FRIDAY FALL PUSHES STOCKS TO LOSSES ON WEEK
The headline: Dow Posts 3rd Straight Decline
The Dowlost more ground Friday and posted its third straight decline, explains Dylan Ratigan. The move lower came as investors focused on the financial health of the consumer. Reports showed personal spending is at its weakest level in 17 months and consumer sentiment has dropped to its lowest level since 1992.
I think it was a horrible close to a mediocre month, says Jeff Macke.
I like the fact that volatility stayed below 25 on Friday, counters Pete Najarian.
BREAKING NEWS: IAC/INTERACTIVE
The headline: WSJ: Delaware Judge Rules For Diller in IAC/InterActiveCorp.
A Delaware judge has ruled in favor of IAC Chief Executive Barry Diller in a dispute with Liberty Media Corp.,a controlling shareholder in the InterActiveCorp conglomerate.
The opinion from the judge said Friday Liberty failed to prove that Diller violated an agreement between them by pursuing a plan to break the company into five parts. Liberty wanted to stop the spin-offs and remove Diller from IAC's board
I think it’s a positive for the stock, says Jon Najarian.
The only people who win on this news, counters Jeff Macke, are the lawyers.
JC PENNEY PLUNGES 7% FRIDAY
The headline: JC Penney Lowers Forecast, Says All of 2008 to Be Rough.
J.C. Penney , the big middle-market department store chain, warned Friday of disappointing first-quarter profits in another sign that consumers are cutting discretionary spending in the face of higher gasoline prices and falling confidence, explains Dylan Ratigan.
I bought some JCP stock today, reveals Karen Finerman, because I think they have a great balance sheet and this market is really beating them up.
I agree, says Jon Najarian. The pros wait to see what’s the most bloodied animal out there and then they buy.
I think investors should hold-off buying retail until April 8th, says Jeff Macke, because they report same-store sales around the 10th. That’s the time to trade retail, not now.
BULLION, BLACK GOLD BOUNCE BACK
The headline: Crude Oil, Gold, Commodity Stocks Mount Comeback This Week.
On Friday gold fell more than 2 percent in a broad commodities sell-off and oil tumbled almost 2 percent, yet both made gains for the week, explains Dylan Ratigan.
Take a look at the commodities that are most “up” for the quarter and then get out, counsels Jon Najarian.
We’re seeing the Oil Services HLDRS trade in a range between 165 and 180, peaking and then going down explains Pete Najarian. Buy the dips and sell the rips, he counsels. Also look at Marathon (MRO) and Hercules (HERO).
BANKS BATTERED BY 6% THIS WEEK
The headline: Financial ETF (XLF) Sheds 6% This Week On Fresh Credit Fears.
Citigroup , Wachovia and other U.S. banks are likely to announce dividend cuts in April because their earnings will not support currently scheduled payouts, Oppenheimer & Co analyst Meredith Whitney said this week. "We continue to believe the bad news is not priced into the bank stock prices and that progressively throughout this year, all financials -- but particularly banks -- will trade ... at least 25 percent lower from current levels," she said.
Whitney correctly predicted in October that Citigroup would cut its dividend and need to raise $30 billion of capital, explains Pete Najarian. She’s someone I'd listen to.
Also, if Merrill (MER) doesn’t have a major issue in their next earnings cycle, there could be an opportunity, he adds.
APPLE REBOUNDS 7% THIS WEEK
The headline: Apple Shares Jump Friday On Positive Bank Of America Comments
The Nasdaq ended the week lower despite strength in Apple , explains Jeff Macke. The tech heavy index was dragged down after weak earnings from Oracle created a drag on the sector.
At this point the easy money has been made in Apple, says Jeff Macke.
I think Apple will sell sideways for a while, adds Jon Najarian.
Oracle looks great to me going forward, exclaims Pete Najarian. It could be a good time to buy.
WILL WHOPPER BARS CHEER CONSUMER UP?
The headline: Burger King To Introduce New Version Of Restaurant
Burger King plans to start building a new version of its restaurants this year called the Whopper Bar that will sell a wider variety of its signature hamburger in a more hip setting, explains Dylan Ratigan.
I say sell the news, counsels Jeff Macke. It’s too much of a casual dining initiative for me.
I disagree, counters Pete Najarian. Me too, adds brother Jon. I think it will bring in new customers, if only to try it.
SURPRISE FRIDAY GUEST
The headline: How Can Fast Food Companies Stay Ahead Of Slowing Consumer.
Domino's CEO David Brandon joins the panel for this conversation. Following is a summary of his main points.
How are you dealing with the rise in commodity prices?
“We have to manage costs like never before. And at the same time we’ve been steadily increasing prices to our customers,” replies Brandon.
How much have you raised prices?
“Our average ticket has gone up 10% – 15% over the past year and we think that’s too high too fast,” replies Brandon. “Starting Monday we’re coming out with a 4-4-4 promotion which will allow customers to purchase three pizzas for $4 each. We’re going to shout value like we haven’t in quite some time.”
But how can you sell pizza at lower prices with commodities going up?
“The net effect on our company will be to stimulate traffic, which will stimulate trial which will afford us the ability to do more upselling and hopefully increase those tickets,” explains Brandon. “We think it’s a very positive step forward and that it will bring a lot of people into the pizza category.”
Traders, what do you think?
It’s interesting, says Karen Finerman. But they have cost pressure everywhere, Even the gas used by the delivery drivers is going up.
It’s is intriguing, adds Jeff Macke.
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Trader disclosure: On Mar.28, 2008, the following stocks and commodities mentioned or intended to be mentioned on CNBC’s Fast Money were owned by the Fast Money traders; Jon Najarian Owns (AAPL), (AG), (AGU), (BG), (COST), (DAL), (DE), (JWN), (MO), (MON), (MOS), (NOK), (NTRI), (NVDA), (POT), (RIMM), (TSO), (AET), (WCG); Jon Najarian Is Short (APOL), (TGT), (LEH), (MRK); Pete Najarian Owns (AAPL), (BIIB), (CSCO), (EMC), (ORCL), (TSO), (XLF), (YHOO), (MSFT), (NOK), (BKC); Pete Najarian Owns (LEH) Puts. (MER) Puts, (OIH) Puts; Pete Najarian Owns (BSC) Calls, (COP) Calls, (NVDA) Calls; Macke Owns (YHOO), (INTC), (DIS), (EMC); Finerman Owns (GS); Finerman's Firm Owns (DSW), (JCP), (MSFT), (MO), (MSFT), (SUN), (TSO), (VLO), (WMT), (YHOO); Finerman's Firm Is Short (IYR), (IJR), (MDY), (IWM), (SPY)