Weakness in China Hurts U.S. Markets

One big banana merger, a rate reduction, and lower guidance move other stocks within the markets today.

Mar 10, 2014 at 9:00PM
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In our interconnected world, the announcement that China's exports fell 18.1% in February was all it took this morning to put downward pressure on the major U.S. indexes. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES:^DJI) lost 34 points on the day, or 0.21%, while the S&P 500 fell 0.05%. The Nasdaq was unchanged.

Within the Dow, shares of AT&T (NYSE:T) closed down 0.09%, after falling as much as 1.07% during the day. Investors were probably reacting to the news that AT&T is cutting its Shared Value Plan price from $80 to $65 per month for current customers who are no longer under a two year agreement and sign up for the new plan, or for new customers who pay full price for a phone. But as my colleague Travis Hoium explained earlier today, AT&T is essentially just changing the way it collects money from customers. I don't think shareholders have much to worry about from this move.  

Outside the Dow, shares of Bed Bath & Beyond (NASDAQ:BBBY) rose 0.43%, despite Friday's announcement of reduced earnings expectations. Blaming the weather, management cut its forecast from a range of $1.60 to $1.67 per share down to a range of $1.57 to $1.61. The company also sees revenue for stores open at least a year rising only 1.7% for the quarter, down from the previous estimate of 2% to 4%. Credit Suisse said earnings would have been in line with guidance if not for the weather, backing up management's assertions. Sometimes, things are just out of your control.

A big winner on the market today was Chiquita Brands (NYSE:CQB). Shares rose 10.7% this afternoon after the company announced a merger agreement with Dublin-based Fyffes. The new company will surpass Dole to become the world's largest banana company. The companies characterize the merger as a "strategy of survival," as big discount-driven retailers have put pressure on margins. The merger is likely to help for now, but as a way to survive it doesn't seem like the best long-term strategy. If trouble strikes again, there's really nowhere else to go: The new ChiquitaFyffes and Dole together will control more than half of the world's banana market.  

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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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