9/22/2012 automatic update and SSG files are available

Posted on September 22, 2012 | Stock Investor Pro

Automatic update for Stock Investor Pro and SSG files as of 9/22/2012 are available.

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CI Weekly Features: September 22, 2012

Posted on September 22, 2012 | Computerized Investing

Using the Enterprise Value Ratio
How to use enterprise value to evaluate a company.

Technical Analysis & Charting Programs
What to look for in software that is dedicated to technical analysis and charting, and in-depth reviews of the top three programs in this area.

Business Wire
Business Wire has the most comprehensive news and disclosure network in the world, making it the global market leader in commercial press release distribution.

Gadget Corner – TravelPro Crew 9 20-inch Expandable Business Plus Rollaboard

Rolling carry-on with a special laptop compartment.

Sitelight – Intrade

Intrade is a fascinating website for those who like to speculate. Specifically, Intrade is a prediction market that allows individuals to bet on the outcome of hundreds of real-world events.

This Week’s Question

How many years will it be before information stored on your phone or mobile device will replace cash payments for a majority of purchases?

A) Within the next year
B) 1 year to less than 3 years
C) 3 years to less than 5 years
D) 5 years to less than 10 years
E) 10 years or more
F) Never

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Posted on September 21, 2012 | Stock Superstars Report

Stock Superstars alert for the week ending 9/21/2012 updated.

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Posted on September 21, 2012 | Dividend Investing

Dividend Investing alert for the week ending 9/21/2012 updated.

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Strategies for Uncertain Tax Rates

Posted on September 21, 2012 | Investor Update

With the tax breaks about to expire and automatic spending cuts set to kick in, the House of Representatives is ending its session without preventing either from occuring. Late last week, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor announced, “We no longer anticipate votes in the House during the week of Oct. 1. This is a change from the original House calendar.” It is probable that the Senate will also break without passing related legislation.

This leaves the issue of avoiding the so-called fiscal cliff up to the post-election session of Congress, where some members will be lame ducks. Though the focus of the November elections is the presidential race, many House and Senate seats are also being contested. Several combinations could potentially result from the elections, making it completely unclear what will actually happen.

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GADGET CORNER – Phiaton PS 20 BT Bluetooth Stereo Earphones With Mic

Posted on September 21, 2012 | Computerized Investing

Wireless “half in-ear” headphones for music and hands-free calling.

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Pessimism Reaches 8-Week High in AAII Sentiment Survey

Posted on September 20, 2012 | AAII Survey

Bullish sentiment rose to a four-week high, while bearish sentiment rebounded to a eight-week high in the latest AAII Sentiment Survey.

Bullish sentiment, expectations that stock prices will rise over the next six months, rose 1.0 percentage points to 37.5%. This puts optimism at a four-week high. Nonetheless, bullish sentiment is below its historical average of 39% for the fourth consecutive week and the 24th out of the past 25.

Neutral sentiment, expectations that stock prices will stay essentially unchanged over the next six months, declined 1.8 percentage points to 28.7%. This is a 12-week low for neutral sentiment. The historical average is 31%.

Bearish sentiment, expectations that stock prices will fall over the next six months, rose 0.8 percentage points to 33.8%. This is the highest level of pessimism registered by our survey since August 2, 2012. Bearish sentiment is also above its historical average of 30% for the 20th time in the past 24 weeks.

Individual investor optimism remains improved relative to what was registered throughout spring and much of the summer. While pessimism is persistently staying above average, it is below the May through July readings. Splitting the moods of AAII members are higher stock prices, improved economic data, slowing global economic growth, Washington politics and the European sovereign debt crisis.

This week’s special question asked AAII members how last week’s announcement of more monetary stimulus by the Federal Open Market Committee impacted their sentiment toward stocks. There was not a consensus among our members. More than a third of respondents said the move will help stocks. Another 10% thought the move would provide a temporary lift to stocks. Conversely, nearly 30% said the announcement didn’t change their sentiment. Some members described the move as being bad for the U.S., while others viewed gold as now being more attractive.

Here is a sampling of the responses:

  • “I will be moving more assets out of cash and into stocks.”
  • “The announcement reaffirmed that fixed income will not satisfy my retirement income needs and an overweight commitment to equities must be maintained.”
  • “Short term, I feel somewhat more positive about stocks, but I am equally wary of the downside risks of stimulus.”
  • “It doesn’t impact my sentiment toward stocks at all. Although, I don’t believe more monetary stimulus will accomplish much of anything.”
  • “It hasn’t affected my sentiment because I’m awaiting for the November election results.”
  • “The Fed’s policy is a disaster. We will get bitten by it sooner or later.”

This week’s AAII Sentiment Survey results:

  • Bullish: 37.5%, up 1.0 percentage points
  • Neutral: 28.7%, down 1.8 percentage points
  • Bearish: 33.8%, up 0.8 percentage points

Historical averages:

  • Bullish: 39%
  • Neutral: 31%
  • Bearish: 30%

The AAII Sentiment Survey has been conducted weekly since July 1987 and asks AAII members whether they think stock prices will rise, remain essentially flat, or fall over the next six months. The survey period runs from Thursday (12:01 a.m.) to Wednesday (11:59 p.m.) The survey and its results are available online at: http://www.aaii.com/sentimentsurvey

Charles Rotblut. CFA is a Vice President with the American Association of Individual Investors and editor of the AAII Journal.


Dividend Safety Signs and Warning Flags

Posted on September 20, 2012 | Investing

Many investors have sought shelter from the stock market storm in more mature dividend-paying companies, since the income from these firms provides at least some positive return in an otherwise bleak environment.

But the economic downturn has tested even the most mature and stable firms, with some forced to cut dividend payments. Others have managed to maintain current levels for the time being, but could be forced to make cuts in the future.

What signs can you look for that indicate the safety of a company’s dividend payment stream?

Investors in dividend-paying stocks typically seek stocks that are paying steadily increasing levels of dividend income, and have the cash flow and financial resources to continue to pay the dividends. There are a number of financial ratios and indicators you can use to evaluate this; the most common are listed below.

While these safety signs and warning flags are applied at the individual firm level, you should keep in mind that even the most well-managed company can be overwhelmed by changing winds within an industry. When you are evaluating a stock for its dividend payments, make sure you don’t lose sight of the bigger picture in terms of the environment in which the firm is operating.

Clearly, dividend-seeking investors need to evaluate the dividend payments themselves, how steady they have been and how much you are paying for them.

A dividend stream may be important to you, but a critical question is: How much is the market demanding for that stream of payments?

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Upcoming Chapter Meeting: AAII Birmingham

Posted on September 20, 2012 | Local Chapters

Date: Thursday, September 27, 2012
Topic: Election Year Markets
Speaker: Richard D. Crew, CFM, Vice President and Senior Financial Adviser, Merrill Lynch

Presidential election results usually have a significant impact on the future financial affairs of the country. Crew will briefly review and discuss several of the key election factors. These include candidate platforms regarding monetary policy, names of potential new key federal financial appointees, congressional election results and fourth-quarter portfolio adjustments. He will also review 2013 scenarios based on the November 6, 2012, results and historical precedents for the markets.

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Check out all AAII local chapters »

Company Financials

Posted on September 20, 2012 | Computerized Investing

The best websites for financial statement data, and where to get access to full company reports online.

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