Japan was back at the center of financial news today, not because the Nikkei is still getting rocked back and forth, but because the island-nation's central bank refused to adjust monetary policy today in the midst of a huge market correction. In April, the Bank of Japan had announced a $1.4 trillion stimulus program with room for additional funding if needed, but today passed on that opportunity, though Bank of Japan governor Haruhiko Kuroda did say that the bank could unleash further stimulus if borrowing costs rise.
World markets were down on the news, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI ) finishing down 117 points, or 0.8%, in a volatile session, as the blue chips opened down 1% before climbing to breakeven at midday, and finally tanking in afternoon trading. As stocks pulled back, treasuries hit a 14-month high, with the 10-year yield climbing to 2.29% at one point.
Among the Dow's biggest losers today was Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT ) , which fell 1.8% as rival Sony introduced its PlayStation 4 last night and said would be priced at $399, $100 less than Microsoft's Xbox One. The two are major competitors in the gaming arena, and Sony's moves could put pressure on Microsoft. In addition to beating the Xbox on price, the PS4 also allows users to sell or reuse second-hand games and does not require a fixed Internet connection. Both consoles are due out this fall in time for the holiday season.
Top 10 Blue Chip Stocks To Own Right Now: International Business Machines Corporation(IBM)
International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) provides information technology (IT) products and services worldwide. Its Global Technology Services segment provides IT infrastructure and business process services, including strategic outsourcing, process, integrated technology, and maintenance services, as well as technology-based support services. The company?s Global Business Services segment offers consulting and systems integration, and application management services. Its Software segment offers middleware and operating systems software, such as WebSphere software to integrate and manage business processes; information management software for database and enterprise content management, information integration, data warehousing, business analytics and intelligence, performance management, and predictive analytics; Tivoli software for identity management, data security, storage management, and datacenter automation; Lotus software for collaboration, messaging, and so cial networking; rational software to support software development for IT and embedded systems; business intelligence software, which provides querying and forecasting tools; SPSS predictive analytics software to predict outcomes and act on that insight; and operating systems software. Its Systems and Technology segment provides computing and storage solutions, including servers, disk and tape storage systems and software, point-of-sale retail systems, and microelectronics. The company?s Global Financing segment provides lease and loan financing to end users and internal clients; commercial financing to dealers and remarketers of IT products; and remanufacturing and remarketing services. It serves financial services, public, industrial, distribution, communications, and general business sectors. The company was formerly known as Computing-Tabulating-Recording Co. and changed its name to International Business Machines Corporation in 1924. IBM was founded in 1910 and is based in Armonk, New York.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Alex Planes]
Exactly 36 years after it was created, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI ) made a number of great changes -- or changes that would have been great, if the Dow's overseers had stuck to their guns. On May 26, 1932, seven new stocks joined the Dow. Only one has remained part of the index ever since: Procter & Gamble (NYSE: PG ) . Two others -- Coca-Cola (NYSE: KO ) and IBM (NYSE: IBM ) -- were removed far too soon.
Top 10 Blue Chip Stocks To Own Right Now: Chevron Corporation(CVX)
Chevron Corporation, through its subsidiaries, engages in petroleum, chemicals, mining, power generation, and energy operations worldwide. It operates in two segments, Upstream and Downstream. The Upstream segment involves in the exploration, development, and production of crude oil and natural gas; processing, liquefaction, transportation, and regasification associated with liquefied natural gas; transportation of crude oil through pipelines; and transportation, storage, and marketing of natural gas, as well as holds interest in a gas-to-liquids project. The Downstream segment engages in the refining of crude oil into petroleum products; marketing of crude oil and refined products primarily under the Chevron, Texaco, and Caltex brand names; transportation of crude oil and refined products by pipeline, marine vessel, motor equipment, and rail car; and manufacture and marketing of commodity petrochemicals, plastics for industrial uses, and fuel and lubricant additives. It a lso produces and markets coal and molybdenum; and holds interests in 13 power assets with a total operating capacity of approximately 3,100 megawatts, as well as involves in cash management and debt financing activities, insurance operations, real estate activities, energy services, and alternative fuels and technology business. Chevron Corporation has a joint venture agreement with China National Petroleum Corporation. The company was formerly known as ChevronTexaco Corp. and changed its name to Chevron Corporation in May 2005. Chevron Corporation was founded in 1879 and is based in San Ramon, California.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Ben Levisohn]
The S&P 500 fell 0.2% to 1,767.69, as Cliffs Natural Resources� (CLF) fell 4% to $26.27 on lower metal prices and NRG Energy (NRG) dropped 3.5% to $27.06 after it reported a profit of 37 cents, well below forecasts for 63 cents. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dipped 0.2% to 15,750.76, as taper talk hit Travelers (TRV), which fell 1.7% to $86.44, and Chevron (CVX), which dropped 0.9% to $120.
