With all due respect to the successful IPOs of Snap Inc. (SNAP) , Mulesoft (MULE) and Canada Goose (GOOS) and the continued surge in U.S. stock markets, it was Apple (AAPL) and Amazon (AMZN) that stole everyone's hearts in the first quarter that ends on Friday.
Shares of Apple and Amazon have surged 24% and 17%, respectively, so far this year. The stellar gains have propelled Amazon's founder Jeff Bezos to world's second richest person status, while talk on Wall Street is building on Apple being the first trillion-dollar company. Interestingly, the move in each tech giant's stock price has come on a lack of big-time news, which to be sure should worry investors a bit in the second quarter.
With markets likely getting more volatile in coming months as Trump faces more serious tests, it's the winning stocks such as Apple and Amazon that could be dumped first by investors to raise cash.
The hype on each name has indeed been strong (which could make their pullbacks newsworthy, too). Apple iPhone supercycle talk is running as wild as Hulkamania at Wrestlemania 1 some 30 years ago. Yet, from what we learned this week from Samsung (SSNLF) , Apple better deliver something amazing with the iPhone 8 -- the Galaxy S8 is a legitimate threat to the Apple supercycle fanboys out there.
As for Amazon, Wall Street has forgotten its mixed fourth quarter (and the stock's already crazy valuation) and went all in on the company on news of a crumbling U.S. retail sector. It probably helps drive the hype machine that Amazon has uncorked a series of innovations this year, too. From Bezos manning a giant robot to the first successful delivery test of a drone to new store concepts, Amazon is showing that it will continue to redefine how we all live. That's the type of upbeat message that Wall Street often loves betting on.
So, cheers to Apple and Amazon for knocking it out of the box; may your second quarters not be the complete opposite! Because if they are, we will likely be experiencing that dreaded 10% correction TV prognosticators will just love discussing.
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Some are wagering that Sears goes under soon: Shares of Sears Holdings Corp. (SHLD) have exploded 44% in the past two weeks, while its credit-default swaps (CDS) -- which is what some investors pay to insure against a debt default within the next 12 months -- have more than doubled in the same period, TheStreet reports. Count this guy as firmly on board with the CDS investors here.
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Panera Bread out in front, again: The fast casual restaurant chain said on Friday it will start putting calorie and sugar counts on its fountain machines (pictured below), reports TheStreet. In effect, Panera (PNRA) -- who has been ahead of many on new digital technology and improved food quality -- has dealt a blow to Pepsi (PEP) and Coca-Cola (KO) . Meanwhile, Panera's best-in-class founder Ron Shaich told me in an interview ahead of the news the company is making a huge delivery push this year. This effort could unlock serious sales and profits over time.
Happy National Crayon Day kids: To mark the big day, Crayola will announce a new color to replace Dandelion, one of its classic colors, USA Today reports. The release of the new color will happen live this morning on Crayola's Facebook page. OMG THE SUSPENSE!
We can all use this coffee in our lives: The "world's strongest coffee" is now available in the U.S., reports CNN. Called Black Insomnia and retailing for $19 a pound, at 58.5 mg per fl. oz., the coffee is more than twice as strong as Starbucks' (SBUX) dark roast, at about 21.25 mg per fl. oz. Bless this company (the brand's Kickstarter video below).
Barack Obama is still popular: The former leader of the free world has been ranked the 12th best U.S. president ever, according to a C-SPAN survey of 91 presidential historians that hit the internet on Friday. We all await Trump's tweet on this one.
Wrestlemania weekend off to a fine start: Wrestlemania 33 is this Sunday, and will see 50 year old, freakishly chiseled icon Goldberg square off with star Brock Lesnar, who last year in July tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs. Festivities have gotten off to a fine start, nonetheless. Legendary wrestler Ric Flair finally received his statue, reserved for the legends in the business, presented by long-time friend and boss Triple H.
For those wondering, World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. (WWE) shares have surged 30% over the past year. Unfortunately, the legendary Hulk Hogan is still banned from WWE, and is instead spending Wrestlemania weekend promoting the opening of a new memorabilia shop (seen below).
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