UPS Hits the Brakes While EA Soars

Stocks finished mixed as UPS dipped on preliminary earnings, and Electronic Arts jumped on an upgrade.

Jan 17, 2014 at 10:00PM

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

Stocks finished the day mixed again today as the market seems hesitant to pick a direction this year after more than two full weeks of trading in 2014. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES:^DJI) finished up 42 points, or 0.3%, but the S&P 500 and Nasdaq both fell. For the year, only the Nasdaq has gained.

Several economic reports were released today, but nearly all were in line with expectations. December housing starts and building permits dipped from November totals, but still met estimates at an annual pace of nearly a million. Total housing starts last year were 923,400, an 18% jump from 2012. December industrial production grew 0.3%, matching projections, and the University of Michigan's consumer confidence survey rated 80.4, below estimates of 83.0, but still strong.

Earnings reports from financial companies continued to roll in today as Morgan Stanley jumped 4.4% on improvements in investment banking and stock trading revenue. Dow financials Visa and American Express also both surged, each gaining more than 3.6% as AmEx turned in a strong fourth quarter on solid growth in card member spending.

Moving in the other direction after reporting preliminary earnings today was UPS (NYSE:UPS), which was down more than 4% pre-market on a disappointing update, but recovered to finish down just 0.6%. The parcel-delivery giant is often seen as a bellwether for the economy, so perhaps it's no surprise that the stock fell as retailers have widely reported disappointing holiday seasons. Big Brown said costs were up due to increased shipments and weather, and management now expects full-year EPS of $4.57, below previous guidance of $4.65-$4.85. It also said it expects EPS growth of 10%-15% this year, in line with its long-term targets, and a solid clip for a company of its size. Shares likely rebounded as investors realized that the poor quarter was a one-time event, and that UPS is a strong brand and a leader in a huge and growing industry.

Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA), on the other hand, moved up 12% after the video game maker got an endorsement from NPD research group, and a buy rating from CRT Capital. In its holiday sales report on the video game industry, NPD said EA sales jumped 40% even as industry-wide sales fell. Meanwhile, CRT initiated coverage with a buy, saying that the release of Titanfall this March should drive sales and the World Cup's effect on its sales of its trademark FIFA soccer game. Still, video game makers tend to be volatile, and CRT warned as much saying this stock was not for the "faint of heart."

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Fool contributor Jeremy Bowman has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends American Express, United Parcel Service, and Visa. The Motley Fool owns shares of Visa. 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.

4 in 5 Americans Are Ignoring Buffett's Warning

Don't be one of them.

Jun 12, 2015 at 5:01PM

Admitting fear is difficult.

So you can imagine how shocked I was to find out Warren Buffett recently told a select number of investors about the cutting-edge technology that's keeping him awake at night.

This past May, The Motley Fool sent 8 of its best stock analysts to Omaha, Nebraska to attend the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting. CEO Warren Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger fielded questions for nearly 6 hours.
The catch was: Attendees weren't allowed to record any of it. No audio. No video. 

Our team of analysts wrote down every single word Buffett and Munger uttered. Over 16,000 words. But only two words stood out to me as I read the detailed transcript of the event: "Real threat."

That's how Buffett responded when asked about this emerging market that is already expected to be worth more than $2 trillion in the U.S. alone. Google has already put some of its best engineers behind the technology powering this trend. 

The amazing thing is, while Buffett may be nervous, the rest of us can invest in this new industry BEFORE the old money realizes what hit them.

KPMG advises we're "on the cusp of revolutionary change" coming much "sooner than you think."

Even one legendary MIT professor had to recant his position that the technology was "beyond the capability of computer science." (He recently confessed to The Wall Street Journal that he's now a believer and amazed "how quickly this technology caught on.")

Yet according to one J.D. Power and Associates survey, only 1 in 5 Americans are even interested in this technology, much less ready to invest in it. Needless to say, you haven't missed your window of opportunity. 

Think about how many amazing technologies you've watched soar to new heights while you kick yourself thinking, "I knew about that technology before everyone was talking about it, but I just sat on my hands." 

Don't let that happen again. This time, it should be your family telling you, "I can't believe you knew about and invested in that technology so early on."

That's why I hope you take just a few minutes to access the exclusive research our team of analysts has put together on this industry and the one stock positioned to capitalize on this major shift.

Click here to learn about this incredible technology before Buffett stops being scared and starts buying!

David Hanson owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and American Express. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway, Google, and Coca-Cola.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 has a disclosure policy.

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