Tuesday, June 30, 2009

What Do Huntington Station, West Nyack, Las Vegas, and Los Angeles Have In Common

Huntington Station, West Nyack, Las Vegas, and Los Angeles are all cities that have Apple (AAPL) stores where the iPhone is sold out. The iPhone is selling like hotcakes, and if you are planning on buying one, you should check out Apple's iPhone Availability Checker.

Author owns AAPL and an iPhone.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Contraception and Birth Control Stocks

The correlation between contraception and the recession is significant. Women are now much more concerned about preventing pregnancy during the economic downturn. Because of this concern, investors are looking at companies that are involved in contraception and birth control products. Here are a selection of stocks in this area:

Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (TEVA) owns Barr Pharmaceuticals, Inc., which owns Duramed Pharmaceuticals, Inc., which makes the ParaGard T-380A, a copper-T IUD, the only copper-containing intrauterine device approved for use in the U.S.

Bayer AG (BAYRY.PK), which owns Bayer Schering Pharma, which makes the T-frame LNG-20 IUS, an intra-uterine system marketed as Mirena Coil. They also market birth control pills.

SSL International plc (SLSLY.PK) is a British-based manufacturer of healthcare products makes the Shieks and Ramses brands, and the Durex brands of condoms.

Church & Dwight Co., Inc. (CHD) makes the Trojan brands of prophylactics.

Ansell Limited (ANSLF.PK) makes the Mates brand and Lifestyles brand of condoms.

Schering-Plough Corporation (SGP) owns Organon International which makes NuvaRing, a combined hormonal contraceptive vaginal ring and Implanon, a single-rod long acting reversible hormonal contraceptive birth control subdermal implant that is inserted just under the skin of the upper arm.

Pfizer Incorporated (PFE) makes Depo-Provera Contraceptive Injection which is injected every 3 months. They also market birth control pills.

Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) owns Ortho-McNeil Pharmaceutical, which makes Diaphragms, and the combined oral contraceptive pill brands Ortho Tri-cyclen and Ortho-Evra.

However, a possible offset of this correlation is Pfizer's distribution of Viagra for free for those who lost their jobs and health insuance.

By Stockerblog.com

The Economy Drops, Contraception Increases

According to a recent article in the Silicon Valley Mercury News, the use of birth control and more permanent forms of contraception are skyrocketing as the economy tanks. Women have become very concerned about accidental pregnancies during the recession. Reportedly, birthrates drop with the drop in the Dow Jones Industrial Average.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

The Exact Day This Recession Will End

You probably read my recent article about the recession underwear indicator. But what about the real recession? I can tell you the exact day that the current recession will end, and its coming up quickly. It will be this Tuesday, June 30, 2009. This day marks the end of the second quarter of 2009. The Gross Domestic Product, also known as GDP, percent change based on chained 2000 dollars was negative for the third quarter of 2008, the fourth quarter of 2008, and the first quarter of 2009.

According to classic definitions, one quarterly downturn in the Gross Domestic Product (formerly Gross National Product) is a correction, two or three quarterly downturns is a recession, and four or more would be a depression. So if on June 30, we finish the quarter with an increase in the GDP, the recession is over. However, if it is still another downturn in the GDP, then we can no longer be in a recession by definition, we would be in a depression. Unfortunately, we won't know the results until we get the data from the U. S. Government's Bureau of Economic Analysis until probably sometime in September.

By Stockerblog.com

Friday, June 26, 2009

What Country Experienced Inflation of over a Trillion Percent?

The country that experienced an inflation rate in excess of a trillion percent is Zimbabwe. Inflation was so bad that the country allowed multiple currencies, including the United States Dollar and the South African Rand, as legal tender. It got to the point where Zimbabwe was the first country to issue banknote currency in excess of a trillion dollars, and now the Zimbabwe 100 trillion dollar bill, the highest denomination ever issued, has now become a collectors item in the United States and a popular gift to include with a greeting card.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Stocks Going Ex Dividend during the first week of July

If you want to try the stock trading technique called 'Buying Dividends,' which is the process of buying stocks before the ex dividend date and selling the stock shortly after the ex date at about the same price, yet still being entitled to the dividend, there are many stocks to choose from. This technique generally works only in bull markets.

