The following article is part of The Motley Fool's "Stock Madness 2006," based loosely on the annual NCAA College Basketball Tournament, a.k.a. "March Madness." Throughout the competition, our writers and analysts will engage in head-to-head competition. You, dear readers, are the fans and referees -- after you read these exciting duels, your votes will determine who moves on to the next round of play. The writer who survives the tournament will be our champion and most valuable "coach."
But please, make no mistake -- "Stock Madness 2006" is a GAME!
Consumer brands and social trends are where it's at with my team, despite their hailing from many different industries and addressing different kinds of consumers.
Let's start with an Internet play, Yahoo!
I have a few retailers in the mix, too. Lately, negative sentiment regarding many apparel retailers has sent Urban Outfitters'
Meanwhile, you may hear a lot about steakhouses, but I've included a play that many people likely forget about -- RARE Hospitality
Last but not least, many automakers have been feeling the pain lately, but not Toyota
Having one superstar player is one thing, but it's the strong group with the great teamwork that most often leads to the best plays.
Jeremy MacNealy's rebuttal
I can admire the playing skills of Urban Outfitters -- I own shares in it as well. But Guess? and Dress Barn have already proved that they have enough ability to hang with this apparel retailer. And who can deny that Toyota has been making a better car than the domestic alternative? Comparing it, however, to industry-dominating enterprises like Apple Computer in the emerging media distribution market and Avid Technology in the digital video/audio production industry is just not fair -- and I expect their winning ways to continue.