You go, Rick!
I'm not one to usually speak about myself in the third person, but it's also rare to see myself beating the market in Motley Fool CAPS for two weeks in a row.
The good news is that my rating of 7.84 is the highest since I began chronicling my efforts to get out of the CAPS gutter four months ago. The bad news is that this isn't Dancing With the Stars or figure skating, where a 10 is a perfect score. My 7.84 is out of a possible score of 100, which means that 92% of you out there are still beating me in CAPS' community stock-picking experience.
These are my ratings over the past few weeks:
Let's go over some of my recent picks and pans, as I do every week.
Making moves and taking names
I made four new calls this week, but they weren't all bullish. I bet against Ann Taylor
I think the tight economic times mean that moms will scale back on their own clothing needs before they'll forgo buying clothes for their children. Ann Taylor offers a bonus bearish feature of specializing in workforce-friendly outfits, an area that will take a notable hit if employment numbers weaken. As for Talbots, the limited amount of clothing lines it carries for men and children hasn't helped. The retailer is in a funk. It will probably post a loss this year, and a turnaround doesn't seem to be waiting around the corner.
On the more upbeat side, I initiated a bullish call on BJ's Wholesale Club
My other bullish pick is VisionChina Media
Things can only get better
I did a bit of my usual pruning work, though this time, I did so in anticipation of upcoming earnings. I removed my bearish call on Salesforce.com
Furthermore, let's be frank: A ton of companies have been dying to acquire Salesforce as a way to wave the cloud-computing flag. Storing apps on a provider's servers is the future, and Salesforce is a pioneer.
Another tech bellwether off my scorecard is Hewlett-Packard
This past week, HP finally made my move official. Yes, the company has beaten earnings in each and every quarter since CEO Mark Hurd took the company's helm. Still, I fear that after heading a tremendous turnaround effort, Hurd has now turned to a beefy acquisition because he can no longer squeeze such fat margins out of HP's organic business
What will I do next? You're welcome to follow along on my CAPS page to see how I'm doing even before next week's update. You also may want to give Motley Fool CAPS a shot. The moment you start, you'll be way ahead of me.
I won't stop fighting just because there's one more person ahead of me, though. In fact, I'm not going to rest until my rating grows respectable. See you on CAPS!