If you're feeling down, take my hand as we go over some of the more uplifting headlines of the week. No, it wasn't all layoffs, missed earnings, and guidance knockdowns this week.
1. TiVo risin'
Blockbuster will promote the deal in its stores, and even begin selling TiVo digital video recorders. Blockbuster isn't the first digital streamer to warm up to TiVo. It's not even the second. Investors still liked the deal, sending shares of Blockbuster 10% higher on the news. Instead of hoping that its proprietary set-top box will woo audiences to its piecemeal digital rentals and purchases, now it can piggyback on the millions of active TiVo subscribers to move its content.
2. Noble intentions
It's been a March to remember for Barnes & Noble
Barnes & Noble acquired Fictionwise earlier this month.
Gee, a month ago it seemed as if Barnes & Noble was going to live and die by the bricks-and-mortar bookstore. Now it's actually a force in electronic books.
3. Betting on Baidu
Deutsche Bank initiated coverage of Baidu
Investors soured on Baidu in November, when a television news show in China took the company to task for accepting ads from unlicensed health-care companies. Baidu beefed up its ad approval process and doesn't appear to have suffered a hit in traffic as a result of last year's report.
China isn't perfect. Even online advertising has taken a hit -- at least on the brand advertising side -- this year. However, Baidu's paid search stronghold promises to be the most lucrative niche of Web advertising in the world's most populous nation. Analysts are warming up to the reality that Baidu -- and China -- have their flaws, but they are here to stay.
4. The best defense is a good dividend
With so many companies slashing their dividends these days, you have to take the time to single out the ones that are actually raising their payouts. Raytheon
5. Walking through the ashes of Circuit City
The most encouraging nugget from yesterday's report is that gross margins actually improved relative to the previous year's holiday quarter. I didn't see that coming. Between the tight economy dictating meager markups and the liquidation of Circuit City birthing ridiculous prices, I didn't think that Best Buy had it in it.
Well, it did. And now that Circuit City has been fully liquidated and consumers are starting to feel cautiously optimistic, one can only imagine that things will keep getting better at Best Buy.
Best Buy is a Motley Fool Inside Value and Motley Fool Stock Advisor recommendation. Baidu is a Motley Fool Rule Breakers recommendation. The Fool owns shares of Best Buy. Try any of our Foolish newsletters today, free for 30 days.
Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz is an optimist at every turn. He's the inspiration for The Killers' "Mr. Brightside." He does not own shares in any of the stocks in this story. Rick is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.