Ryan Gilbert

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  • The "Small Four"

    By Ryan Gilbert - August 13, 2013 | Tickers: GS, MS, BK, USB

    Sure, everyone keeps up to date with the "Big Four" banks: Bank of America, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, and Wells Fargo. They collectively account for $7,889,731,000 in assets. 

    <img src="http://g.foolcdn.com/editorial/images/65408/small-four_large.jpg" />

    But the banks just under them shouldn't be neglected.  Ranked 5-8 in the U.S. by assets, the "Small Four" banks make up a a significant part of the financial market share. (Note: I don't include GE Capital more »

  • Banking Is Back

    By Ryan Gilbert - August 12, 2013 | Tickers: BAC, C, JPM

    And not just for a visit. Big banks like Citigroup (NYSE: C) barged into investors' proverbial house and put their feet up on the coffee table. 

    <img src="http://g.foolcdn.com/editorial/images/65128/xlf_large.jpg" />

    Source: Google Finance

    The financial sector performance (represented by XLF) is running circles around the S&P 500 (represented by SPY) in 2013 and will likely continue to do so.

    But the comeback's been a long-time in the making. Since the financial crisis more »

  • Predicting the Future.. With Coffee?

    By Ryan Gilbert - August 9, 2013 | Tickers: MCD, SBUX

    Starbucks (NASDAQ: SBUX) had a killer third quarter earnings report. It surprised analyst expectations, as the company's revenue rose by 13% due to strategic growth in China, as well as moderate expansion in Europe. Can we leverage this data in other useful ways, though? Yes, we can--in fact, we can use this data to predict the future of a similar company: McDonald's (NYSE: MCD).

    The two companies have more »

  • Mortgage Risk, Mor(e)tgage Profits

    By Ryan Gilbert - August 7, 2013 | Tickers: BAC, MTG, WFC

    On Tuesday, August 7th, President Obama announced a winding-down of the government-backed mortgage finance system to give the private finance sector more control over the debt. Whereas 90% of all mortgages are financed by Fannie and Freddie right now, there's a movement to put more risk on creditors. 

    And despite mortgage demand, many big banks aren't buying into mortgage debt anymore. As a result, mortgage rates are skyrocketing more »

  • Is Europe the Next Big Bet?

    By Ryan Gilbert - August 7, 2013 | Tickers: CMG, NFLX, YELP

    International prospects have been a huge factor for investors lately. But with Asian growth being cut, it raises concerns that the Pacific gravy train won't last forever. What about the Euro-zone? Is expansion there viable? Or is it all doomed for years to come?

    The Euro-zone's contraction-stage business cycle isn't going to be pumping out growth numbers like China any time soon. But identifying potential before others more »

  • Late to the Cloud Party

    By Ryan Gilbert - August 1, 2013 | Tickers: ORCL, VZ

    The cloud networking boom has been a huge growth driver for many businesses since the late 1990s, when cloud computing was first introduced. Since then, there's been many different strategies for investment. The development aspect of cloud computing is where a lot of investors chase profits, but what about companies that are providing a seamless transition for business clients? Analyzing two companies that work on each end of the more »

  • China Mobile Gets the Best of Both Worlds

    By Ryan Gilbert - July 29, 2013 | Tickers: T, CHL, VZ

    AT&T (NYSE: T) and Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ) are the biggest telecommunications players this side of the Pacific. Previous years of investment and development in new technologies have paid off in a big way. The phone and telephone providers are paying out huge 4-5% dividends and have promising leads to keep growing revenue in the future.

    These two companies pale in growth and value to China Mobile (NYSE: CHLmore »)

  • The Goldman Gold Rush Pt. 2

    By Ryan Gilbert - July 26, 2013 | Tickers: GS, WFC

    I recently wrote about Goldman Sachs Group (NYSE: GS) and their potential for big future profits given the current economic climate. The stock closed at $163 flat before the July 16 earnings call. Since then, Goldman Sachs has surged 2%. More investors bought into the dinosaur-esque investment bank after it beat analyst estimates.

    In the article, I also wrote about the success of Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE: WFC) in Q2 more »

  • Comparing Apples to Oranges (In Bulk Cases)

    By Ryan Gilbert - July 22, 2013 | Tickers: COST, KR, WMT

    In a recent post I talked about the driving factors and solid history that makes Kroger (NYSE: KR) a "buy," even when compared to up-and-coming grocers like Whole Foods Market or Fresh Market.

    Kroger's recent buyout of Harris Teeter Supermarket illustrates the company's separation from its peers to do well, even when sticking to a pretty bland business model. Kroger has an acceptable balance sheet, growth prospects, and more »

  • You Ate the Bones...

    By Ryan Gilbert - July 18, 2013 | Tickers: MCD, YUM

    If you bought Yum! Brands (NYSE: YUM) before the close on Wednesday, you might be panicking - like the diners who think they swallowed chicken bones in KFC's new commercials. 

    Sure, Yum! has had a lot of support from investors and analysts lately. We've seen increasing earnings outlooks, despite economic slowdown and bad publicity in China. Sure enough, things got worse, just like Yum! predicted.

