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What should be a holiday lull of a week looks set to be anything but, with Wall Street on alert for the twists and turns in the credit crisis, commodities volatility in and developments in the White House race.
For the week ending Friday, August 22, 2008, the U.S. major Indices fell for the week on the unknown future of mortgage giants Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, downbeat home construction July data, and soaring producer prices. The NASDAQ Composite performed the worst for the week, declining 1.54%, its steepest decline since Independence Day week. However, Friday was a positive day for the markets helped by a welcome speech by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and a pull back in the price of crude. The Dow had three days of triple-digit point gains & losses, netting to finish almost flat for the week.
The market rallies on Friday with the Dow, NASDAQ and S&P all up 1% or more, on light volume, but Friday's gains are not enough to boost the market's weekly performance out of negative territory. Energy stocks dominate.
Dizzy from all the ETF choices? Jeffrey Kosnett can help -- the Kiplinger's senior editor offered CNBC his top five exchange-traded fund names.
Sean Kraus, senior vice president of Provident Investment Counsel, sees opportunities in retail, healthcare and technology.
Wenli Tan, Morningstar mutual fund analyst, says playing funds is safer than playing stock directly -- and just might be the way to beat a bear market. Tan offered her top names to CNBC.
The international tobacco market is the way to go for investors who want to keep their money safe in this volatile economy, says Charles Norton, co-portfolio manager at Vice Fund.
Ronald Weiner, president and CEO of the RDM Financial Group, says his two favorite stock picks are in the defense and energy sectors.
Trace Urdan and Dana Telsey agree: Despite the slowdown in most back-to-school stocks, some sectors are looking bullish.
Geert-Jan Nikken at Rabobank sees plenty of upside for stocks from semiconductors and multimedia companies.
Michael Gaugler, senior vice president at Brean Murray, Carret & Co., and Neil Berlant, portfolio manager at PFW Water Fund said investing in water manufacturing and pipeline company stocks are the way to go.
Scott Richter, portfolio manager of the Fifth Third Disciplined Fund, prescribes two stocks in the pharmaceuticals sector.
Tim Parker, an energy analyst at T. Rowe Price, says his best stocks picks are in the oil services sector.
Adam Johnson, managing director at MLH Capital, said that in a volatile market, he sees opportunities in ETFs.
It's hard to say whether Wall Street's fear of itself or rising oil prices will be more of an impediment for stocks this week. Both of those trends were apparent Tuesday and could continue to hang over the market Wednesday.
Gerald Jordan, portfolio manager at Jordan Opportunity Fund said that investing in large cap stocks is the way to go.
Chris Blum says "discipline" is the key to making money in this market. He's the Behavioral Finance Team CIO at JPMorgan Asset Management, and his decisions shape the actions of a vast range of Morgan funds -- including the Intrepid Value Fund, rated five stars by Morningstar.
Short-term, buy commodities; but hold those financials for a fourth-quarter recovery. So says King Lip, portfolio manager at Baker Avenue Asset Management. He explained his investment strategy to CNBC -- and offered his top stock picks.
Energy and energy service stocks are the plays where Donald Hodges of Hodges Capital Management sees opportunity.
Inflation and housing data and retailers' earnings could contribute to Wall Street's early direction Tuesday. But the stock market will continue to fret over the financial sector and worry through every move in the oil markets.