Two Big Winners During the Day, and Two in the Evening

Shares of AT&T and Verizon jump during the regular trading day, while Microsoft and Starbucks climb in the after-hours session.

Jan 23, 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.

The major indexes and stock market, in general, had a very poor day today, but two of the Dow Jones Industrial Average's components bucked that trend, while another ended just slightly higher during the regular trading session but soared in the after-hours period. Let's take a moment and see what was going on today.

Shares of AT&T (NYSE:T) and Verizon (NYSE:VZ) rose an astonishing 1.38% and 1.12%, respectively, today despite being two of only seven Dow components ending the day in the black. The index itself lost more than 175 points today, or 1.07%. The likely cause for the move higher was an announcement made yesterday by AT&T that it would be reporting a non-cash gain of $7.6 billion from its pension plan due to better-than-expected performance of the company's pension during 2013. Verizon recently reported a similar event when it said that it would report a $6 billion gain from its pension obligation. What this essentially means is that the amount each company will need to add to its employee's pension funds has just dropped by a massive amount, and thus, more money can be used for business operations, or given back to shareholders. 

Another Dow component that finished in the black, but then really took off during the after-hours session, was Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), which was trading up 3.51% in the extended trading session this evening at 8 p.m. EST after finishing the regular trading period up 0.35%. The reason for the big jump in the extended period was the company's earnings report. Big Softy reported earnings per share of $0.78 on revenue of $24.52 billion. Analysts were expecting earnings per share of $0.68 on revenue of $23.44 billion. The much-better-than-expected results were great to see, but many investors were hoping management would have more to report along the lines of who may be taking over for the retiring Steve Ballmer. The company did not discuss this at all during the conference call. 

Another big winner in the after-hours session was Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX), which closed the regular trading day down 0.29%, but ended the extended period up 1.1%. The move was, again, the result of a better-than-expected earnings report. Starbucks posted earnings per share of $0.71 for the quarter, much better than the $0.57 it reported a year ago, and higher than the $0.69 analysts were expecting. On the revenue side, Starbucks reported $4.24 billion in sales, again much higher than the $3.79 billion last year, but slightly lower than the $4.3 billion Wall Street was looking for. But on a same-store sales basis, the company saw a 5% increase both in the Americas and internationally, while operating margins climbed from 16.6% to an impressive 19.2%. Despite the slight miss on revenue, the report seemed to be very strong. 

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Fool contributor Matt Thalman owns shares of Microsoft and Starbucks. The Motley Fool recommends Starbucks. The Motley Fool owns shares of Microsoft and Starbucks. 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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