Investors are stuck between a rock and a hard place. At the same time that bonds are offering historically low yields, stocks are trading for a healthy premium over their 60-year average. According to the most widely cited estimate, the current premium on the S&P 500 (SNPINDEX: ^GSPC ) is upwards of 24%.
Given the sluggish economic recovery, what’s causing asset prices to inflate?
The obvious, though incomplete, answer is that there’s been an increase in demand for debt securities from the Federal Reserve. Since the fourth quarter of last year, the central bank has purchased $85 billion each month in long-term treasuries and agency mortgage-backed securities. The effect has been to hold long-term interest rates at their current low levels — indeed, had you told someone 10 years ago that the yield on the 10-year treasury would go below 2%, they would have called you crazy.
Hot Small Cap Companies To Watch For 2015: Sify Technologies Limited(SIFY)
Sify Technologies Limited provides enterprise and consumer Internet services primarily in India. The company offers various corporate network/data services comprising e-commerce and network connectivity solutions, such as end-to-end services network, application, and security services; voice origination and termination services; co-location and managed hosting services; and system integration services for data centre build, hardware distribution, security solutions, and turnkey projects. It also provides application services, including SLEMS and Microsoft Exchange messaging platforms; I-test for online assessment and LiveWire, which enable management of training processes across the organization; document management system for the management of documents electronically; and Forum, a forward supply chain solution. In addition, the company operates e-Ports that offer browsing, chat, email, gaming, utility bill payment, travel ticketing, hotel booking, mobile recharge, Intern et telephony, and online share trading services; and portals, which provide news, views, reviews, interactions, and services in the areas of movies, sports, finance, food, videos, astrology, online games, shopping, and travel, as well as offers content offerings and broadband services. Further, it provides infrastructure management services, such as network management, datacenter and helpdesk outsourcing, desktop and storage outsourcing, IT security outsourcing, LAN and WAN outsourcing, database and telecom outsourcing, and application monitoring and management services to automotive, chemical, media, and financial enterprises; and virtualization design, integration, and deployment services for servers, storage, networks, and end user clients. Sify has approximately 1,278 e-Ports in 200 towns and cities; and serves 1,06,000 broadband subscribers through 1500 cable TV Operators. The company, formerly known as Sify Limited, was founded in 1995 and is based in Chennai, India. Advisors’ Opinion:
- [By Jake L’Ecuyer]
Leading and Lagging Sectors
Technology stocks gained Tuesday, with Ku6 Media Co (NASDAQ: KUTV) leading advancers. Among leading tech stocks, gains came from Rubicon Technology (NASDAQ: RBCN), Bitauto Holdings (NYSE: BITA) and Sify Technologies (NASDAQ: SIFY).
- [By Jake L’Ecuyer]
Leading and Lagging Sectors
Technology stocks gained Tuesday, with Ku6 Media Co (NASDAQ: KUTV) leading advancers. Among leading tech stocks, gains came from Rubicon Technology (NASDAQ: RBCN), Bitauto Holdings (NYSE: BITA) and Sify Technologies (NASDAQ: SIFY). Utilities shares dropped by 0.11 percent in the US market today.
Hot Small Cap Companies To Watch For 2015: Hot Topic Inc.(HOTT)
Hot Topic, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, operates as a mall- and Web-based specialty retailer in the United States. The company operates Hot Topic and Torrid store concepts, as well as an e-space music discovery concept, ShockHound. Its Hot Topic stores sell music/pop culture-licensed merchandise, including tee shirts, hats, posters, stickers, patches, postcards, books, novelty accessories, CDs, and DVDs; and music/pop culture-influenced merchandise comprising women?s and men?s apparel and accessories, such as woven and knit tops, skirts, pants, shorts, jackets, shoes, costume jewelry, body jewelry, sunglasses, cosmetics, leather accessories, and gift items for young men and women primarily between the ages of 12 and 22. The company?s Torrid stores sells casual and dressy jeans and pants, fashion and novelty tops, sweaters, skirts, jackets, dresses, hosiery, shoes, intimate apparel, and fashion accessories for various lifestyles for plus-size females primarily betw een the ages of 15 and 29. As of July 30, 2011, it operated 636 Hot Topic stores in 50 states, Puerto Rico, and Canada; 145 Torrid stores; and Internet stores, hottopic.com and torrid.com. The company was founded in 1988 and is headquartered in City of Industry, California.
- [By Marshall Hargrave]
In May True Religion (TRGL) announced a buyout offer from TowerBrook Capital for $826 million. Also in May, Rue21 decided to sell itself to Apax Partners for $2.2 billion. Before that, in March, Hot Topic (HOTT) announced that Sycamore Partners was buying out it out for $600 million.
