Why Twitter, Synaptics, and FuelCell Energy Jumped Today

The broader stock market couldn't post big gains today, but these three stocks did. Find out more about what made them soar.

May 28, 2014 at 8:05PM

The stock market pulled back from record levels on Wednesday as investors wondered whether the drop in long-term interest rates signaled weaker economic conditions than they had originally thought. The modest losses in the broader market weren't enough to hold back many individual winners, though, and among the best-performing today were Twitter (NYSE:TWTR), Synaptics (NASDAQ:SYNA), and FuelCell Energy (NASDAQ:FCEL), each of which posted solid advances.


Twitter gained almost 11% after favorable remarks about the social-media company from analysts. Even after today's advance, Twitter has seen its stock drop significantly since its initial public offering, with shares currently fetching less than they did on the first day Twitter went public. But investors will recall that Twitter's main rival saw even more dramatic share-price declines before its shareholders figured out the true potential from social media. Twitter might not offer the broad-based appeal that some of its rivals do, but bulls argue that the company has more dedication from those who do use the service, and that should help Twitter reap more revenue from its eventual monetization efforts. The key for investors to remember is that with most stocks, there's usually a share price at which the company will suddenly look attractive and a higher price at which it will look much uglier.

Synaptics jumped 12% as reports surfaced that the company would likely take a majority stake in its current Renesas SP Driver joint venture, with Renesas Electronics seeking to sell the stake. Given the importance of the joint venture in supplying driver chips that help some of the most popular smartphone displays function properly, Synaptics has a chance to latch onto the success of the mobile-device manufacturers that it serves. Given the gold-rush mentality in the smartphone space right now, Synaptics' sense of urgency is a good sign that the company is on top of its best prospects.


Source: FuelCell Energy.

FuelCell Energy rose more than 9% after analysts issued a buy rating on the maker of larger-scale fuel-cell technology. FuelCell's peers often get more attention that it does, given their emphasis on smaller-scale fuel-cells with applications based more on portability and remote production capacity. By contrast, FuelCell Energy tends to focus on larger-scale generation facilities with its stationary fuel-cell power plants. But as technological advances continue, investors are optimistic that FuelCell Energy can cut its costs gradually and make its products more economically viable for consumers. That in turn could unlock the huge growth potential in the space, and investors have waited a long time for those trends to manifest.

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Dan Caplinger has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Twitter. 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.

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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