When you buy dividends, there are many stocks in many different sectors to choose from. In order to be entitled to the dividend, you have to buy the stock before the ex-dividend date, and you can't sell the stock until after the ex date. The actual dividend may not be paid for another few weeks. WallStreetNewsNetwork has compiled a free downloadable and sortable Excel list of the stocks going ex dividend during the first part of July. They came up with over 20 companies all with market caps over $500 million. Here are a few examples showing the stock symbol, the ex-dividend date and the yield:

Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD) ex-div date 7/1/09 market cap $40.8B yield 4.3%

Mack-Cali Realty Corp. (CLI) ex-div date 7/1/09 market cap $1.7B yield 8.5%

Erie Indemnity Company (ERIE) ex-div date 7/1/09 market cap $1.8B yield 5.2%

The rest of the ex-dividend stocks can be found at wsnn.com. If you like dividend stocks, you should check out the high yield utility stocks and the Monthly Dividend Stocks at WallStreetNewsNetwork.com or WSNN.com. For more details on dividend definitions, check out definitions of dividend dates. Don't forget to reconfirm the ex-dividend date with the company before implementing this technique.

Author doesn't own any of the above.

By Stockerblog.com

Friday, June 19, 2009

Apple's Steve Jobs Had a Liver Transplant

The news is out. Apple Inc. (AAPL) Steve Jobs had a liver transplant in Tennessee.

There are Still Stocks that are Trading Below Cash

After the stock market rise from March, you might think that any stocks that had been trading below their cash per share would have made their move and would now be trading above cash. Not so. WallStreetNewsNetwork.com has just updated their list of over 35 stocks that are trading below their cash per share and have market caps above $100 million.

The cash per share is calculated by taking all the cash in banks of the company and dividing that number by the total shares outstanding. So if the company has $10 million in cash, and has 1 million shares outstanding, the cash per share is $10. If the stock trades for $5, then the Cash per Share Price ratio would be 2. The higher the number, the bigger the discount.

In this example, if the company went out of business today and had no debt, all investors would double their money plus receive a pro rata share of the sale of all the other assets of the company. In a way, it almost creates a base or floor for the price of the stock, because eventually the company will be noticed by either investors who will buy shares of the stock driving up the price or other companies who will attempt a take-over of the company.

Some of the companies that show up on the list include:

Enstar Group Limited (ESGR), which settles insurance and reinsurance claims, recently traded at 57.88 and has cash per share of 162.84, giving it a cash to share price ratio of 2.81. The company has a market cap of 778.5 million, with a forward PE of 6.51. They do have $392.7 million in debt.

American Railcar (ARII) which makes and sells hopper and tank railcars, trades at 7.59 per share and has cash per share of 13.74, giving it a cash to share price ratio of 1.81. The company has a market cap of $161.7 million, with a forward PE of 95.12. Their debt level is 275.0 million.

Wellcare Health (WCG) a managed healthcare services company, trades at 18.45 per share and has cash per share of 28.62, giving it a cash to share price ratio of 1.55. The company has a market cap of $ 779.0 million, and a forward PE of 8.11. They have 152.4 million in debt.

To see all the other stocks that are trading below cash, several of which are debt free, and at least one of which pays a dividend, you can download a free Excel database of Stocks Trading Below Cash at wsnn.com.

By the way, one of my readers asked me what source I use to come up with this list. The answer is, I am the source. I start with searching for stocks using general categories, such as market caps over $100 million. I then go line by line through the list of stocks and calculate the cash divided by the price per share to get the cash per share price ratio (sometimes I calculate the share price per cash ratio), then I sort by highest to lowest ratio.

When going through this list, be careful of the financial and investment companies, since the amount of cash for the financials is generally much higher than the cash balance of other sectors.

Author does not own any of the above.

By Stockerblog.com

Guest Article: S&P 500 - A correction or a major turn?

With the S&P 500 falling to a fresh two-week low, the big question is this a correction, or the start of a major trend on the downside?

I have just finished a short video that details many of the key concerns that we have for this market. If you have not seen our videos before you may enjoy this one. This video does not require a plug-in.

The video is free to watch and there is no need to register. I would love to get your feedback about this video on our blog.

http://www.ino.com/info/378/CD3111/
&dp=0&l=0&campaignid=3


All the best,

Adam Hewison
President, INO.com
Co-creator, MarketClub

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

First Wireless Internet, Now Wireless Power

Who would have thought ten years ago that everyone would be connecting to the Internet through the air, without being connected with a cable. Now Nokia (NOK), which trades on the New York Stock Exchange, has developed a cell phone that doesn't have to be plugged in to recharge. It charges itself through radio waves.

Guest Article: Despite the Rumors, Capitalism is Alive & Well

I just read and reviewed a best-selling book, A Failure of Capitalism: The Crisis of '08 and the Descent into Depression, written by the acclaimed author, Richard Posner. Posner's written dozens of books, and has an excellent track record, but this time, he's missed the mark.

