129th Edition of the Festival of Stocks

Welcome to the February 23, 2009 edition of the Festival of Stocks. The Festival of Stocks is a blog carnival dedicated to highlighting bloggers best posts on stock market related topics. Fat Pitch Financials is the actual birth place of this online weekly event, so it is always a special occassion when I get the chance to host this roving event.

If you aren’t already familiar with my blog, Fat Pitch Financials, it is a value investing blog with a focus on wide moat companies selling at substantial discounts and Graham style workouts. I encourage you to subscribe for free to my blog feed to keep up with my latest postings.

You should also check my Fat Pitch Financials Contributor’s Corner while you are here. It is my premium members only community dedicated to unique arbitrage and special situation opportunities.

Now that you are familiar with Fat Pitch Financials, let’s take a look at this week’s Festival of Stock participants. Here are this week’s entries:

Stock Analysis

Ebay’s Relative Value posted at Wide Moat Investing. This post looks at the relative value numbers for eBay versus Amazon. I was suprised to see the huge differences in the price ratios. Tickers: (EBAY), (AMZN).

The Ultimate Stock For A Recession posted at The Penny Daily. A  discussion of why Altria Group Inc. is one of the best stocks to invest in during a recession. Ticker: (MO).

Quick Take: SOHU.com posted at MagicDiligence. Sohu.com, while not an “official” Magic Formula stock, has a bargain valuation against it’s significant growth potential in China’s nascent online advertising and gaming markets. Ticker: (SOHU).

American Italian Pasta: A Strong Stock Today posted at The Iconoclast Investor. This dry pasta maker is seeing growing sales and profits even during this tough environment. This post points to new management cleaning up the ills of this company’s past management. Ticker: (AIPC).

KMB: Stock Analysis for Dividend Growth Portfolio posted at Dividend Tree. KMB is in a high-risk-to-dividend category analyzed in this post. Ticker: (KMB).

Wells Fargo: Things May Not Be Well at Wells posted at Dividends Value. Dividend Value thought Bank of America (BAC) was strong enough to survive without cutting its dividend. This all changed with the announced acquisition of Merrill Lynch. Is this same situation playing out with Wells Fargo’s (WFC) acquisition of Wachovia? Tickers: (WFC), (BAC), (C), (JPM).

Dividend payers of note posted at Zignals blog. Declan Fallon looks at three stocks which paid a dividend yield of at least 5%, had no long term debt and had a market cap over $100m. Tickers: (ETJ), (DOM), (BVF).

Are Canadian Bank dividends safe? posted at Financial Highway. Review of the safety of Canadian bank dividends. Tickers: (BNS.to), (BMO), (TD).

Meadow Valley Surprise posted here at Fat Pitch Financials. A look back at how I profited from a special situation at Meadow Valley. Ticker: (MVCO).

Long GOOG/Short VCLK posted at Intelligent Speculator. The current economic context is certainly giving nice opportunities in the long/short market. This blogger has been looking at trading Valueclick (VCLK) short. Ticker: (GOOG), (VCLK).

A Stock Trading System For Shorting Stocks: How To Short Estee Lauder posted at The Smarter Wallet. This post highlights the INO.com service by discussing a video on shorting using Estee Lauder as an example. Stocks: (EL)

Macro Views

Buffett’s Stock Market Indicator posted at Barel Karsan. Warren Buffett has compared the value of the stock market to U.S. GNP to determine whether the market is overvalued. While this ratio is off the March 2000 high, are stocks now cheap?


New Bond ETFs posted at The Sun’s Financial Diary. Sun reviews the four new fixed-income ETFs launched last month by Barclays Global Investors and State Street Global Advisors. Tickers: (ISHG), (IGOV), (MBG), (BWX).

Asset Allocation posted at Less is More. This blogger uses discusses how he uses Schwab funds to maintain a desired asset allocation. Tickers: (SWPIX), (SWINX), (SWSMX).


Does Zecco’s New Rate Change Make You Want to Change Brokerage Firms? posted at Cash Money Life. This post Compares Zecco with TradeKing and ShareBuilder.

Book Review: The Five Rules for Successful Stock Investing by Pat Dorsey posted at MagicDiligence. Morningstar’s Pat Dorsey’s The Five Rules for Successful Stock Investing is possibly the best book out there for learning how to analyze companies and stocks. A MagicDiligence book review.

Investment Clubs posted at Blueprint for Financial Prosperity. Jim lists the benefits and drawbacks of starting an investment club.

Investor Education

Beta and Alpha Returns for Us Sane Investors posted at Investing School. Beta and alpha are simply defined and explained here.

Faith, Hope, and Love: Are they part of your financial plan? posted at Christian Personal Finance Blog. Should investing and our conscience go hand in hand?

Want to Know How to Succeed at Investing? posted at Pimp Your Finances. Too many investment plans fall victim to excessive trading, timing the market, or picking the next hot stock pick. Instead of worrying about things you can’t control, you should focus on things you can – like asset allocation, minimizing costs, and minimizing taxes.

Is Now a Good Time to Start Investing in Stocks? posted at Darwin’s Finance. This article highlights the pros and cons of building a market position now given the current financil turmoil. Also offered are some hedging strategies.

Investing Tips For The Beginning Stock Picker posted at The Digerati Life. Tim Parker lists five steps to take on your road to becoming a stock picker.


That concludes this edition of the Festival of Stocks. Next week’s Festival of Stocks is still looking for a home. If you are interested in volunteering to host a future edition of the Festival of Stocks, just contact me with the name of your site, blog URL, email address, and the date your prefer to host. Submit your blog article to the next edition of Festival of Stocks using our carnival submission form. Past posts and future hosts can be found on our Festival of Stocks index page for those of you interested in reviewing the archives.

* Photo by _PaulS_

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