Market Wrap-Up for Feb.1 (BRCM, HSY, TUP, GS, BEN, MS, more)


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The new month has started well for investors, as 2012 continues to carry an early bullish bias. Today's moves have a hint of short-covering, with fairly large bounces in stocks that had been trading closer to 52 week lows.

Some of those early winners were following earnings results. They include names like Whirlpool ( WHR ), Broadcom ( BRCM ) ( story here ), and Manpower Group ( MAN ) ( story here ). Franklin Resources ( BEN ) led the financials higher, followed by gains from investment banking plays Morgan Stanley ( MS ) and Goldman Sachs ( GS ). Several well-known brands reported earnings and raised dividends as well, including The Hershey Company ( HSY ) ( more here ) and Tupperware ( TUP ) ( read more ).

Eurozone Unemployment Levels Reach Decade Highs

The Financial Times recently reported joblessness in the 17 countries that use the euro rose to 10.4% at the end of 2011, the highest level since the single currency was introduced a decade ago. There are now 23.8 million jobless across the 27-country EU, adding new pressures to domestic economic demand. You can bet interest rates will continue to be capped overseas, as they are here in the U.S.

Your Job Never Ends

As much as we tend to think about retirement being the ultimate end to everyday stresses, it unfortunately is not as carefree as most would think. Having spoken personally to many retirees, I can tell you they stay as focused as ever when it comes to their money.

As we all know, life is an ongoing process. Your wants and need change dramatically as you age. For example, my old-school Italian parents just bought their first flat-screen TV a few days ago (a 51″ model). When I asked them about it, their focus was on how much they paid for it, and not so much the picture quality or anything like that. Despite prices coming down after the holidays, and down significantly over the past few years in general, my parents looked at the cost as a very big deal. It's understandable - once someone's weekly income stream ends, their tendency is to think about everyday costs as just chipping away at their life savings.

That's why I continue to pound home the point of staying active and getting invested in quality assets that can produce income over the years. I know that we will never stop thinking about financial issues, so the key is to build as big a cushion as we can, regardless at what point we get started.

Year-to-Date Results Just Posted

Be sure to check out the year-to-date watchlist posts up on the site today. You can see how well many of the dividend stocks we are tracking have done through the first month of 2012. As always, you can find these and other members-only articles on Premium Articles Page .

2011 Was a Big Year for Dividend Stocks!

It is always great to see the media tip their hat to what has been a great year for dividend-paying stocks. We've been seeing several major media outlets publishing articles about how dividends were a big investing theme in 2011 and likely in 2012.

The truth is that we tend to see solid years more often than not in the dividend world, but the business media focuses their attention instead on the high-risk momentum action. Only in times of extreme duress does the media seem to focus on our dividend niche. Regardless, we won't be distracted from our job of finding the best dividend names to put fresh capital into.

I'd like to thank all our Premium subscribers and newsletter readers for helping spread the word about our service. It means a lot to us, and telling loved ones about is the best possible gift you can give to us this holiday season.

Our Beat The Markets with Dividend Stocks eBook Has Arrived!

We just debuted our brand new 275-page eBook, exclusively on! In this digital-only book, we look ahead to 2012 and the main factors that could affect dividend investors. A $39.95 value, the eBook is a free download for paid Premium subscribers.

Beat The Markets with Dividend Stocks contains a full economic forecast for 2012, including in-depth analysis on 65 of the biggest dividend stocks out there. It's a great way to get prepared for your investing next year! So head over to the Premium homepage now to download your copy.

A Dividend Capture Strategy for Active Investors

We now offer complete U.S. dividend data for all Premium members, so anyone that focuses on "Dividend Capture" trading strategies should have plenty of good stuff to research each day. Just check our enhanced Ex-Dividend Calendar , which is the best in the business, to search for upcoming payouts.

Speaking of dividend capture, Premium members can also access a 9-page report we published on the essential elements to any successful dividend capture strategy. Be sure to check it out here on the Premium homepage .

Thanks for reading everybody. I'll see you tomorrow!

Be sure to visit our complete recommended list of the Best Dividend Stocks , as well as a detailed explanation of our ratings system here .

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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This article appears in: Investing , Stocks
More Headlines for: BEN , BRCM , GS , HSY , MAN

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