Why Alcoa, Vipshop Holdings, and Nike All Rose

The broad market moved higher as Alcoa, Vipshop, and Nike made gains on earnings and upgrades news.

Apr 8, 2014 at 10:00PM

After a sharp sell-off over the past two days, stocks rebounded today as investors bought the momentum names that had fallen off in recent weeks. As a result, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES:^DJI) finished the day up just 10 points or 0.1%, while the S&P 500 gained 0.4% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq jumped 0.8%.

Investors were encouraged by the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey from the Labor Department, which showed job openings at a six-year high. The figure hit 4.17 million in February, above January's total of 3.87 million and at its highest level since January 2008. In 2007, before the recession, the number of job openings were close to 5 million a month. Considering the report is on a one-month lag, it is not as closely watched as the monthly jobs report, but the numbers nonetheless show the jobs market continuing to improve, especially promising coming at a time when bad weather was thought to be weighing on businesses.

After hours today, Alcoa (NYSE:AA) unofficially kicked off earnings season, moving up 2.6% after beating estimates and showing progress in its turnaround. The aluminum-maker posted an adjusted per-share profit of $0.09, ahead of estimates of $0.05. After years of slow growth and low prices in the industry, Alcoa said it expected global demand for aluminum to increase 7% in 2014 because of demand for commercial aircraft. For the quarter past, Alcoa saw revenue fall 6.5% to $5.45 billion, below estimates of $5.55 billion. Still, the bottom line was strong. CEO Klaus Kleinfeld noted "record downstream profitability" as well as improved results in its midstream and upstream business.

Also moving higher today was Vipshop Holdings (NYSE:VIPS), which finished 11% higher after getting an upgrade from Credit Suisse. The Swiss bank lifted its rating on the Chinese online retailer to outperform, saying that cosmetics and baby products should drive growth in 2014. Vipshop shares have been flying over the past year, gaining more than 400% on the strength of flash sales models. The stock is dearly priced, but the company is putting up triple-digit sales growth and has beaten earnings estimates in its last four quarterly reports. With a track record like that, it's easy to see how shares could continue to move higher.


Source: Nike.com.

Finally, Nike (NYSE:NKE) shares got a boost today, finishing up 3% on an upgrade from Stifel, which lifted its rating to buy. The upgrade was largely valuation-based as the stock had fallen more than 10% since reporting earnings three weeks. The analyst firm said the sneaker king's fundamentals remain solid, despite disappointing guidance in the report, and said its long-term prospects look strong.  

The biggest thing to come out of Silicon Valley in years
If you thought the iPod, the iPhone, and the iPad were amazing, just wait until you see this. One hundred of Apple's top engineers are busy building one in a secret lab. And an ABI Research report predicts 485 million of them could be sold over the next decade. But you can invest in it right now, for just a fraction of the price of Apple stock. Click here to get the full story in this eye-opening new report.

Jeremy Bowman owns shares of Apple and Nike. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Apple and Nike. 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.

Compare Brokers