Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL ) reported earnings last Tuesday night, and investors were generally pretty pleased with results. The stock spent most of the next trading day up more than 5% and has gained 3.8% in the past week. Yet while the result had some positives, such as iPhone unit growth well above analyst expectations, there were also some areas that were a mixed bag.
In the following video, Fool analysts Evan Niu and Eric Bleeker look at the good, the bad, and the ugly in Apple’s earnings. Beyond better-than-expected iPhone sales, the storyline was really how the company continues outperforming in America. In this quarter’s report, the addition of T-Mobile (NYSE: TMUS ) provided some new tailwinds to growth. As far as the “bad” and “ugly,” the two look at Apple’s first year-over-year decline in tablets and weakness in Greater China and what might be causing results in those areas that were worse than expected.
To see Evan’s and Eric’s full thoughts, watch the video.
Top Income Stocks To Watch For 2014: Eaton Vance Tax-Managed Global Diversified Equity Income Fund (EXG)
Eaton Vance Tax-Managed Global Diversified Equity Income Fund (the Fund) is a diversified, closed-end investment company. The Fund was established to offer investors sources of potential tax-advantaged income and gains. The Fund’s primary investment objective is to provide current income and gains, with a secondary objective of capital appreciation. The Fund pursues its investment objectives by investing primarily in a diversified portfolio of domestic and foreign common stocks. The Fund invests primarily in dividend-paying domestic and foreign common stocks that qualify for favorable federal income tax treatment. In addition, the Fund writes (sells) stock index call options with respect to a portion of its common stock portfolio value. As of October 31, 2007, the Fund had written call options on 49.9% of its equity holdings. The Fund’s 10 largest equity holdings as of October 31, 2007, included Enel SPA, Nokia Oyj ADR, ENI SPA, Royal Dutch Shell PLC, BP PLC, Cesky Telec om AS, GlaxoSmithKline PLC, EMC Corp., HSBC Holdings PLC and Anadarko Petroleum Corp.
The Fund may invest in Cash Management Portfolio (Cash Management), an affiliated investment company managed by Boston Management and Research (BMR), a subsidiary of Eaton Vance Management (EVM). The Fund had a total return of -4.64% for the period from inception on February 27, 2007, to October 31, 2007.
- [By Vivian Lewis]
Eaton Vance Tax-Managed Global Equity Income Fund (EXG) favors active management in a declining market based on CIO Michael Wilson’s strategy for closed end funds.
Top Income Stocks To Watch For 2014: Amazon.com Inc.(AMZN)
Amazon.com, Inc. operates as an online retailer in North America and internationally. It operates retail Web sites, including amazon.com and amazon.ca. The company serves consumers through its retail Web sites and focuses on selection, price, and convenience. It also offers programs that enable sellers to sell their products on its Web sites, and their own branded Web sites. In addition, the company serves developer customers through Amazon Web Services, which provides access to technology infrastructure that developers can use to enable virtually various type of business. Further, it manufactures and sells the Kindle e-reader. Additionally, the company provides fulfillment; miscellaneous marketing and promotional agreements, such as online advertising; and co-branded credit cards. Amazon.com, Inc. was founded in 1994 and is headquartered in Seattle, Washington.
- [By Charles Sizemore]
Something sends a chill down the spine of a traditional retailer than hearing the name “Amazon (AMZN).” Amazon has taken a wrecking ball to every market it has entered, essentially putting Borders out of business giving Best Buy (BBY) a thorough beating.
