Monthly Archives: December 2015

Insight – Microsoft failed to warn victims of Chinese email hack – former employees

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My 2014 Best Performers, Looking Ahead To 2015






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Insight – Microsoft failed to warn victims of Chinese email hack: former employees

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My 2014 Best Performers, Looking Ahead To 2015






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Microsoft failed to warn victims of Chinese email hack: former employees

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My 2014 Best Performers, Looking Ahead To 2015






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Warren Buffett Beats Elon Musk In Nevada

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My 2014 Best Performers, Looking Ahead To 2015

5 Value Growth Stocks I Am Buying Now






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Apple Closes '15 Lower; S&P Ends Red 1st Time Since '08

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Year-To-Date Winners: We Have Found The Market And It's Apple

APPLE – THE BEST OPPORTUNITY EVER?

I SEE APPLE GOING BACK ABOVE $300, SOONER RATHER THAN LATER

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Apple Closes ’15 Lower; S&P Ends Red 1st Time Since ’08

Apple Closes '15 Lower; S&P Ends Red 1st Time Since '08


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How implied correlation can make or break a stock picker







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Diversity at Apple : Bloomberg West (Full Show 12/31)

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Year-To-Date Winners: We Have Found The Market And It's Apple

APPLE – THE BEST OPPORTUNITY EVER?

I SEE APPLE GOING BACK ABOVE $300, SOONER RATHER THAN LATER

Microsoft to Warn Email Users of Hacks

48:43 – Daniel Ives, analyst at FBR Capital Markets, and David Readerman, portfolio manager at Endurance Capital, discuss Microsoft’s announcement that they will warn email and cloud service users if a government-backed hacker has targeted them. He speaks to Bloomberg’s Cory Johnson on “Bloomberg West.” (Source: Bloomberg)






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What Happened to the Dow in 2015?

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Year-To-Date Winners: We Have Found The Market And It's Apple

APPLE – THE BEST OPPORTUNITY EVER?

I SEE APPLE GOING BACK ABOVE $300, SOONER RATHER THAN LATER


Image source: 2015 New Year celebration by christmasstockimages.com.

The Dow Jones Industrials (DJINDICES: ^DJI  ) had a forgettable year in 2015, with the average posting a 2% decline to finish at 17,425 and losing ground for the first time since the financial crisis in 2008. Yet even though the Dow’s performance was an obvious disappointment for investors, a number of interesting things happened with the Dow over the course of the year that will have longer-term implications for stock market investors. Let’s look more closely at some of the most important things that happened to the Dow in 2015.

Apple joins the Dow
Perhaps the most awaited event for the Dow in 2015 was the admittance of Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL  ) to the average in March. For years, the tech giant’s high share price was a barrier to its entry to the price-weighted Dow, as it would have had far too much influence over the average. Apple’s decision to split its stock 7-for-1 opened the door for the stock to come into the Dow without having too heavy a weighting in its calculation.

Apple didn’t have the positive impact that most had probably hoped to see, with the stock falling for the first time in years. Indeed, as we’ve seen in the past, the stock that got taken out of the Dow to make room for Apple, AT&T, actually performed better, climbing about 10% on the year. Nevertheless, as the largest company in the stock market, Apple deserves its place in the Dow, whether or not it has a positive impact on returns in the future.

Dow has first correction since 2011
On average, the Dow has a 10% downward correction about once a year, but for three years, investors had gone without a loss of that magnitude. That all changed in 2015, when U.S. stocks responded negatively to a 40% plunge in the Chinese stock market over a period of just a couple of months during the summer. Concerns about a potential spillover to the global economy ran rampant, and at its worst point in August, the Dow traded more than 16% off its record levels from earlier in the year.

The correction fell short of the 20% downward move that defines a bear market, so, technically, the bull market remains intact as it approaches its seventh anniversary. While many saw increased volatility as something to fear, experienced investors were somewhat pleased to see an unprecedented level of calm finally come to an end and return to more normal conditions.

Big winners and losers
Finally, it’s always tempting to think that a year near the unchanged level must have been inconsequential for every stock in the Dow. Yet underneath that flat performance were some big winners and losers.

On the plus side, consumer giants Nike (NYSE: NKE  ) and McDonald’s (NYSE: MCD  ) were the biggest gainers, both climbing about 32% to 33%. For Nike, the positive trend toward athletic apparel and footwear continued, and even as the stalwart faces competition from newer companies in the space, Nike has managed to consolidate its leadership position in the industry by sticking to its long-term business model and continuing to innovate. For McDonald’s, a much-needed recovery came from a willingness to try new things, including the long-awaited introduction of all-day breakfast to its menu. With the fast-food giant looking for ways to simplify its business for its franchisees, McDonald’s hopes to return to its roots and get customers reconnected to the restaurant chain’s food offerings.

