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Wednesday, November 30, 2005

End of BlackBerry?

Just a year ago in December, 2004, investors of high flying technology stock, Research in Motion(RIMM), were cheering for the incredible investment return. As the maker of famous Blackberry platform and devices, Research in Motion had seen its stock sky-rocketted from $8 per share in October, 2002 to as high as $124 per share. After the 2:1 stock split that same month, the stock went back to the 100 mark just half year after the split. The investment of return was an incredible 2500% return in 2 years!!

However today after the federal judge rule against the patent settlement between Research In Motion and NTP Inc, the company who claims the patent right of Balckberry technology, the high flying stock is probably ready for a huge nose dive. If Research In Motion still could not find a settlement with NTP with reasonable amount, the banning of Blackberry in US could crash this high tech ready to be giant. Looking at how the stock of Taser International(TASRE) performed and you'll see how devastating RIMM could become if the case isn't settled soon. The stock of Research In Motion is down almost 4 dollars or 6% to $61 per share.

BioCryst Stock Price Skyrocketted

BioCryst(BCRX), maker of H5N1 or bird flu related drug, seen its stock price up 3 dollar per share or 28% to $15.11 on the news that Roche Holding, Tamiflu producer, licensed an experimental compound from BioCryst for organ transplant rejection and auto-immune diseases although the compound is still in the early stage of experienment.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

China ADRs Under Pressure

China ADRs are under the pressure today and drag the whole Asia ADR index down. The China stocks in red are
  • (BIDU): down 2.64% or $2 per share and ends the day at $76.39 per share
  • Shanda(SNDA): drop 3.52% or 67 cents to $18.38 per share
  • down 2.41% to $24.7 per share
  • Netease(NTES): down $1.27 dollar or 2.17% to $57.38 per share; almost $30 off its privious month high of $91 per share
  • TOM Onlin(TOMO): the wireless service company is down 4.2% to $20.26 per share

[Foreign] Investing in the Country of Dragon. China Stocks

For the past few weeks we've been covering stocks within US. Although there is a lot of choices available from Corporates America, a smarter investment strategy would be to diversify your portfolio by investing in non-US stocks especially since in today's world US is no longer the only dominate economic forces.

Ever since the weakening of US currency, smart investors have already looked elsewhere for better investment returns. Traditionally European stocks are the top investment choices outside of US. However with the emergence and strong economy growth of the developing nations such as the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, China), more and more investors cash is going into these once so called the poor nations.

Of the BRIC nations, China probably has attracted the most attention today. With about 1/5 of world's population or 1.2 billion, China has established itself as the main supplier of low cost labors in the global supply chain. Many fortune 500 companies such as Nike(
NKE) and General Motors(GM) have factories in China to cut labor costs as well as initiating penetration into this potential mega market. On the other hand many Chinese companies are seeing exponential growth with the increaseing of foreign investment and individual per capita income.

Investing in these high flying Chinese companies does not require you to have a brokerage account in China. Fortunately for the hungry investors there's something called ADR(American Depositary Receipts) where you will be able to buy Chinese stocks in US. Currently there are probably more than a dozen China ADRs listed in either NYSE or Nasdaq and the one you should pay attention to are:

  • Investors call it the Google(GOOG) of China. This Google like search engine provider has a Yahoo(YHOO) like business model where people pay for the positions of the search result. The stock is trading near its opening day lows around $76 per share and has been sitting in the $60 to $80 range for two months. Revenue has trippled to 13 millions 2004 from 4 millions in the prior year and the revenue in the first quarter of 2005 has easily surpassed the revenue of the entire year of 2003 around 5 millions. Watching how Google(GOOG) stocks flys, investors are betting this Chinese Google will also do well.
  • Shanda Interactive Entertainment(SNDA): The fast growing online game maker in China known for its MMORPGS(Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games). Although it revene has more than doubled from 2003 to 2004, yet the stock has dipped more than 50% this year. After accouncing adapting new avatar-like revenue model, it will be interesting to see how the company will perform next quarter with the new revenue model taking place.
  • One of the three main portal sites in China where the other two are and The energetic CEO Charles Zhang has brought Sohu from net loss in 2002 to net gain of 35 millions last year. Why I choose Sohu over Sina and Netease is its attractive stock price, and insider buying. Normally when insiders of a company are buying their stock, the stocks generatlly should do well.

Monday, November 28, 2005

[Buzz] It's Cyber Monday! Cyber Monday Stocks

It's Cyber Monday. What Cyber Monday? Well probably most of you are familiar with Black Friday which is the big shopping day after Thanksgiving where brick-and-motar company like Wal-Mart(WMT) and Best Buy(BBY) will give unbelievable discount on some items.