- [By WWW.DAILYFINANCE.COM]
Ben Margot/AP NEW YORK — Amazon is betting that shoppers will pay $20 more for its popular Prime two-day free shipping and video streaming service of movies and TV shows. The mega online retailer said Thursday that it is raising the price of Prime to $99 a year as it seeks to offset rising costs of fuel and transportation. It’s the first price hike since Amazon.com (AMZN) rolled out the service in 2005. The move could please investors at a time when Amazon continues to face pressure to boost its bottom line after years of furious growth. As more Americans shop online, Amazon has spent heavily to expand its business into new areas — from movie streaming to e-readers and groceries — often at the expense of its profit. But the price increase also threatens to scare away online shoppers who tend to resist fee hikes. The company, which warned it would probably raise the price of Prime by $20 to $40 in January, is bolstering the membership program by adding more items available for two-day shipping and rolling out a greater selection of streaming TV shows and movies. Still, online shoppers don’t always react favorably to price hikes. For example, when Netflix (NFLX) tried to raise its annual subscription fee in 2011. But it did an about-face after widespread customer backlash and a jarring stock plunge of 80 percent from its highs. Social media was buzzing Thursday after Amazon announced the price hike. Many Prime users’ comments fell equally on either side of the fence between those who didn’t mind the increase and those who planned to stop using the program. Nick Begley ordered from Amazon 53 times last year, everything from Curious George books for his toddler to a car phone charger. Begley, 33, says he shops at Amazon more since joining Prime in 2012 and is hooked on the convenience. “It’s my go-to retail site,” says the resident of Salisbury Mills, N.Y. “$79 was a great price, but $99 is not enough for me to give it up.” Rick Valente, who lives i
- [By MONEYMORNING.COM]
Google is hardly alone: Back in 2012, Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN) spent $775 million to acquire Kiva Systems Inc., a company specializing in the kind of robots that can move inventory around warehouses. And Facebook Inc. (NYSE: FB) just bought a drone player – an aerial robotics firm.
- [By Matthew Coffina]
EBay seems to be playing second fiddle to Amazon.com (AMZN) these days, but while Amazon may be growing more quickly, eBay is far more profitable. I think there’s room for two successful e-commerce companies, particularly considering that the secular shift to online commerce is still in its early days.
Top Income Stocks To Watch For 2014: Retractable Technologies Inc. (RVP)
Retractable Technologies, Inc. designs, develops, manufactures, and markets safety syringes and other safety medical products for the healthcare industry in the United States and internationally. Its products include VanishPoint 0.5mL insulin syringes; 1mL tuberculin, insulin, and allergy antigen syringes; 0.5mL, 2mL, 3mL, 5mL, and 10mL syringes; small diameter tube adapters; blood collection tube holder; allergy trays; IV safety catheters; Patient Safe syringes; Patient Safe Luer Caps; and VanishPoint blood collection set, as well as autodisable syringes. The company sells its products to healthcare providers, such as acute care hospitals, alternate care facilities, doctors offices, clinics, emergency centers, surgical centers, convalescent hospitals, veterans administration facilities, military organizations, public health facilities, and prisons. Retractable Technologies, Inc. distributes its products through a direct marketing network; and general line and specialty distributors, as well as through international distributors. The company was founded in 1994 and is headquartered in Little Elm, Texas.
- [By Holly LaFon]
Chip Skinner is a portfolio manager and principal of Royce & Associates, LLC, investment advisor to The Royce Funds. He serves as portfolio manager for Royce Value Plus Fund (RVP) and serves as an assistant portfolio manager for Royce Low-Priced Stock Fund (RLP). The thoughts expressed in this piece are solely those of the person speaking and may differ from those of other Royce investment professionals, or the firm as a whole. There can be no assurance with regard to future market movements.
Top Income Stocks To Watch For 2014: New Jersey Resources Corp (NJR)
New Jersey Resources Corporation (NJR), incorporated in 1981, is an energy services holding company providing retail and wholesale energy services to customers in states from the Gulf Coast and Mid-Continent regions to the Appalachian and Northeast regions, the West Coast and Canada. NJR’s subsidiaries and businesses include New Jersey Natural Gas (NJNG), NJR Clean Energy Ventures (NJRCEV), NJR Energy Services (NJRES) and NJR Energy Holdings Corporation (NJREH). NJNG is a local natural gas distribution company, which provides regulated retail natural gas service to approximately 500,100 residential and commercial customers in central and northern New Jersey and participates in the off-system sales and capacity release markets. NJR Clean Energy Ventures (NJRCEV) comprises the Company’s Clean Energy Ventures segment and reports the results of operations and assets related to the Company’s capital investments in renewable energy projects, including commercial and residential solar projects, as well as on-shore wind projects through a 19.9% interest in OwnEnergy. NJRES maintains and transacts around a portfolio of physical assets consisting of natural gas storage and transportation contracts. NJRES also provides wholesale energy management services to other energy companies and natural gas producers. NJRES comprises the Company’s Energy Services segment. NJREH invests in energy-related ventures through its subsidiaries, NJNR Pipeline Company (Pipeline), which holds the Company’s 5.53% ownership interest in Iroquois Gas Transmission L.P. (Iroquois) and NJR Steckman Ridge Storage Company, which holds the Company’s 50% combined interest in Steckman Ridge GP, LLC and Steckman Ridge, LP (collectively, Steckman Ridge), a natural gas storage facility. Iroquois and Steckman Ridge comprise the Company’s Energy Holdings segment.
