Fools were out and about this past week in an investing world jam-packed with actions and ideas. Here are three articles you might find useful as you decide how to invest your money.
What to Expect From Autos in 2012
Fool contributor John Rosevear brings readers insight about what the year will hold for some top auto stocks.
"Ford (NYSE: F ) is nearing the endpoint of its turnaround plan, and should see continued incremental improvements in margins and profits as its newly globalized product lineup starts to bear fruit," John wrote. He sees sales, profits, and stock price rising, but not dramatically.
General Motors (NYSE: GM ) faced challenges in 2011, and John is optimistic about 2012, saying the company has a good plan for success in place. "The real fruits of that [plan] may not be visible until 2013 or 2014, and the company's share price may linger in the meantime, but incremental progress and continued organizational shakeouts should give hope to long-term investors in 2012," John wrote.
Read the article to get John's full rundowns on GM, Ford, Toyota, Honda, and Tesla.
3 Reasons I'm Avoiding China
Fool contributor Jeremy Bowman lays out some facts about the real estate situation in China, including that residential real estate construction now accounts for a tenth of China's GDP and that the average home price in China is about nine times the mean annual income.
"Real estate prices have now started declining, which will have an impact on everything from prices for commodities like iron, copper, cement, and coal to a slowdown in the global credit market," Jeremy wrote. "With the risk of the bubble bursting, I'd avoid any companies that are involved in the Chinese financial mess or supplying resources needed for construction."
Read the article to find out more about the caution flags Jeremy sees in China and for the names of companies he thinks are good plays on China's changes.
4th-Quarter Dividend Champions
The gold-star winner among Fool contributor Sean Williams' list of fourth-quarter dividend champions is coal company Alliance Resource Partners (Nasdaq: ARLP ) . "Rather than announcing yearly dividend hikes, Alliance Resource has boosted its payout for 14 straight quarters," Sean declared, and "2011 is on pace to be the company's 11th straight year of record profits and will boast the highest operating margins ever."
Disney (NYSE: DIS ) also made the list of companies doing right by shareholders. "Disney announced the largest dividend increase in its history, 50% in November, as the company experienced a boon in growth across all sectors," Sean wrote. Securing a contract with the NFL to broadcast games through 2021 was just one win, and Sean sees positive things ahead in 2012.
Read the article to see all of what Sean had to say about these two stocks as well as Silver Wheaton, Amgen, and VF.
To get a hot stock tip from The Motley Fool's chief investment officer, you'll want to get the free report "The Motley Fool's Top Stock for 2012." Check out the details on this "Costco of Latin America." It's free.