Starbucks stock retreated in heavy volume after a report suggested the coffee chain's growth may be losing some steam.» Read More
With weeks until the next potential crisis in Washington, how can you 'D.C.-proof' your portfolio?
Big money managers Susan Fulton, president and founder of FBB Capital Partners, and Michael Farr, president of Farr, Miller & Washington and a CNBC contributor, have picked out the top three stocks they feel will weather the next, or any, Washington gridlock storm.
(Read more: DC gets busy on to do list to avoid another crisis)
Fulton, whose firm has $680 million in assets under management, likes stocks that "have the ability to grow their cash flow over time and pay back their shareholders through hefty dividend payments." In general, she added, she also favors businesses that provide a "niche service or product and whose growth over time is nondependent on whether or not the government is open or shut."
Coca-Cola will report earnings on Tuesday morning before the open, and the company is expected to show modest earnings growth up to $0.53 and a small decline in revenues. 2013 has been a tough year for Coke, with the stock up just 4 percent versus the S&P 500's gain of 19 percent. However, one options trader expressed confidence in the stock by selling 5,000 May 33-strike puts for $0.67.
This trade commits the trader to buy 500,000 shares for $32.33, or 14 percent lower, should the stock trade below $33 at May expiration. If Coke shares are above $33 come May, these options will expire worthless, and the trader will keep the $0.67 premium, which is a 3.5 percent annualized return on capital.
In Tuesday's earnings report, investors will be closely watching sales volumes, which have been in decline for several years in developed markets like North America. Investors are still optimistic that there is room for growth in emerging markets. In response to changing tastes and increasing health consciousness, Coke has introduced smaller serving portions and has been focused on building its portfolio of waters, juices, and teas to make up for declining soda sales.
Do you like the heath care sector as an investment theme in 2013 and beyond?
Even if you're ambivalent about Obamacare or totally opposed to it, some version will become law in 2014. Love it or hate it, it has the potential to boost health insurance stocks in a big way going forward.
Even though the government is in shutdown mode as I write, on Oct. 1 the government-subsidized health insurance exchanges and state insurance exchanges were scheduled to come online.
After a scathing review of Samsung's Gear smartwatch by New York Times columnist David Pogue, CNBC's Jim Cramer said that the game is up for the Korean company's attempt at wearable technology and that's great news for Apple.
"This is one of those reviews ... compare Apple, what he had to say about the [iPhone] 5C—where he basically just said 'this is the Mona Lisa' ... I mean, this [Samsung smartwatch] is not even a paint-by-numbers."
"This is it. This thing, the curtain closed on this. The curtain closed on this device," Cramer said, although he acknowledged that wearable technology is still a growing trend.
In Pogue's review, he described Samsung's smartwatch as " a human-interface train wreck" and that "nobody will buy this watch, and nobody should." Pogue explains that the device underdelivers because of an incompatibility with non-Samsung phones and that it has a "hodgepodge" of seemingly random features.
Although Samsung's smartwatch seems underwhelming, one company in particular that has the potential to make waves in the wearable tech market is Under Armour, Cramer predicted. He expects that the company will have "a wearable that's killer" in the form of a shirt that tracks biometric data, along with other accessories.
Don't expect to see a negative David Pogue article on wearable tech from Under Armour, Cramer said. On Samsung, "This was one of those reviews, where it's like, 'holy cow.' "
"Don't you feel that shift in favor of Apple?" Cramer asked. "It's changed. I think that Samsung suddenly becomes what we used to think of Samsung, and Apple has become what we used to think of Apple."
Warren Buffett said the markets are fully valued and that it's hard to find value right now.
Mario Gabelli said Wednesday on CNBC that he's found value in …bourbon!
"[W]e have a slogan: If you drink it, we follow it," Gabelli said on on CNBC's "Fast Money Halftime Report." "We are looking at bourbon plays around the world."
In an interview Tuesday on CNBC's "Squawk Box," Miller made a case for why he thinks Apple shares are trading at ridiculously low levels of about $476 each as of Monday's closing price. "It just makes no sense for Apple to trade where it is: Seven times enterprise value to free cash flow."