Hot Small Cap Companies To Watch For 2015: KongZhong Corporation(KONG)
KongZhong Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, provides wireless interactive entertainment, media, and community services to mobile phone users in the People’s Republic of China. It also involves in the development, distribution, and marketing of consumer wireless value-added services, including wireless application protocol, multimedia messaging services, short messaging services, interactive voice response services, and color ring back tones. In addition, it offers interactive entertainment services, such as mobile games, pictures, karaoke, electronic books, mobile phone personalization features, entertainment news, chat, and message boards; and through Kong.net offer news, community services, games, and other interactive media and entertainment services; and sells advertising space in the form of text-link, banner, and button advertisements. Further, the company develops and publishes mobile games, including downloadable mobile games and online mobile games cons isting of action, role-playing, and leisure games. As of December 31, 2009, it had a library of approximately 300 internally developed mobile games. Additionally, it develops online games; and provides consulting and technology services, as well as media and net book services. The company was formerly known as Communication Over The Air Inc. and changed its name to KongZhong Corporation in March 2004. KongZhong Corporation was founded in 2002 and is headquartered in Beijing, the People?s Republic of China
- [By Jake L’Ecuyer]
Top losers in the sector included China Unicom (Hong Kong) (NYSE: CHU), off 4.5 percent, and Kongzhong (NASDAQ: KONG), down 4.7 percent.
The Boeing Company (NYSE: BA) reported better-than-expected first-quarter profit. Boeing’s quarterly profit declined to $965 million, or $1.28 per share, from a year-ago profit of $1.11 billion, or $1.44 per share. Its adjusted earnings surged to $1.76 per share compared to $1.73 per share. Its revenue climbed to $20.47 billion versus $18.89 billion. However, analysts were projecting earnings of $1.57 per share on revenue of $20.24 billion. For the full year, Boeing expects adjusted earnings of $7.15 to $7.35 per share.
- [By Roberto Pedone]
One under-$10 wireless services player that looks poised for a big spike higher is KongZhong (KONG), which is a provider of WVAS and mobile games to mobile phone users and a wireless media company providing news, content, community and mobile advertising services through its wireless Internet sites in the PRC. This stock is off to a hot start in 2013, with shares up sharply by 53%.
If you take a look at the chart for KongZhong, you’ll notice that this stock has been downtrending badly for the last two months, with shares plunging lower from its high of $14.92 to its recent low of $7.78 a share. During that downtrend, shares of KONG have been consistently making lower highs and lower lows, which is bearish technical price action. That move has now pushed shares of KONG into oversold territory, since its current relative strength index reading is 30.21. Shares of KONG are now starting to spike higher off its recent low of $7.78 a share and off its 200-day moving average of $7.95 a share. This spike could be signaling that the downside volatility for KONG is over in the short-term and the stock is ready to trend higher.
Traders should now look for long-biased trades in KONG if it manages to break out above some near-term overhead resistance at $8.50 a share with high volume. Look for a sustained move or close above that level with volume that hits near or above its three-month average action of 519,857 shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then KONG will set up to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance levels at $10 to its 50-day moving average at $11.33 a share.
Traders can look to buy KONG off any weakness to anticipate that breakout and simply use a stop that sits right below some key near-term support at $7.78 a share. One can also buy KONG off strength once it takes out $8.50 a share with volume and then simply use a stop that sits a comfortable percentage from your entry point.
- [By Seth Jayson]
Calling all cash flows
When you are trying to buy the market’s best stocks, it’s worth checking up on your companies’ free cash flow once a quarter or so, to see whether it bears any relationship to the net income in the headlines. That’s what we do with this series. Today, we’re checking in on Kongzhong (Nasdaq: KONG ) , whose recent revenue and earnings are plotted below.
Hot Small Cap Companies To Watch For 2015: bebe stores inc.(BEBE)
bebe stores, inc. engages in the design, development, and production of women?s apparel and accessories. Its products include a range of separates, tops, dresses, active wear, and accessories in career, evening, casual, and active lifestyle categories. The company markets its products under the bebe, BEBE SPORT, bbsp, and 2b bebe brand names targeting 21 to 34-year-old woman. As of July 2, 2011, it operated 252 retail stores, and an online store at bebe.com in the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Japan, and Canada, as well as 60 international licensee operated stores in south east Asia, the United Arab Emirates, Israel, Russia, Mexico, and Turkey. The company was founded in 1976 and is headquartered in Brisbane, California.