- [By Arjun Sreekumar]
Talisman's and Marathon's decision to retrench from their Polish operations comes not too long after ExxonMobil (NYSE: XOM ) announced last year that it would stop exploring for natural gas in Poland after initial tests failed to yield commercial quantities of gas. Of the remaining energy majors, only Chevron (NYSE: CVX ) , ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP ) and Eni still have operations in Poland.
Top Financial Companies To Buy For 2014: Philip Morris International Inc(PM)
Philip Morris International Inc., through its subsidiaries, engages in the manufacture and sale of cigarettes and other tobacco products in markets outside of the United States. Its international product brand line comprises Marlboro, Merit, Parliament, Virginia Slims, L&M, Chesterfield, Bond Street, Lark, Muratti, Next, Philip Morris, and Red & White. The company also offers its products under the A Mild, Dji Sam Soe, and A Hijau in Indonesia; Diana in Italy; Optima and Apollo-Soyuz in the Russian Federation; Morven Gold in Pakistan; Boston in Colombia; Belmont, Canadian Classics, and Number 7 in Canada; Best and Classic in Serbia; f6 in Germany; Delicados in Mexico; Assos in Greece; and Petra in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. It operates primarily in the European Union, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia, Canada, and Latin America. The company is based in New York, New York.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By WALLSTCHEATSHEET]
There are definitely concerns for Phillip Morris, which include decreased market share in many areas and poor debt management. However, up until this point, Phillip Morris has done a good job rewarding its shareholders. While history usually repeats itself, that�� not necessarily an all-positive in this case. Phillip Morris didn�� hold up well in 2008/early 2009. If a similar environment were to present itself again, then Phillip Morris wouldn�� be a top option ��regardless of the impressive yield. In the meantime, Phillip Morris is an OUTPERFORM.
- [By Morgan Housel]
For most of the last decade, investors scooped up stocks that had big international exposure with the idea that they would provide a hedge against a weakening dollar. Companies that do most of their business overseas, like Coca-Cola (NYSE: KO ) (73% overseas), Philip Morris International (NYSE: PM ) (all overseas), and Intel (NASDAQ: INTC ) (85% overseas), looked compelling as a hedge against the U.S. economy's faults.
- [By Dividend]
Philip Morris International (PM) has a market capitalization of $135.05 billion. The company employs 87,100 people, generates revenue of $77.393 billion and has a net income of $9.154 billion. Philip Morris International�� earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) amounts to $14.827 billion. The EBITDA margin is 19.16 percent (the operating margin is 17.89 percent and the net profit margin 11.83 percent).
- [By Dan Caplinger]
Philip Morris International (NYSE: PM ) will release its quarterly report on Thursday, and projections suggest that it will manage to deliver decent results for investors. But shareholders don't seem convinced about Philip Morris earnings, as they've recently sent the stock down substantially from its May highs.
Top 10 Blue Chip Stocks To Own Right Now: Colgate-Palmolive Company(CL)
Colgate-Palmolive Company, together with its subsidiaries, manufactures and markets consumer products worldwide. It offers oral care products, including toothpaste, toothbrushes, and mouth rinses, as well as dental floss and pharmaceutical products for dentists and other oral health professionals; personal care products, such as liquid hand soap, shower gels, bar soaps, deodorants, antiperspirants, shampoos, and conditioners; and home care products comprising laundry and dishwashing detergents, fabric conditioners, household cleaners, bleaches, dishwashing liquids, and oil soaps. The company offers its oral, personal, and home care products under the Colgate Total, Colgate Max Fresh, Colgate 360 Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Ong Kang Wei]
Another example of such a product is Colgate-Palmolive (CL)'s Colgate toothpaste. I do not think I have to elaborate much here. Toothpaste is needed in our everyday life, and we will definitely have to buy more toothpaste after we have finished using a packet of it, ensuring that Colgate gets more and more sales over the years.
- [By Douglas A. McIntyre]
Some traditional brand powerhouses have lost ground in the Top 100 since 2009. These include BMW, FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) and Colgate-Palmolive Co. (NYSE: CL).
- [By Dan Caplinger]
Procter & Gamble (NYSE: PG ) will release its quarterly report on Friday, and investors have watched the stock hit new all-time record highs in November before falling back in the past two months. Despite the optimism, Procter & Gamble earnings face pressure from international giant Unilever (NYSE: UL ) as well as domestic rivals Colgate-Palmolive (NYSE: CL ) and Kimberly-Clark (NYSE: KMB ) . The question facing investors is whether P&G can sustain its longtime competitive advantages against its rivals and bolster its growth.
