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Cash in on This "Invisible" $33 Billion Business

U.S. defense contractors don’t make a habit of sending “thank you” letters to America’s enemies.

But if they did, the corporate leaders at The Boeing Co. (NYSE: BA) might want to look up Vladimir Putin‘s address – before running to the Hallmark store.

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  • U.S. Stocks

  • What We Can Learn From The Stock Market Genius That Wall Street Loves to Ignore Mathematician Benoit B. Mandelbrot, the inventor of fractal geometry, died Oct. 14.

    As mathematicians go, Mandelbrot was very likely the best of the last half-century. And that brilliance extended to the financial markets. In fact, his groundbreaking insights into the operations of the stock market could have been used to avert the 2008 crash - had those insights only been heeded.

    But Mandelbrot - for all his stock market genius - has been largely ignored by Wall Street.

    As investors, let's not make the same mistake.

    To understand how to profit from Mandelbrot's insights, please read on... Read More...
  • Question of the Week: Investors Seek Metals To Soften Blow of Global Currency War The housing market remains in the dumper. U.S. stocks - despite a rally - are still 22% below their record highs of two years ago. And the "official" unemployment rate remains at a heart-stopping 9.6%.

    With their knees almost ready to buckle under such burdens already, how will American consumers respond when clothes, computer accessories and other key consumer staples at their neighborhood Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE: WMT) undergo an overnight price hike of 30% to 60%?

    As the United States aims to increase exports by debasing the dollar, a global currency war is underway that could swallow consumers and investors if they don't prepare for the likelihood of a weaker dollar.

    The United States, China, Switzerland, Brazil, South Korea, Australia, Japan have all entered the war, trying to bring down their currencies to boost exports and fuel growth. Countries are vying to win the "race to the bottom," as it's been called by Money Morning Contributing Writer Peter Schiff. Read More...
  • Don't Miss Out on the Global Stock Rally

    Indices across the world rose last week in what looks to be the beginning of a historic stock rally.

    The Standard & Poor's 500 Index rose 1.6% last week, while the overseas developed-world large-caps - represented by the Vanguard FTSE All-World ex-US exchange-traded fund (NYSE: VEU) - rose 2.4%.

    Meanwhile, the iShares Emerging Markets ETF (NYSE: EEM) rose 1.7%, the iShares FTSE/Xinhua China 25 Index (NYSE: FXI) rose 3%, the iShares MSCI Switzerland Index fund (NYSE: EWL) rose 3%, and the iShares MSCI Australia Index Fund (NYSE: EWA) rose 3.6%.

    Among our favoried emerging markets and sectors, iShares MSCI Turkey Index Fund (NYSE TUR) blasted 6.5% higher, the Market Vectors Latin American Small Cap Index Fund (NYSE: LATM) rose 3.5% and Market Vectors India Small Cap Index Fund (NYSE: SCIF) rose 2.4%. The SPDR Gold Trust (NYSE: GLD) rose 2.1% and the Market Vectors Junior Gold Miners ETF (NYSE: GDXJ) rose 2.6%.

    To find out how you can participate in the global stock rally read on... Read More...
  • Will the Fed's Spending Drive Stocks Back Up to Their Pre-Lehman Levels? The Standard & Poor's 500 Index is up more than 10% in the past month, and it finally looks like all of the thin threads of strength we've seen over the past few months are starting to twine together into a single rope that may be strong enough to pull stocks back up to pre-crisis levels.

    The key threads are:

    Even if you are skeptical of these developments, remember one thing: The Fed has absolutely flooded the financial system with money.

    Read More...
  • The Fed's Actions Are Boosting the Bull Cycle for U.S. Stocks News from the U.S. Federal Reserve is keeping the bull cycle for U.S. stocks alive and well. Despite investors taking a breather this week, the outlook is good for coming months.

    The Standard & Poor's 500 Index fell 0.2% since Monday, while the Nasdaq 100, shown below, fell every day of the past week for a total slippage of 1.5%. The week felt a lot better than that for my subscribers because all but one of our exchange-traded funds (ETF) bets is on overseas stocks, and most rose 1.75% to 4.7%.

    So we are exiting the best September since 1939, but it closed very softly for U.S. investors as the most critical earnings season in the past year looms on the horizon.

    But to see why there's good news coming, read on... Read More...
  • Six Stocks That Should be on Every Investor's 'Don't Buy' List With more than 8,790 publicly traded stocks on U.S. exchanges and another 7,000 or so listed on the OTC Bulletin Board and the pink sheets, it's not particularly difficult to find stocks you wouldn't want to buy. It's not even that hard to find stocks with numbers so bad they're good short-sale candidates.

    What's really hard is recognizing companies whose shares seem like they might be bargains, but that actually have subtle or hidden problems. These stocks truly belong your DO NOT BUY list.

    A good example is Bank of America Corp. (NYSE: BAC). The financial sector was among the leaders as the market rallied from its July lows, but BAC didn't add much to the advance. In fact, after a brief bounce, it tumbled to a 12-month low of $12.18 on August 30 - a far cry from its October 2007 high of $52.71. Still, it looks like the stock built a solid technical base during the early September market upsurge and could be poised for a breakout if its earnings, due out Oct. 20, beat expectations.

    Read More...
  • Buy, Sell or Hold: Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ) – It's Time to Sell This High-Tech Stalwart Now's not the time to own Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ).