Same thing goes to online retailers. With the convenience of online shopping most shoppers avoided the dog fight at the stores on Black Friday and instead wait till the following Monday to do their big holiday shopping online. This year's top items are still the electronics so let's look at some internet stocks that would probably get big sale boost from Cyber Monday. Although most name brand brick-and-motar stores do offer online shopping, we will not cover them here as they were already covered in the previous Black Friday article. The followings is our Cyber Monday Stocks List.
  • CNET Network(CNET): Although this is not an online retailer, this rich content provider of all electronic gadgets from digital camera to iPOD is the gateway of many online shoppers who want to know everything from product review to price differences before they make any decision. The stock is trading at 52 weeks high at 15 per share and still have lots of upsides.
  • eBay (EBAY): You can't miss this online auction giant when you are talking about online shopping. Although eBAY offeres everything from your backyard antique to plasma TV in the living room. Check the eBay official site. If you find crazy bidders or many items at the electronic section, chaces are the store should do pretty well on Cyber Monday. On the techical side the 50 day moving average has top over 200 day moving average which indicates a plus sign for the stock which still trade $10 off its 52 weeks high.
  • Major online discount retailer selling items in different categories from furniture to electronics. Its $1 shipping on Cyber Monday should generate a lot of sales from eager cyber shoppers. The stock has just bounced off its 52 weeks lows to $36.93, almost half of its 52 weeks high. The stock could easily pass $40 per share after the holiday.
  • Online discount retailer selling close-out or refurbished items. This is the site where bargain hunters may go. Take a look at the site to see what I meant by bargain hunting. The stock price is also attractive for bargain hunters as it had been beaten badly from $20 per share in the beginning of the year to $1.38 per share now.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Portfolio Performance - November 27

Since started in November 3, Smart Stock Investment has covered the following stocks according to our innovative categories: Next Generation Tech, Shopping Mall Hidden Gem, Bird/Avian Flu Vaccine, Tamiflu, Solar Energy,Halloween, Harry Potter and Hot Gadget stocks. Here's a summary of how these stocks ending 11/18/2005.

Shopping Mall Hidden Gem (Invest Since 11/9/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)

BBW / 29.69 / 25.27 / +17.49%
Overall +$442 +17.49%
(*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Bird Flu Vaccine (Invest Since 11/8/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)
CHIR / 44.4 / 44.19 / +0.48%
NVS / 53.27 / 54.33 / -1.95%
SNY / 40.58 / 40.68 / -0.25%
MEDI / 36.26 / 34.93 / +3.81%
GSK / 49.53 / 53.09 / -6.71%
NVAX / 3.10 / 3.905 / -20.61%
Overall -$398.5 -1.72% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Tamiflu (Invest Since 11/7/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)
TEVA / 42.01 / 38.35 / +9.54%
BRL / 59.00 / 56.8 / +3.87%
MYL / 21.15 / 19.94 / +6.07%
Overall +$707 +6.14% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Solar Energy (Invest Since 11/4/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)
ESLR / 12.32 / 11.2 / +10.00%
Overall +112 +10.00% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Halloween (Invest Since 11/3/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)

PCTY / 17.16 / 16.19 / +5.99%
BDAY / 12.93 / 12.9 / +0.23%
WMT / 50.49 / 47.57 / +6.14%
HSY / 54.68 / 56.4 / -3.05%
TR / 30.32 / 30.5 / -0.59%
Overall +202 +1.24% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Next Generation (Invest Since 11/11/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)
IRBT / 29.74 / 36.51 / -18.54%
Overall -$677 -18.54% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Harry Potter (Invest Since 11/14/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)
TWX / 18.33 / 17.76 / +3.21%
CKEC/ 25.16 / 23.23 / +8.31%
RGC / 20.04 / 19.42 / +3.19%
Overall +312 +5.16% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Hot Gadget (Invest Since 11/14/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)
AAPL/ 69.34 / 64.98 / +6.71%
SIRI/ 7.13 / 7.33 / -2.73%
Overall +416 +5.75% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Out of the eight stock portfolios, six of them are in the positive territories with five of them gaining at least 5% and two of them above 10%. Of the two losing portfolio one of them are 1% below the watermark yet the other is still at a dismel 18% below sea level.

The best performing stock overall is still Build-a-Bear Workshop(BBW) with 17% gain followed by 10% gain of solar energy player Evergreem Solar(ESLR). Tamiflu manufacture TEVA is getting a respectful 9.54% gain while theaters owner Carmike Cinems(CKEC) is benefiting 8.3% from Harry Potter. Even blue chip such as Wal-Mart(WMT) has increased 6% now should be expecting more gain as we are officially in the holiday sale season.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Big Shopping Day after Thanksgiving! Black Friday Stocks.

The day after Thanksgiving marks the biggest shopping event of the year. With people lining up even before the store open to get their dream HD TV or desktop PCs it's no wonder retailers are using the Thanksgiving sale as a big milestone.