- [By Anna Prior]
Bebe Stores Inc.(BEBE) is exiting its value-oriented 2b concept and is cutting jobs as part of a cost-reduction program. The women’s apparel and accessories retailer said Friday that a workforce reduction affected about 9% of its nonstore employees, excluding the distribution center, and less than 1% of its store operations team.
- [By Maria Armental and Anna Prior]
Bebe Stores Inc.(BEBE) said Chief Executive Steve Birkhold resigned and the board named Jim Wiggett, who has been advising the struggling retailer, as interim CEO. The women’s apparel and accessories retailer plans to begin the search for a permanent successor.
Hot Small Cap Companies To Watch For 2015: EZchip Semiconductor Limited(EZCH)
EZchip, a fabless semiconductor company, engages in the development and marketing of Ethernet network processors for networking equipment. Its products include network processor chips, evaluation boards and network-processor based systems, and development software toolkits. The company offers network processors for use in forming the silicon core of networking equipment, such as switches and routers; and for voice, video and data integration in various applications. Its network processors are single-chip solutions, which enable its customers to design multi-port line cards, such as processing and classification engines, traffic managers, media access controllers, as well as a range of specialized hardware blocks that accelerate various functions. The company offers Evaluation systems which enable customers to test NPU-based systems; and toolkits that assist customers in creating, verifying, and implementing solutions based on its network processors. It provides a library f eaturing data plane code for a range of applications, which include Metro Ethernet protocols, Multi-Protocol Label Switching, IPv4 and IPv6 routing, Access Control Lists, GPON/EPON OLT functionality, Network Address Translation, and Server Load Balancing. The company sells its products directly, and through contract manufacturers and distributors to network equipment vendors. It markets its products in Israel, China, Hong Kong, the Far East, Canada, the United States, and Europe. The company was formerly known as LanOptics Ltd. and changed its name to EZchip Semiconductor Ltd. in July 2008. EZchip Semiconductor Ltd. was founded in 1989 and is based in Yokneam, Israel.
- [By Lisa Levin]
EZchip Semiconductor (NASDAQ: EZCH) surged 9.38% to $26.13. The volume of EZchip Semiconductor shares traded 407% higher than normal. EZchip Semiconductor reported better-than-expected Q1 results.
- [By Evan Niu, CFA]
What: Shares of EZchip (NASDAQ: EZCH ) have jumped today by as much as 13% after the company reported first-quarter earnings.
So what: Revenue in the first quarter totaled $15.3 million, topping the Street’s forecast of $15.1 million. Non-GAAP net income per share came in at $0.23, which was right on target with expectations.
- [By Paul McWilliams]
Paul McWilliams: Oh, absolutely. Another company that most investors probably have never heard of is a tiny little Israeli semiconductor company named EZChip (EZCH).
Hot Small Cap Companies To Watch For 2015: Texas Instruments Incorporated(TXN)
Texas Instruments Incorporated engages in the design and sale of semiconductors to electronics designers and manufacturers worldwide. The company?s Analog segment offers high-performance analog products comprising standard analog semiconductors, such as amplifiers, data converters, and interface semiconductors; high-volume analog and logic products; and power management semiconductors and line-powered systems. Its Embedded Processing segment includes DSPs that perform mathematical computations to process and enhance digital data; and microcontrollers, which are designed to control a set of specific tasks for electronic equipment. The company?s Wireless segment designs, manufactures, and sells application processors and connectivity products. Its Other segment offers smaller semiconductor products, which include DLP products that are primarily used in projectors to create high-definition images; and application-specific integrated circuits. This segment also provides handhe ld graphing and scientific calculators, as well as licenses technologies to other electronic companies. The company serves the communications, computing, industrial, consumer electronics, automotive, and education sectors. Texas Instruments Incorporated sells its products through a direct sales force, distributors, and third-party sales representatives. It has collaboration agreements with PLX Technology Inc.; Neonode, Inc.; and Ubiquisys Ltd. The company was founded in 1938 and is headquartered in Dallas, Texas.
- [By The Wall Street Journal]
The Dallas-based company (TXN) , whose chips are used for many kinds of devices purchased by consumers and businesses, has shifted its strategy to grapple with broad changes in the semiconductor market.
- [By Chuck Saletta]
Texas Instruments (NASDAQ: TXN ) is a selection for the real-money Inflation-Protected Income Growth portfolio. In this brief video, portfolio manager Chuck Saletta offers two-and-a-half reasons he’s holding on to Texas Instruments’ stock despite its substantial rise since he bought those shares a little more than a year ago.
