If you're feeling good about the market, you're not alone. Take my hand as we go over some of this week's more uplifting headlines.
1. Let the sun shine in
The hot and cold solar energy sector continues to heat up.
Shares of LDK Solar
Buoyed by a better-than-expected uptick in wafer and module shipments during the period, LDK now expects to report revenue from $610 million to $640 million for the three months that ended in September. The solar star's previous guidance had capped revenue at $600 million.
LDK isn't providing a bottom-line target at this time -- that will have to wait until the company's quarterly report -- but this is usually a fair indicator of a company that's about to clock in ahead of analyst profit projections.
2. In Sirius debt
Shares of Sirius XM Radio
However, the satellite-radio giant's best move this week is pulling off a $700 million senior notes offering.
Normally, one wouldn't applaud a company with $3 billion in long-term debt taking on new obligations, but Sirius XM is using the proceeds -- which mature in 2018 -- primarily to pay off secured senior notes that needed to be repaid in 2013. Sirius XM is buying itself another five years of cash-flow-generating goodness.
The cherry on top is that the new notes were offered at an interest rate of 7.625%, so Sirius XM will be saving some serious interest expense when it wipes out the 2013 notes yielding 11.25%.
3. Scan on the run
In a move that is long overdue -- but very cool nonetheless -- Amazon.com
Think about it. You're at a bookstore, consumer electronics superstore, or even a home furnishings retailer. You see an item you want, but you're not sure if there's a better deal to be had. Tap open that Amazon Mobile app, click the "scan" button, and the iPhone's forward-facing camera scans the UPC to identify the product. If Amazon stocks the same item, you'll see the product page pop up with the online retailer's price. You can also check out the reviews submitted by fellow Amazon.com shoppers.
There are already a few barcode scanning apps out there. Some will argue that Amazon only limits queries to its store. However, the ability to order an item through Amazon -- on the spot -- is too tempting to ignore.
You also have to love Amazon's timing, rolling this out just weeks before the holiday shopping season kicks up in earnest.
4. Can you iPad me now? Good!
The Verizon-Vodafone joint venture Verizon Wireless announced that it would begin selling Wi-Fi iPads, but bundled with Novatel Wireless
If you're not familiar with MiFi, it's a personal mobile hot spot -- about the size of an Altoids box. It serves as a portable router, so an iPad owner can achieve a 3G connection. It's a decent workaround for a hot tablet that its largest rival is currently selling.
This may also be the biggest indicator yet that Apple
5. Bring on the subs
New York Post is reporting that Apple's iTunes boss is talking to major labels about offering a premium streaming service.
This isn't new. Napster, RealNetworks, and Zune Pass are just some of the existing services where folks pay from $10 to $15 a month in order to fill their PCs, smartphones, and portable media players with unlimited tunes that can be played as long as the subscription is active.
This is just what the doctor ordered for Apple. Digital music sales may have peaked. Warner Music Group
Launching a music subscription service may not be the perfect cure, but it will help both Apple and the prerecorded music industry. It should also be a boost to Ping, Apple's poorly received social music network. It's a cold, commercialized place in its present form. It can quickly come to life as part of a vibrant virtual listening room.
True to its name, The Motley Fool is made up of a motley assortment of writers and analysts, each with a unique perspective; sometimes we agree, sometimes we disagree, but we all believe in the power of learning from each other through our Foolish community.
Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz is an optimist at every turn. He does not own shares in any of the stocks in this story, except for Novatel Wireless. 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.