Market Wrap-Up for Sept.25 (AAPL, CAT, MTN, PAYX, EMR, more)


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There were certainly no signs of window dressing (money managers buying up the winners from the quarter to make their portfolios look better) in the indices as the selling continued this afternoon and right into the close.

Looking at today's internals, we saw earnings results moving several names. Vail Mountain Resorts ( MTN ) posted some nice gains following today's earnings results . On the flipside, shares of Paychex ( PAYX ) and Emerson Electric ( EMR ) pulled back on their earnings numbers and outlook. It wasn't a good day for Apple ( AAPL ) shares as disappointment from the initial iPhone5 weekend sales numbers continue to hang over the stock. Caterpillar ( CAT ) shares were also lower as management pulled expectations lower for the next couple of years.

Cutting Corners on Quality (NFL-Style)

There probably is no bigger controversy hitting the media headlines today than the brutal officiating call made in last night's Packers-Seahawks NFL football game by one of the increasingly despised replacement referees. The botched call by so called "replacement" referees handed the game to the Seahawks, when the correct call seemingly should've been an interception by the Packers.

You see, The NFL has been in a negotiating battle over pensions for NFL referees. Amid the labor dispute, the league has locked out the regular refs (i.e. the people who know how to do the job correctly), replacing them with ill-prepared, inexperienced refs, many of whom have never refereed at a level higher than high school.

Unfortunately the lack of experience has translated into an amazing amount of officiating mistakes, some of which are directly affecting the outcomes of games. Here we have a sport that makes hundreds of billions of dollars, and the difference between the what the "real" refs want and what the NFL is willing to give them reportedly boils down to less than $5 million. The longer the current situation goes on, the more irate players and fans will get. Clearly, this development is bad for the sport, and quite frankly, the NFL should know better.

As I was driving into the offices this morning, it was amazing to hear the sports radio callers express their angst with what happened in last night's game. You could swear some of these callers were on the verge of having a heart attack with the anger they expressed. I couldn't help but think about how this type of scenario mirrors what happens with people and the financial/investment decisions they make. Many talk about building a large nest egg, but then the actions they take to get there make no sense at all. Whether it's trying make money trading in high-risk areas like penny stocks, Forex (currency trading), or futures, some of the same people blowing a gasket about the NFL referee situation should introspect and realize how they too are making a big blunder with their financial approach. In other cases, many people may be looking to all the wrong people for financial advice or guidance (similar to how the NFL thinks it can get away with unqualified referees).

I can certainly say that sports brings out plenty of emotion for me. But at some point, you learn to separate the impact of sports on your actual life, and concentrate instead on things that matter so much more. If we can get the everyday person/sports fan to understand this concept, the scope of many people's financial well-being could certainly begin to get the proper attention it deserves.

Having a Back-Up Plan with Your Investments

News came out this morning that office retail giant Staples ( SPLS ) is gearing up to close even more stores than the company had initially expected. Today is certainly a nerve-wracking day for commercial property owners who may have Staples as their key tenant (or "anchor") to their retail-focused location. Filling in these sort of locations once they are vacated often proves very difficult. For those who have much of their wealth tied up in commercial property these days, it's integral on top of property investments like never before. In the real estate business, it does pay to anticipate the changes that are likely coming, and create the fallback plan before this changes begin to occur.

"Turn-key" investments, particularly in real estate, are few and far between these days. The story lines can change quite dramatically, and news is disseminated more quickly than ever. Having the inside scoop doesn't have the same meaning anymore in a world where so much information is at most everyone's fingertips. As I mentioned before, you must learn to anticipate impending market changes if you want to sleep comfortably at night - whether you're looking at retail-focused commercial property, or any other investment.

Income, Income, Income

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

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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: AAPL , CAT , EMR , MTN , PAYX

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