Why iRobot, TriQuint Semiconductor, and Harmony Gold Soared Today

Signs that the new Fed leader will be much the same as the old Fed leader led investors to send stocks sharply higher today, but these three stocks posted even stronger gains. Find out more about what made them soar.

Feb 11, 2014 at 8:02PM

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.

Economic woes have plagued the markets in 2014, but today, the stage belonged to Janet Yellen, and the Federal Reserve chair delivered an impressive opening performance. Major stock market benchmarks were up more than 1% Tuesday, but that paled in comparison to the larger gains that iRobot (NASDAQ:IRBT), TriQuint Semiconductor (NASDAQ:TQNT), and Harmony Gold (NYSE:HMY) enjoyed today.

iRobot jumped 11% after the robotic electronics maker's intellectual-property law firm announced that it had been ranked No. 5 on a list of top patent portfolios in the electronics and instruments industry. With even higher showings in the "science strength" and "industry impact" categories, iRobot has developed technology that has had an impact not just on its own products but on the entire industry's offerings as well. Moreover, as Google (NASDAQ:GOOGL) bought Boston Dynamics and other robot-making companies recently, interest in iRobot as a potential takeover candidate has increased as well.

TriQuint also gained 11% as the company reportedly turned to Wall Street giant Goldman Sachs for assistance in fending off unwanted pressure from activist investors at Starboard Value. With the hedge fund pushing for aggressive moves like selling off its power-amplifier business or divesting its in-house manufacturing capability in favor of third-party foundry services, TriQuint likely wants to assess all of its available options. Yet with Starboard having announced its intention to begin a proxy battle to name directors to TriQuint's board at its annual meeting later this year, TriQuint needs to act carefully but firmly in order to fulfill its obligations to its shareholders.

Harmony Gold rose 9% on a strong day for gold, which reacted favorably to Dr. Yellen's testimony as well. Most gold-mining stocks posted solid gains Tuesday, but Harmony in particular jumped because its relatively high production costs leave it less margin than lower-cost miners. As a result, when gold rises, it has a more dramatic impact on potential future profits for Harmony than with other mining companies. It's unclear whether gold's gains will continue, but signs of Fed accommodation continuing are generally a positive for the market.

You can find great growth stocks, can't you?
They said it couldn't be done. But David Gardner has proved them wrong time, and time, and time again with stock returns like 926%, 2,239%, and 4,371%. In fact, just recently one of his favorite stocks became a 100-bagger. And he's ready to do it again. You can uncover his scientific approach to crushing the market and his carefully chosen six picks for ultimate growth instantly, because he's making this premium report free for you today. Click here now for access.

Dan Caplinger has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Google and iRobot and owns shares of Google and TriQuint Semiconductor. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. 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.

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. 

Something big just happened

I don't know about you, but I always pay attention when one of the best growth investors in the world gives me a stock tip. Motley Fool co-founder David Gardner (whose growth-stock newsletter was rated #1 in the world by The Wall Street Journal)* and his brother, Motley Fool CEO Tom Gardner, just revealed two brand new stock recommendations moments ago. Together, they've tripled the stock market's return over 12+ years. And while timing isn't everything, the history of Tom and David's stock picks shows that it pays to get in early on their ideas.

Click here to be among the first people to hear about David and Tom's newest stock recommendations.

*"Look Who's on Top Now" appeared in The Wall Street Journal which references Hulbert's rankings of the best performing stock picking newsletters over a 5-year period from 2008-2013.