Microsoft to Invest $300M in New Barnes & Noble Unit
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Well, that’s what the man said: Overall, Wozniak says he prefers the look and feel of Windows Phone apps over Android and iPhone apps. He also likes Windows Phone better overall than Android.
He still uses the iPhone 4S, though. Why? More apps. Windows apps just aren’t there and lack of voice dictation.
But those may be available soon, right?
The Lumia 900 is selling well, even with Nokia stock cratering.
Again, not shilling for any of these companies or phones. I still have an iPhone, FWIW. But I like the competition. I don’t want any of these companies to become complacent.
Picture is of Miami Dolphin’s first round pick Ryan Tannehill’s wife, Lauren Tannehill.
The nonpartisan Legislative Analyst's Office said total personal income tax collections would likely be more than $2 billion below Brown's expectation of $9.4 billion for the month. Because the state was already running behind, it would mean PIT revenues would be $3 billion shy for the fiscal year compared to Brown's updated January projections.
Just a few billion shy.
Everything is fine, unless it isn't. Therefore, the Fed doesn't need to do anything, unless they do.
How important is Apple ($AAPL) to the indexes?
Of course, we all know this, as we're reading the WSJ and blogs on our iPhones and iPads.
It seems as if we read the headlines and worry about what's happening with the latest bond auction in Spain. Depending on the word of the day, the markets react.
Meanwhile, in Asia, they're actually looking at the glum US economic numbers.
(If the Asian headlines can be believed...)
The reason du jour for today's weakness in Asian markets is US economic news! Always blame somebody else!
One reason iPhone sales may be slowing at $VZ (Verizon), is because of $AAPL (Apple's) release cycle. Those who want a phone get one soon after the release. After a few months go by, folks are most likely starting to anticipate and wait for the next version.
And the next version will most likely have 4G LTE internet connectivity.
I want one!
All eyes on the $FB IPO date - May 17th? Set your alarm clock! You won't want to miss it!
The market gave back some of yesterday's gains as $IBM and $INTC drew investors' ire.
Reason du Jour: Two big tech names in IBM and Intel spooked investors, as did Spain. It's not like we can ignore Europe. But you never know what kind of reaction we're going to get. One day folks are worried, the next day they're not worried, then worried, not worried, etc. So the market rips one way or another, and either way Europe gets tagged as part of the reason. But when IBM falls $7 on what really isn't bad numbers but good numbers, one has to think about adding the name to the buy list somewhere down the road. Just thinking out loud. Seriously, whenever this correction is over - if it is a correction - then there are going to be some obvious names to buy. Unless one is a diversified ETF investor, as one probably should be - lol.
Slope of Hope: $EBAY rocking the after hours up over 6% last I checked. Getting some juice from PayPal. Haliburton also was up almost 5% last I checked. When I turned Bloomberg on after the Dodgers late loss, I noticed the futures were up. Somebody is excited about something!
Wall of Worry: Housing starts were light. That darn Europe - as in, Spain. Everyone on the planet talking about Sell in May. Maybe it's too obvious. The market corrects 4% and Apple pulls back 10% and it's Armageddon. Chesapeake ($CHK) at new lows as it looks like not only will Natural Gas be free soon, but there are some curiousities about "complex loans" to the CEO. You know, whenever that kind of stuff is going on I understand why folks dump the stock.
Black Gold: Oil prices were down, which means that - maybe - gas prices will come down and help folks out. Show of hands: Are you tired of paying more than $4 for fuel? Would you rather spend the cash on cheesecake or Colombian strippers? On the other hand, the reason for the price drop was the fourth consecutive week of supply build. So if the economy is improving, wouldn't we see oil demand increasing? Oil is a global commodity, so it's the US, Europe and China burning the stuff. So if things are slowing down then the current supply is meeting demand. Yet, we do have the middle east tensions still somewhere out there, right?
Seasonality: The Sell in May noise is getting loud, and those saying that maybe it's coming early this year are also loud. I heard someone say that it comes early in Presidential years and the rally picks back up earlier than buying back in the Fall. I didn't fact check that. I thought about the Fed and QE3, and how they would implement it in an election year. I can't imagine the Fed would want to be making dramatic market shaking moves too close to the election. Maybe that's why we're hearing more of the "status quo" about low rates forever rather than the "fiscal discipline" message this past week.
Got the first hour-plus ride in for the Spring. Three nights in a row of cycling! And an hour walk for the puppy on top of that. The Dodgers lose two in a row in the last inning against the Brewers. Great series so far, but now the Dodgers are 9-3.
What do we focus on tonight, the market action or after hours earnings? Or Dodgers baseball?