Making the official beginning of the holiday season, Thanksgiving Day sale no wonder is always the biggest event of all the retailers. This year is no exception with all the major retailers, Sears(SHLD), Macy, Best Buy(BBY), Circuit City(CC), Wal-Mart(WMT), trying to make a buzz of their mega unbelievable slashing on prices. After listening the news throughout the day, I've come up with the Thanksgiving winners.
  1. Wal-Mart(WMT): "Laptop got thrown to the air...." "A woman lose her leg as she fall down..." These terrible yet electrifying news from Wal-Mart have been on the headline through out the day and it virtually become a free of cost promotion for the largest discount retailer. The happiest people today are not the shoppers who got their dirt-cheap laptop but the walmart executives.
  2. The Electronic Retailers: Want to know what people normally get on Black Friday? Go to multi-merchandise retailers such as Sears(SHLD) and Wal-Mart(WMT) and see which department gets the most crowd. I checked both stores today and it's clear that the electronic department gets the biggest line-up. So another clear winners would be the pure electronic retailers such as Best Buy(BBY) and Circuit City(CC).

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Holiday Rally for Major Indices

These past few days has been big for the three major indices, the Dows, Nadaq and S&P 500 as all of them posting significant gains. The primary reasons of the surge are dropping oil prices and positive economic outlook despite housing bubble worry and fed's aggressive interest rate hike.

The Dows has gained more than 200 points or 2% since 17,000 of last Thursday. Nasdaq, also fueled by the investor confidence has also gained 60 points of 2.7% in 5 days. S&P 500 is also on a roll with 30 points or 2.4% gain during the same period.

There are ways to put the indices rally right in your portfolio. One is to buy the mutual funds, especially the index fund which closely reflect the up and down of the indices. If you do not like the expenses and would like something more flexible such as stock, you could consider getting the ETFs.

ETFs which stands for Exchange Traded Funds are what we called the "behave like fund trade like stock" type of stocks. It gives you the flexibility of multiple trading within a day and also has the stableness of the mutul funds. So for example if you want to include Dow Jones index in your portflio, you would buy Diamond Trust(DIA). For Nasdaq you could get Nasdaq 100 Trust or mostly known by its symbol QQQQ while you could also get The Spider in your portfolio SPY which represents S&P 500.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Amazing Bear - Not the Bad Bear

No I'm not talking about the bear as for bear market. This is a more friendly bear that your kids love.

Build a Bear
Build a Bear Workshop(BBW), a specialty retailer which allow customers to participate in the process of making their own stuffed animals, has been
doing so well since my initial coverage on my November 9 hidden shopping mall gem article. At this moment, the stock has rosed from my cover price of $25.27(closing price on November 9) to $29.5 per share, an amazing 16.74% gain in less than two weeks. Even more encouraging there is one new analyst coverage on Build A Bear Workshop with a market outperform rating.

In the
financial statement released today, it shows both the revenue and profit has increased in current quarter. In addition in the cash flow statement it shows Build A Bear Workshop is showing a positive cash flow from operating activities. The gradual increase in stock holder equity for four consecutive quarter is also a plus. And remeber we are just in the beginning of the holiday season where retailer stocks normally do well.

Other stocks that has been on a rock and roll since the beginning of our coverage are:
  • Carmike Cinemas(CKEC): The stock is up 9% from $23.23 a share to $25.34 a share since we begin the coverage on Harry Potter related stocks last Monday.
  • Teva Pharmaceutical(TEVA): The Tamiflu maker is up almost 10% since our coverage on bird flu drug maker. Not surprisingly all stocks in this category are up.
  • Evergreen Solar(ESLR): The pure solar energy player is up 11.34% since our coverage on November 4 on solar energy.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Thanksgiving Smart Stocks - Turkey Processor

Maybe it is still a bit early but anyway - "Happy Thanksgiving!". With Thanksgiving holiday, a four day long weekend, just around the corner, it would be a great time to take a look at some of the stocks related to this topics.

The first thing coming to my mind when speaking of Thanksgiving is the word turkey. That's right. Turkey. No matter how much the technology has changed our world today, having a turkey on the family gathering dinner table on Thanksgiving night is still the tradition.

Turkey Processor
Jennie-O Turkey Store is the leading turkey processor in the nation. Although you would not see Jennie-O Turkey Store listed on any of the US stock exchanges, the parent company, Hormel Foods Corp. (HRL), is a public traded company on the New York Stock Exchange. Hormel Foods is prducing various meat and food products in both perishable meat (fresh meats, sausage..) and nonperishable meat (canned meats, chilies). The share price of the stock is relatively stable and has been on a roll this month from $31 per share to today's closing price of $35 per share.

Another public traded turkey producer is the Pittsburg, Texas based Pilgrim's Pride Corp(PPC). The company is mainly focused on poultry related product so would be a more pure play of turkey related stock than Hormel. Its market cap is 2.1 billion, about half of Hormel Foods and the stock price is about the same as a year ago about $30 per share. Technical wise Hormel Food is a safer play than Pilgrim Pride and since the world is still under the shadow of bird flu, investing in a poultry maker would be a riskier move. Therefore I would suggest to wait a little while before investing in this stock.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Harry Potter Wins the Weekend

The first weekend of Harry Potter's fourth film - Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire has been a successful hit driving $101.4 milliion in ticket sale and top the box office in US and Canada. This film would serve as a positive sign for the next big hits coming later this year - The Chronicles of Naria: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and King Kong.