Top 10 Blue Chip Stocks To Own Right Now: McDonald's Corporation(MCD)
McDonald?s Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a worldwide foodservice retailer. It franchises and operates McDonald?s restaurants that offer various food items, soft drinks, coffee, and other beverages. As of December 31, 2009, the company operated 32,478 restaurants in 117 countries, of which 26,216 were operated by franchisees; and 6,262 were operated by the company. McDonald?s Corporation was founded in 1948 and is based in Oak Brook, Illinois.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Neha Marwah]
Yum! Brands (YUM) has been facing difficulty in its top international market China from where it earned over 50% of its revenue in 2012. Post December 2012 the operator of KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell started witnessing difficult times in China after the food regulatory agency ran a search over the antibiotic levels of the chicken that these quick service restaurant chains, including McDonald�� (MCD) and Burger King (BKW) use.
- [By Associated Press]
McDonald's (NYSE: MCD ) CEO Don Thompson revealed at an analyst conference this week that he shed about 20 pounds in the past year by getting his "butt up" and "working out again." But he said he hasn't changed his habit of eating at McDonald's "every single day."
Top 10 Blue Chip Stocks To Own Right Now: Visa Inc.(V)
Visa Inc., a payments technology company, engages in the operation of retail electronic payments network worldwide. It facilitates commerce through the transfer of value and information among financial institutions, merchants, consumers, businesses, and government entities. The company owns and operates VisaNet, a global processing platform that provides transaction processing services. It also offers a range of payments platforms, which enable credit, charge, deferred debit, debit, and prepaid payments, as well as cash access for consumers, businesses, and government entities. The company provides its payment platforms under the Visa, Visa Electron, PLUS, and Interlink brand names. In addition, it offers value-added services, including risk management, issuer processing, loyalty, dispute management, value-added information, and CyberSource-branded services. The company is headquartered in San Francisco, California.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Sean Williams, Travis Hoium, and Alex Planes]
In that spirit, we three Fools have banded together to find the market's best and worst stocks, which we'll rate on�The Motley Fool's CAPS�system as outperformers or underperformers. We'll be accountable for every pick based on the sum of our knowledge and the balance of our decisions. Today, we'll be discussing Visa (NYSE: V ) , the world's largest electronic payment processing network.
- [By Sean Williams]
The biggest concern for the two largest credit card processing companies -- MasterCard and Visa (NYSE: V ) �-- is whether or not consumer spending is growing or slowing. If global dollars transacted and volumes are falling, that would mean less processing revenue for these giants. However, I can't actually recall the last time we saw a steady decline in credit card usage since the deep recession of 2009.
Top 10 Blue Chip Stocks To Own Right Now: Apple Inc.(AAPL)
Apple Inc., together with subsidiaries, designs, manufactures, and markets personal computers, mobile communication and media devices, and portable digital music players, as well as sells related software, services, peripherals, networking solutions, and third-party digital content and applications worldwide. The company sells its products worldwide through its online stores, retail stores, direct sales force, third-party wholesalers, resellers, and value-added resellers. In addition, it sells third-party Mac, iPhone, iPad, and iPod compatible products, including application software, printers, storage devices, speakers, headphones, and other accessories and peripherals through its online and retail stores; and digital content and applications through the iTunes Store. The company sells its products to consumer, small and mid-sized business, education, enterprise, government, and creative markets. As of September 25, 2010, it had 317 retail stores, including 233 stores in the United States and 84 stores internationally. The company, formerly known as Apple Computer, Inc., was founded in 1976 and is headquartered in Cupertino, California.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Eric Bleeker, CFA, Austin Smith, and Chris Hill]
With Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL ) having just released its new iOS 7 mobile operating system at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference earlier this week, analysts and consumers alike are clamoring to get a better look at it. In this week's Motley Fool Tech Review, host Chris Hill talks with analysts Eric Bleeker and Austin Smith about the new iOS 7, and Eric gives us a breakdown of where the new system is wonderful and where it could be better.
- [By Rick Munarriz]
A new carrier could be just what Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL ) needs to grow its market share.
Deutsche Telekom (NASDAQOTH: DTEGY ) unit T-Mobile T-Mobile began selling the iPhone 5 over the weekend, and initial reports on Friday were encouraging. Online reports showed some T-Mobile stores busy with customers taking advantage of T-Mobile's new relationship with Apple, and that's more than what can be said for some of the new smartphones that have hit the market recently.