Thursday, May 8, 2014

7 personal finance lessons to learn from Katrina Kaif

Top 5 India Stocks To Buy Right Now

Inspirations come in all shapes and sizes. You would surely agree that Katrina Kaif as an inspiration is not only shapely but also quite beautiful.

Katrina was a total novice when she entered the Hindi film industry. She had no knowledge of films. Worse � she couldn�t even speak the Hindi language properly. Yet within a short span of 5-7 years she has become one of the most successful actresses in the Hindi film industry.

Many amongst you too would have no knowledge of the personal finance industry. Worse � you wouldn�t even understand the financial language. But if you are willing to work hard like Katrina, there is no reason why you too can�t become a successful manager of your money.

Lesson 1: Background and past do not matter; what matters is what you do with your present.

Her first movie was called Boom, which ironically went totally bust (even though it also starred the legendary superstar Mr. Amitabh Bachchan). But she didn�t let the super-flop discourage her. Instead of feeling sad or sorry about it, she turned the failure into a lesson. You too will experience many failures when you start investing. But don�t let them deter you. No one can be 100% successful. All you have to aim for is to have more wins than losses.

Lesson 2: Don�t be discouraged by failures, instead learn from them.

To guide her during the initial years, she found herself a mentor. He acted as her friend, philosopher and guide � educating her about the nuances of the films and film industry. More importantly, she was a willing student who worked very hard to absorb all the lessons. You too should find yourself a financial advisor who will pass on all the knowledge to you. More importantly, you should be a willing student. After all, you have to score your own goals. A coach cannot do it for you.

Lesson 3: Find yourself a mentor and be willing to learn.

The first few years of her career she worked with established and successful stars only. You too should begin your investments with large and established companies/mutual funds. There is no point in taking risks until you understand the game.

Lesson 4: To start with, invest only in top-rated and successful companies/mutual funds.

She found a certain comfort level with Akshay Kumar and gave many hits working with him. She didn�t try to experiment too much or work with many stars. Identify a few investment options that you easily understand and are comfortable with. Don�t buy too many different financial products in the initial years of your investment.

Lesson 5: Stick with a few simple investment products in the early years.

It was only when she started understanding the Hindi film industry and achieved reasonable success that she moved to younger upcoming stars such as Ranbir Kapoor, Imran Khan and Ali Zafar. She also took to doing items songs. Had she done item songs in early part of her career she would have remained an item-girl only. Only when you get a hang of the personal finance industry and have made some successful investments, should you consider investing in different products and upcoming companies. If you start with Futures/Options you will never become a successful investor.

Lesson 6: Move to riskier and specialized products only after you become a reasonably successful investor.

It would be wrong to attribute Katrina�s success to only her face and contacts. Starlets with prettier faces and better connections didn�t shine long enough. You won�t even remember their names. Ultimately, it is her attitude and dedication towards her work that has given Katrina all the success, fame and money. Likewise, the likelihood of you too becoming a multi-millionaire would be determined by just how good you are at managing the resources you have.

Lesson 7: Only �attitude� matters; rest is just a matter of details.

Professions may differ, but the underlying rules to success remain the same. Pick up any person you admire � Sachin Tendulkar, A.R. Rahman, Narayana Murthy, Kiran Bedi, Sonia Gandhi, etc. � and make him/her your inspiration. Success is waiting for you. Are you ready to grab it?

Sanjay Matai is a personal finance advisor ( ) and author. � Millionaires don�t eat cakes�they make them � is his latest publication.

Snapchat settles privacy complaint with FTC

Snapchat agreed to a settlement with the Federal Trade Commission on Thursday after the agency claimed it was not forthcoming to consumers about how long messages are visible to other users.

The unique messaging service allows its users to send photos and videos to friends that "disappear" after several seconds. Friends can opt to take a screenshot, but the sender is warned in advance.

The FTC claims Snapchat "made multiple misrepresentations" about the app, including the longevity of photos and videos users sent. The agency's complaint cites workarounds users employ to avoid Snapchat's screenshot detection, as well as third-party apps that save photos or videos indefinitely.

The complaint also says Snapchat deceived users on the amount of personal data it collects and how it protects it. The FTC notes a high-profile breach tied to the Find My Friends feature, which exposed the usernames and phone numbers of 4.6 million users.

"If a company markets privacy and security as key selling points in pitching its service to consumers, it is critical that it keep those promises," said FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez in a statement.