Certainly, there's no arguing the fact that we, as a society, let a lot of things slip which helped lead us into the current economic malaise. Interest rates got too low, lenders were overly aggressive in approving marginal loans for houses, we failed to put much money into savings each month, and corporate America's CEOs got carried away with a sense of their own invincibility; risky business decisions flowed. Last summer, the bubble burst.

I suppose we should've seen it coming.

It was no doubt, quite a mess. However, to blame the economic woes on "the failure of capitalism" may sell a lot of books, but the truth is, capitalism is alive and well. Corporate America is going through some hard times, though. However, it has nothing to do with the system; it has to do with their failure to understand how psychological human emotions come into play in the workforce, as well as the market.

Employees are really a fragile bunch of people; their emotions need to be understood, and they need to be treated with respect and dignity. That's not happening. Corporations got so big and so powerful, they didn't feel it necessary to treat employees like human beings. That was a misguided way of thinking, but it resulted in low morale, high turnover, and decreased productivity.

The decreased productivity has been estimated by some employee motivation experts---like Paul Herr, the author of Primal Management---to be costing corporations anywhere from $1-2 trillion, annually. The simple solution of getting employees engaged in their company's success would certainly go along way to getting our economy back on track, and it wouldn't even require a Stimulus Package.

The tricky part of the psychological equation is trying to understand the rationale behind the mysterious manner in which the stock market, real estate market, or commodities market moves. They're driven by forces more complex than rudimentary "supply and demand" concepts. Emotions are often difficult to gauge, but when the masses move the markets in one direction or another, it's apparent they're unstoppable.

Consider the way the stock market reacted in the late '90s; especially the NASDAQ. It rallied in a manner far greater than any logical explanation could warrant, but once the masses got behind it, "panic buying" took over, and the next thing you knew, the NASDAQ eclipsed the 5000 mark. So-called experts were predicting a run to 10,000 within a couple of years; then in early 2000, the first stage of the correction began.

As far as the masses were concerned, the NASDAQ was no place to be, and it moved sharply down to the 3000 level; it never stopped its decline, and when 9/11 occurred, it was all she wrote. Today, the NASDAQ is hovering around the 1800 level, which is about where it was six years ago. I'd say the correction has just about been completed, but really, who can tell? It all depends on the psychology of the investor, as a whole; someday they may decide everything's better again, and it'll be off to the races, at least for a while.

The free market economy is not to blame for this mess; fundamentally, capitalism is still alive and well. People are crazy, however; but we've always known that. And they will continue to be crazy and unpredictable; at least in the investment arena. In the workplace, they're anything but unpredictable; and the sooner Corporate America understands that, and deals with it, the better off we'll all be.

The companies that will thrive in the market going forward, will be the progressive companies that understand the importance of employee engagement, and how that can positively impact their bottom lines if they get it right. The choice is clear; the General Motors and Chryslers of the world didn't get it right; that's for sure. Before investing in a company, it would be highly recommended in investigating the management philosophy of that company; and the best way to find out about that is to ask the employees in the trenches how they feel.

They'll know, and they'll be honest.

by Larry Underwood, author of Life Under the Corporate Microscope: A Maverick's Irreverent Perspective

Communication Evolution Video from Yahoo

This is an interesting video from Yahoo about the history of computerized communication from Yahoo (YHOO).

Guest Article: Important Gold Update

Will the long-term support line stop the hemorrhaging in the gold market?

In my new short video I will show you some of the key elements and levels that I think should come in and support the gold market. The video is quite short, but it will lead you step by step into the detailed analysis of this not so precious metal.

The video is free to watch and there is no need to register. I would love to get your feedback about this video on our blog.

http://www.ino.com/info/377/CD3111/&dp=0&l=0&campaignid=3

All the best,

Adam Hewison
President, INO.com
Co-creator, MarketClub

Monday, June 15, 2009

6 More Days to Fathers Day

Don't forget, Fathers Day is coming up quickly in the next six days. I came up with several suggestions in previous articles, however, it may be too late to order anything. But if you run out of ideas, you can always get your father an Amazon (AMZN) gift card, that can either be sent by email or can be printed out by you and put in a card.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Best Selling Business and Finance Books

The number one book in the category of Business and Investing is Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell. I am just starting to read this book now. I had previously read and reviewed one of Gladwell's previous books, Blink.

The number one book in the category of Investing is Crash Proof: How to Profit From the Coming Economic Collapse (Lynn Sonberg Books) by John Downes.

