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Is Slow & Steady Winning The Race?

On Thursday chatter on the Street had everything to do with the market’s lack of direction with many investors fearing the S&P was stuck in neutral.

The latest economic data was somewhat contradictory -- slowing factory activity in the mid-Atlantic region and falling sales of existing homes painted a cloudy picture. However, a drop in weekly jobless claims suggested the labor market was on track for recovery.

In an environment where negative catalysts cancel out the positive, the Fast Money traders always recommend looking at what’s working – and on Thursday that was boring stocks.

In fact, the least sexy stocks have been among the year’s best performers. Take a look:

“Boring” Sectors Sexy Performance

Year To Date
Healthcare (XLV) +15%
Consumer Staples (XLP) +10%
Utilities (XLU) +9%
S&P 500 +6.6%

How should you position?

Trader Steve Grasso confirms that on the floor of the NYSE he’s seeing a lot of money rotate into utilities. However, he prefers playing it as a single stock story with a long position in Dominion Resources.

Guy Adami thinks no matter if the tape is good, bad or benign - two names to hold are McDonald’s and Yum!.

Karen Finerman can’t get behind Yum!. She says, “I’m selling into strength because it’s starting to get expensive.”

Tim Seymour suggests putting GE on the radar as a company that’s well positioned for global growth.

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HOT, HOT, HOT

On Thursday investors couldn’t stop talking about the blockbuster IPO of social media giant, LinkedIn.

Shares surged in their first day of trading with the reception widely considered an important gauge of investor appetite for other social networking companies including Facebook, Twitter, Groupon and Zynga -- which are expected to go public in coming years.

What should you make of it?

Steve Grasso is concerned that the IPO could ignite a bubble with the next social networking company generating even more of a frenzy.

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UNDER THE RADAR: MLPs

Looking at an under the radar trade, Karen Finerman has her keen eye on MLP's or master limited partnerships.

Her favorite name in the space is KMP and she also likes AMJ which is a fund that provides exposure to a basket of MLPs.

Get all the details. Watch the video now!




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Trader disclosure: On May 19, 2011, the following stocks and commodities mentioned or intended to be mentioned on CNBC’s "Fast Money" were owned by the "Fast Money" traders; Finerman and Finerman's firm own (AAPL); Finerman and Finerman's firm own (BP); Finerman and Finerman's Firm own (CMI); Finerman's Firm owns (IBM); Finerman owns (C); FInerman owns (JPM); Finerman's Firm owns (JPM) leaps and (JPM); Finerman's Firm owns (TGT); Finerman owns (UNG); Finerman's Firm is short (IWM), (MDY), (SPY); FInermans firm is long S&P Puts, Russell 2000 Puts; Adami owns (AGU); Adami owns (C); Adami owns (GS); Adami owns (MSFT); Adami owns (NUE); Adami owns (BTU); Grasso owns (AKS); Grasso owns (AMD); Grasso owns (ASTM); Grasso owns (BA); Grasso owns (BAC); Grasso owns (C); Grasso owns (D); Grasso owns (HOV); Grasos owns (JPM); Grasso owns (LIT); Grasso owns (LPX); Grasso owns (MHY); Grasso owns (NDAQ); Grasso owns (PFE); Grasso owns (PRST)

For Steve Grasso
Stuart Frankel & Co and it’s partners own (ABX)
Stuart Frankel & Co and it’s partners own (CSCO)
Stuart Frankel & Co and it’s partners own (CUBA)
Stuart Frankel & Co and it’s partners own (GERN)
Stuart Frankel & Co and it’s partners own (HPQ)
Stuart Frankel & Co and it’s partners own (HSPO)
Stuart Frankel & Co and it’s partners own (MSFT)
Stuart Frankel & Co and it’s partners own (MU)
Stuart Frankel & Co and it’s partners own (NEM)
Stuart Frankel & Co and it’s partners own (NYX)
Stuart Frankel & Co and it’s partners own (PFE)
Stuart Frankel & Co and it’s partners own (PRST)
Stuart Frankel & Co and it’s partners own (SDS)
Stuart Frankel & Co and it’s partners own (XRX)
Stuart Frankel & Co and it’s partners are Short (QQQQ)
Stuart Frankel & Co and it’s partners are short (AAPL)

For Brian Blair
*No Disclosures

For John Stephenson
John Stephenson and First Asset Management are long corn
John Stephenson and First Asset Management are long CF Industries
John Stephenson and First Asset Management are long Potash Corp
John Stephenson and First Asset Management are long Agrium
John Stephenson and First Asset Management are long Mosaic




CNBC.com and wires

Symbol
Price
 
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%Change
S&P 500
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AM
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D
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GE
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KMP
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SPDR UTL SEL
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YUM
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MCD
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LINKEDIN
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