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We're rightly focused on the human tragedy in Japan (here's how you can help), but we shouldn't forget the economic consequences. New estimates peg the total cost of the earthquake and tsunami at $310 billion, and that's before factoring in lost economic output.
Private industry will have to pick up some of that tab, and those most exposed will see profits take a hit. As investors, we know this intuitively; it's why the Nikkei Stock Average fell more than 10% last week.
But now, Japanese stocks are rallying in the wake of Warren Buffett's assertion that last week's panic selling presents a buying opportunity. Shares of Toshiba (OTC: TOSBF) had rallied more than 8% this week before ending down 2% today. Hitachi
These are just two of many Japanese businesses with long-term potential. My Foolish colleagues Alex Dumortier and Joe Magyer have several other ideas that may be worth pursuing. Will you act on their advice? Are you bold enough to invest in Japan now?
Please vote in the poll below and then leave a comment to explain your thinking. You can also rate any of these stocks in Motley Fool CAPS.
To track the shares mentioned in this article, add Toshiba, General Electric, and Hitachi to your watchlist, or start a new watchlist and add any company you want. You'll get valuable updates as well as immediate access to a new special report, "Six Stocks to Watch from David and Tom Gardner." Click here to get started.
Fool contributor Tim Beyers is a member of the Motley Fool Rule Breakers stock-picking team. He didn't own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article at the time of publication. Check out Tim's portfolio holdings and Foolish writings, or connect with him on Twitter as @milehighfool. You can also get his insights delivered directly to your RSS reader. 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 is also on Twitter as @TheMotleyFool. Its disclosure policy usually prefers to buy on sale.