Nevertheless the biggest winner of the weekend are the producers of Harry Potter film as well as the cinemas. has a huge selection of Harry Potter toys, action figures, games, apparel, books and more! Click here for our huge selection!

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Portfolio Performance

Since started in November 3, Smart Stock Investment has covered the following stocks according to our innovative categories: Next Generation Tech, Shopping Mall Hidden Gem, Bird/Avian Flu Vaccine, Tamiflu, Solar Energy,Halloween, Harry Potter and Hot Gadget stocks. Here's a summary of how these stocks ending 11/18/2005.

Shopping Mall Hidden Gem (Cover Date: 11/9/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)

BBW / 27.48 / 25.27 / +8.75%
Overall +8.75%
(*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Bird Flu Vaccine (Cover Date: 11/8/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)
CHIR / 44.35 / 44.19 / +0.36%
NVS / 54.19 / 54.33 / -0.26%
SNY / 41.04 / 40.68 / +0.88%
MEDI / 36.25 / 34.93 / +3.78%
GSK / 49.92 / 53.09 / -5.97%
NVAX / 3.24 / 3.905 / -17.03%
Overall -0.92% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Tamiflu (Cover Date: 11/7/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)
TEVA / 40.79 / 38.35 / +6.36%
BRL / 56.65 / 56.8 / -0.26%
MYL / 20.82 / 19.94 / +4.41%
Overall +2.75% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Solar Energy (Cover Date: 11/4/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)
ESLR / 12.63 / 11.2 / +7.14%
Overall +7.14% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Halloween (Cover Date: 11/3/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)

PCTY / 16.97 / 16.19 / +4.82%
BDAY / 12.58 / 12.9 / -2.48%
WMT / 49.50 / 47.57 / +4.06%
HSY / 54.00 / 56.4 / -4.26%
TR / 30.67 / 30.5 / +0.56%
Overall +0.13% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Next Generation (Cover Date: 11/11/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)
IRBT / 29.5 / 36.51 / -19.2%
Overall -19.2% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Harry Potter (Cover Date: 11/14/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)
TWX / 18.03 / 17.76 / +1.52%
CKEC/ 25.19 / 23.23 / +8.44%
RGC / 20.14 / 19.42 / +3.71%
Overall +4.88% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Wow! The portfolios looks really promising. Except for the hot gadget stocks which we've just covered and the volatile IPO of next generation stock, the shopping mall gem and solar energy are hitting home run with percentage gain of 8.75% and 7.14% respectively. The newly covered Harry Potter stocks aren't doing bad as it also gain 4.88% in just 4 days. Tamiflu stocks isn't too far behind with 2.75% gain along with the stable Halloween stock posting a slight 0.13% gain. Bird Flu Vaccine is in the red giving up 0.92% and the next generation stock which is now at a miserable 19.2% below cover price.

Friday, November 18, 2005

The End of AT&T Era

Today California approves the acquisition of SBC(SBC) on AT&T(T), the former giga pound telecom elephant who saw its stock and business going south on servere competition from the rivalries which includes the spinn-off or the so called baby-bells such as SBC.

The elephant can't dance
It's really sad to see such famous elephant just couldn't dance like Louis Gerstner and his IBM(IBM)which went through a major turn-around("Who Says Elephants Can't Dance" - buy from from a dead old hardware maker to a global-consultant and outsourcing mega house. Although former AT&T CEO Mike Armstrong tried to bring AT&T into the new era by buying broadband company, yet the strategic move never proved to be successful.

Greatest Scientific Lab
As a former developer from on of AT&T's Research & Developement center in New Jersey, I was overwhelmed with the rich talents that AT&T has in its R&D centers scattered around in New Jersey. Bell Lab, as most people call the R&D center of AT&T, was used to be called the the greatest scientific laboratory that ever existed with investions which changed the world such as transistor, laser, optical communication, cell phone, touch-tone phone, and for the developers - UNIX system and C programming language. Unfortunately AT&T's core long-distance service is getting less profit and with the emerging of telecom companies such as MCI (MCIP), SBC and Verizon(VZ) which takes the profits of local telephone, there's no way to keep its tens of thousands of talented employees.

Telecom industry
After the SBC AT&T acquisition, the telecom industry will be left with only two major player as Verizon also merges MCI. The industry is in a bump ride ahead as new technology such as Voice Over IP has taken away revenues in both local and long distance. 10 years from now it will be interesting to see who'll still survive in the telecom industry or if the company will transform to a entirely new business model just like IBM.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Hot Gadget Stocks - iPOD & Satellite Radio Part II

In the article yesterday, we've discussed the iPOD storm which help Apple Computer's stock went double fold in a year. It's no surprising that the stock representing hot gadget generally performs well because hot gadget = high sales = good future stock performance.

