Since the beginning of 2013, the iShares MSCI Brazil Index ETF (NYSEMKT: EWZ) is down over 25%, with very little reason to believe this should abate.
Let's face it, times are tough in Brazil right now. Commodities have declined in price, speculation that stagflation is taking hold has hurt financials, credit downgrades loom threatening junk status, and the political unrest seems to grow daily.
At the end of June more »
The greatest players in any profession often make their job look effortless. Whether it was Michael Jordan on the court, George Carlin weaving political satire, or Warren Buffett's prophetic visions of the economy, the genius of what they do comes in the mastery of fundamentals.
As the CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, Buffett's investing strategy is well known. Buy understandable businesses with solid value and assured growth at great more »
Traditional media and entertainment have not succumb to the Internet as quickly or severely as many people predicted. In fact, it seems that a few media giants have secured their standing in the long run. Quality programming and products continue to attract consumers as they did in the past. So while the method of transmission may have changed, the game remains the same, with customers seeking out the best content more »
It has become a well know fact that Fed intervention has spurned interest in low-paying bonds, especially with the specter of inflation around the corner. Both savers and bond investors are being forced into an equity market in which they normally would not participate. However, these groups are not putting their capital into the market in a broad sense. They are seeking out historic out-performers with good yields and low more »
In May of this year, the Energy Information Administration released a report updating US dependence on foreign oil. The statistics confirm that the United States is becoming increasingly energy independent with only 40% of total petroleum and oil coming from foreign countries.
Of that 40%, more than half is imported from the Western hemisphere, mostly from Canada, which accounts for 28% of total net imports. This makes Canada the USA more »
It's no secret that the basic materials sector has seen some rough times lately. However, a bullish spike last year offered hope. Investors cheered the Chinese stimulus package and thought it might contribute to support levels in key commodities. Steel temporarily spiked and copper seemed like it was on the radar for the first time in years. Fast forward 12 months to the present and it's painfully clear more »
Recently the Energy Information Administration (EIA) published projections for future electricity generation through the year 2040. While coal-fired power plants currently have the largest share of electricity to the US power grid, and will continue to have it, natural gas is projected to make large gains.
Chart Courtesy of The EIA
Having a glimpse of the future often can provide investors with the insight needed to profit over time. Knowing more »
We all know it's always best to buy when stocks are inexpensive, but we must also observe the opposite and sell when stocks appear over-priced. Recently Occidential Petroleum (NYSE: OXY) has seen quite a run, moving about 25% in the last six months.
Chart Courtesy of The Motley Fool
The Baltic Dry Index (BDI) is a composite of the Baltic Capesize, Panamax, Handysize and Supramax indices. It provides a useful snapshot of current pricing for water transportation. Recently, this index has just bounced off a five-year low. These prices are unsustainable as they will eventually bankrupt a significant amount of shippers who are unable to profit at these levels. But this could be a necessary condition for recovery in more »
On March 7 this year, I penned an article entitled "How Currency Exchange Rates Will Impact These Stocks." This outlined how currency exchange fluctuations impact economies, the new Japanese monetary policy, and the highly predictable results. For beginners, I highly encourage you to review that article. I advised readers to purchase major Japanese exporters based on my thesis.
That theses was and remains: Deliberate inflation policy (now at 2% annually more »
What happens when everyone seeks safety?
We know the story: Fed intervention has spurned interest in low paying bonds, especially with the specter of inflation around the corner. Both savers and bond investors are being forced into an equity market in which they normally would not participate. Recently, CNBC reported that 25% of Central Banks will have committed or have plans to commit capital to the equity market.
However, these more »
Recently the coal market has operated under increasing pressure as natural gas usurps coal as the fuel of choice for energy production. The coal ETF Market Vectors Coal (NYSEMKT: KOL), which tracks miners, is down 32% in the last year alone and almost 60% over the last two years. Some 42.7% of this ETF is composed of US-based companies, and a majority are pure coal plays.
But before value more »
Problems across the globe continue to mount. US hiring is weak. The prices of key commodities are falling. Cyprus. Though I could go on with the short-term bearish argument, that is not the point. This was simply a prelude to why low beta stocks with significant value will be preferable for those that choose to stay in the market. For an introduction to what beta is and why it is more »
Over the last few days, refiners have been hit hard over concerns that new pollution upgrades required by the EPA will cost hundreds of millions of dollars. Refiners have lost billions in market cap as a result. This sell-off appears overdone and could present a buying opportunity.
For the last 20 months, gasoline prices have been consolidating around the highest nominal prices in history, providing the catalyst for refiners to more »
Recently two big reports came out of the Energy Information Administration (EIA) that went largely undiscussed in the media. However, they might be worth a closer look since they confirm what many Natural Gas (NG) proponents have long expected.
After examining the reports, three stocks in three different areas will be discussed to put some profit potential behind this positive news.
Energy-related carbon dioxide emissions in 2012 were more »
Over the last few days refiners have been hit hard over concerns that new pollution upgrades required by the EPA will cost hundreds of millions of dollars. Refiners have lost billions in market cap as a result. This move to the downside appears overdone and could present a buying opportunity.
For the last 20 months gasoline prices have been consolidating around the highest nominal prices in history providing more »
Problems across the globe continue to mount and with that comes an increasingly uncertain future.
Rising political tensions in North Korea and weak US hiring were the latest pieces of ammunition in the mounting bearish arsenal.
This follows the Cypriotic fiasco which brought Europe to a standstill as unprecedented measures eroded the security of depositors.
Prices of key commodities have been falling. Couple this with the recent bearish turn seen more »
Fearing that Cyprus was on the brink of default, a last minute plan to keep the cash-strapped nation afloat was initially cheered by investors. U.S. markets opened positive on the news Monday morning, optimistic that the Cyprus deal was an isolated incident. However, early gains in the markets were erased when the Dutch Finance Minister, Jeroen Dijsselbloem, indicated that this plan could be a template for future situations.
This more »
The United States has recently grasped that it sits atop some of the largest natural gas deposits in the world. These largely untapped resources have the potential to alter the energy landscape domestically and abroad.
Demand for this commodity has increased substantially over the years.
Some major developments have recently been taking place in two very important end use points for natural gas. In 2007 the total consumed for transportation more »
Every now and then, seemingly unjustified pullbacks can gift bold investors with significant price reductions, increased yields, and more favorable long term returns. Recently, European oil stocks have suffered amid renewed fears that austerity's harsh economic effects will linger. But when quality companies with inelastic products and global demand suffer major declines, they can often offer long-term value investors an ideal entry point.
Over the last 45 more »
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