November brought us one of the strongest closes to a month in recent memory. Was the big rally just a bear market bounce, as we saw in late 2008/early 2009, or was the action a sign of good things to come? Realistically, we won't know the answer until we see some sort of follow-up action on decent volume (up or down).
Today, we observed mostly mixed trading for the indices. Embattled book retailer Barnes & Noble ( BKS ) got hammered following a poor earnings report and outlook. On the flipside, retailer Guess? ( GES ) had a bit of a bounce off recent lows, despite their lackluster earnings results . Meanwhile, Walt Disney ( DIS ) shares ended the day mostly flat, despite the company's 50% dividend increase (which still only puts its yield at a paltry ~1.6%).
We also had the usual "first Thursday of the month" retail sales figures trickling in. Of the notable moves, Nordstrom Inc. ( JWN ) and Ross Stores ( ROST ) were upside standouts, while Kohl's ( KSS ) did not receive a good reception on their numbers.
Following yesterday's bounce, the financials ended mixed on this day with Citigroup ( C ) and J.P. Morgan ( JPM ) lacking much of the upside we witnessed yesterday. Again, the financials are moving mostly on European headlines these days, and to a lesser extent on any U.S. news.
Over on the commodity side, CF Industries ( CF ) and Cliffs Natural Resources ( CLF ) managed to add on some gains. If you want to know how the commodity names will ultimately fare, you need not look any further than China's economic picture. We've seen many of the commodity sector favorites pull way off their highs, with some even approaching their 52-week lows.
Lastly, many are expecting gold ( GLD ) prices to resume their move higher with all the new money printing globally, but so far the move up has been a bit slower than expected. Gold is, of course, still worth keeping an eye on for those who may have some exposure in their portfolios. We don't currently have any gold-related names on our recommended list, as most have extremely low yields, making them unattractive to dividend investors.
Timing the Market Will Only Make Your Job Harder
Once again, yesterday's massive rally proved why trying to time the market is quite often a fruitless endeavor. Everyone knows from reading my newsletter each day that the best strategy is consistently putting money to work in the markets month after month. I know the temptation to avoid paper losses in your portfolio is tough to ignore, but take it from me, you will only morph into a day trader when you try and time the markets.
At that point, any goal you have on building long-term wealth through the beauty of compound interest will be long gone. We certainly don't advocate taking big losses or holding onto to losers. That's why you need to develop and stick to a discipline of making your money work for you. There are already plenty of hurdles to stop you from building wealth (lower-than-expected salary, bad spending habits, etc.), so don't step on your own feet when it comes to investing! There are plenty of great opportunities out there each and every day.
An Important Note Regarding the Best Dividend Stocks List
We want to make sure everyone understands that the stocks on our Best Dividend Stocks List are the names we currently like for new investor capital, regardless of what date the stock was first recommended on. If and when a stock is removed from the list, we will clearly state whether the stock should be sold (which is rare but occasionally will happen), or simply held in one's account until we see a better entry point or catalyst.
And here's one last thing to remember about what we do here at Dividend.com. It's not just the names that we recommend that can help you build wealth, but also the things we try to steer you away from that are just as important. Forget about speculative or penny stocks, chasing unprofitable IPOs, and listening to the manic talking heads in the business media!
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 are doing through the first eleven months of 2011. As always, you can find these and other members-only articles on Dividend.com Premium Articles Page .
Our Beat The Markets with Dividend Stocks eBook Has Arrived!
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Thanks for reading, and I'll see you tomorrow!
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