Reason du jour? Investor enthusiasm! Yes, with Coke, JNJ, and Goldman Sachs reporting good earnings, investors had to get in today. In addition, investors snapped up Spanish bonds, easing Euro fears. At least for today. Maybe we just saw some buying after "the world is ending" view of yesterday, but this was a pretty significant move, right? The market closed strong, the Nasdaq led.
The Slope of Hope: Some earnings are coming in better than expected. Things seem to have gone okay with the Spanish bond auction. No bad news from China. Apple rallied over 5%, after 5-days in a row down! Back over $600 and back on its way to $1001.
The Wall of Worry: After the bell, IBM and Intel reported and disappointed investors. Stocks were trading down after hours. IBM has a 12% weighting in the Dow, so we shall see what happens after folks have a night to sleep on it.
Dodgers choked one away in the 9th on the road in Milwaukee. My dog knew something bad was going to happen as she started barking at me to take her for a walk with no outs in the bottom of the ninth, and Javy Guerra having put the first two runners on. Towards the end of the walk my friend called me to tell me the Dodgers had lost.
Another night of no podcast/audioboo. Two nights in a row of cycling and puppy walking, with lots of wind to prevent the audioboo-on-the-walk thing. Tomorrow!
Wow, stocks are ripping higher. Even $AAPL is up today! All market averages are up over a percent. Bulls fighting back and making a stand. I still believe the market is in a topping process ahead of the summer months, but we will see.
Sell in May doesn't work every year.
Most years? Yes.
All years? No.
Likely in years where the market is near bull market highs in April? Probably.
I haven't checked the reason du jour, yet. My guess is that the news flow is exactly the opposite of the news flow of previous days, the Fed is talking QE3, US jobs data is strong, and that all is well in Spain, Italy and China. Lol. I will check later! But be careful, the news could be exactly the opposite again tomorrow...
Here is my daily check on the $NOK $MSFT and $T Lumia 900 sales. This poll shows that 60% of new Lumia 900 users are folks who have left Apple or Android.
Of course, since most folks have an Apple or Android phone - that's 80% of the smart phone market, it's kind of like the poll result that says "the majority of adults are former children."
Nevertheless, the new Nokia phone is selling better that expected and is giving folks another option. The Lumia 900 is currently free with a 2-year activation from AT&T. "Free" is an interesting price point and very attractive for folks who want in to the market. Heck, the Lumia 900 has a big screen and 4G LTE speed. That's the next market, especially when you consider that Apple iPhone users are stuck in 3G land - but are also most likely locked into a two year deal at this time. Well, except for those converting I guess!
I still have the iPhone and am in a two year deal. What would stop me from switching or converting at this point is the MLB.tv app. Lol.
Companies in the News
The market was a tale of two tapes, with the Dow rising and the Nasdaq falling.
Reason du jour? Anxiety! ("it’s got me on the run, anxiety") From Reuters via Yahoo finance, by Angela Moon, quotes James Dailey portfolio manager at TEAM Asset Strategy Fund from Penn-sly-vannia: “The market behavior is fairly manic today and investors are confused after a mixed set of data, Spanish yields, and momentum stocks like Apple losing ground. The confusion is leading to anxiety, and that’s why we are seeing the blue chips, the large caps, outperform”
Really? Anxiety? Maybe it's the long bull run reaching marginal new highs in the month of April, just before May, when we tend to have our annual Spring-Summer market correction. Maybe the profits are being booked. Not saying James is wrong, though. All these things are in the trough. I'm not sure it's that confusing. Get out before the whole thing falls apart!
The belles of the ball fell hard today. Apple was down 4%, is below $600 a share, and now down five days in a row. And you thought the Dodgers had a streak going! Priceline was also down about 4%. How much is William Shatner worth, though? Meanwhile, The Google also was tripped up for a few percent. Well the high beta stocks go up faster, and come down faster during corrections, too.
Speaking of, check out the SPHB (High Beta) ETF vs. the SPLV (low beta) ETF. Money seems to be moving in one direction over the other. And that's not a healthy sign. But those low beta stocks are the big cap dividend paying MONSTERS. (Oh, JNJ before the bell tomorrow. Gird your loins, dividend investors!)
And it's not like the Fed was out trying to jawbone the tape higher, either. You never know. I was half-expecting Janet Yellen to announce that rates would be near 0% until 2016. Up the ante, JY!
The Slope of Hope: US Economy: US retail sales up .8%, sharper than expected.
(Excluding the Apple store, retail sales were down 100%. Just kidding, but you know I'm not the only one thinking that isn't too far out of the realm of possibilities.)