Satellite Radio
Ever heard of satellite radio? Instead of getting just statics from your car radio when you are in the middle of a desert, satellite radio basically receive the radio channels from the commercial satellite in space so that you'll be able to get your life NFL radio broadcast even at the place where conventional radio station doesn't work.

Of course satellite radio service does not come free like conventional radio as you'll need to get a satellite radio receiver for about $49 a piece at circuit city and also pay a subscription fee of $12.95 a month. What? Paying $12.95 a month just for better radio quality? Who would pay for that?

More than a milliion people today are subscribing to satellite radio services from the two major satellite radio provider - Sirius Satellite Radio(SIRI) and XM Satellite Radio(XMSR). By last quarter, Sirius Satellite Radio has a total of 2.2 million subscribers nation wide while it's bigger rival XM Satellite Radio has more than double of about 5 million subscribers. Translate the number into revenue and you will find a decent business here.

One big plus for this new gadget is that many of the auto makers are having satellite radio as build-in features on new models. For example today Mercedes-Benz USA announces that Sirius radio will become standard feature on certain model next year. In addition, the signing of big time celebrities such as Howard Stern and Martha Stewart just makes this quality radio service a lot more attractive.

So does this hot gadget look good to you? You should be able to find some cheaper satellite radio receiver at eBay or just have either SIRI or XMSR in your portfolio.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Hot Gadget Stocks - iPOD & Satellite Radio Part I

Remeber Research in Motion? The wireless solution company who makes the famous BlackBerry platform sees its stock flying from $5 per share to $100 per share in just two years. This type of agressive movement inspires me to look at another interesting group of stocks which are generating lots of money for the investor - the hot gadget stocks.

So where do you find the new hot gadget? Well don't ask me because you probably should know the most. Look at your colleagues, your high schoolers at home or your neighbors and see what they are getting. If there's one gadget where you haven't heard before yet some people around you are getting it, chances are it's a new hot gadget and you should better check it to see if it is listed in the stock market.

The first hot gadget, you probably are aware of, is iPOD, made by tech genius Steve Job and his Apple Computer
(AAPL). When my colleague first show this white stylish box to me, I thought this is just another new walkman. However when I see how he also uses iPOD as an external hard drive, I feel I want to get one as well. It's stylish outlook may just attracks the younger generation yet it's multi-functionality also attracts tech geeks. The easy to use iTune CD to iPOD software is also a bonus. Steve Job and Apple Inc are creating a successful business model from iPOD where on one hand they are generating revenue from sales of iPOD yet on the other hand they are getting millions of dollars from online music sales. My colleague bought the stock the same time he got his iPOD and has seen his portfolio appreciate 20% ever since. The stock is currently trading at its 52 weeks high at $64.75 per share and is still rising.

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Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Flu Season is Here!

Looking at the morning headlines at At the center of the web site is a picture of a senior taking a flu shot and on top of the picture the black bolded phrase reads "pandemic fears loom over flu season".

The avian flu mania has peaked last month as penny stock such as Novavax(NVAX), listed in Nasdaq, reached its 52 weeks high of $6 per share from less than a dollar per share in merely two months before dumped back to it's 50 day moving average of around $3 per share. It looks as if the bird flu stock fever has cool down arleady. However we all know that the flu is not here yet and it eventually will hit US. Now that we are officially in the flu season so the risk of bird flu penetration into US is increasing higher. Therefore it's probably a good time to revisit the bird flu stocks and make sure they are in your portfolio.

Vaccine Maker
The first group of stocks is H5N1 vacccine related stock and the group composed of the vaccine contract winners Chiron(CHIR), Swiss drug maker Novartis(NVS) and Sanofi-Aventis (SNY) plus these other stocks who are in the development of H5N1 related vaccines - MedImmune(MEDI), GlaxoSmithKline(GSK) and Novavax (NVAX).

The second group of stocks is the Tamiflu manufacture including Teva Pharmaceutical (TEVA), Barr Pharmaceuticals (BRL), Mylan Laboratories (MYL). Tamiflu producer Gilead Sciences Inc. (GILD) is also the top player in this group.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Harry Potter to the Rescue

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, the fifth film base on British writer J. K. Rowling's multi-million book sale generator, is coming to theaters across US this week. Your five to ten year olds at home are probably waiting for you to bring them to the local AMC theaters. Nevertheless, the ones who anticipate the most are not your kids but the people sitting in the boardroom of Time Warner Brother.

Movie Producer
Seeing its stock hovering around the 16-19 per share range, a homerun in box office from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire should help Time Warner Inc(TWX)'s stock performance. In addition, the spin-off of AOL, if possible, would also help the stock.