Hot Small Cap Companies To Watch For 2015: Rackspace Hosting Inc(RAX)
Rackspace Hosting, Inc. operates in the hosting and cloud computing industry. It provides information technology (IT) as a service, managing Web-based IT systems for small and medium-sized businesses, as well as large enterprises worldwide. The company?s service suite includes dedicated hosting comprising customer management portal and other management tools that manage data center, network, hardware devices, and operating system software; and cloud computing that enables customers to provide and manage a pool of computing resources, as well as delivery of computing resources to business when they need them. It offers cloud servers, cloud files, and cloud sites, as well as cloud applications, such as email, collaboration, and file back-ups; and hybrid hosting that provides a combination of dedicated hosting and cloud computing services. The company also offers customer support services. It sells its service suite through direct sales teams, third-party channel partners, an d online ordering. The company was formerly known as Rackspace.com, Inc. and changed its name to Rackspace Hosting, Inc. in June 2008. Rackspace Hosting, Inc. was founded in 1998 and is headquartered in San Antonio, Texas.
- [By Jayson Derrick]
Rackspace Hosting (NYSE: RAX) plans to offer two services tiers. The first would be a basic managed infrastructure tier that provides standard laaS services. The second would be a managed operations tier that includes a dedicated account manager, 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week monitoring and response, and management of common operating systems and application stacks. Shares lost 1.43 percent, closing at $31.69.
- [By Eddie Staley]
Rackspace Hosting (NYSE: RAX) shares were also up, gaining 5.10 percent to $35.47 after TechCrunch reported that Rackspace may be considering taking the company private, according to multiple sources.
- [By Garrett Cook]
Rackspace Hosting (NYSE: RAX) shares were also up, gaining 8.27 percent to $36.54 after TechCrunch reported that Rackspace may be considering taking the company private, according to multiple sources.
- [By Monica Gerson]
Rackspace Hosting (NYSE: RAX) shares tumbled more than 7% in Friday’s trading on a report that Rackspace is not receiving any interest from potential acquirers. DealReporter reported Friday that International Business Machines (NYSE: IBM) has backed away and Rackspace has seen little interest from other strategic buyers. Rackspace Hosting shares gained 1.81% to $34.24 in after-hours trading.
Hot Small Cap Companies To Watch For 2015: Panera Bread Company(PNRA)
Panera Bread Company, together with its subsidiaries, owns, operates, and franchises retail bakery-cafes in the United States and Canada. Its bakery-cafes offer fresh baked goods, sandwiches, soups, salads, custom roasted coffees, and other complementary products, as well as provide catering services. The company also manufactures and supplies dough and other products to company-owned and franchise-operated bakery-cafes. As of March 29, 2011, it owned and franchised 1,467 bakery-cafes under the Panera Bread, Saint Louis Bread Co., and Paradise Bakery & Cafe names. The company was founded in 1981 and is based in St. Louis, Missouri.
- [By Ryan Guenette]
What’s even more exciting is that Starbucks has no intention of stopping there, which is great for Starbucks investors, yet could cause major problems for Panera Bread (NASDAQ: PNRA ) .
- [By WWW.DAILYFINANCE.COM]
www.youtube.com There were plenty of winners and losers this week on Wall Street, with a restaurant chain embracing more natural ingredients and an old website digging into your past to woo you back. Here’s a rundown of the week’s smartest moves and biggest blunders. YouTube — Winner It’s been two summers since Psy uploaded the official “Gangnam Style” video to Google’s (GOOG) YouTube. It blew up as a global single later in the year. This week, it surpassed 2 billion views on YouTube. It’s a notable achievement for the South Korean pop music star, but it’s also a big deal for YouTube. After all, the milestone shows how popular YouTube is as a video-sharing platform. Most folks may have tired of the video and the song ages ago, but clips live on forever in cyberspace. YouTube just validated itself again. MySpace — Loser Speaking of bringing pop stars to life, MySpace — yes, MySpace — turned heads this week by sending out old photos posted years ago to the emails of folks with dormant accounts. MySpace had its moment in the sun before giving way to Facebook (FB), but the social networking dinosaur now jointly owned by Specific Media and pop icon Justin Timberlake, is struggling to regain its relevance. Sending old pics to folks that have moved on may seem like a clever tactic given the popularity of Throwback Thursday, but it comes off desperate at best, and creepy at worst. Panera Bread (PNRA) — Winner Panera became the latest eatery to climb onto the organic food bandwagon this week. The chain of bakery cafes revised its food policy, moving to do rid its menu of artificial colors, flavors and preservatives by 2016. It’s a smart move for Panera. Growth at the former quick-service darling has been slowing lately, with analysts targeting top- and bottom-line growth in the mid-single digits. Anything it can do to beef up its profile with the growing number of consumers angling for natural foods will only help. Walmart (WMT) — Loser The world’s larg
- [By James O’Toole]
Panera Bread (PNRA) is the latest chain to introduce automated service, announcing last month that it plans to bring self-service ordering kiosks as well as a mobile ordering option to all its locations within the next three years. The news follows moves from Chili’s and Applebee’s to place tablets on their tables, allowing diners to order and pay without interacting with human wait staff at all.