The number one book in Stocks is The Myth of the Rational Market: A History of Risk, Reward, and Delusion on Wall Street by Justin Fox. It will be available on June 18, 2009.

The number one book in Stocks available now is How to Make Money in Stocks: A Winning System in Good Times and Bad, Fourth Edition by William O'Neil.

The number one book in Real Estate is The Real Book of Real Estate: Real Experts. Real Stories. Real Life. by Robert T. Kiyosaki.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Stocks Going Ex Dividend During the Last Week of June

If you want to try the stock trading technique called 'Buying Dividends,' which is the process of buying stocks before the ex dividend date and selling the stock shortly after the ex date at about the same price, yet still being entitled to the dividend, there are many stocks to choose from. This technique generally works only in bull markets, which we seem to be in now.

In order to be entitled to the dividend, you have to buy the stock before the ex-dividend date, and you can't sell the stock until after the ex date. The actual dividend may not be paid for another few weeks. WallStreetNewsNetwork has compiled a free downloadable and sortable Excel list of the stocks going ex dividend during the last week of June. They came up with over 20 companies all with market caps over $500 million, and several with yields above 8%, all from June 22 to June 30. Here are a few examples showing the stock symbol, the ex-dividend date and the yield:

Xcel Energy Inc. XEL 6/23/2009 5.57%

Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce CM 6/25/2009 6.54%

Essex Property Trust, Inc. ESS 6/26/2009 5.95%

The rest of the ex-dividend stocks can be found at wsnn.com. If you like dividend stocks, you should also check out the high yield utility stocks and the Monthly Dividend Stocks at WallStreetNewsNetwork.com or WSNN.com. Don't forget to reconfirm the ex-dividend date with the company before implementing this technique.

Author doesn't own any of the above.

By Stockerblog.com

Friday, June 12, 2009

7 Reasons Why Real Estate Hasn't Hit Bottom Yet

Now is an OK time to buy a house to live in for the long term, but as an investment, we still have a while to go. Here is why, especially the last two reasons.

1. Mortgage rates have increased during the last few weeks by almost one percent for 30 year fixed mortgages.

2. Nonfarm payroll employment fell by 345,000 in May.

3. The number of unemployed persons increased by 787,000 to 14.5 million in May.

4. The unemployment rate continues to rise, increasing from 8.9 to 9.4 percent.

5. Real gross domestic product decreased at an annual rate of 5.7 percent in the first quarter of 2009.

6. Many amateur / first time real estate investors are jumping in to the market. Last time I saw that was at the top of the market in 2005.

7. In California and Nevada, I've seen a significant number of houses receiving many multiple bids over the asking price. Last time I saw that, again, was at the top of the market in 2005. Maybe things are different this time, and it now means that real estate is bottoming, but I doubt it.

However, I think we are still close to a bottom and I still stand by my prediction I made in September of last year, that the bottom of the real estate market will be November 25, 2009.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Who Would Pay $4 for a Corrupted Computer File?

Who would pay $4 for a corrupted computer file? A college student would, that's who. An innovative 20 something former college student has set up a business called Corrupted-Files.com, which sells corrupted files that students can submit to their professors by email or online. By the time the professor gets around to checking the paper, trying to open it, and notifying the student to resend, the student has bought an extra day or two to finish the paper, spreadsheet, or Microsoft (MSFT) PowerPoint presentation. This for the nominal cost of $3.95 until June 30. The buyer gets a choice of many types of files including doc, xls, ppt, jpg, etc., guaranteed to be unopenable.

Talk about entrepreneurial innovation.

Swine Flu Pandemic Level 5 to Level 6

Now that the World Health Organization has declared a swine flu pandemic, raising the alert level from a 5 to a 6, investors are looking to see what companies are participating. Check out the recent posting of Swine Flu Stocks.

Monday, June 08, 2009

Stocks Going Ex Dividend during the last part of June

If you want to try the stock trading technique called 'Buying Dividends,' which is the process of buying stocks before the ex dividend date and selling the stock shortly after the ex date at about the same price, yet still being entitled to the dividend, there are many stocks to choose from. This technique generally works only in bull markets.