Other possible winners from the film release of Harry Potter also includes the movie theater industry. For example Columnbus, Georgia based Carmikes(CKEC), the 307 theaters opeartor and the 558 theaters owner Regal Entertainment(RGC) should be pretty happy over the openning weekend of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.

So let's cross our fingers that next Monday Harry Potter would again do his magic for these three companies.

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News Alert: Wal-Mart Posts Strong Earning

Wal-Mart posts strong third quarter earning as profit rise 3.8% and sales growth 10%. Wal-Mart net income rose to $2.4 billion or 57 cents per share which is in line with analyst forecast. Shares rise 30 cents to $49.30.

Considering the closing of stores due to Hurrican Katrina, the numbers looks very promising.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Our Stock Porfolio Performance

Since started in November 3, Smart Stock Investment has covered the following stocks according to our innovative categories: Next Generation Tech, Shopping Mall Hidden Gem, Bird/Avian Flu Vaccine, Tamiflu, Solar Energy and Halloween stocks. Here's a summary of how these stocks did as for 11/11/2005.

Next Generation (Cover Date: 11/11/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)
IRBT / 36.51 / 36.51 / 0.00%
Overall 0.00% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Shopping Mall Hidden Gem (Cover Date: 11/9/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)

BBW / 25.76 / 25.27 / +1.94%
Overall +1.94%
(*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Bird Flu Vaccine (Cover Date: 11/8/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)
CHIR / 44.14 / 44.19 / -0.11%
NVS / 54.25 / 54.33 / -0.15%
SNY / 40.79 / 40.68 / +0.27%
MEDI / 35.71 / 34.93 / +2.23%
GSK / 53.53 / 53.09 / +0.83%
NVAX / 3.04 / 3.905 / -22.15%
Overall +0.14% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Tamiflu (Cover Date: 11/7/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)
TEVA / 40.12 / 38.35 / +4.62%
BRL / 56.93 / 56.8 / +0.23%
MYL / 19.82 / 19.94 / -0.60%
Overall +1.55% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Solar Energy (Cover Date: 11/4/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)
ESLR / 10.63 / 11.2 / -5.09%
Overall -5.09% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

Halloween (Cover Date: 11/3/2005)
Stock / Current / Start / Change(%)

PCTY / 16.84 / 16.19 / +4.01%
BDAY / 13.06 / 12.9 / +1.24%
WMT / 49.00 / 47.57 / +3.01%
HSY / 55.05 / 56.4 / -2.39%
TR / 30.47 / 30.5 / -0.10%
Overall +0.53% (*buying 100 shares for each stock)

So far except next generation stock which just started on Friday, 4 out of 5 portfolios are in postive territory which seems pretty decent for now.

Friday, November 11, 2005

IPO Alert - The Next Tech Frontier

Ever seen the movie I, Robot, the sci-fi thriller played by Will Smith about a future world where multi-functional robots are extensively used to help human being. Don't just think of this as just another it-will-never-happen crazy idea. In fact, there is a company,which just went public three days ago, making the dream come true.

Founded in 1990 by roboticists in MIT, iRobot Corp, same name as the sci-fi movie, designs behavior-based and artificially intelligent robots, in another words, the smart robots. The company is famous for it's vacuum cleaning robot which sold about 1.5 million worldwide. Its search-and-surveillance is performing potential hazardous work for Bomb Squads, SWAT teams or the military.

Pricing at $24 per share, iRobot(IRBT) went public on Wednesday, Nov. 9, and quickly soared to $34 per share, a 42% increase. It hits $37 today and look for more upside for this new tech frontier.

Other interesting worth watching technology includes nanotech where you may subscribe to a naotech stock report.

Thursday, November 10, 2005 also Covering BBW

Just day after I write about Build a Bear Workshop, a St. Louis based experiential retailer who allow customer to participate in the process of making their own stuffed animals, also writes an article about it today and claims that they have BBW under their screen. The stock may be off its high. But with low EV/Ebitda (Enterprise value versus earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) and improving sales we should see it goes up in no time.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Hidden Gem in the Shopping Mall

The greatest investor of our time, Warren Buffet, is famous for his "invest only in the stock you know" strategy. This simple in words yet complex in execution strategy has bring Buffet to one of the wealthiest man of the planet.

Why is it difficult? Because knowing a stock isn't just about knowing it's name. It's about understanding the stock to a point where you are comfortable that the stock is going to do well. It's about knowing it's balance sheet, the industry, the management team, the operation margin, the sales revenue... etc. I guess that's why we have so many analysts on Wall Street.

So does that mean there's no way we can understand a stock? Well there is actually an easy way to know something more about the stock, such as predicting it's sales revenue, by doing what you or your spouse normally do over the weekend - shopping. Shopping!? That's right! Shopping. Think of al these names: Gap, Target, Best Buy, Bed Bath & Beyond. Aren't they the shops you go almost once a week or once a month? And you know what, they and many more retailers are listed in the US stock exchange.