NJR has retail and other operations (Retail and Other). NJR Retail Holdings (Retail Holdings) is consolidates the Co mpany’s unregulated retail operations. Retail Holdings consi! sts of wholly owned subsidiaries, including NJR Home Services (NJRHS), a company which provides heating, ventilation and cooling (HVAC) service repair and contract services to approximately 134,900 customers, as well as solar installation projects; Commercial Realty & Resources (CR&R), a company that holds and develops commercial real estate holds and develops commercial real estate, and NJR Plumbing Services (NJRPS), a company that provides plumbing repair and installation services.
NJR Energy Investments (NJREI) is an unregulated affiliate, which consolidates the Company’s unregulated energy-related investments. NJREI includes the wholly owned subsidiaries, including NJR Investment, a company which makes and holds energy-related investments, through equity instruments of public companies. NJR Energy Corporation (NJR Energy), a company that invests in energy-related ventures. NJR Service an unregulated company, which provides shared administrative services, in cluding corporate communications, financial and planning, internal audit, legal, human resources and information technology for NJR and all subsidiaries.
The Company operates within four reportable business segments: Natural Gas Distribution, Clean Energy Ventures, Energy Services and Energy Holdings. The Natural Gas Distribution segment consists of regulated energy and off-system, capacity and storage management operations. The Clean Energy Ventures segment consists of capital investments in renewable energy projects. The Energy Services segment consists of unregulated wholesale energy operations. The Energy Holdings segment consists of investments in the midstream natural gas market, such as natural gas transportation and storage facilities.
Natural Gas Distribution
NJNG provides natural gas service to approximately 500,100 customers. NJNG’s service territory is in New Jersey’s Monmouth and Ocean counties and parts of Burlington, Mo rris, Middlesex and Sussex counties. It encompasses 1,516 sq! uare mile! s, covering 105 municipalities with an population of 1.4 million people. During the fiscal year ended September 30, 2012 (fiscal 2012), NJNG added 6,704 new customers and added natural gas heat and other services to another 539 existing customers. During fiscal 2012, NJNG’s gas supply portfolio consists of long-term (over seven months), winter-term (November through March) and short-term (seven months or less) contracts. During fiscal 2012 , NJNG purchased gas from approximately one hundred suppliers under contracts ranging from one day to one year and purchased over 10% of its natural gas from two suppliers. NJNG maintains agreements for firm transportation and storage capacity with several interstate pipeline companies. NJNG receives natural gas at eight citygate stations located in Middlesex, Morris and Passaic counties in New Jersey.
The pipeline companies, which provide firm contract transportation service for NJNG and supply the above pipelines are ANR Pi peline Company (ANR), Iroquois Gas Transmission L.P., Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company, Dominion Transmission Corporation (Dominion) and Columbia Gulf Transmission Company. In addition, NJNG has storage and related transportation contracts, which provide additional maximum daily deliverability to NJNG’s citygate stations of 102,941 decatherm from storage fields in its Northeast market area.
Clean Energy Ventures
NJRCEV is an unregulated company, which invests, owns and operates renewable energy projects located in the State of New Jersey and owns an interest in an on-shore wind project developer. NJRCEV invests in, owns and operates residential and commercial solar installations in the State of New Jersey. As of September 30, 2012 , NJRCEV has placed a total of 35.9 megawatts of solar assets into service, including a combination of residential and commercial rooftop and ground mount solar systems.
NJRES p rovides unregulated wholesale energy services and engages in! the busi! ness of optimizing natural gas storage and transportation assets. The rights to these assets are acquired in anticipation of delivering natural gas or performing asset management activities for the Company’s customers or in conjunction with identifying arbitrage opportunities that exist in the marketplace. These activities are conducted in the market areas, which include states from the Gulf Coast and Mid-Continent regions to the Appalachian and Northeast regions, the West Coast and Canada.
