Inside the Advisory

Update: OK, Here’s the Good News

It’s like they hopped in the ring for 15 rounds with a young Mike Tyson. They’re beaten. They’re down. They might never get back up. It is inevitable that some of the stocks we buy along the way just do not work as we hoped. And sometimes, it is natural to focus our attention on the ones that are not working out, ignoring the good news in the process.

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Portfolio Update: More Good News for PTRC

Petro River Oil (PTRC), which we added to the Top 1% portfolio in January, just announced its second major oil discovery in the past 30 days. Here is the press release on this most recent discovery. What does this show? Our initial analysis was dead-on. These two discoveries of oil in long-abandoned wells show that...

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The Stock Market Is Lying To You

A while back I wrote a post about the stock market. It was very popular. News outlets all over the world picked it up and ran it on their sites. The message was simple: The stock market is bullshit. As members of the Top 1% Advisory—my stock market advisory service—you might be scratching your head...

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What’s Next for Stocks? I Don’t Know, and Neither Do You

It’s a strange time in the market right now. On the one hand, prices have been soaring since Election Day in November in anticipation of new business-friendly policies, new job creation efforts and… I don’t know, just new everything. As of January, the S&P 500 had surged more than 6% since the election, and it’s...

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After the Fed: Here’s Where We Stand

Last week in this space I wrote about the Fed’s recent rate hike to the range of 0.75% to 1%. I said it didn’t matter. I said I didn’t care about it one bit. And all of that is still true. But a week later, now that we’ve all had some time to mull over...

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Fed Hikes Rates Again. Who Cares?

Another quarter, another rate hike by the U.S. Federal Reserve. This afternoon the Fed raised the Federal Funds target rate, one of its key interest rates, by 25 basis points to a range of 0.75% to 1%. 1%! This is the big time! The Fed last raised rates in December, going from a range of...

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What’s a Reasonable Timeframe for a Long-Term Investment?

We’re doing a lot of buy-and-hold, or long-term, investing in the Top 1% portfolio. This is by design. We are not trading based on short-term market swings or news or economic forces or whatever. We are investing in these companies long-term because of the growth opportunities we see for their business models. These stocks are...

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Why I Never Invest in IPOs

There’s a lot of talk this week about Snap, the company formerly known as Snapchat, which is set to debut on the NYSE in early March. At the expected IPO price of $14 to $16 per share for 200 million shares, that would value the company—which does…what?—at $19.5 to $22 billion, making it the largest...

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Portfolio Update: A Bad Week for Teva

Let’s talk about Teva (NYSE: TEVA). Honestly, I’m not sure it could get any worse for the company right now. On Monday, Teva’s CEO, Erez Vigodman, stepped down (he was fired) following the loss of four different patents as well as a U.S. bribery settlement related to its Russian dealings. Considered one of the best...

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The Secret of Abundance: Or, Why Ideas Are More Valuable Than Money

A friend of mine bought a chain of about 30 pizza stores that were “under-performing.” They were in great locations: all near college campuses. And they all had a great brand name, which you likely know: Domino’s. My friend had been a high-up executive at Domino’s but now he wanted to branch out on his...

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2017: Here’s What I’m Expecting From the Markets

Every year about this time it’s the same thing. “James, what are your predictions for the new year?” “What do you think investors should do?” “What are you watching this year?” Here’s my answer for 2017… Nothing. Really, I don’t have anything. I have no way of knowing what’s coming down the road—what with the...

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What Does the Latest Fed Rate Hike Mean for Stocks?

It happened. Again. Earlier today, the U.S. Federal Reserve Bank raised the Federal Funds target rate, a key interest rate, by 0.25% to a range of 0.5% to 0.75%. Up until then, it had been in a range of 0.25% to 0.5% since December 2015, after seven years of near-zero interest rates. The change in...

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The Triumph of the Lazy Investor

I have a secret for you. Actually, it’s not a secret. I’ve been writing about this for years. I’m lazy. I don’t mean lazy like I blow off work and just sit around watching TV all day. I don’t mean irresponsible. I mean lazy like I, by default, would rather be doing whatever I want...

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It’s the Price You Pay, Stupid

I think it was James Carville, who was Bill Clinton’s campaign strategist during the 1992 presidential election, who first came up with the phrase “it’s the economy, stupid.” (Just Googled it. Yep, Carville.) Anyway, the idea behind it was that, for all of the things that we focus on in a presidential campaign—healthcare, education, defense,...

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Portfolio Update: About KaloBios and Trading Low-Volume Stocks

Last Thursday we added KaloBios (OTC: KBIO) to the Top 1% Advisory portfolio. KaloBios is a biotech company that’s currently very undervalued and has a large, well-protected development pipeline that, I believe, gives it great upside potential. But KaloBios is also a very low-volume stock, trading on average less than 10,000 shares per day on...

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We Sold Some NAVI, and More on LXU

This past Monday we recommended selling some of the Top 1% portfolio, unloading half of our position in Navient (NAVI), a company that services student loans. For those that missed the update, here’s a quick summary of what we said: “Shares of NAVI were around $10 when we recommended them, so that makes for a...

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Portfolio Update: What’s Happening With Hertz?

First, I’m not here to talk about the election. I’ll probably address that elsewhere, but right now I want to discuss several of our Top 1% portfolio positions. The markets are a little volatile today, but two companies in particular had big moves recently (before today), and I wanted to send you a quick update...

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Portfolio Update: Alcoa Splits in Two

It finally happened.  The lever we were waiting for when we originally recommended Alcoa (AA) back in January happened yesterday when the company split into two different companies—Alcoa, which still trades under the AA ticker but is a new company, is focused on “bauxite, alumina and aluminum products,” while the legacy company has been renamed...

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The Difference Between Trading and Investing

I used to run a hedge fund that would hold onto trades for five minutes at a time on average. The longest was a day. The shortest was about five seconds. Here was my strategy: I identified about 1,000 patterns in the market that showed some statistical significance. By that I mean, if my software...

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Why the Economy Doesn’t Matter to Stocks

Here’s the myth: When the economy does well, the markets go up. And when the economy does poorly, the markets go down. Here’s the other myth: When the markets go down, all stocks go down. When the markets go up, all stocks go down. Here’s the truth: There’s not really such thing as “the economy.”...

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