    Long one of the bluest of blue chips in the U.S. high-tech sector, H-P has been in the spotlight and under the gun since its early August ouster of Chief Executive Officer Mark Hurd.

    And while Hurd's unceremonious resignation following an internal sexual harassment investigation has been dominated the headlines when it comes to stories about H-P, the... To continue reading, please click here...
  • Three Ways to Brace for a Double-Dip Recession Economists are torn... Is the U.S. economy on the upswing? Or are we facing the dreaded "double dip recession"? Either way, there are a few things every smart investor needs to do now to protect their nest eggs. Find out what you should do in this free report. Read More...
  • Investors' Hopes Riding on Surge in M&A Activity Global mergers and acquisitions (M&A) activity is at its highest level since late 2009, providing a glimmer of hope to investors struggling to decipher stock and bond markets roiled by a weakening U.S. economy.

    Global takeovers announced so far this year have totaled $1.29 trillion, up 23% from the same time last year, according to Bloomberg News.

    Last week a flurry of bleak economic news headlined by larger than expected unemployment claims spurred a 280-point drop in the Dow Jones Industrial Average.

    But, investors took some solace from a flurry of M&A activity and an initial public offering (IPO) from General Motors Co., because acquisitions are seen as a sign companies are confident the economy will grow and business will improve.
    Read More...
  • What to Expect on Wall Street as Nervous Investors Navigate a Slowing Economic Recovery Wall Street was hit hard last week with gloomy data that has kept buying interest stalled and investors spooked over a slow economic recovery.

    Stocks slipped over the past week after investors learned from government reports that jobs are getting scarcer than straw hats in a wind tunnel, and it isn't always sunny in Philadelphia.

    The big-cap indexes lost around 1%, while safe haven assets like gold and the U.S. dollar were buoyant. The best investment around for the week was the U.S. long bond, up 2%.

    To read what’s in store after last week’s gloomy data, click here.

    Read More...
  • Three Ways to Brace for a Double-Dip Recession: Recession-Proof Stocks Today (Friday) we conclude our series on bracing for a double-dip recession.

    In Part I of this investment series, "Three Ways to Brace for a Double-Dip Recession: Going for the Gold," we discussed ways investors could safeguard against the imminent decline of the U.S. dollar by buying gold.

    In Part II, "Three Ways to Brace for a Double-Dip Recession: Going Global," we explored potential investments in foreign countries that have more stable economies and better growth prospects.

    And today, we're going to conclude by looking at "recession-proof" stocks right here in the United States.

    Read More...
  • GM's IPO Filing Reveals Challenges That Could Discourage Investors  When General Motors Co. filed registration papers for an initial public stock offering (IPO) on Wednesday, it also revealed the formidable challenges it faces - some of which may give pause to investors considering taking a stake in the venerable automaker.

    The 734-page document GM filed with the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) paints a picture of a company that is alternately confident about its progress since it nearly failed last year and cautious about the future.

    The IPO raises the stakes for taxpayers who own 61% of GM and will be at least partially repaid based on its success.
    ... To continue reading, please click here...
  • How to Pick Stocks in the 'New Normal' Economy In today's potentially ultra-slow-growth "New Normal" economy, old stock market multiples do not apply.

    In fact, investors who rely on long-held rules about Price/Earnings (P/E) ratios when they buy and sell stocks are risking a pretty big "haircut:" They may be overvaluing some of their stocks - and the stock market in general - by 17% to 20%.

    Let's take a closer look...

    To understand how to value stocks in the "New Normal" economy, please read on...

    Read More...
  • History Gives a Reason to Be Hopeful about U.S. Stocks Volatility has hamstrung U.S. stocks recently, but history suggests there's a reason for hope on the horizon.

    The past week and a half has been a welcome reprieve from the extreme volatility we've seen over the past few months. There have been no fewer than 19 days this year in which up or down volume has accounted for more than 90% of total volume.

    The rapid up-and-down, all-or-nothing nature of the stock market has confounded even the most talented, highly paid and well informed traders. The hedge fund industry as a whole has been caught flat-footed - posting losses in each of the last two months.

    Read More...
  • Defensive Investing: Beware of Municipal Bonds Of the speculative excesses that misguided monetary policy and a prolonged recession has caused, the one that poses the most danger to investor wealth is the financial bubble in state and local municipal bonds.

    Municipal bonds - usually referred to as "munis" - are very popular portfolio plays because of tax advantages that, in effect, enhance their rates of return. There's also an allure because of their local nature: Investors can invest in specific bond issues that provided the money for projects such as schools, highways, bridges, hospitals or housing that actually affects the community in which the investor lives. That makes them a very tangible investment.

    But there's a problem.

    State-and-local-government finances have taken a bigger beating during this economic downturn than during any other recession since World War II. Even worse, that beating came after the easy money available during this stretch encouraged those same governments to venture well beyond any reasonable limits in terms of their borrowing. They're now stuck with a bigger-than-warranted debt load - which can't be covered by the property tax stream that's been reduced by record-level housing defaults.

    The bottom line: At the present time, "munis" may not be the benign - or even alluring - investment that they've been in the past. In fact, thanks to continued fallout from the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, some munis may be more akin to bombs than bonds - ticking away and just waiting to blow up your portfolio.

    To understand why "muni" bonds may be dangerous, please read on... Read More...