Michael Brush, investing, portfolio, Wall Street, stock tips

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Michael Brush archive
  • Facebook will have the last laugh

    The bad taste left by a bungled IPO and persistent myths of corporate weakness are keeping the social-networking giant's stock down. But a lot of experts see big gains ahead.

  • The keys to Buffett's success

    A new study suggests the investing master does well by sticking with stocks that sit out the market's swings yet consistently book profits. It's boring — or at least, as boring as making money can be.

  • Why Sears is on its last legs

    More store closings and key departures have some wondering if the long-struggling icon is finally going away. Despite turnaround efforts, it is dying — slowly. Here's why.

  • The myth of the $1 CEO

    New Apple chief Tim Cook took some heat for taking $378 million in stock, compared with Steve Jobs' fabled $1 a year salary. But how much compensation do dollar CEOs really get?

  • It's a Tiffany's or dollar store Christmas for Americans

    The trends of a struggling middle class and a happy high end will play out in retail stores over the holidays. So where should investors be spending their money?

  • Dare to invest in the walking dead?

    Consider these market zombies, companies that have basically been written off and now trade for less than the cash they have on hand. Yet some, like Hawaiian Airlines and Heelys, may have life left.

  • What Wall St. protesters have right

    If you can look past the hippie overtones, what the protests are really saying is that we need good jobs, honest banks and fair-and-square politics. It’s hard to disagree with any of that.

  • You're fired — here's $9 million

    Sacked Yahoo boss Carol Bartz lashed out at the company as she walked out the door with parting gifts most folks would envy. But as CEO perks go, $9.4 million in severance is pretty chintzy.

  • Five reasons gold is headed for $3,000

    Recent dips are giving us another chance to get in on the great gold rush. The factors driving the metal higher — broken governments and fragile economies — aren't going away.

  • Six stocks insiders are snapping up

    While recent volatility sparked panic selling, those in the know were buying. Among the names insiders thought were bargains: Morgan Stanley, Hasbro and Berkshire Hathaway.

  • McDonald's or Starbucks: Who wins?

    The purveyor of burgers is going upscale, treading on turf that the coffee titan has trolled for years. Which company will prevail? And what's the effect on consumers?

  • Could ETFs blow up the market?

    ETFs are supposed to be safe and steady, but some of the same exotic instruments that helped tank the market four years ago are being employed now to craft increasingly complex exchange-traded funds.

  • How to invest in the cloud

    Everybody's talking about it (reason enough to be cautious). Know which technology companies can give you a piece -- or a bigger helping -- of the action.

  • CEOs got a big raise; how about you?

    Coming out of a bruising recession, the average CEO in the U.S. got a 24% pay raise. The average American worker? Just 3.3%. What does the widening pay gap mean for investors?

  • Could Trump fix America?

    The flashy billionaire's interest in the U.S. presidency may be serious. So we should take a serious look at his business history and his ideas for running the country.

  • Investors get say on CEO pay

    Empowered by new rules, some shareholders are starting to say 'no' to lavish packages -- and companies are learning to be more careful about what they ask for.

  • Can you profit from pot -- legally?

    Medical marijuana is big business. Some governments are taking a sympathetic approach to it, and some investors smell an opportunity. But there's a problem hanging in the air: Pot is still illegal.

  • BP is back, but the Gulf shows scars

    Whether it's fair or not, the company to blame for last year's epic oil disaster is recovering faster than the environment. The simple reason is that the world needs energy.

  • 10 companies for 'Project Japan'

    The human tragedy remains front and center, but the long and costly rebuilding will begin eventually. There's more than $300 billion in work to be done, and these companies will likely take part.

  • Will $200 oil kill the economy?

    Unrest in key oil-producing nations opens the door to price spikes that could push gas prices sky high and spin the world back into recession. Here's how we'd get there, and how to protect your portfolio.

  • Five can-do companies made in America

    Think the U.S. economy no longer has what it takes to lead the world? Consider these five examples of American entrepreneurship and innovation, and you might have to think again.

  • Five best stocks under $5 right now

    Stocks trading for less than a fiver have more room to grow than the giants, and the right ones can grow faster, too. Here are five to look at now, with names you might already know.

  • Six companies for Buffett to buy

    With billions in cash on hand, the Oracle of Omaha says he's gunning for takeover targets. Here are six prospects with the qualities Warren Buffett likes in his companies.

  • Lotteries and nine other oddball investments

    If stocks and bonds seem shaky, consider some unusual plays, from investing in lotteries to ETFs that own water and investment vehicles that perform like sports cars (because they are).