When you buy dividends, there are many stocks in many different sectors to choose from. In order to be entitled to the dividend, you have to buy the stock before the ex-dividend date, and you can't sell the stock until after the ex date. The actual dividend may not be paid for another few weeks. WallStreetNewsNetwork has compiled a free downloadable and sortable Excel list of the stocks going ex dividend during the last half of June. They came up with over 25 companies all with market caps over $500 million. Here are a few examples showing the stock symbol, the ex-dividend date and the yield:

H.J. Heinz Company HNZ 6/22/09 4.56%

Piedmont Natural Gas Company, Inc. PNY 6/23/09 4.66%

Portland General Electric Company POR 6/23/09 5.43%

The rest of the ex-dividend stocks can be found at wsnn.com. If you like dividend stocks, you should check out the high yield utility stocks and the Monthly Dividend Stocks at WallStreetNewsNetwork.com or WSNN.com. For more details on dividend definitions, check out definitions of dividend dates. Don't forget to reconfirm the ex-dividend date with the company before implementing this technique.

Author doesn't own any of the above.

By Stockerblog.com

Suggested Father's Day Book Gifts

Not sure what to get your father for Father's Day? How about an investment book. Here are several that I've written about in the past few months.

World Wide Rave: Creating Triggers that Get Millions of People to Spread Your Ideas and Share Your Stories, by David Meerman Scott

Foreclosure Myths: 77 Secrets to Saving Thousands on Distressed Properties! by Ralph Roberts and Chip Cummings

Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking, by Malcolm Gladwell

The Intelligent Investor: The Definitive Book on Value Investing. A Book of Practical Counsel (Revised Edition)

Liar's Poker: Rising Through the Wreckage on Wall Street

Stock Investing For Dummies

The Neatest Little Guide to Stock Market Investing

The Heretics of Finance: Conversations with the Leading Practitioners of Technical Analysis

The Great Depression Ahead: How to Prosper in the Crash Following the Greatest Boom in History

Crash Proof: How to Profit From the Coming Economic Collapse (Lynn Sonberg Books)

Rich Dad, Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach Their Kids About Money--That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not!

The Intelligent Investor: The Definitive Book on Value Investing. A Book of Practical Counsel (Revised Edition)

The Wall Street Journal Guide to the End of Wall Street as We Know It: What You Need to Know About the Greatest Financial Crisis of Our Time--and How to Survive It

Life Under the Corporate Microscope: A Maverick's Irreverent Perspective by Larry Underwood

The Love Me Tender Years Diary written by Trude Forsher and compiled by her son James Forsher

Put Your Money Where Your Heart Is: Investment Strategies for Lifetime Wealth from a #1 Wall Street Stock Picker by Natalie Pace

The book Clean Money: Picking Winners in the Green Tech Boom by John Rubino

The Ten Roads to Riches: The Ways the Wealthy Got There (And How You Can Too!) by Ken Fisher

The Age of Speed: Learning to Thrive in a More-Faster-Now World by Vince Poscente

FATHER'S DAY IS JUNE 21.

Book Review: Right on the Money

Who would have thought that Pat Robertson, the religious broadcaster and host of The 700 Club, is a financial expert. He has written the book Right on the Money: Financial Advice for Tough Times.

The book is designed for the beginning investor or the investing novice, as it provides a lot of advice about obtaining credit, getting out of debt, improving your credit score, and saving money. He also covers the basics of stocks, mutual funds, options, future, and gold. In addition, he has several chapters on home ownership, mortgages, and refinancing.

For someone who is starting out with investing, Right on the Money: Financial Advice for Tough Times may be worth taking a look at.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Beyoncé Stock Index Outperforms the Dow Jones Industrial Average


The famous singer and actress, Beyonce, appears on the cover of the June 22 issue of Forbes Magazine. She earned $87 million according to the magazine, achieving fourth place on the 2009 Forbes Celebrity 100 list, and the second highest position for a musician. If you look at all the stocks of companies that she is connected with to build an index, her index outperforms the Dow Jones Industrial Average from the beginning of 2008. The Dow was down 30.7%, whereas the Beyoncé Stock Index was down only 23.8%.

Her index includes:

General Mills (GIS) served as celebrity spokesperson

Sony (SNE) Columbia Records label, Obsessed movie, distributed by Screen Gems, subsidiary of Sony; Cadillac Records movie, TriStar subsidiary of Sony

Viacom (VIAB) Dreamgirls, The Fighting Temptations, and Fade to Black movies, distributed by Paramount, subsidiary of Viacom

Pepsi (PEP) TV, radio, and Internet commercials

L'Oréal Group (LRLCF.PK) earned $1 milion as a celebrity endorser

Other celebrity stock indexes you may be interested in include the Heidi Klum Stock Index, the Eva Longoria Stock Index, the Angelina Jolie Stock Index, the Jessica Alba Stock Index, the Nicole Kidman Stock Index, the Freida Pinto Stock Index, and the Supermodels Stock Indices.