    Earnings came in at more »

  • Burritos Vs Noodles - A Culinary Approach to Investing

    By Ryan Gilbert - July 17, 2013 | Tickers: CMG, NDLS

    A lot of people like to compare Noodles & Co. (NASDAQ: NDLS) to Chipotle Mexican Grill (NYSE: CMG). Many investors have communicated disgust at Chipotle's overvalued stock price, which was partially justified. Even now, I still believe investors are still looking for the "new Chipotle." And while these two companies are both in the fast-casual dining niche of restaurants (the fastest growing area in the industry), the two stocks have more »

  • The Goldman Gold Rush

    By Ryan Gilbert - July 15, 2013 | Tickers: GS, WFC

    Interest rates have been surging lately for a ton of different reasons. The economic climate is getting better, and eventually we'll see the Fed bump up the price of debt. Increased lending and investment spending is also a factor that's spiking interest rates to the highest levels they've been since 2011.

    It's a bear-bond market ladies and gentlemen; let's find a good way to take more »

  • You Want Organic Growth? Go Buy Some Vegetables at Whole Foods!

    By Ryan Gilbert - July 12, 2013 | Tickers: HTSI, TFM, KR, WFM

    The Kroger Co's (NYSE: KR) recent acquisition of Harris Teeter Supermarkets (NYSE: HTSI) brought a lot of attention and investors to the stock. The $2.5 billion deal seems like a smart move at first glance, but after some analysis, it looks to be a dumb idea. And just when you think it's a poor acquisition, you start to see a method to Kroger's madness. Because upon more »

  • 2 Opposing Stocks to Maximize Profits in the Bull Market

    By Ryan Gilbert - July 10, 2013 | Tickers: DAL, HAL

    The stock market has taken a recent dip, but we are still very much in an expansionary period. If you're like me, maybe you were a little too wary during the first two quarters of the year and didn't take the risks you should have. 

    But there are still tons of great strategies to beat the indices, especially given the discounted stock prices of late. Bond yields are more »

  • Dividends, Schmividends

    By Ryan Gilbert - June 18, 2013 | Tickers: CELG, HAL, SBUX

    Almost all retirement investment strategies advocate generating a steady income from dividend payments from well-established, safe stocks. And while it's an effective and secure strategy, dividends don't always cut it. Whether you're looking for growth opportunities or are just trying to bridge your financial gap with capital gains, these investments can help.

    The stocks discussed here are all good growth and value blend investments. For reduced risk more »

  • Better Ratios Don't Always Make for Better Investments

    By Ryan Gilbert - June 12, 2013 | Tickers: GMCR, SBUX

    Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (NASDAQ: GMCR) has received a lot of positive attention and comparisons to Starbucks (NASDAQ: SBUX) lately.

    Green Mountain Coffee Roasters has a lower Price-Earnings ratio (P/E) than Starbucks, but just marginally (33 for Starbucks vs 29 for Green Mountain). Green Mountain Coffee Roasters just hit $1 billion in revenue in the first quarter (Q1) of 2013, so why shouldn't they have a lot of more »

  • Can Yahoo! or Microsoft Leverage Social Media to De-Throne Google?

    By Ryan Gilbert - June 5, 2013 | Tickers: FB, GOOG, MSFT, YHOO

    Yahoo! (NASDAQ: YHOO) and Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) are constantly playing catch-up with Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) in the search for more ad revenue, but the two underdogs may have found an opportunity to expand their reach through the use of social networking. 

    Don't drop the ball, Yahoo!

    Yahoo!'s acquisition of Tumblr has been framed by the media as the worst idea since Geocities, because of Yahoo!'s apparently uncool more »

  • Why the 80/20 Principle Will Do This Company a World of Good

    By Ryan Gilbert - May 28, 2013 | Tickers: FB, JCOM, CRM

    In December last year, I wrote an article detailing j2 Global's (NASDAQ: JCOM) transformation into a fresher and more diverse company. Last year, j2 Global bought into Carbonite and acquired Ziff Davis. This allowed the provider of internet business solutions to diversify its operations into both cloud computing and media publication. The company's stock has risen 33% since I last wrote about it, but does it have room more »

  • Technology Is Spelling the End for GameStop

    By Ryan Gilbert - May 27, 2013 | Tickers: ATVI, EA, GME

    GameStop (NYSE: GME) has been a watering-hole for gamers for many years now. It's a place where people can buy games, consoles, or just socialize with their friends at different game releases or events. Ironically, advances in technology are going to harm the entertainment retailer given that it's current business model relies on the stock-and-sell method of selling video games. 

    Zombie mode

    GameStop has barely held on to more »

  • Cruise Through 2013 With These 3 Tourism Stocks

    By Ryan Gilbert - May 23, 2013 | Tickers: CCL, NCLH, RCL

    The U.S. economy is showing signs of recovery to pre-recession levels, and personal disposable income has skyrocketed since late 2009. Given this, we may be poised for a boom in the tourism industry soon. That's why I’m analyzing the 3 top publicly traded cruise liners to see if any are investment worthy as the summer doldrums approach.

    <img alt="" src="http://media.ycharts.com/charts/181a83d32a7bf94e44b33fa83355d60e.png" />

    US Per Capita Disposable Personal Income data by YCharts

    The more »

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