The complaint also claims Snapchat collected Apple iOS users contact information without permission, and failed to secure the Find My Friends feature despite a warning about a potential exploit.

In January, Snapchat issued an update to fix the exploit.

Snapchat generated buzz last fall after the messaging service turned down a $3 billion acquisition offer from Facebook. The social network giant later scooped up messaging company WhatsApp for $16 billion.

Follow Brett Molina on Twitter: @bam923.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

3 Huge Stocks Everyone Is Talking About

BALTIMORE (Stockpickr) -- Put down the 10-K filings and the stock screeners. It's time to take a break from the traditional methods of generating investment ideas. Instead, let the crowd do it for you.

>>5 Stocks Set to Soar on Bullish Earnings

From hedge funds to individual investors, scores of market participants are turning to social media to figure out which stocks are worth watching. It's a concept that's known as "crowdsourcing," and it uses the masses to identify emerging trends in the market.

Crowdsourcing has long been a popular tool for the advertising industry, but it also makes a lot of sense as an investment tool. After all, the market is completely driven by the supply and demand, so it can be valuable to see what names are trending among the crowd.

While some fund managers are already trying to leverage social media resources like Twitter to find algorithmic trading opportunities, for most investors, crowdsourcing works best as a starting point for investors who want a starting point in their analysis. Today, we'll leverage the power of the crowd to take a look at some of the most active stocks on the market today.

>>Must-See Charts: 5 Big Trades for May

These "most active" names are the most heavily-traded names on the market -- and often, uber-active names have some sort of a technical or fundamental catalyst driving investors' attention on shares. And when there's a big catalyst, there's often a trading opportunity.

Without further ado, here's a look at today's stocks.


Nearest Resistance: $32

Nearest Support: $30

Catalyst: Q1 Earnings

Drug maker Pfizer (PFE) is down more than 2% in this afternoon's session, pushed lower by first-quarter earnings to kick off the week. Pfizer's earnings came in on target, beating Wall Street estimates by 2 cents per share. But the problem came from sales, which missed the mark by approximately $750 million. The sales miss comes as Pfizer pursues an acquisition of big pharma name AstraZeneca (AZN) -- Pfizer's $106 billion offer price has been rejected as AZN looks for a bigger price tag.

From a technical standpoint, Pfizer is showing some more significant cracks. In the intermediate term, PFE is forming a head and shoulders top with a neckline level at $30; today's earnings miss is shoving shares to within grabbing distance of that line in the sand. If $30 support gets violated, look out below in shares of Pfizer.

JPMorgan Chase

Nearest Resistance: $56

Nearest Support: $54

Catalyst: Revenue Warnings

JPMorgan Chase (JPM) is down more than 2.3% this afternoon, dropping following the firm's announcement that bond and equity trading revenues were expected to drop this quarter versus last year. That's the latest in a series of trading revenue drops, a development that's leaving some investors thinking that a rebound for the unit won't be in the cards.

Technically, JPM looks a lot like the chart of Pfizer. Like the drug maker, this big bank is forming a head and shoulders top setup, and it's testing a breakdown below the neckline in today's session. That level to watch comes in at $54. If JPM fails to catch a bid above that level this week, it's a sell.


Nearest Resistance: $62.50

Nearest Support: $59

Catalyst: CEO Departure

Big box retailer Target (TGT) is down 3% this afternoon, following news that CEO Gregg Steinhafel would be stepping down from his executive and board roles. That makes him the latest and greatest casualty of the data breach that left Target with egg on its face during the holiday season. The flux in corporate leadership isn't doing investors any favors right now, and that's the driver of the selloff we're seeing today.

Looking at the chart, Target could actually look a lot worse than it does. The firm has been consolidating in a rectangle pattern with resistance up at $62.50 and support at $59 -- that's giving investors a chance to figure out their next moves while this stock churns sideways. If shares can catch a bid above $62.50, it becomes a high-probability buy. Otherwise, if shares fall below $59, more downside is likely.

To see these stocks in action, check out the at Most-Active Stocks portfolio on Stockpickr.

-- Written by Jonas Elmerraji in Baltimore.


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Follow Stockpickr on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.

At the time of publication, author had no positions in the names mentioned.

Jonas Elmerraji, CMT, is a senior market analyst at Agora Financial in Baltimore and a contributor to

TheStreet. Before that, he managed a portfolio of stocks for an investment advisory returned 15% in 2008. He has been featured in Forbes , Investor's Business Daily, and on Jonas holds a degree in financial economics from UMBC and the Chartered Market Technician designation.