Assumptions:
This is a price-weighted index, similar to the Dow Jones Industrial Average.

Author does not own any of the above. No celebrity endorsement expressed or implied.

By Stockerblog.com

Friday, June 05, 2009

First Floating Windmill

The first floating windmill turbine is being launched of the coast of Norway. The Hywind can be located far enough offshore that it can be out of sight, making the potential for offshore windmills more palatable.

Cord Blood Stocks

Cord blood has been in the news a lot recently. A Florida hospital is waiving the fee for the donation of cord blood. Five cord blood transfer centers in Spain have joined a study for the treatment of lymphoma and leukemia. And a cord blood bank in Texas has added Midland Memorial Hospital to is collection network.

Cord blood is blood that comes from umbilical cords, and contains an extensive amount of hematopoietic stem cells. The blood is kept in depositories called blood banks. Cord blood stem cells are considered far superior to stem cells from bone marrow. Many parents have their newborn's cord blood preserved in the event it may be needed at some point in the future for treatment of their child's or the child's sibling's cancer or genetic disease. Over 75 diseases have been treated with cord blood. For a lot more detail on cord blood and how it is collected, stored, and used, go to CordBloodStocks.com.

Even Richard Branson, of Virgin Records and Virgin Atlantic Airways fame, is in the cord blood business. He set up Virgin Health, a cord blood bank.

There are a couple ways to invest in the cord blood industry, the cord blood banks and the companies that use cord blood to develop cures. Here are several stocks that participate in the cord blood business. Please be aware that many of these companies have low market caps and are extremely speculative.

Cord Blood America Inc. (CBAI.OB) One of the cord blood bankers, this Los Angeles company is involved in the collection, testing, processing, and preservation of the blood from umbilical cords for use in future stem cell therapy. They own the Cord Partners umbilical cord blood banking company. They have recently generated negative earnings. This is an extremely low cap stock and should therefore be considered extremely speculative.

ThermoGenesis (KOOL) This California company designs, makes, and sells automated blood processing systems for the manufacture, preservation, and delivery of cell therapies. They are involved in a joint venture with GE Healthcare, a unit of General Electric Company (GE) to distribute the AXP(TM) AutoXpress Platform, a closed and automated system for harvesting mononuclear cells from cord blood. They have a price sales ratio of 1.4. They have recently generated negative earnings. This is an extremely low cap stock and should therefore be considered extremely speculative.

Cryo-Cell International (CCEL.OB) This is a Florida based cord blood stem cell bank, specializing in the family market. The stock has a PE ratio of 665. This is an extremely low cap stock and should therefore be considered extremely speculative.

PerkinElmer, Inc. (PKI) owns ViaCell, a Cambridge, Massachusetts company which sells ViaCord, a product which is used to preserve baby's umbilical cord blood. They also research and other therapeutic uses of umbilical cord blood-derived and adult-derived stem cells. The stock has a PE of 17 and a yield of 1.7%.

Celgene (CELG) This New Jersey company is involved in the discovery, production, and marketing of therapies designed to treat cancer and immune-inflammatory-related diseases. They own LifeBank USA, a cord blood bank. The P/E is 74.

Baxter International Inc. (BAX) makes blood collection bags for umbilical cord blood and develop adult stem-cell therapies. They also own a patent for assembling and methods to process cord blood in a sterile fashion to avoid exposure to bacterial contamination and to meter the introduction of cryopreservation solution into cord blood at a desired rate, thereby avoiding damage or trauma to the cord blood cells. The stock has a PE ratio of 14 and pays a yield of 2.1%.

Amgen Inc. (AMGN) is also funding research into cord blood extraction, preservation, and storage. The stock has a PE of 13.

For a free downloadable Excel database of cord blood and stem cell stocks, go to WallStreetNewsNetwork.com.

Author does not own any of the above.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Tony La Russa Sues Twitter

St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony La Russa sued Twitter for damaging his reputation and emotional distress due to an unauthorized posting.

What Does Tim Geithner Have in His Wallet?

When U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner was asked in a House of Representatives meeting if he had ever seen a hyperinflation Zimbabwean bank note, Geithner pulled one of the multi-billion or trillion dollar Zimbabwe bills out of his wallet. He also had some Euros and credit cards but no US dollars.

Does this imply an investment possibility? Such as the CurrencyShares Euro Trust (FXE) for the Euro play? Or should you just buy Zimbabwe $100 trillion bills?

