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While Washington Stews, You Can Cash In on the Biggest "Tax-Inversion" Deal in History

Back in June 2012, we recommended that you pick up shares of Big Pharma player Abbott Laboratories Inc. (NYSE: ABT). The reason: Abbott was planning to split in two at the end of the year, meaning folks who took our advice would end up with stakes in two companies for the price of one.

There was more than bargain-basement thinking at work here.

You see, these corporate breakups – known as spin-offs – have a habit of turning into market-beating profit plays. And the newly minted spin-off firms often end up as takeover fodder – also at big profits.

Abbott followed part of that blueprint.

  • Four Timely Moves For The Next Three Crises

    Sorry to say, but we are only in a brief "lull" between crises. Nothing was resolved in the eleventh (and a half) hour Fiscal Cliff compromise, and three new crises are coming down the line in 2013. Here's what we face now and how you can still structure your energy portfolio for profits.

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  • The Path to Energy Independence is More Rocky Than It Seems You might have seen yesterday's headline in the Wall Street Journal: "U.S. Redraws World Oil Map."

    As the article explains, U.S. oil production is now on pace to surpass Saudi Arabia by 2020. This would make the United States world's largest oil producer. We're already the second-largest natural gas producer, according to 2010 EIA estimates.

    It's all thanks to the U.S. shale boom that has unlocked billions of barrels of oil and trillions of feet of natural gas from the Appalachian Mountains to the Pacific Coast, from the Bakken in North Dakota to the shale fields of southern Texas.

    But all of this fracking has caused some serious economic and environmental problems.

    And while I greatly advocate increased drilling and domestic production, we still must address a wide-range of problems now plaguing the shale oil and gas sectors.

    After all - with apologies to Voltaire and Spiderman - with such great fortune comes greater responsibility.

    That's why I am in the third day of what has become a very interesting conference here in Pittsburgh. It was convened to set the agenda moving forward to deal with the almost invisible aspects of shale oil and gas drilling.

    In fact, for the first time, the conference's primary focus will be on the negatives caused by the drilling.

    We also have questions surrounding the amount of water required to frack these formations (the process needs a lot of water to break open rock and release hydrocarbons), as well as the ongoing public health fears from the chemicals used.

    Now, we are seeing parallel economic problems as well.

    In the Marcellus basin, researchers are now recording some of these shortcomings and placing them in four basic categories.

    The real concern is that these four problems - in infrastructure, labor, local inflation, and the environment - will remain well after the drilling (and the revenue) has moved on.

    So before you decide to declare "energy independence", take a look at some of the downside that may come along with it.

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