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. Cisco is connecting with investors
It may be hard to argue that Cisco (NASDAQ:CSCO) isn't a market darling. Through thick and thin times, the networking gear giant has consistently surpassed Wall Street's profit targets.
However, investors also know that Cisco has struggled in recent years, especially as companies scale back on purchases and competitors get more intense.
Well, Cisco's report this week was a welcome surprise. Revenue and earnings climbed 6% and 12%, respectively. It's not a surprise on the bottom line. Cisco has topped analyst estimates for 19 quarters in a row. However, Cisco's revenue of $11.9 billion was also ahead of where the pros were perched, suggesting that either companies are buying networking equipment again or that Cisco is making headway against its rivals. Either way, it's a good sign.
2. Tea time for Starbucks
There's no point in being shy around the chai.
Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) turned heads this week by announcing a $620 million deal for Teavana (NYSE: TEA).
If you're not familiar with Teavana, it's a fast-growing chain of mall stores that sells more than 100 varieties of exotic loose teas. It also sells stylish tea-making equipment.
Taking out Teavana investors at $15.50 a share in cash is a healthy premium to where Teavana was trading, but it's actually a discount to last year's IPO at $17. That's some pretty good timing for Starbucks.
It's also a great deal on its own. Teavana sells some prepared beverages at its stores, but it's mostly about the retail nature of extending the tea culture. Starbucks already has Tazo, so anything it can do to get more people excited about the consumption of tea, the better.
Along the way, Starbucks can also use its strengths to extend Teavana's reach in packaged-goods distribution, push Teavana overseas, and add beverage bars to existing Teavana stores.
3. Activating a dormant volcano
Sirius XM Radio (NASDAQ:SIRI) is turning a problem into an opportunity.
More than half of the satellite radio receivers in cars out there are dormant. Subscribers may have tired of the premium radio service, or they may have sold the cars to buyers who aren't even aware of the programming merits of coast-to-coast premium content.
Sirius XM is hoping to change that. On Wednesday the company turned on all of the dormant receivers, making a little less than half of its stations available. The free limited preview runs through Nov. 27.
Nice timing, Sirius XM. Turn on those receivers just as folks are starting to compile their holiday wish lists.
Well played, satrad.
4. RIM shot
It's easy to be cynical when it come to Research In Motion (NYSE:BB).
BlackBerry has seen its market share slashed in half when it comes to new smartphone sales, and it remains to be seen if a mobile operating system can regain its mojo after losing it.
However, RIM did finally announce a media event to introduce BlackBerry 10. There are plenty of neat features in the update. Will it be enough to woo enterprise customers who have succumbed to the iOS and Android monsters? Even if it's not likely, RIM never had a chance with BB10 on the blocks. At least now it has a shot.
Jan. 30 is when opportunity may knock again for RIM.
5. Unlocking the door doesn't mean that you want to go out
Investors may have been thrown for a loop on Wednesday, seeing shares of Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) move 13% higher.
Wasn't this the day when lockup restrictions on 773 million shares and 31 million restricted stock units expired? Wasn't this when early Facebook hires and investors would bail on the company?
Well, it didn't happen. The market doesn't always do what it's supposed to do. It's never as easy as that, and that's a lesson worth reminding investors of. Just as buying a stock before a fat dividend won't make you rich, assuming that certain adages are always true is hazardous to your portfolio.
A lockup expiration has never been the end of the world.
Have you seen what happened to investors who chose to "sell in May and go away" only to buy back into the market a few weeks ago?
There is no free lunch on Wall Street.