  • Seven companies ripe for a takeover

    American Eagle Outfitters, Petrohawk Energy and five others could be ripe acquisition targets. But profiting as an investor won't be easy.

  • Sorry, Toyota: GM is winning China

    The Motor City giant now sells more cars in China than in the U.S., and that market could restore its title as the world's top seller of cars. Turns out the Chinese love Buicks and Chevys.

  • The return of the Internet IPO

    The market seems ready to party like it's 1999 as investors eagerly await shares of Facebook, Twitter, Groupon, Kayak and other popular names. But should you dive in?

  • The six big market events of 2011

    Here's a look at some possibilities that could shape the market this year, from the first true market highs in years to a Facebook buyout.

  • Five great companies to own now

    You can try to outguess the market for great results in 2011, or you can simply buy companies you think will do great things. Here are several worth a look, including GE, AMD and 3M.

  • Five reasons to love big U.S. banks again

    Sure, they helped cause the problems that nearly toppled the American economy and cost investors a lot of money. But U.S. banks will be one of the best places to invest in 2011.

  • Top pros' top stocks for 2011

    Some leading investment newsletter authors who share stellar records but don't agree on where the market is headed. Bulls and bears offer their best bets for the new year.

  • 10 hot stocks for a cold winter

    With the La Niña weather pattern expected to make for an extra-chilly winter, here are some plays in energy and other areas to warm an investor's heart.

  • Why food bills are heading higher

    The cost of a wide range of commodities has been soaring and will likely keep rising. You can't fight it, but with some smart investing moves, you can profit from it.

  • 'Mad men' suiting up for a rally

    Another sign the business world is rebounding: The advertising industry is making a profitable comeback. Don Draper, TV's favourite ad man, would no doubt drink to that.

  • Five U.S. companies that aren't afraid to hire

    While many businesses are content to boost profits by cutting back, a select few are confident enough to hire and grow. That makes them promising plays for investors.

  • Eight secrets your broker won't tell you

    They're supposed to help you make money, but some brokers are more concerned with their own financial interests. Here's how to protect yourself.

  • Get your slice of a $2 trillion pie

    Companies sitting on piles of cash are being pressured to use it, so expect jumps in capital spending, dividends and stock buybacks. Here's how to get in on the action.

  • The next Visa and MasterCard?

    Fed up with banks or spurned by them, millions of Americans are turning to prepaid plastic that works like an ATM card. Two young companies could emerge as giants in this space.

  • Why CEOs can't stand Obama

    America's corporate leaders are slamming the president over taxes and the uncertain effects of his policies, and the executives' siege mentality is holding back the U.S. economy.

  • CEOs: Cut more jobs, make more money

    A study reveals an unsettling trend from the Great Recession: Not only did many CEOs get raises while laying off workers, those who cut more got bigger pay packages.

  • How the stock market is killing jobs

    Today's rapid-fire, anyone-can-play market makes it tougher for small companies to raise money to grow and hire. Do we need a new market to save the economy?

  • Eight bargain buys for the rebound

    Investors who are seeking safety in bonds are missing major opportunities in big, solid companies that look cheap and pay dividends that beat bond returns hands down.

  • Eight CEOs' total windfall: $250 million

    As stock prices tumbled in 2008-09, companies made huge options grants to their top execs, who then scored millions when the market recovered. See who's up $75 million.

  • 3-D IPO and other hot new stocks

    There's a boom under way among intriguing companies new to the market -- including the one that makes those glasses we couldn't see 'Avatar' in 3-D without.

  • Is your smart phone spying on you?

    The same device that puts the world at your fingertips can be a snoop's best friend. Here's how consumers -- and investors -- can respond to the risks.

  • What's Facebook really worth?

    If the social-media site goes public, it will have to be as forthcoming as many of its users. The prospect of an IPO has investors salivating, but would buying be a good idea?

  • Sex, drugs and rockin' profits

    Viagra and its clones created a multibillion-dollar industry that the recession hasn't touched. And the next generation of sex drugs, including 'female Viagra,' is on the way.

  • Kicking the tires on GM's IPO

    It's still at least a few months away, but selling shares again will be a major step in the automaker's remarkable recovery. Should you buy General Motors' stock?

  • Tough choice: BP or nuclear power

    The oil disaster in the Gulf and concerns over global warming could spur greater interest in building nuke plants. That means new options for investors to explore.