When you are in these stores and you are seeing line up, not the line up at the refune counter, then the store shouldn't be doing too bad. Although the stores listed above are probably covered by many institution already so you won't be expecting a multi-fold return, it is still save to invest in those who you overserve as having a great holiday season. However if you found a store that is relatively new in the stock market and is doing pretty well in your neighborhood shopping mall, then you should probably consider include it in your portfolio.

Hidden Gem
This is how I found Build a Bear Workshop(BBW), a St. Louis based specialty retailer on stuffed animals. So another Toy-R-US? Well, Build a Bear Workshop comes up with a inovative idea of lettting the kids design their own stuff animals and also actually seeing it being stuffed. The new stuffed toy is then given a name and birthday. The stuffed bear is not just your typical made-in-China but the one almost created by you or your children. Think of how carefully your kid would take care of the toy. And speaking of the line-up, I recently went to it's store in Ontario Mill, a mega outlet in Ontario, California and were seeing kids wating in line at the animal stuffing machine to create their own babies.

The Finance
The balance sheet is quite strong with no debt unlike those risky high tech. The stock has just gone public a year ago last November and is still trading near the 52 weeks low of $25 per share. With more than 60% of insdier holding the stock, you should count on the management team to not mess around too much. With holiday season coming, the stock should only go up from now on.

Want to buy a Cherished Teddy Bear or find collection of Wildlife Bear Gifts?

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Avian Flu Vaccine Maker

In the previous article we've dicussed the first group of stocks that will benefit in case of the bird flu outbreak - the Tamiflu makers. Now let's shifts out attention from to another player - the H5N1 vaccine maker.

Vaccine Winner and Developer
Lacking enough vaccine in stock to combat against H5N1, the deadly bird flu virus now threatening human lifes, U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Service the HHS was handing out huge contracts for biotech firms to produce avian vaccine to inoculate Americans against the deadly disease. The contract winners are:

  • Chiron(CHIR): awarded $62.5 million to produce 20 million vaccines for bird flu. The biopharmaceutical company based in Emeryville, CA has been bought by Swiss drug giant Novartis(NVS), so pay attention to Novartis which has seen its stock price rise from $48 a share to $54 a share today.
  • Sanofi-Aventis (SNY): the European drug maker was awared a $100 million contract to produce avian flu vaccine. With strong earning result today, the stock should be ready for plenty of upside as it is still trading at 6 month low of $40.7 a share.

There are also other companys who has bird flu vaccine under development to supply the current shortage of H5N1 vaccine:

  • MedImmune(MEDI): Maryland based vaccine maker is also develolping vaccines against H5N1. The stock has rise from $26 per share in August to its 52 weeks high of $36 per share.
  • GlaxoSmithKline(GSK): the Brentford, UK based vaccine maker is also developing its own version of H5N1 vaccine. The stock has just reached 52 weeks high recently around $53 per share.
  • Novavax (NVAX): the Malvern, PA based company has proved its vaccine could protect animals against avian flu. After announcing more stock offering to fund more clinical development, the company is clearly in the Avian Flu vaccine rase. The stock is a risk play as it has sky-rocketted 400% in three month from merely a dollar per share to $3.9 per share today.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Bird (Avian) Flu Panic

Investing on News that is going to happen is probably the smartest move that many investors ever dreamed of. However most of the time what happen is that we buy on news that has already happen. Smart stock buying before any news outbreak involves experience, detail analysis, logical thinking and a bit of luck. Fortunately we are in a position where there's news that is going to happen yet hasn't happen here yet. Huh? Doesn't sound logical? Well, it is.

Thanks to the advance media technology, we are far more accessible to news happening in the other part of the globe than ever before. Therefore when Asia is battling the
Bird Flu, an deadly virus commonly occurred among birds, we in US still have plenty of time to prepare for it and also at the same time find the possible stock that is related to Bird/Avian Flu.

Let's begin the research with the sole cure for Bird Flu called Tamiflu, an antiviral drug produced by Swiss drugmaker Roche. Don't stop your research here because Roche unfortuntely isn't listed in any of the US stock exchange. So there's no way to invest Tamiflu related stocks? Don't give up yet. Actually Roche is allowing four generic drug manufacturers to product Tamiflu and three of them are listed in US stock exchange. Here they are:
  1. Teva Pharmaceutical (TEVA): headquarter in Israel with facilities in North America and Europe, now trading at 52 week high at $38.39.
  2. Barr Pharmaceuticals (BRL): maker of 70 different generic pharmaceutical product in New Jersey, now trading at 52 weeks high at $56.8.
  3. Mylan Laboratories (MYL): producer of drugs in US, now trading at $19.9 per share.