Guest Article: Homes Still Cost Too Much

Homes Still Cost Too Much
By John F. Wasik,
Author of Cul-de-Sac Syndrome: Turning Around the Unsustainable American Dream

You would think with home prices still dropping like hailstones in most areas, that homes would be bargains.

The present buyer's market obscures a key fact about the housing crisis though: millions sought the refuge of cheap credit, subprime and adjustable loans during the boom because they were the easiest routes to homeownership in a time when house prices far outpaced income growth.

The sad fact is that the Great American Dream is still out of reach for far too many and it was the declining affordability of decent houses that was one of the triggers of the housing bust.

It's not that home prices haven't plummeted as banks unload foreclosed homes at fire-sale prices. The national median home price fell to $169,000 in the first quarter, according to the National Association of Realtors. Bank-owned properties are selling at 20-percent to 50-percent discounts.

"Contrary to popular belief," says Jeffrey Lubell, executive director of the Center for Housing Policy, "the recent decline in home prices has not resolved the nation's housing affordability problem."

Homes cost too much even before the bubble, so home buyers were willing to do anything to get into the domicile of their dreams. After all, homeownership is an American birthright, or at least that promise was sold to Americans starting in 1946. "Buy as much house as you can afford!" That's what the bankers and real estate agents were telling us for generations because of generous tax breaks and easy, often government-guaranteed financing.

Unfortunately the cost of land, homebuilding, taxes and homeownership far exceed what millions of households are able to cover with nearly stagnant personal income growth in this century. Inflation simply ate away at wages that just weren't enough to pay ever-rising bills for property taxes, maintenance, health care, education and energy.

Even at the height of the boom, Harvard researchers at their Joint Center for Housing Studies found that almost 18 million households were paying more than half of their incomes for housing (about one-third is considered reasonable). They were also hit hard by rising energy costs, which rose twice as fast as total spending from 2004-2006.

That wasn't always the best advice. The Harvard group last year found that "nowhere in America does a full-time minimum wage job cover the cost of a modest two-bedroom rental at 30 percent of income." Those stranded in the low-wage service economy, left behind by the technological revolution of the 1990s, could barely afford to rent a decent place in most cities, much less buy.

Those families who are paying more than half of their budget for housing have little to nothing left over for healthcare, food, clothing and education. That hurts more than 14 million children living in low-income households, whose families had less than $600 per month on average for other essential expenses.

So was anyone surprised when brokers and subprime lenders targeted minority and low-to middle-income neighborhoods then walked away when they sold trillions of these mortgages to Wall Street and the largest banks? They were selling the American Dream!

From sparkling new suburbs in the Sun Belt to inner cities, cheap money and neutron-bomb adjustable loans meant nobody had to be house poor -- at least for a year or two. Then the explosion hit and we're still feeling the aftershocks.

Further exacerbating the affordability crisis was the tendency for municipalities to favor upscale, sprawling home developments over middle- and low-income housing. Since home values are directly fueling property tax income in most places, nearly every community can get more money for schools and public services. When you base property tax revenue on home valuations, bigger price tags translate into better-equipped schools, fire stations and libraries.

Yet building McMansion subdivisions only inflated the housing bubble and reduced the stock of affordable homes. From 2002-2005, home prices soared 45 percent in areas restricted to upscale building, versus 24 percent in unrestricted areas. Moreover, by creating these "spurbs," sprawling urban areas unconnected to transportation and city centers except by endless highways, homeowners costs rose to catch up with needed infrastructure, schools and other public services.

The housing crisis has given us a rare opportunity to re-evaluate and re-invent the American Dream. As I note in my new book The Cul-de-Sac Syndrome, if we're to increase the homeownership rate, government will have to create incentives to build more affordable housing.

We'll also have to find a way to de-link property taxes from funding local services to reduce the number of overpriced homes in a handful of areas. Perhaps even eliminating tax breaks for mortgage interest would keep prices at realistic levels because you wouldn't be subsidizing ever-larger mortgages.

Ultimately, though, the American home and community will have to be re-invented. Houses will need to be ultra-energy efficient to reduce long-term ownership costs and even produce their own energy. This can be done with factory-built, green homes.

Then we'll have to build -- or re-build -- high density, walkable communities that are close to jobs and retail outlets. This is already happening throughout the U.S., although building and zoning codes need to change to allow this to happen on a large scale. Even more federal incentives are needed for green building.

We've just experienced a great teaching moment in history. The American Dream as we know it was not sustainable. Now we have the chance to make it affordable, ecologically sound and socially beneficial. It's a rare opportunity.