Leading the losers in the Dow were Wal-Mart (NYSE: WMT  ) and American Express (NYSE: AXP  ) , which fell 26% and 24%, respectively. Wal-Mart said late in the year that the need to spend more on labor costs and spending to further develop its e-commerce platform would lead to an earnings decline of as much as 12% in the coming fiscal year. The news further weakened confidence in Wal-Mart, which has struggled in recent years to keep its sales moving higher. For American Express, the loss of a key merchant card relationship with Costco Wholesale put pressure on the financial giant, which has seen competition get ever fiercer with its rival card networks. American Express hopes to earn back business elsewhere to make up for the loss, but shareholders aren’t certain whether it will be successful in keeping up with its biggest competitors.

2015 was a disappointing year for Dow Jones Industrials investors, but it serves as a reminder that declines do happen from time to time. The admission of Apple to the Dow was a key event that could drive future returns for the average, and the appearance of a correction was something that experienced investors had wanted to see in order to dispel fears of unsustainable gains.

The $15,978 Social Security bonus most retirees completely overlook
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Investors Pressure Apple for Diversity

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Year-To-Date Winners: We Have Found The Market And It's Apple

APPLE – THE BEST OPPORTUNITY EVER?

I SEE APPLE GOING BACK ABOVE $300, SOONER RATHER THAN LATER

Now watching



Next video starts in : 7
Play

Investors Pressure Apple for Diversity

Investors Pressure Apple for Diversity


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How implied correlation can make or break a stock picker







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Microsoft to Warn Email Users of Hacks

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My 2014 Best Performers, Looking Ahead To 2015

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Microsoft to Warn Email Users of Hacks

Microsoft to Warn Email Users of Hacks


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How implied correlation can make or break a stock picker







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Where The Smart Money Is Placing Its 2016 Stock Bets

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Special Report: Personal Finance Action Plan For 2016

It is pretty clear what worked best for mutual funds in 2015. Several prominent strategists who spoke with IBD expect similar results at best — more likely, slightly worse — in 2016. And they expect to find better investment opportunities outside the U.S.

Eighty-nine of 2015’s 100 top-performing U.S. diversified stock funds as of Dec. 30, excluding funds that do a lot of shorting, borrowing and hedging, were large-cap growth, according to Morningstar Inc.

That’s because investors, reacting to stock market news, believed that only big, strong companies had the resources to eke out gains.

“Growth was harder to come by,” said David Joy, chief market strategist of Ameriprise Financial. “In that environment, investors gravitate to stocks where they presume growth will be more visible. And they’re willing to pay a premium for growth when it’s hard to find.”

Reflecting that, large-cap growth mutual funds led the market, advancing 4.57% through Dec. 30 .

The top-performing fund was $853 million Polen Growth Institutional , which was up 16% for the year.

Technology was the fund’s top sector, with a 35% weighting. Consumer cyclicals were next, at 29%.

Top holdings included Nike (NYSE:NKE), Visa (NYSE:V), Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) and Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL).

Among all U.S. stock funds, health/biotechnology and technology funds led major sectors, gaining 9% and 6% respectively.

It was also clear which segments of the market fared worst: the oil patch and commodities.

Energy funds lost 28%. Natural resources funds were off 22%.

And with U.S. diversified stock funds overall losing ground, down 0.5%, precious metals funds were down 23%, among the worst performing sector funds.

The Outlook For 2016

What’s murkier, of course, is the future. What will work best for your financial plan in 2016?

“Essentially, it will be a repeat of 2015,” said Jurrien Timmer, director of global macro for Fidelity Investments.

But Timmer cautions that the market is not pricing-in the risk that the price of oil will stay low, which would delay a rebound in the energy sector.

“So I expect an overall market gain of less than 7%,” he said.

In the slow-growth environment that Timmer anticipates, growth stocks should outperform value, he says.

He expects financials, especially banks, to benefit from margin expansion in the wake of the Fed’s rate hike.

Consumer discretionary should do well, but China’s slowdown will pinch luxury retailers, he adds.

And consumer staples, which tend to be higher-yielding than growth sectors, “will get hurt because the bond market will generate more attractive yields” as rates rise, Timmer said.

 





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