Danger Zone: Make Sure You’re in These Two Stocks for 2015

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Instead of our usual weekly sell/short call, we are going to open 2015 with two of our favorite stocks for the upcoming year. These stocks have strong growth potential in the coming year, and are attractively valued, trading below their economic book values.

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What We’re Reading This Morning — November 17, 2014

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What is Americans’ behavior saying about the economy?

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How to Avoid the Worst Sector Mutual Funds

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Picking from the multitude of sector mutual funds is a daunting task.

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Ford (F) is Hitting on All Cylinders

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As long as Ford’s strong profit growth and market share gains continue, this stock has a lot of upside.

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Consumer Discretionary Sector

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The Consumer Discretionary sector ranks fourth out of the ten sectors as detailed in my Sector Rankings for ETFs and Mutual Funds report. It gets my Dangerous rating, which is based on aggregation of ratings of 18 ETFs and 21 mutual funds in the Consumer Discretionary sector as of April 2, 2014.

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New Stocks Make Most Attractive/Dangerous Lists For March

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Momentum chasing is never a good strategy. RCL significantly outperformed the market last year, while F lagged it slightly, but don’t expect those trends to continue in 2014 for either stock.

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Deferred Tax Assets and Liabilities – Invested Capital Adjustment

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DTAs artificially raise reported assets and do not help generate operating profit while DTLs are like a source of interest-free financing. We remove the impact of DTAs and DTLs from our calculation of invested capital to ensure the more accurate measure of a firm’s return on invested capital (ROIC).

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Show Discretion When Choosing Consumer Discretionary Sector ETFs

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Retail HOLDRS (RTH) is our top pick for consumer discretionary sector ETFs.  RTH is one of 51 ETFs that gets an attractive-or-better rating. We rate the investment merit of the top six consumer discretionary sector ETFs based on our coverage of 471 stocks in this sector. Per our first-quarter-2011 review of U.S. Equity Sector ETFs,…

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Red Flag Report: Hidden Expenses/Income: What You Don’t Know Can Cost You

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Most investors are not aware that companies hide one-time and unusual charges and income inside normal, operating line items (e.g. “Cost of sales”) on their income statement. These hidden items can mislead investors by artificially decreasing/increasing GAAP earnings. We found 13,000+ one-time items buried in normal line items like “Cost of Sales” by studying the Footnotes of 10-K filings from 1998 thru 2/15/2011. This research revealed that companies have concealed over $41 billion in one-time items.

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For Ask Matt readers: Ford (F) — Dangerous Rating

Ford gets our Dangerous Rating. This means F has poor quality-of-earnings and an expensive valuation. For example, F’s ROIC at 0.6% is in our Bottom Quintile. And the valuation of the current stock price ($15.07) implies the company will grow its profits at 10% compounded annually for over 40 years. The takeaway: avoid this stock.

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