NJRES has developed a portfolio of natural gas storage and transportation capacity in the Gulf Coast, Mid-Continent, Appalachian and Northeast regions, the West Coast and Canada. NJRES also participates in park-and-loan transactions with pipeline and storage counterparties, where NJRES will park (store) natural gas to be redelivered to NJRES at a later date or borrow to be returned to the pipeline or storage field at a later date. NJRES has built a portfolio of customers, inc luding local distribution companies, industrial companies, electric generators, retail aggregators, natural gas producers and other wholesale marketing companies.
Energy Holdings include investments in natural gas transportation and storage assets and is consisted of NJNR Pipeline, which consists of its 5.53% equity investment in Iroquois Gas Transmission System, which is a 412 -mile natural gas pipeline from the New York-Canadian border to Long Island, New York, and NJR Steckman Ridge Storage Company, which holds the Company’s 50% equity investment in Steckman Ridge. Steckman Ridge is a partnership, jointly owned and controlled by subsidiaries of the Company and subsidiaries of Spectra Energy Corporation, which built, owns and operates a 17.7 billion cubic feet natural gas storage facility in western Pennsylvania.
Other Business Operations
Retail and Other operations consist of the unregulated affiliat es, including NJRHS, which provides HVAC service, sales and ! installat! ion of appliances to approximately 134,900 customers, as well as installation of solar equipment, and CR&R, which holds and develops commercial real estate. As of September 30, 2012 , CR&R’s real estate portfolio consisted of 27 acres of undeveloped land in Monmouth County, 52 acres of undeveloped land in Atlantic County, and a 56,400 -square-foot office building on five acres of land in Monmouth County. NJR Investment invests in and holds certain energy-related investments, through equity instruments of public companies. NJR Energy invests in energy-related ventures. NJR Service provides shared administrative and financial services to the Company and all its subsidiaries.
- [By Charles Carlson]
If you are new to DRIP investing, treat yourself to a few DRIPs this holiday season. Trust me—It’ll change your life.
American Water Works (AWK)—yielding 2.7% with a DRIP minimum of $100
Cincinnati Financial (CINF)—yielding 3.2% with a DRIP minimum of $25
CVS Caremark (CVS)—yielding 1.4% with a DRIP minimum of $100
Dominion Resources (D)—yielding 3.4% with a DRIP minimum of $40
Domino’s Pizza (DPZ)—yielding 1.2% with a DRIP minimum of $65
Eaton (ETN)—yielding 2.3% with a DRIP minimum of $100
Flowserve (FLS)—yielding 0.8% with a DRIP minimum of $100
Kellogg (K)—yielding 3.0% with a DRIP minimum of $50
New Jersey Resources (NJR)—yielding 3.7% with a DRIP minimum of $100
Quest Diagnostics (DGX)—yielding 2.0% with a DRIP minimum of $100
Tim Hortons (THI)—yielding 1.7% with a DRIP minimum of $25
Subscribe to Dow Theory Forecasts here…
- [By Laura Brodbeck]
Earnings Releases Expected: Nuance Communications, New Jersey Resources Corporation (NYSE: NJR), Laclede Group, Inc. (NYSE: LG)
Economic Releases Expected: U.S. pending home sales, Italian trade balance, Swiss employment level
Top Income Stocks To Watch For 2014: Facebook Inc (FB)
Facebook, Inc. (Facebook), incorporated in July 2004, is engaged in building products to create utility for users, developers, and advertisers. People use Facebook to stay connected with their friends and family, to discover what is going on in the world around them, and to share and express what matters to them to the people they care about. Developers can use the Facebook Platform to build applications and Websites that integrate with Facebook to reach its global network of users and to build personalized and social products. Advertisers can engage with more than 900 million monthly active users (MAUs) on Facebook or subsets of its users based on information they have chosen to share with the Company, such as their age, location, gender, or interests. It offers advertisers a combination of reach, relevance, social context and engagement.