Check out Proctor and Gamble, Wal-Mart, and that sort of thing. Toothpaste and Chinese imports, right?
The Wall of Worry: Spain – rising borrowing costs. The Spanish 10 year govt bond is above 6% for the first time since early December. The country also noted that it has probably slid into its second recession since 2009. Italian yields also surged somewhere near 6%. I think 7% is the number where folks worry about stuff hitting the fan.
Socialism works everywhere they try it! As long as you never run out of people to tax, it keeps on chuggin' along...
As for me: Still with a lot of cash and low beta stuff.
I tried a podcast/audioboo on the dog walk, but it was a disaster with the outdoor noise and wind. Taking it to the keyboard while watching the Voice!
Apple - $AAPL - suffered its biggest dollar decline in history today. Mark your calendar! While the price drop wasn't the largest percentage drop in history, I imagine those who purchased shares at $644 with a market order are scratching their heads. Heck, the stock was supposed to go 550-bucks in the up direction!
I have a sense of deja vous from Microsoft in the 1990s as the huge company battled monopoly charges and such.
Are we seeing the same with Apple?
I don't own shares directly although I'm sure it is in some of my ETFs in outrageous proportions.
My thoughts lie on the moving averages (or there abouts) with the stock. It has been on such a run that profit takers had to show up sometime. And the high beta stocks do tend to pullback more than the lower beta stocks during a market correction. Looking at the calendar and recent market highs, it seems as if we are near (if not in) one of those.
The $NOK Lumia 900 is selling well. I've taken some flak over commenting on the $MSFT Windows smart phone offered by $T. But the thing seems to be selling well.
Again, I think it's the price point. The thing is free right now with a two year contract. And the phone is getting good reviews by customers.
By the way, I own an iPhone. So it's not like I'm shilling for the Lumia 900. I do like to see the competition because it's good for all of us and helps to avoid price fixing and other monopoly related issues that we sometimes see when a company dominates the market.
Markets rip higher for the second day in a row for exactly the opposite reason stocks tanked just a few days ago! Reasons du jour?
The Fed's Vice Chair Janet Yellin promised that the Fed was planning on keeping rates at near zero until 2015 or forever, whichever is needed. This is a continuation of the back and forth messages the Fed has been sending the past few weeks. In addition, US GDP growth is now estimated to be in the neighborhood of 2.5% to 3.5%. Nice.
Earnings started off better than expected with Alcoa and continue to improve. Folks who were worried are now optimistic about this earnings season. If you were paying attention after hours then you saw Google announce some sort of new-fangled stock split. I think we all need to sleep on that one and see how we feel in the morning.
Folks were worried about slowing growth in China, now they're optimistic about rumored stronger than expected growth.
And regarding Europe, folks were worried about Spain, Italy and debt, but bond yields fell in Europe on good results at Italy's bond auction.
Last year we saw wild market swings from day to day and week to week. Are we entering that sort of thing again?
Anyway, the market has almost recovered its losses from the recent 4% pullback.
Another article asking the question if investors should "sell in May" and go away. This is good background on the strategy. It has worked well the past two years and over the long term. But there are years where it doesn't work.
Of course, as the market races into April at new bull market highs, one has to wonder if the odds favor another summer correction.
Should investors plan to 'sell in May'?
Over the past 50 years, April has been the strongest month for the Dow. Over the past 100 years, only July has been stronger. I suppose that's why one is supposed to "sell in May" and not in April.
Strong day to start off the quarter.
April showers Dow with solid gains, history shows
You can't read a financial publication or website without being warned that the market is about to have a nasty correction. After all, that's what happened in 2010 and 2011. As we all know, whatever happened most recently always continues to happen in the future.
Well. Maybe not. Lots of money has been lost playing the previous market trends and ignoring what is going on in the here and now.
Yes, the market has had an incredible run and trees don't grow to the sky. The history of market seasonality tells us that the market makes most of its gains from fall to spring, not spring to fall. I find myself with a large cash position and investments in low-beta dividend paying kinds of things.
There's China. There's Israel and Iran. There's high energy prices. America's debt crisis is growing from small municipalities to states to the federal government. Unemployment remains stubbornly high..
But April is one of the stronger months of the year for stock returns. We are at the beginning of the month where money is dollar cost averaged into the stock market. China just reported economic data that is being received well, thus maybe removing one of the wall of worry items from the bear case. The "market seasonality" trade is getting noisy -- contrarian alert?
But there are always bull and bear sides. Not making a decision is making a decision.
I will remain cautious going forward, with cash and low beta while looking for an opportunity to get more aggressive on The Coming Market Correction.
And... I have hedged my positions by going long on the Dodgers to win the World Series.