Stocks to Invest in 2009 (Energy and Dow Industrial Stocks)

February 15, 2009

2009 is the Year of the Ox according to the Chinese Astrology, but for the stock market participants, 2009 will be the Year of the Stock Trader.  You are going to see some volatile days with very big news revolving around long term oil prices, viability of the United States stimulus package, increasing unemployment, California running out of money, and whether the housing market will ever bottom out.

My strategy this year will be taking positions in companies that are being oversold and doing it incrementally instead of “going all in” like they say in poker.  If you normally invest in $3000 chunks, break that into $1500 chunks and reserve a bit of money in case that stock you love falls another 10% so you can cost average and spread around your funds to different sectors.  2008 showed us that no sector is immune to the slaughter in stock prices although some stocks only fell 40% compared to 80% from yearly highs.

With oil hitting $150/barrel and even though it’s sitting at barely 25% of that value, I am a big fan of energy and commodity stocks.   Knowing how important natural gas, coal, solar, and petroleum will be through every developing nation, it’s a golden opportunity to take a position while these prices are so depressed.  Banks and housing stocks will have many more tough times ahead of them and a lot of infrastructure stocks will follow the health of the economy.  Most of the ten investments below are ones that I believe will have a better chance to go up than down in the next few months.  If they do go down any further, just add more shares!

  • Alcoa (AA)
  • Procter & Gamble (PG)
  • Wal Mart (WMT)
  • Garmin (GRMN)
  • Diamond Offshore Drilling (DO)
  • Transocean (RIG)
  • Devon Energy Corporation (DVN)
  • Nabors Industries (NBR)
  • General Electric (GE)
  • Perdigao (PDA)

Most of these are large companies with none being small cap stocks.  6 of the 10 corporations have some kind of ties to the energy industry and all are well off their yearly highs.  I threw in some Dow Industrial stocks too for some dividend plays that shouldn’t take too big of a hit if the market tanks any further.  Take your 30% gains when they come and be a happy investor!!!

Disclosure: I have current ownership in Transocean.

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Recession Durability: Video Games

December 8, 2008

I follow the video game industry intently from the small independent developers who make casual games to the AAA titles that make billions of dollars. This industry has surpassed the movie industry in terms of sheer revenue recently and continues to grows as the Nintendo generation ages and continues to buy games for themselves and their children. Finally, video games are considered mainstream entertainment. Games are everywhere from your mobile phone to your home entertainment system.

In this recession, people are turning to industries, which might weather the current storm. Walmart (WMT) has done rather well since the middle-class is cutting back and saving more money. Video games have been brought up as something that is resilient to a recession. Video games are very cheap on a per hour cost of entertainment. Some can be played over and over again. In the Great Depression people turned to cinema to escape their woes. Video games are the modern day cinema.

Video Game Tidbits

The major gaming console players are the Nintendo (NTDOY.PK) Wii with ~50% market share and the rest of the market split between the Sony (SNE) Playstation 3 and the Microsoft (MSFT) Xbox 360.

After many years of consolidation, Activision Blizzard (ATVI) and Electronic Arts (ERTS) are the two major publishers left. Take-Two (TTWO) is a smaller player, who dodged a hostile takeover from Electronic Arts.

Square-Enix (SQNXF.PK) and Konami (KNM) are a prominent Japanese publishers.

Korea’s NCSoft (036570.KS) specializes in online mulitplayer games.

Gamestop (GME) retailer wants to expand.

Casual gaming sites like BigFishGames and China’s 9you are getting large investments.

Apple’s (AAPL) iPod Touch and iPhone are growing gaming platforms, which might represent the future of gaming.

But not all gaming companies are prospering. Midway (MWY) is close to bankruptcy.

There are a few ways gamers can save money on their games.