Follow Jonas on Twitter @JonasElmerraji

Monday, May 5, 2014

Top Cheap Companies To Invest In 2014

Top Cheap Companies To Invest In 2014: CVS Corporation(CVS)

CVS Caremark Corporation operates as a pharmacy services company in the United States. The company?s Pharmacy Services segment provides a range of pharmacy benefit management services, including mail order pharmacy services, specialty pharmacy services, plan design and administration, formulary management, and claims processing; and drug benefits to eligible beneficiaries under the Federal Government?s Medicare Part D program. This segment primarily serves employers, insurance companies, unions, government employee groups, managed care organizations and other sponsors of health benefit plans, and individuals. As of December 31, 2010, it operated 44 retail specialty pharmacy stores, 18 specialty mail order pharmacies, and 4 mail service pharmacies located in 25 states, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia. This segment operates business under the CVS Caremark Pharmacy Services, Caremark, CVS Caremark, CarePlus CVS/pharmacy, CarePlus, RxAmerica, Accordant, and TheraCom names. The company?s Retail Pharmacy segment sells prescription drugs, over-the-counter drugs, beauty products and cosmetics, seasonal merchandise, greeting cards, and convenience foods through its pharmacy retail stores and online, as well as offers film and photo finishing, and health care services. This segment operated 7,182 retail drugstores located in 41 states, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia; and 560 retail health care clinics in 26 states and the District of Columbia under the MinuteClinic name. It has a strategic alliance with Alere, L.L.C. for the management of disease management program offerings that cover chronic diseases, such as asthma, diabetes, congestive heart failure, and coronary artery disease. CVS Caremark Corporation was founded in 1892 and is based in Woonsocket, Rhode Island.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Dan Burrows] !

    Specifically, IRC specializes in retail locations. Some of its biggest customers are national chains like Walmart (WMT) and CVS (CVS).

    Also, IRC is the only name in this group of dividend stocks that’s above $10 as of this writing … but I wouldn’t hold that against Inland.

  • [By Victor Selva]

    As we can see, the firm has a lower ROE than Abbott Laboratories (ABT), Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. (TMO) and CVS Caremark Corporation (CVS).

    Final Comment

  • [By Bloomberg]

    Matthew Staver/Bloomberg via Getty Images Cerberus Capital Management's $9 billion deal to merge Safeway (SWY) with Albertsons is a bet that a larger supermarket chain can better fend off an attack on the grocery business by big-box stores and online retailers. Safeway, the No. 2 grocery-store operator in the U.S., agreed Thursday to be acquired by Cerberus's Albertsons for about $40 a share. The deal will unite two chains with locations across the country -- especially in the West -- and narrow Kroger's (KR) lead as the nation's top supermarket company. Cerberus, a private-equity firm that has spent years investing in the supermarket industry, will use the new company's heft to combat a growing array of threats. Big-box retailers such as Walmart Stores (WMT) and warehouse clubs are increasingly targeting grocery customers, using their size and breadth of products to attract shoppers. Online food sellers and delivery services, including (AMZN), also have made neighborhood supermarkets less essential than before. "This merger will improve our competitive position," Safeway Chief Executive Officer Robert Edwards, who will be in charge of the combined company, said Thursday on a conference call. "Our customers will benefit from significant cost saving synergies and a stronger management team." Safeway shares fell as much as 6.3 percent to $37 in extended trading, reflecting concerns the deal may not close at the current price. The shares had increa! sed 21 pe! rcent this year through the close of regular trading Thursday, outpacing the 1.6 percent gain of the Standard & Poor's 500 Index. Blackhawk Network As part of the agreement, investors will get $32.50 a share in cash, plus stock in Safeway's gift-card unit Blackhawk Network Holdings (HAWK), according to a statement Thursday. Safeway, based in Pleasanton, Calif., had said last month that it was in talks about a sale of the company. Assuming a diluted share count of about 235 million shares,


    Healthcare stocks in the Fund had a strong fourth quarter and year. CVS (CVS)'s 26% performance for the quarter is reflective of the fact that 10,000 Americans turn 65 every day and will for the next 15 years. Businesses that are able to serve this growing segment with improving service, innovation, technology, product quality and value should continue to win.

  • source from Top Stocks Blog: