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  • Consumer Activity under the Spotlight in Coming Weeks - 16 November 2009
  • With the famed Black Friday less than two weeks away, and consumers suffering from what has been coined as "frugal fatigue", the US consumer is under the spotlight as Wall Street investors look for signs that the US economy may, in fact, be on the road to recovery, spurred on by consumers who are tired of economizing and may throw caution to the winds for their festive season shopping. With Thanksgiving in the US taking place on the fourth Thursday of November each year, the Friday following Thanksgiving is the unofficial beginning of a festive season shopping season which has been known to continue into the New Year. Referred to as "Black Friday" because the annual consumer spending spree drags a lot of retailers out of the red and into the black financially speaking, many consumers take the day off work, descending on retail stores in their hordes to spend some quality time with their credit cards. While this may sound like a nightmare to many people, Black Friday devotees insist that it is well worth the effort, as competition is stiff and prices are often reduced to cost or below for a predetermined number of items to lure buyers into stores - the trick is to be there first.

  • Diversifying in Detroit - 12 November 2009
  • With one in three wage-earners in Detroit currently unemployed, primarily due to the crisis the in the auto industry, this once thriving city has been hard hit by the economic downturn in the United States. Many of the city's talented younger generation are leaving Detroit to search for job opportunities elsewhere, which experts believe is a cause for concern and could spell disaster for the future of the city. But amidst all the doom and gloom, there are optimistic entrepreneurs who are determined to put a positive spin on the changes taking place in Detroit, by introducing and developing new industries, the majority of which are totally unrelated to the auto industry.

  • The Role of a Greensheet in IPO Investing - 9 November 2009
  • Just as in any type of trading on the stock market, investing in Initial Public Offerings is not without risks. Weighing the pros and cons of an IPO investment can be greatly assisted by checking out the S-1 form lodged with the Securities and Exchange Commission as a requirement for going public. By doing this investors not only get a good idea of the future prospects of the company, but also of what would be a fair price to pay for the stock.

  • Investing in IPOs - 5 November 2009
  • The price of any financial asset traded on the stock market is determined by the age-old forces of supply and demand. Regarding initial public offerings (IPO) that have no trading history the question may arise as to how an analyst may value an IPO share price. There are at least two schools of thought regarding investing in IPOs, one being that the lack of historical information on share price performance provides a buying opportunity, and the other being that because IPOs have not yet been tested on the market, they present a higher risk factor.

  • The Practice of Greenwashing - 2 November 2009
  • With the threat of global warming, increasing awareness of both individual and corporate carbon footprints, and a general trend toward saving the environment, going "green" is seen by many as being socially responsible and is becoming part of marketing strategies around the world. Environmentally conscious investors may even, to some extent, choose green companies over others when making investment choices. So, with the general trend toward all things green, the term "greenwashing", which was coined by American environmentalist Jay Westerveld back in 1986, has taken on greater significance. Greenwashing is a combination of the words "green" and "whitewashing" – a term which has long been used to describe trying to make something bad look good, but it remains fundamentally bad. And so the term greenwashing has come to be applied to the practice of spending more time and money advertising that a company or product is green, than actually implementing environmentally sound practices.

  • Stop-Loss Orders: An Effective Investment Safety Net - 29 October 2009
  • There are many investment tools designed to take some of the guess-work out of a potentially volatile way of earning money. But what about when you've made your decision with regard to the stock you want to invest in? Is there a way to make that particular stock safer? An invaluable stock market investment safety-net which is sometimes overlooked, is the 'stop-loss order'.

  • Gather in the Stops: An Investment Strategy - 26 October 2009
  • While large numbers of stock market investors leave their portfolios in the hands of investment advisors while remaining passive with regard to stock market manipulation, these very investment advisors and active stock market players have a number of investment strategies they employ to manipulate the market, hopefully to their advantage. One of these strategies is to "gather in the stops", referring to stock market stop orders – an arrangement to buy or sell a stock when it hits a predetermined price.

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