  • Five investing lessons for Buffett

    The Oracle of Omaha has taken criticism lately for his relationships with financial-meltdown rascals. And he should -- because he has skirted some of his own investing rules.

  • Five Internet ghosts finding new life

    Many fallen stars have haunted the market since the boom went bust a decade ago, but a few seem to be on their way back.

  • Is Hollywood a blockbuster investment?

    With a 3-D revolution under way, a blasé May has turned movie-company stocks into great buys. The low numbers may also mean the economy is getting healthier.

  • Five huge CEO paydays

    When the market was near its low last year, companies handed out fresh stock options to top executives. With the rebound, some of them have scored tens of millions of dollars.

  • Spill creates buying opportunities

    The disaster in the Gulf has sent stocks of companies involved in offshore oil spinning down. But unless you think drilling is going to stop, it may be time to buy them.

  • 14 safe stocks to stock up on

    With the economic road uncertain, it's a good time to shift some money into defensive stocks -- makers of toilet paper, razors and other things you'll use no matter what.

  • Metals, comic books worth more than gold

    The lustrous metal gets most of the publicity, but platinum is richer, and several other metals look like better investments. Or consider comic books, which can be worth far more than their weight in gold.

  • Five lies U.S. big banks keep telling

    Do American bankers seriously expect us to believe that they had no way of knowing the depth of the looming financial crisis or that others were entirely to blame?

  • Five cheap tech stocks to buy now

    As iPad sales demonstrate, the public isn't likely to lose its taste for gadgets -- and some of the companies that help feed this frenzy are still affordable investments.

  • Six places to make money now

    You probably know you need to look overseas to find strong growth, but hot markets such as China and India may seem overdone. Here are other leading markets for your money.

  • Why America is having a rich man's recovery

    Stores that cater to America's well-to-do see sales rise while those aimed at the middle class and lower struggle. Here's what that means to the U.S. economy and investors.

  • Why health care stocks look healthy

    The sector has lagged during the long U.S. health care reform debate because the market hates uncertainty. But with a decision apparently near, these stocks look promising.

  • Amazon vs. Apple: Battle of the books

    With its new iPad, Apple is taking aim at Amazon's core business and its Kindle book reader. Can the 'e-tail' pioneer keep up as books, music and movies go all-download?

  • The 10 stocks you should buy first

    Making the transition from mutual funds and index investing to picking and buying stocks can be daunting. Start with stable, solid portfolio stalwarts like these.

  • Less gold for Olympic sponsors?

    The winter games are big business, with advertisers and other sponsors paying huge sums to try to reach the world's consumers. But the Great Recession may foil their plans.

  • Six banking reforms the U.S. really needs

    A wave of populist outrage has put financial overhaul back onto the agenda in Washington, D.C. But what's being considered might not prevent another meltdown.

  • Is your land line phone dead?

    Wireless will likely kill off wired telephones in a decade. You could invest in cell phone giants, but there are better ways to ride this wave.

  • Four sectors stuffed with cheap stocks

    After a big rally, you can keep your portfolio growing with overlooked stocks in sectors the market hates. Here's where to look now -- plus experts' favourites in each.

  • Hello, frugality; goodbye, good life

    Companies that once fed our luxurious lifestyles now feel the squeeze of a penny-pinching market. Can Starbucks and others adapt to the new age of value?

  • 10 pros' stock picks for 2010

    Editors of investing newsletters with proven annual returns provide both bullish and bearish outlooks for the coming year. Bottom line: Stocks still have an upside.

  • America is hiring (sort of)

    Agencies that work on the front lines of U.S. employment say demand for temp workers is rising -- and not just for holiday retail help. Economists say that's a very good sign.

  • Seven stocks for Buffett's Christmas list

    If jolly ol' St. Buffett were handing out stocks, there's reason to believe he'd pick retailers. Here's why -- and the names he might consider gifts to investors.

  • Corporate America's huge piles of cash

    After throttling down for a depression that didn't happen, companies are sitting on billions in excess money. The likely result: A spending spree that could get the U.S. economy rolling.

  • Farewell to Wall St.'s decade of hubris

    The era will be remembered for two burst financial bubbles and a rogue's gallery of scoundrels who rewarded themselves well and delivered very little.

  • Your guide to insiders' stock moves

    The top execs naturally know more about a company than the average investor, so if they're buying stock, it might be good for you to buy, too. But not always.

  • Is this Buffett's best run ever?