©2009 John F. Wasik, author of Cul-de-Sac Syndrome: Turning Around the Unsustainable American Dream

Reprinted with permission of the publicist.

Author Bio
John F. Wasik, author of Cul-de-Sac Syndrome: Turning Around the Unsustainable American Dream, is a personal finance columnist for Bloomberg News and the author of several books. His most recent book, The Merchant of Power, was praised by Studs Terkel and well reviewed by the New York Times. Wasik has won more than fifteen awards for consumer journalism including the 2008 Lisagor and several from the National Press Club. He has appeared on such national media as NBC, NPR, and PBS. He lives in Chicago.

Guest Article: The Am I a Soloist? Quiz

The Am I a Soloist? Quiz
by Jonathan Littman & Marc Hershon,
Authors of I Hate People!: Kick Loose from the Overbearing and Underhanded Jerks at Work and Get What You Want Out of Your Job

How do you know if you're a Soloist, or at least destined to become one? The easiest sniff test is how many times a day you mutter, shout, or even think to yourself, "I hate people!" But not all People Haters are necessarily Soloists.

This quiz will help determine the depth of your Soloist leanings. The higher your score, the more Soloist blood in your veins.

A. The portion of the day I prefer working by myself is . . .
1 one hour.
2 two hours.
3 four hours.
4 six hours.
5 all day.
B. My favorite part of the day is . . .
1 staff meetings.
2 status meetings.
3 dinner or cocktails with clients.
4 lunch with colleagues.
5 meeting with my boss.
C. I'm most comfortable working in a team with . . .
1 ten or more people.
2 seven to nine people.
3 five to six people.
4 two to four people.
5 nobody.
D. An empty office makes me feel . . .
1 creepy.
2 lonely.
3 unmotivated.
4 at home.
5 excited.
E. When I get to the office in the morning, I usually . . .
1 bring in doughnuts and coffee for everyone.
2 say hello to people and ask about their evening.
3 nod to people I run into between the front door and my desk.
4 grunt and head to my workspace.
5 head to my workspace.
F. When I see an empty conference room, I think . . .
1 I hope I didn't miss the meeting.
2 I hope I set aside enough time for the meeting.
3 the meeting is about to start.
4 how can I get out of the meeting?
5 what a great place to write my report.
G. When I dream of the perfect office, I visualize . . .
1 a glass fishbowl in the center of the action.
2 the latest collaborative open-space environment.
3 small work-group offices.
4 a cubicle.
5 four walls and a door that locks.
H. The place I do my most creative work is . . .
1 at my desk.
2 in a meeting room.
3 in the break room.
4 at home.
5 outside.
I. I like a boss who . . .
1 checks up on me periodically.
2 asks what I'm working on in the morning.
3 gives me weekly assignments.
4 asks for monthly status reports.
5 rarely comes in.
J. I like a coworker who . . .
1 is friends with everyone.
2 regularly breaks up the day with office gossip.
3 freely converses during breaks and at lunch.
4 barely interacts with just a few people.
5 minds his own business.

YOUR SCORE

10–15 Forget it. You, my friend, are a teamworker, through and through.

16–25 Though more comfortable in a team setting, you occasionally like your alone time. Soloist larva.

26–35 Stretching your Soloist muscles. Yes, you like people a little too much.

36–45 Strong Soloist. You could be teaching others if you weren't spending so much time alone.

46–55 Cream of the Soloist crop. No one's getting in your way, and that's the way you like it.

The above is an excerpt from the book I Hate People!: Kick Loose from the Overbearing and Underhanded Jerks at Work and Get What You Want Out of Your Job by Jonathan Littman & Marc Hershon. The above excerpt is a digitally scanned reproduction of text from print. Although this excerpt has been proofread, occasional errors may appear due to the scanning process. Please refer to the finished book for accuracy.

This excerpt is used with the permission of Hachette Book Group, Marc Hershon and Jonathan Littman. All rights reserved.

Author Bios
Jonathan Littman, is the author of I Hate People! and numerous acclaimed works of nonfiction, including The Fugitive Game, The Watchman, and The Beautiful Game. He is also the coauthor of IDEO's The Art of Innovation and The Ten Faces of Innovation. He is a contributing editor for Playboy and a columnist for Yahoo! Sports.

Marc Hershon is the coauthor of I Hate People! and a branding expert who helped to create the names for the BlackBerry, Swiffer, nüvi, and many other influential products. He is also a comedy veteran who has worked closely, with Dana Carvey, Bill Maher, and Robin Williams.

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