March Madness is upon us.
It’s that time of year when the country drops everything and turns its attention to the precarious fates of 68 college basketball teams. Even President Obama takes an annual timeout from leading the free world to try his hand at basketball bracketology.
According to research from outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, this year’s NCAA men’s basketball tournament is expected to cost U.S. employers $1.9 billion in lost wages due to unproductive workers.
But despite the distractions of the NCAA tourney, the week was not without its share of significant news in the investment world.
The Federal Reserve issued a statement Wednesday following its two-day policy meeting. The key takeaway was the removal of assurances that the Fed would remain “patient” before raising interest rates. The Dow jumped more than 300 points within minutes of the announcement.
Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen later downplayed the buzz around the choice of words.
“Just because we removed the word patient from the statement doesn’t mean we are going to be impatient,” Yellen stated at a press conference Wednesday.
Yet despite Yellen’s careful hedge, the door has definitely inched open wider for a rate hike in June. Stay tuned.
In what has become a weekly occurrence these days, there was also big news regarding Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL).
As The Wall Street Journal and other media outlets reported, Apple is rumored to be planning a launch of its long-anticipated Apple TV service in the fall. The subscription streaming service will reportedly cost $25-$35 a month and feature about 25 channels – including ABC, CBS and Fox.
Like we saw with last week’s Apple Watch announcement, the world’s largest publicly traded company continues to find new ways to expand its tech empire.
The team at Wyatt Investment Research had its hands full this week uncovering the latest investment ideas during the last days of winter.
Here are some of my favorite articles from the week:
The Next 3D Printing Stocks Boom – 3D printer stocks were hot – then not. But there’s no denying that 3D printing is a breakthrough technology that will have far-reaching effects in the manufacturing sector and beyond. And top analyst Tyler Laundon predicts a big shake-up in the 3D printer industry, which could result in big profits if you play it right.
Is Home Depot’s Dividend Sustainable? – Home Depot (NYSE: HD) increased its quarterly dividend 25.5% this month, to 59 cents a share. In fact, HD has increased its dividend every year for the last six years. Can the home improvement retailer keep up its aggressive payout rate?
What Every Investor Gets Wrong About Oil Investing – Many income investors are sweating over their oil investments, and rightly so. But investors are wrong about one key aspect of oil investing.
Is a New Breed of Dividend Leaders Upon Us? – Which sector will overtake information technology as the top dividend paying sector in the S&P 500? The answer could surprise you.
A Safe, Conservative Investing Approach – Is your March Madness bracket already busted? Don’t worry, you can recoup the cash you lost in your office pool with this conservative income strategy from Wyatt Research expert Andy Crowder.
Will the Dying PC Market Be the Downfall of This Tech Giant? – If you’re reading this on your laptop, iPad or smartphone, it should come as no surprise that the personal computer is slowly dying. But will the PC’s demise also spell the doom of this venerable tech name, which just slashed its first quarter revenue outlook by $1 billion?
This Dividend Aristocrat Just Got a Lot More Interesting – Despite being the biggest player in the consumer products space, this company has perennially underperformed its peers. But with a restructuring of its product portfolio and a dividend that has increased for 58 straight years, you might want to consider buying shares of this stock.
Is GM Stock Finally Worth Buying? – As part of a settlement with an investor group led by activist Harry Wilson, GM will buy back $5 billion of its own shares over the next two years. But GM stock is up just 12% since completing its post-bankruptcy IPO in 2010. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 is up 73% over that same period. Has the time to buy GM finally arrived?
Should BofA Shareholders Be ‘Stressed’? – The results of the Fed stress tests are in, and Bank of America (NYSE: BAC) was “conditionally approved.” Are investors stressing out unnecessarily, or is there legitimate cause for concern?
Have a great weekend!
Wyatt Research Week-in-Review: March 15-21
March Madness is upon us.