The Motley Fool's Weekly Editors' Picks

Fools were out and about this week in an investing world jampacked with actions and ideas. Here are three articles you might find useful as you decide how to invest your money.

Time to Quit Big Tobacco Dividends
Fool contributor Chris Baines thinks it's time to hop off the gravy train that U.S. tobacco stocks provide. "Like their products, big tobacco's stocks are just too expensive and just too dangerous," Chris wrote. His case isn't based on health or morality concerns about these so-called sin stocks. It's more about the sustainability of the companies' dividends.

Looking at Altria (NYSE: MO  ) , Reynolds American (NYSE: RAI  ) , and Lorillard (NYSE: LO  ) , Chris concludes: "These companies pay out most everything in a dividend, retaining almost nothing for growth, and 4.7% to 5.7% just isn't a high enough return given the risk. There are better alternatives for your money."

Read the article to see what this Fool has to say about tobacco stocks, the possible effects of new package labeling, and alternative investments for your money.

Why I Was Wrong About Baidu
On his recent trip to China, Motley Fool Global Gains co-advisor Tim Hanson visited Baidu (Nasdaq: BIDU  ) . "And after spending a full day meeting employees and getting a sense of the company's culture and growth strategy, I'm beginning to think that my skepticism of the company has been misguided," Tim wrote.

Here's a tidbit of Tim's reasoning:

"Baidu is a learning machine, and the company's vision and corporate culture are light-years ahead of its Chinese Internet peers. And with better than 86% market share, it's compiling a lot of data it can use to improve its search algorithm. Google (Nasdaq: GOOG  ) may eventually return to China, but its technological advantage will probably have eroded by then."

Head over to the article to read more of Tim's thoughts on Baidu and its stock.

Wal-Mart Pumps Up a Gas War
Alyce Lomax took a look this week at Wal-Mart's (NYSE: WMT  ) latest move to (1) save its customers money and (2) drum up business for itself. The company is going to cut the cost of gas by $0.10 per gallon at select stores through Sept. 30.

"The catch: Only customers who use a reloadable Wal-Mart gift card or Wal-Mart credit card at the pump will get the lower prices," Alyce wrote. Check out the article to read more about how this might affect business at Wal-Mart, and be sure to add your two cents in the comments section below Alyce's story.

Fool online editor Kris Eddy owns no shares of any stocks mentioned in this article.

The Motley Fool owns shares of Wal-Mart Stores, Altria Group, and Google. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Baidu, Wal-Mart Stores, and Google, creating a diagonal call position in Wal-Mart Stores, and writing puts in Lorillard. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool's disclosure policy has a tiger by the tail.


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