He also said, "Microsoft has been a terrible stock for a decade. It started out stupidly overpriced and now it's stupidly underpriced." In the past 10 years, Microsoft stock has gained 18 percent. But year-to-date, it's up 25 percent.
As Wall Street focuses on the budget debate in Washington, investors can make moves right now to protect their portfolios from any potential spending fallout, CNBC's Jim Cramer said on "Squawk on the Street" Thursday.
Some expectations surrounding a potential government shutdown "does take you breath away," Cramer said, because many believe that market momentum into year-end could be killed by a prolonged debate in Washington.
(Related: Brawl in US Congress—should the world care?)
Cramer noted that out of the 25 best-performing small-cap stocks this year, they are "almost entirely biotech."
The sector has a "double advantage" in this environment, he said, because the industry is not economically sensitive and there are numerous firms with promising drug pipelines.
Although some companies, such as Eli Lilly, have warned that key drugs have disappointed in clinical trials, many firms remain standouts with promising new drugs on the way.
Celldex Therapeutics, for example, is "just incredible," Cramer said. "You see these companies that are doing targeted work against cancer. They are the dominant companies in terms of who is responsible in this rally."
Other companies to watch are Celgene, Immunogen and Onyx Pharmaceuticals, which all have promising cancer products on the way, he said. "It is biotech. It's leading us. We don't talk enough about biotech ... if you think the economy is slowing, who has the greatest growth year over year? A company that discovers a new drug. A very exciting group."
Although the biotech sector may be sheltered from the federal debt debate, another group of stocks has disproportionate downside risk.
After car rental company Hertz cut full-year demand forecasts, Cramer pointed out that the travel sector in particular is vulnerable to budgetary problems in Washington. For instance, during the 2012 sequestration debate, many major airlines told investors to brace for weaker-than-expected numbers, and Cramer said that this could happen all over again.
The travel industry, "if you're worried, that's where your focus should be ... it's not essential that anyone travel in government, so they literally don't travel," he said.
The American consumer remains "pretty strong" and that's why Saira Malik—head of global equity research for TIAA-CREF—said she favors two retailers in particular.
She told CNBC's "Squawk Box" on Thursday that she likes Costco because 70 percent of its profits come from recurring membership fees. "They raise prices on their members every few years and have 90 percent retention rates."
A day after winning its historic Emmy, Netflix moved further into record-high territory Monday before retreating.
In advance of Sunday's awards show, Netflix closed Friday at a record $315.89. (Click here for the latest price on Netflix)
The Emmys marked a first for Netflix, which saw its "House of Cards" political drama snag best director for David Fincher.
These are the "very early building blocks" of original programming at Netflix, Richard Greenfield, media and technology analyst at BTIG, told CNBC's "Squawk Box" on Monday.
(Read more: Why Netflix is at anew all-time high)
Investors should be generally cautious as the market surges toward new records, but several stand-out stocks are likely to end the year much higher, CNBC's Jim Cramer said.
"This is a remarkable moment, and people are willing to overlook a lot of stuff," Cramer said on "Squawk on the Street" on Thursday. "It's an up market. Maybe it shouldn't be, and I fear the [government] shutdown, but, wow. … I do think that you have got to be careful here—[the stock market] just had a very big move."
A stock like Rite Aid may have more upside potential, but any run higher is likely limited, he said. It's better to "wait until things come down" before buying stocks that have made big moves recently, he added.
Cramer warned that despite many names' approaching overbought territory, a handful of "cult" stocks should continue their rally through the rest of the year, supported by a group of dedicated buyers with high expectations.
One such company is Tesla Motors, he said. "That thing is such a cult, I don't want to get in front of a cult." He also listed Netflix, Ulta Salon, Lumber Liquidators, Yelp and Tractor Supply as having similar support.
"Those are the cult stocks of the growth momentum players. Do not get in front of a growth stock between here and year-end," he advised.
Cramer also said that international stocks are a good bet to weather the uncertainty generated by events such as the debt ceiling debate and a potentially overbought U.S. market. He listed United Technologies, Honeywell, 3M and Boeing because "these happen to be international companies that are located here."
One name Cramer said he "furiously" believes in and owns in his charitable trust: Facebook.
"I do think that Facebook is a real stock. A real company, a real stock," he said. "I think the monetization there is going to be great."