Keep this blog in your radar as we'll go thru other bird flu related stocks in the next few articles.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Solar Energy the Winner

A smart stock pick not only involves technical analysis but also requires the sense of understanding the "Big Picture", i.e. where the trend is heading. Don't know how to find the big picture? Well, just read the headlines of a newspaper or just being in your normal self - sitting like potatoe in front of TV. And instead of watching NFL Football most of the time, pay a little more attention to CNN or your local news headline. What you're getting from the news may very well be valuable stock investment tips.
Energy Crisis
For instance, you probably have all heard about the buzz word "Energy Crisis" more often than Donald Trump's famous "You are fired!" phrase. With energy crisis, you could make your stock selection in either oil/gas stocks or alternative energy stocks where both categories were seeing huge demands.
Alterntave Energy
Let's say you've picked alternative energy stocks since you're more of a risk taker. You'll be given the option of various categories in alternative energy, wind, thermal, solar or hydrogen. After reading news that household that installs solar power would get some utility and tax break, you narrow down your stock pick to solar energy. Now use yahoo symbol lookup and type in the word solar and you should probably get about 11 listings with only one possible stock to pick from - Evergreen Solar, because the rest are either .PK(bankrupt) or .OB(way too risky). You could even be more caucious by checking the competitors. However you should see that only Evergreen Solar is publicly listed.
Everygreen Solar
If you buy Evergreen Solar(ESLR) half a year ago, you would probably see your portfolio more than doubled today, from $5 to $11 after a positive earning announcement. Investing this stock a year ago last November, you would see the stock more than trippled from $3 to $11. Ouch! So is the stock too expensive to buy? Well, if energy bill still keep rising, look for more upside.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Halloween Stock Picks

Halloween parties has ended not long ago and many houses are still having their creepy decoration sitting on the front yard. Parents are probably making dental appointment for their children for eating too many Halloweeen trick-or-treat candies.
So what does Halloween have to do with stocks? Well, guess what? It does.
Basically there are two major events on Halloween nights - Halloween Parties and Trick or Treat and these two events sort of provide us with the following two directions for stock picks for Halloween.
1. Halloween Party - Party Retail
No matter where you throw the party - homes or street parade, you gotta prepare yourself as scary as possible by going to the local retail for Halloween party good. Here are some of the companies I have in mind:
  • Party City (PCTY): number one places in everybody's mind when it comes to Halloween party. Party City will be taken over for $17.5 per share by the end of this year from a private firm. the number should be strong for the earning on 11/9.
  • Celebrate Express (BDAY): maker of celebration products for families with young children based in Kirkland, WA. Sells Halloween costumes. Now trading at 2 year low at $12.9 per share.
  • Wal-Mart (WMT): can't miss this disoucnt retail giant when talking about Halloween. Just rising of 5 year low with heavy volumn. A save pick for Halloween.
2. Trick or Treat - Candy Maker
Parents, do you still remeber the candies that your kids got on Halloween night? If not, take down the brand names of the candies before they are all gone. If many families are buying the candies for Halloween, chances are the company is making money for the Halloween night. Some major candy makers are:
  • Hershey (HSY): chocolate is still a big favorite when it comes to Halloween candies. The stock is trading close to 1 year low at $56.4. With Holloween and holiday season approaching, it should be a save net for Christmas.
  • Tootsie Roll Industries (TR): maker of Tootsie Roll. Its Child's Play kids variety bag was originally introduced in 1985 Halloween. Past 2 year chart shows the stock headed upward usually near the end of the year especially after Halloween. Trading at $30.5 and should be a great buy for the holiday.

Have you found your Halloween pick yet?

Pick the Right Stock

Anybody still remember Enron, the promising energy trading giant that tanked all the way to bankruptcy in a matter of days? Who's that dumb putting his money in that land mine? Yah, I confess it's me, and many other investor from million dollar funds to individual 401K account.

Now let's flashback to January, 2002 when people are still recovering from the Nasdaq crash. There is this stocks sitting of most investor's radar in the category where people avoid the most, internet. In addtion, being in a foreign country China, (
NTES), fluctuating between 3 quarters($0.75) per share to just over a dollar ($1.25) for almost half year, would probably sitting unnoticed away from most institutions.

Anybody brave enought to invest 1000 shares in this penny stock, which cost $750 or roughly one month rent of single bedroom apartement, and leave it till today without tracking it. I mean, who would care a stock worth a monthly rent after losing tens and thousands of dollars in the portfolio. Guess what this man is getting out of his one bedroom rent investment today? $85,200!! Speaking of expensive houses, this would easily give you a 20% downpayment for most houses today. Imaging if you've dump all your saving and buy it for $7,500 you'll be almost ready for retirement with close to a million in your account. Unfortunately, I wasn't that person, and neither are many of you who are probably hit your head against the wall now.

Picking the right stock is difficult and picking the right stock at the right time is even more difficult. Who would imaging the shut gun maker, Taser International (TASR) would sky-rocketed from $4 a share all the way to $154 a share in just one year from February 2003 to 2004 and back to planet Earth also in a year to $18 in Febbruary 2005 and is still finding bottom at $6 today.

I'm hoping by careful analysis, we would be able to find stock that would perform, if not as good as but at least not as bad as Enron.
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