What is Earnings Season?

What is Earnings Season?

Earnings season describes not one, but four times in a year, when corporations release their quarterly earnings reports. Investors look forward to this time because they are able to get an update about how the year is going, compared to projections. After each fiscal quarter ends, there are a few weeks in which companies file their quarterly reports with the SEC and announce their current earnings and sales numbers. Each of these periods is known as earnings season. Continue reading...

What is the Broadening Top (Bullish) Pattern?

The Broadening Top pattern forms when the price of a pair progressively makes higher highs (1, 3) and lower lows (2, 4) following two widening trend lines. The price is expected to move up or down past the pattern depending on which line is broken first. What distinguishes a Broadening Top from a Broadening Bottom is that the price of the pair is rising prior to entering the pattern formation. This type of formation happens when volatility is high or increasing, and when a pair’s price is moving with high volatility but little or no direction. It potentially indicates growing investor nervousness and indecisiveness. Continue reading...

What is the Falling Wedge (Bullish) Pattern?

The Falling Wedge pattern forms when the price of a pair appears to be spiraling downward, and two down-­sloping lines are created with the price hitting lower lows (1, 3, 5) and lower highs (2, 4). The two pattern lines intersect to form a narrow triangle. Unlike Descending Triangle patterns, however, both lines need to have a distinct downward slope, with the top line having a steeper decline. This pattern is commonly associated with directionless markets, since the contraction (narrowing) of the market range signals that neither bulls nor bears are in control. However, there is a distinct possibility that market participants will either pour in or sell out, and the price can move up or down with big volumes (leading up to the breakout). Continue reading...

What does “Buy the Dips” Mean?

“Buying the dips” is a bullish description of investing in stocks whose prices have gone down. We say this is a bullish sentiment because a bearish investor would be more likely to interpret the downturn as a sign of impending doom, or might prefer to play it safe. A “dip” can be loosely defined as a downtrend without much momentum or evidence to support a bearish outlook. Another way of interpreting a dip would be as an oversold condition, where investor sentiment has caused the price of a quality stock to fall. Bullish investors could maximize their gains in such a scenario by buying low and selling when the stock has recovered and pushed on to new highs. Technical analysis indicators such as Bollinger Bands can be used to identify favorable buying conditions. Continue reading...

What are Accounting Earnings?

Earnings that are reported in a given year may differ for the same company if different accounting methods were used. Earnings are the revenues of the company minus the cost of good sold, expenses, and investment losses. If that seems like something that’s pretty cut-and-dried, and will look the same no matter who is doing the accounting… well, that’s not entirely correct. Earnings can be made to look different if different non-GAAP or pro-forma methods are used. If non-recurring expenses are ignored or amortized in a pro-forma accounting method, then earnings will not match up to the GAAP-based books. Continue reading...

What is Convertible Preferred Stock?

A convertible preferred stock is one that gives the owner the option to convert shares to common stock, usually by a predetermined date. The shareholder usually has control over when to convert the shares, but in some cases there are provisions that allow the company to force conversion. An investor may choose to do this conversion if they believe the company has high upside potential, and they want common stock exposure which would allow them to participate more in market gains. Continue reading...

What is market equilibrium?

What is market equilibrium?

Market Equilibrium occurs when fluctuations between supply and demand balance out, keeping prices relatively stable. This trend appears relatively horizontal or sideways when charted. Both price equilibrium and quantity equilibrium should meet at the same point where the supply and demand curves meet on a chart. According to the Law of Supply, with all factors being equal, if the price of a good or service increases, the supply of that good or service will increase. If demand doesn't meet it, the price of that good or service must come down; this increases demand but might cause a shortage in supply, which might drive prices back up, and so on. Continue reading...

What should I look for in a good Mortgage Calculator?

What should I look for in a good Mortgage Calculator?

Mortgage payment arrangements can be engineered in a number of ways, and a good mortgage calculator will give you enough flexibility to input the terms of your own. Ideally a mortgage calculator will be flexible enough to let you input the following: an adjustable rate, a rate cap, optional mortgage “acceleration” payments, balloon payments and resets, impound account calculations which take into account the property taxes and insurance you pay, as well as calculations which take any origination fees into account. Continue reading...

Should I Buy the Same Companies Warren Buffett is Buying?

Absolutely yes. It would be a lot better if we knew about it at the time he was buying them, though. The only problem is, we only know which companies Warren Buffett bought after the fact, and this news has already been incorporated into the price by the time it becomes known to you (and everybody else). If you want to buy shares of companies that Warren Buffett is buying, purchase shares of Berkshire Hathaway – his investment vehicle. It can also still work to purchase shares of the same companies he does. Continue reading...

What are Growth Mutual Funds?

Companies that generally have high P/E ratios, high expected growth rates, and that generally do not pay dividends are likely to be found in the portfolio of a growth mutual fund. Growth mutual funds invest in companies that are developing and/or have a high potential for growth, as the name implies. Growth Funds are typically riskier because the companies they invest in have a heightened chance of both profiting and failing. Continue reading...