    With sly buys and shrewd loans, the Oracle of Omaha made billions in the credit crunch. You can learn from his moves -- and buy a handful of stocks with him.

  • Five great stocks still under $5

    Cheap stocks have been roaring ahead as the market recovers, but bargains remain. Insiders and experts led us to these, including bailed-out Citigroup and once-hot Sirius.

  • How the credit crunch cost the Habs

    Lots of sports teams -- the Knicks, Nets, Rangers, Cubs, Dolphins and more -- could change hands as owners feel the recession's bite. Here's how investors can get in on the action.

  • How to profit from the U.S. dollar's demise

    Don't kid yourself: U.S. currency is going to keep losing value. The question is how far it will fall. Fortunately for investors, there are ways to play this trend.

  • The big deal is back on Wall Street

    A flurry of high-profile, big-buck mergers and takeovers could be good for investors, since it means corporate leaders are more confident. Here are 25 tempting targets.

  • Is lavish CEO pay on the way out?

    Shareholder advocates are gaining ground in the battle against exorbitant salaries and perks, with some big companies endorsing change. But will they follow through?

  • Good news: The splurge is back

    The North American economy relies on consumer spending, making forecasts of an age of austerity quite dire. But it looks like our 'spendy culture' will ride in to the rescue.

  • Why a meltdown could happen again

    A year after Lehman Brothers collapsed and the financial system nearly went with it, we've heard much talk but seen no real reform.

  • Four 'zombie' stocks better off dead

    Meltdown casualties Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, GM and AIG soared in August, with tons of shares changing hands. But don't be fooled; they're worthless.

  • Wall Street's high-tech war on investors

    A PC can be an investor's best tool. But as a vast high-tech arms race unfolds, big brokers and hedge funds are using their computers to take unfair advantage.

  • Playboy: Is the bunny a bargain?

    The company's stock right now is worth less than its mansion. Yet Playboy owns not just the mansion but a treasure-trove of assets that could make it a real takeover target.

  • 10 top stocks to buy on the pullback

    Many stocks have already gone on sale, but how do you know what's a bargain and what's a sinking ship? Start by asking six questions.

  • Has Apple won the smart-phone wars?

    Nothing's hotter than the iPhone right now, but Palm's Pre and the BlackBerry are serious contenders in today's most intense consumer technology battle.

  • How shareholders are fighting greed

    At annual meetings across the country, fed-up investors are taking stands against excessive CEO pay packages, princely perks and sloppy board oversight.

  • Why execs' fat perks roll on

    While shareholders suffered, top-level execs kept collecting luxurious perks to go with their already huge paycheques. If that seems wrong to you, fight back. Here's how.

  • Coming: A third wave of U.S. foreclosures

    The next group of Americans to lose their homes seemed to have good credit and affordable loans. But those families have been walloped by the recession.

  • How your undies track the recession

    To help predict a recovery, economists such as Alan Greenspan look to men's underwear sales. Here's what those and other unusual economic indicators say about the road ahead.

  • Is 'Made in America' gone for good?

    Products at Wal-Mart and other big box retailers may come from overseas, but the U.S. is still the world's No. 1 manufacturer. For many American companies, there's no place like home.

  • Potter and Spock vs. the recession

    The movie industry has been a rare bright spot amid the economic downturn. Another summer of potential hits, such as the new 'Star Trek' and 'Harry Potter' films, should keep the trend going.

  • 12 stocks for a slow-moving recovery

    It seems the bounce-back has begun, but the U.S. economy won't really get cooking for some time. These stocks should race ahead of the pack.

  • CEOs earn big bonuses for bad year

    As their companies shed jobs and stocks plummeted, hundreds of chief execs collected extra pay last year. Here's how boards justify these rewards.

  • Are airline stocks a bargain now?

    It's hard to believe, but the battered airline industry is weathering the recession in reasonably good shape. Investors shouldn't expect to make big profits anytime soon, though.

  • Is Facebook the new Wal-Mart?

    MySpace and other social-networking sites, beware: Facebook could squeeze you like Wal-Mart has squeezed mom-and-pop shops across America. Even Internet giants such as Google could lose ground.

  • When will bad bankers go to jail?

    Wall Street lies in tatters, but we're still waiting for the prosecutions that might reassure investors that the system works. One key issue: Were risk-taking bankers criminals? Or just dumb?

  • How GE dug itself deep into crisis

    Manufacturers such as GE, Harley-Davidson and Textron are getting slammed in both their core and lending businesses. Here's how they got themselves into such messes.