Why Abercrombie & Fitch Co. Shares Flew

Is this meaningful? Or just another movement?

Jan 10, 2014 at 11:11AM

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of teen apparel retailer Abercrombie & Fitch Co. (NYSE:ANF) popped 11% today after its fourth-quarter update and outlook impressed investors.

So what: The stock has slumped in recent months on concerns over plummeting sales, but today's Q4 update -- same-store sales are down just 6% so far -- coupled with upbeat guidance suggests that things are stabilizing. Management cited successful cost-cutting initiatives and better-than-expected demand for the positive report, giving analysts plenty of good vibes over Abercrombie's turnaround prospects.

Now what: Management now sees full-year adjusted EPS of $1.55-$1.65, up from its prior prediction of $1.40-$1.50. "[F]all season carryover inventory levels are well controlled as we move into the new season," said Chairman and CEO Mike Jeffries. "We continue to focus on execution against our long-term strategic plans, which we believe will drive meaningful improvements in our business in 2014 and beyond." With the stock still off more than 30% from its 52-week highs and sporting a 2%-plus dividend yield, buying into that turnaround talk might even be worth considering.

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Fool contributor Brian Pacampara has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

A Financial Plan on an Index Card

Keeping it simple.

Aug 7, 2015 at 11:26AM

Two years ago, University of Chicago professor Harold Pollack wrote his entire financial plan on an index card.

It blew up. People loved the idea. Financial advice is often intentionally complicated. Obscurity lets advisors charge higher fees. But the most important parts are painfully simple. Here's how Pollack put it:

The card came out of chat I had regarding what I view as the financial industry's basic dilemma: The best investment advice fits on an index card. A commenter asked for the actual index card. Although I was originally speaking in metaphor, I grabbed a pen and one of my daughter's note cards, scribbled this out in maybe three minutes, snapped a picture with my iPhone, and the rest was history.

More advisors and investors caught onto the idea and started writing their own financial plans on a single index card.

I love the exercise, because it makes you think about what's important and forces you to be succinct.

So, here's my index-card financial plan:


Everything else is details. 

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