Why D.R. Horton, Millennial Media, and YRC Worldwide Soared Today

The stock market finally gave investors a long-awaited bounce after five straight down days for the Dow. Several stocks posted much stronger results, with D.R. Horton rising 10%, Millennial Media jumping 14%, and YRC Worldwide gaining 13%. Find out more about what made these stocks soar.

Jan 28, 2014 at 8:01PM

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 stock market finally gave investors the bounce they were looking for, as the Dow broke a five-day losing streak in a broad-based rally that even managed to overcome a terrible earnings report from Apple that sent the tech giant down more than $40 per share today. Among the stocks that helped keep the market higher were D.R. Horton (NYSE:DHI), Millennial Media (NYSE:MM), and YRC Worldwide (NASDAQ:YRCW).

D.R. Horton rose 10% as the homebuilder reported strong results during the December quarter and also said that conditions were favorable in January as well. The company's net income soared 86% from the year-ago quarter, with analysts pointing to D.R. Horton's smart land-acquisition strategy in opportunistically capitalizing on good deals in the vacant-land market. Revenue rose by about 34%, as sales volumes jumped by more than 1,000 homes and average sales prices rose 10%. With all signs pointing toward a healthier housing market, D.R. Horton appears to have taken maximum advantage of improving conditions, and shareholders rewarded the company for its success.

Millennial Media gained another 14% after a big jump yesterday following the mobile-advertising specialist's preliminary results for the quarter included higher guidance. In addition, with co-founder and CEO Paul Palmieri resigning, investors hope that incoming CEO Michael Barrett will be able to bring new ways for Millennial Media to boost its advertising revenue. Today, Wall Street analysts weighed in positively on the moves, with Stifel Nicolaus upgrading the stock to give shares another day of upward movement.

YRC Worldwide climbed 13%. Yesterday, the company's stock went on a roller-coaster ride after union workers approved a new contract with the trucking company. Today, YRC Worldwide weighed in with one of the positive consequences of the contract, saying that the favorable resolution of the ongoing labor negotiations opened the door to the company refinancing its existing debt. New credit facilities totaling $1.15 billion will give YRC Worldwide more time before maturity to rely on having financing available, and it could also lead to lower interest expenses on its loan. In light of YRC Worldwide's challenges over the past few years, today's gains are relatively minor, but they could be the beginning of a more successful period for shareholders.

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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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