An Investor's Perspective on Hurricane Irene
The United States urged 55 million people on its East Coast on Friday to prepare for the onslaught of massive Hurricane Irene, which President Barack Obama warned could be "extremely dangerous and costly."
As Irene barrelled toward the Eastern Seaboard, the "Fast Money" traders looked at the storm from an investor standpoint.
People are stocking up on supplies right now, trader Patty Edwards noted. She said investors should look at the kinds of things people are buying, such bottled water. Both Pepsico and Coca-Cola have water brands. Canned meat is another hot item right now, she noted, adding investors should look at Hormel Foods because of its popular SPAM line. Comfort food is another area to check out, as Hershey's stock is up on the day.
(Slideshow: Scenes from Hurricane Irene)
While Edwards doesn't like Wal-Mart's stock in the long-term, she thinks this storm could be a bump for the retailer in the short-term. After all, Walmart was the first entity to return to the New Orleans area following Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
"They got in there before the federal government did," Edwards said. "If there's this supply chain that's going to be working from any of the big, warehouse-type clubs, it's got to be Wal-Mart."
Speaking of supply-chain disruptions, Stuart Frankel's Steve Grasso would stay away from the East Coast oil refiners. He recommends looking at the mid-continent refiners instead, including HollyFrontier, CVR Energy, Tesoro and Valero Energy .
Depending upon how severe the storm is, options trader Steve Najarian thinks home improvement retailers Lowe's and Home Depot will benefit from any reconstruction projects. He doesn't think investors should be quick to buy these names now, but said they're worth taking a look at.
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CNBC.com with wires.