Products for Users
The Company’s products for users are free of charge and available on the Web, mobile We b, and mobile platforms, such as Android and iOS. It launched Timeline in September 2011, as an enhanced and updated version of the Facebook Profile. Timeline allows users to organize and display the events and activities that matter most to them, enabling them to curate their memories in a searchable personal narrative that is organized chronologically. Users choose what information to share on their Timeline, such as their interests, photos, education, work history, relationship status, and contact information, and users can control with whom each piece of content is shared on their Timeline. The Facebook News Feed is the core feature of a user’s homepage and is a regularly updating list of stories from friends, Pages, and other entities to which a user is connected on Facebook. It includes posts, photos, event updates, group memberships, app updates, and other activities. Each user’s News Feed is personalized based on his or her interests and the sharing activity of t he user’s friends.
Facebook is a photo upload! ing service on the Web. Users can upload an unlimited number of high resolution photos, create photo albums, and share them with their friends or any audience they choose. Users can also upload and share videos. Users can set specific privacy settings for each of their photo albums and videos, making them visible to everyone, or only to certain friends. Users can arrange their photos, add captions, and tag people in a photo or video. Tagging allows users to identify a person in a photo or video as one of their friends. Its messaging products include email, chat, and text messaging. Groups are shared Facebook pages for groups of users to discuss common interests. Lists allow users to organize their friends in order to filter the stories shown in their News Feeds and reach or exclude specific people when they share on Facebook. Through Events, users can organize gatherings, manage invitations, and send event notifications and reminders to their friends. From the Events page, u sers can create a new event, check out upcoming events of interest to them and their friends, and view previous events.
Through Places, users can share their location and see where their friends are. They are able to see if any of their friends are nearby. Users can also check in to Places to tell their friends where they are, tag their friends in the Places they visit, or view Comments their friends have made about the Places they visit. Using Subscribe, users can sign up to receive public posts in their News Feeds from other Facebook users of interest, such as celebrities, thought leaders, and other public figures. Ticker is a live stream of the real-time activities of a user’s friends and the Pages and other entities to which the user is connected. On the top of each Facebook page, a highlighted icon is displayed to users when there is relevant and new information available to them, such as a new friend request, a new message from a friend, or an alert tha t the user has been tagged in a photo posted by a friend.
A Facebook Page is a public profile that allows anyone, including artists, public figures, businesses, brands, organizations, and charities to create a presence on Facebook and engage with the Facebook community. A Page owner can connect with interested users in order to provide updates, answer questions, receive feedback, or otherwise stimulate interest in the owner’s messages, products, and services. When a Facebook user likes a Page, the Page owner has the opportunity to publish stories to the user’s News Feed on an ongoing basis. In addition, when a Facebook user Likes or Comments on a post by a Page owner, that user’s action may be shared with the user’s friends via News Feed to drive awareness to a wider circle of users, increasing the Page’s exposure, recognition, and engagement. The Company does not charge for Pages, nor does it charge for the resulting organic distribution. As of March 31, 2012, there were more than 42 million Pages with 10 or more Likes , including Harvard, Lady Gaga, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Starbucks, and Boo (the World’s Cutest Dog), as well as millions of local businesses.
Products for Developers
The Facebook Platform is a set of tools and application programming interfaces (APIs) that developers can use to build social apps on Facebook or to integrate their Websites with Facebook. As of March 31, 2012, more than nine million applications and Websites were integrated with Facebook. Some of the elements of the Facebook Platform include open graph, social plugins, payments, applications on Facebook, desktop applications, mobile applications and platform-integrated Websites. The Open Graph is a set of APIs that developers can use to build applications and Websites that enable users to share their activities with friends on Facebook. Social plugins are social features that developers can easily integrate with their Websites by incorporating a single line of HyperText Mark up Language (HTML) code.
Facebook provides an o! nline pay! ments infrastructure that enables developers to receive payments from users through a secure system. The Company has designed its Payments infrastructure to streamline the buying process between its users and developers. Its Payments system enables users to purchase virtual or digital goods from developers and third-party Websites by using debit and credit cards, PayPal, mobile phone payments, gift cards or other methods. Applications on Facebook run within the Facebook Website. The Facebook Platform has also enabled new types of social applications on Facebook beyond games to facilitate social sharing and discovery of music, news, television programming, and everyday interests, such as cooking, fitness, and travel. Developers can also build desktop apps that run on the operating system of a personal computer and offer experiences that are integrated with the Facebook Platform. The Facebook Platform for mobile has enabled developers to create engaging mobile applications tha t integrate with Facebook’s social and personalization capabilities. Websites can integrate with Facebook using social plugins, such as the Like button or design more deeply integrated social experiences built around users and their friends.
