Mixed Econ Data, Dunkin's Down Earnings, and Ford/GM Car Performances

Good morning, good lookin'... The three things you need to know on July 25th are:

Jul 24, 2014 at 11:00PM
The insane amount of heavy corporate earnings reports released this week means you deserve relaxing with a double IPA (Wall Street is all about an ale with 10% alcohol by volume). Earnings season continued Thursday as the Dow (DJINDICES:^DJI)(DJINDICES:^DJI) slipped three points on some mixed econ news.

1. Dunkin' Donuts stock dunked on sales drop
America may "run on Dunkin'," but investors are running away. Shares of the not-nearly as-good-as-Krispy-Kreme donuts chain dropped 5% Thursday on a sugar-free earnings report. Although revenue rose 4.6% to more than $190 million last quarter, sales gained less than 2%, and the company lowered its 2014 revenue expectations.
Dunkin' owns one meal: breakfast. About 80% of Dunkin's sales are during breakfast, and now, the company plans to redesign stores for faster service during busy morning hours and add "healthier breakfast sandwich." And, like competitors, Dunkin's been discounting its morning fare this year to drive early traffic, but will now increase prices slowly by 1%
The takeaway is, "go west, young man." The Boston-based Dunkin' is super popular with overly proud New Englanders toting XXXL Red Sox sweatshirts. Now, the chain is opening up more Dunkin' Donuts and Baskin Robbins stores outside the East Coast.

2. Ford's Q2 was hot, while investors ran from GM recalls
Ford released second-quarter earnings, the first one announced by slick-haired, Harvard MBA-touting Mark Fields, the new CEO following the legendary Alan Mullaly. Fields one-upped his predecessor by announcing Ford's (NYSE:F) best profits ever in North America. Overall profits rose 6%, to $1.3 billion, from last year's second quarter. The student has become the teacher. Ford shares rose 0.3%, close to the high for the past 52 weeks.
Everything is relative, and relative to General Motor's (NYSE:GM) disastrous quarter that included $2.5 billion in recall costs. Next to GM's new and already embattled CEO Mary Barra, Ford's Fields looks like a supermodel. GM's profits dropped 80%, to $250 million, due to the horribly costly fixes that had to be done to 29 million cars so far this year. Plus, they estimated today that compensation to families of crash victims from their busted ignition switches will be $400 million. GM's stock got smashed by 4.5% Thursday.
The takeaway is that car sales in the United States are still driving profitability for both Ford and GM. If it weren't for the horrible skeletons in GM's closet, both car companies would have had yet another quarter of billions in profits. American car buyers are digging GM's and Ford's new cars, and are upgrading their old 1984 Rabbits with American muscle.

3. Housing and jobs data were totally mixed
You can't always get perfect econ data. On the bright side, the number of Americans filing for first-time unemployment claims during the last week (aka "Weekly Jobless Claims"), dropped by 19K to reach the much-lower-than-expected total of 284K claims. Wall Street hopes that's a sign of a trend.
On the not-so-hot side, sales of new homes surprisingly fell 8.1% last month. Earlier this week, sales of existing home sales showed some improvement. So what's the deal? Overall, it's a sign that, while the housing market is still recovering, it's doing so at a slower pace than in 2013.
As originally published on MarketSnacks.com

Warren Buffett: This new technology is a "real threat"
At the recent Berkshire Hathaway annual meeting, Warren Buffett admitted this emerging technology is threatening his biggest cash cow. While Buffett shakes in his billionaire boots, only a few investors are embracing this new market, which experts say will be worth more than $2 trillion. Find out how you can cash in on this technology before the crowd catches on, by jumping into one company that could get you the biggest piece of the action. Click here to access a FREE investor alert on the company we're calling the "brains behind" the technology.

Jack Kramer has no position in any stocks mentioned. Nick Martell has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Ford and General Motors. The Motley Fool owns shares of Ford. 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.

©1995-2014 The Motley Fool. All rights reserved. | Privacy/Legal Information