Hot Small Cap Companies To Watch For 2015: Sky-mobi Limited(MOBI)
Sky-mobi Limited engages in the operation of a mobile application store in the People?s Republic of China. It works with handset companies to pre-install its Maopao mobile application store on handsets and with content developers to provide users with applications and content titles. The users of its Maopao store could browse, download, and purchase a range of applications and content, such as single-player games, mobile music, and books. The company?s Maopao store enables mobile applications and content to be downloaded and run on various mobile handsets with hardware and operating system configurations. It also operates a mobile social network community, the Maopao Community, where it offers localized mobile social games, as well as applications and content with social network functions to its registered members. The company owns proprietary mobile application technology in the cloud computing, the MRP format, and SDK development environment. As of March 31, 2011, it had entered into cooperation agreements with approximately 523 handset companies to pre-install Maopao. The company was formerly known as Profit Star Limited and changed its name to Sky-Mobi Limited in October 2010. Sky-mobi Limited was incorporated in 2007 and is headquartered in Hangzhou, China.
- [By Roberto Pedone]
Another stock that’s starting to move within range of triggering a big breakout trade is Sky-mobi (MOBI), which, through its subsidiaries, engages in the operation of a mobile application platform embedded on mobile phones to provide mobile application store and services in the Peoples Republic of China. This stock has been red hot so far in 2013, with shares up a whopping 88%.
If you look at the chart for Sky-mobi, you’ll notice that this stock recently formed a triple bottom chart pattern at $3.31, $3.28 and $3.40 a share. That bottoming pattern occurred over the last two months. Shares of MOBI have now started to uptrend and flirt with its 50-day moving average of $3.76 a share. That move is quickly pushing MOBI within range of triggering a big breakout trade.
Traders should now look for long-biased trades in MOBI if it manages to break out above some near-term overhead resistance levels at $3.71 to $3.83 a share with high volume. Look for a sustained move or close above those levels with volume that hits near or above its three-month average action of 145,934 shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then MOBI will set up to re-test or possibly take out its 52-week high at $4.96 a share. Any high-volume move above that level will then give MOBI a chance to tag its next major overhead resistance levels at $5.55 to $6.13 a share.
Traders can look to buy MOBI off any weakness to anticipate that breakout and simply use a stop that sits right below some key near-term support levels at $3.40 to $3.28 a share. One can also buy MOBI off strength once it takes out that breakout levels with volume and then simply use a stop that sits a comfortable percentage from your entry point.
Hot Small Cap Companies To Watch For 2015: InterDigital Inc.(IDCC)
Interdigital, Inc. engages in the design and development of digital wireless technology solutions. The company offers technology solutions for use in digital cellular and wireless products and networks, including 2G, 3G, 4G, and IEEE 802-related products and networks. It holds patents related to the fundamental technologies that enable wireless communications. The company licenses its patents to equipment producers that manufacture, use, and sell digital cellular and IEEE 802-related products; and licenses or sells mobile broadband modem solutions, including modem IP, know-how, and reference platforms to mobile device manufacturers, semiconductor companies, and other equipment producers that manufacture, use, and sell digital cellular products. InterDigital?s solutions are incorporated in various products comprising mobile devices, such as cellular phones, tablets, notebook computers, and wireless personal digital assistants; wireless infrastructure equipment, such as base stations; and components, dongles, and modules for wireless devices. The company was founded in 1972 and is headquartered in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania.
- [By Dan Caplinger]
Friday gave stock market investors some respite from losses earlier in the week, as major-market benchmarks managed to recover by around a quarter of a percent. Merger and acquisition activity helped bolster stocks in many different parts of the market, but concerns about the sustainability of the economic recovery held others back. Finisar (NASDAQ: FNSR ) , InterDigital (NASDAQ: IDCC ) , and GNC Holdings (NYSE: GNC ) were among the worst performers of the day.
- [By Maria Armental var popups = dojo.query(“.socialByline .popC”); popups.forEach]
Among the companies with shares expected to actively trade in Tuesday’s session are Hillshire Brands Co.(HSH), InterDigital Inc.(IDCC) and Krispy Kreme Doughnuts Inc.(KKD)