Products for Advertisers and Marketers
Facebook offers products that enable advertisers and marketers to leverage its combination of reach, relevance, social context, and engagement. When creating a Facebook ad, advertisers can specify a title, content, image, and destination Web page or Facebook Page to which a user is directed if he or she clicks on the ad. Advertisers can further engage their intended audiences by incorporating social context with their marketing messages. Social context includes actions a user’s friends have taken, such as Liking the advertiser’s Facebook Page. Ads with social context are shown only to a user’s friends, and the user’s privacy settings apply to social ads. It offer s a range of ads with social context, from an ad with a sing! le Like b! utton to its Premium Ad paired with social context, which allows advertisers to highlight the interactions of a user’s friends with a brand or product.
Sponsored stories enable marketers to promote the stories they publish from their Facebook Page to users who have connected with the Page or to amplify the distribution of stories users are already sharing that are relevant to their marketing efforts. When advertisers create an ad campaign with Facebook, they specify the types of users they would like to reach based on information that users chose to share about their age, location, gender, relationship status, educational history, workplace, and interests. Advertisers choose to pay for their ads based on either cost per thousand impressions (CPM) on a fixed or bidded basis or cost per click (CPC) on a bidded basis. Facebook ad analytics enable advertisers to gain insights into which ads were displayed and clicked on. These analytics help advertisers make modif ications to their ad campaigns. Advertisers with Facebook Pages can also view the number of users who Liked and Commented on their Page and a newly introduced metric, People Talking About This, which shows how many stories about their brand are being created and shared.
The Company competes with Google, Microsoft, Twitter, Cyworld, Mixi and vKontakte.
- [By Jasraman Grewal]
In games like Farmville, players can start by getting help from friends, but eventually the time will come when you have no choice but to buy tractors. In Candy Crush Saga, you have to buy lives to complete a level and move onto the next. Zynga stayed a web-portal and missed out on the mobile gaming arena. Candy Crush Saga synced players’ progress across Facebook (NASDAQ: FB ) , smartphones, and tablet devices, reaching out to users through multiple points. This was the key to the game’s success, particularly vis-a-vis Zynga.
- [By Michael Cintolo]
Facebook’s stunning $19 billion purchase of WhatsApp grabbed the headlines for a week or two. It’s hard to defend the purchase price.
- [By Reuters]
David Ramos/Getty Images SAN FRANCISCO — Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg blasted the U.S. government’s electronic surveillance practices Thursday, saying he’d personally called President Barack Obama to voice his displeasure. “When our engineers work tirelessly to improve security, we imagine we’re protecting you against criminals, not our own government,” Zuckerberg said in a post on his personal Facebook page. “I’ve called President Obama to express my frustration over the damage the government is creating for all of our future. Unfortunately, it seems like it will take a very long time for true full reform,” the 29-year-old Zuckerberg said. The phone call and Zuckerberg’s 300-word missive Thursday come amid a series of revelations about controversial government surveillance practices that were leaked by former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden. “The president spoke last night with Mark Zuckerberg about recent reports in the press about alleged activities by the U.S. intelligence community,” a White House official said. The official declined further comment and referred to the National Security Agency’s statement released earlier Thursday saying recent media reports that allege the NSA has infected million of computers around the world malware and that the NSA is impersonating U.S. social media or other websites are inaccurate. Facebook (FB), which operates the world’s No. 1 Internet social network with 1.2 billion users, declined to comment beyond Zuckerberg’s post. Secret documents published on news website The Intercept showed Wednesday that the NSA impersonated Facebook web pages in order to gather information from targets. When those people thought they were logging into Facebook, they were actually communicating with the NSA. The agency then used malicious code on the fake page to break into the targets’ computers and remove data from them. Last year, Facebook moved to encrypt all its pages, making such impersonat