28 AGs Attack: Who Will Blink First?

These companies are coming under fire for selling tobacco products: What's next?

Mar 23, 2014 at 8:00AM

Anti-smoking advocates notched a big victory when CVS Caremark (NYSE:CVS) declared earlier this year that it would stop selling cigarettes in its retail pharmacies beginning in October, sacrificing an estimated $2 billion in sales because selling cigarettes is "inconsistent with our purpose – helping people on their path to better health," according to the CVS website.

Now 28 state attorneys-general are urging competing pharmacies Rite Aid (NYSE:RAD) and Walgreen (NASDAQ:WBA), grocery stores Safeway (NYSE:SWY) and Kroger (NYSE:KRG), and big box retailer Wal-Mart to follow CVS' lead and end cigarette sales. The letters follow CVS' reasoning precisely, declaring that "there is a contradiction in having these dangerous and devastating tobacco products on the shelves of a retail chain that services health care needs." So far, response from these companies has been muted -- but pressure is starting to build.

In the following video, Motley Fool health care analysts David Williamson and Michael Douglass discuss the health care services available in these retail chains -- especially the work Rite Aid is doing in telemedicine -- and the impact of the letters. They also consider the biggest question on investors' minds as these companies contemplate their course of action: How much of a difference would dropping cigarettes make, and which companies will likely feel the most pressure to follow CVS?

Should you own CVS forever?
CVS made a savvy PR move by getting in front of the cigarette issue and stopping its sales of tobacco products. But is that enough to justify buying and holding a company forever? As every good investor knows, Warren Buffett didn't make billions by betting on half-baked stocks. He isolated his best few ideas, bet big, and rode them to riches, hardly ever selling. You deserve the same. That's why our CEO, legendary investor Tom Gardner, has permitted us to reveal The Motley Fool's 3 Stocks to Own Forever. These picks are free today! Just click here now to uncover the three companies we love. 

David Williamson has no position in any stocks mentioned. Michael Douglass has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends CVS Caremark. 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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