage of that.

Source:  Marketwatch.com – video report
 
Date: 07/27/2010

Link: http://www.marketwatch.com/video/asset/investor-be-nimble/C3D27E09-4DFB-4B6C-849D-B10BDA98B94F

Questions for discussion:

  • Summarize the arguments made by Liz Ann Sonders?
  • Do you agree with her assessment?
  • Which economic indicators do you think are more significant influences on business decision makers, before choosing to increase their activity?
  • What is your advice to financial managers in this environment?
  • What is your advice to investors?

Posted by & filed under Economic Analysis.

Description:  Forget gold, says Wealth Adviser columnist James Altucher. He tells Dow Jones Newswires’ Veronica Dagher why and where investors should put their money instead.

Source:  Marketwatch.com – video report
 
Date: 07/30/2010

Link: http://www.marketwatch.com/video/asset/dont-buy-gold/2034712A-1FB7-4924-96F7-80751D9346F1

Questions for discussion:

  • Summarize the arguments presented in this report.
  • Do you agree with the advice presented?
  • Why do you think gold remains a popular investment today?

Posted by & filed under Company Analysis, Economic Analysis.

Description:  There was more evidence of an improving economic environment Monday when bellwether FedEx Corp. raised its profit outlook and said it would again match employee payments into retirement funds.

Source:  Marketwatch.com
 
Date: 07/26/2010

Link: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/fedex-ups-profit-view-restores-401k-payments-2010-07-26?siteid=nwtwk

Questions for discussion: 

  • Why is FedEx considered a leading economic indicator?
  • How would you expect investors to react to the improved financial conditions at the firm?
  • How would you expect other business decision-makers to react?
  • Do you think this news is sufficient to boost equities over the next quarter?

Posted by & filed under Company Analysis, Economic Analysis.

Description: spate of mergers and acquisitions during the past two weeks may signal the start of a comeback for global deal making in the second half of 2010.

Source:  Businessweek.com

Date: 07/30/2010

Link: http://www.businessweek.com/news/2010-07-30/takeover-spree-may-point-to-second-half-pickup-in-m-a.html
 
Questions for discussion:

  • Do you think economic conditions favor further M&A activity for the rest of the year?
  • What do you think is the most important influence now?

Posted by & filed under Governments & Regulators.

Description:  In this economy, even counterfeiters are trading down.

Source: NYTimes.com
 
Date: 07/31/2010

Link: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/01/business/economy/01knockoff.html?ref=business

Questions for discussion:

  • What are the reasons presented for the move towards cheaper knockoffs?
  • What can firms do about this problem? 
  • How does this problem affect cash flow?
  • Explain how this activity can be an economic indicator?

Posted by & filed under Economic Analysis.

Description:  Paul Vigna wraps the day in the financial markets, including why the Dow posted a triple-digit gain.

Source:  Marketwatch.com – video report
 
Date: 07/23/2010

Link: http://www.marketwatch.com/video/asset/news-hub-stocks-end-week-in-rally-mode/51163F51-36EF-4B93-98C1-7E14C782FCEB

Questions for discussion: 

  • Why are the bank stress-test results considered so important at this time in the business cycle?
  • How should the results be interpreted by investors and financial managers of firms looking to finance future operations?
  • Why did stocks react favourably to the news?

Posted by & filed under Economic Analysis.

Description:  Brett Arends says a surprising number of blue-chip stocks now offer better yields than Treasurys.

Source:  Marketwatch.com – video report
 
Date: 07/23/2010

Link: http://www.marketwatch.com/video/asset/news-hub-looking-to-boost-yield-think-ketchup/6BD3FDE8-FF13-4C72-8025-822B9BEFD4F4

Questions for discussion:

  • Summarize the arguments for and against the purchase of blue-chip dividend paying stocks over bonds, and treasury bonds in particular.
  • What is your view of this strategy?

Posted by & filed under Company Analysis.

Description: General Electric Co. raised its dividend and re-started a $15 billion share-buyback program Friday as the conglomerate cited progress in its effort to recover from the financial crisis.

Source:  Marketwatch.com

Date: 07/23/2010

Link: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/ge-raises-dividend-to-resume-share-buybacks-2010-07-23?siteid=nwtwk
 
Questions for discussion:

  • Summarize the financial changes at GE?
  • Do you think management’s decisions are wise or would you advise doing something else?
  • Would you expect this news to influence the general stock market?
  • If so, explain how and why you would expect the market to respond.

Posted by & filed under Company Analysis, Governments & Regulators.

Description: Thursday’s $100 million settlement between Dell and the Securities and Exchange Commission was a reminder that the government is going after tech’s bad boys — and Intel is likely next on the feds’ list.

Source:  CNNMoney.com

Date: 07/23/2010

Link: http://money.cnn.com/2010/07/23/technology/dell_intel/index.htm
 
Questions for discussion:

  • Summarize the reasons for SEC actions against these firms?
  • How would you expect investors to react to this news?
  • Are the punishments appropriate?

Posted by & filed under Company Analysis.

Description: Online retail giant ramps up investments, sees continued spending

Source:  Marketwatch.com

Date: 07/23/2010

Link:  http://www.marketwatch.com/story/amazon-falls-after-earnings-disappoint-2010-07-23?siteid=nwtwk
 
Questions for discussion:

  • Summarize the financial conditions at Amazon?
  • Would you be concerned as an investor or as a financial manager in the firm?
  • What would you advise management?