Beacon Research is out with its monthly, and highly useful take on technology stocks, focusing on Google and Yahoo, among others.
In its “Traders Alert” report, Beacon says that a new alliance between Google and IBM make the latter a good buy. "Google Inc. (GOOG) shares slipped .38% to $341.70 Thursday's morning. In a move to improve its on-line health-record service, the company is recent announced it is teaming up with International Business Machines Corp. (IBM) to allow patients to add data generated from home-health monitoring products, such as blood-pressure cuffs and glucose meters. Both companies said software developed by IBM, with consumers' permission, can shift the data into a personal health record in Google Health, Google's service for helping consumers manage and store their health information on-line."
Beacon’s Trade Alert also featured Yahoo!'s new note-taking application, called Yahoo Search Pad, to be integrated into its search engine:
Thus, Beacon analysts are also high on Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO) shares gained .57% to trade at $13.63 in Friday trading. Beacon says that Yahoo is testing a new note-taking application integrated into search called Yahoo Search Pad. Although not yet publicly available, it will become a feature of Yahoo's search engine in the future. Unlike other note-taking tools, Search Pad tries to figure out when a user might be in research mode, and records and groups all of searches for him, Beacon adds.
Other analysts are starting to fall into line on tech stocks. Highly-quoted investor Mark Faber says that tech stocks are a great buy right now. Specifically, he is touting Cisco Systems Inc., Intel Corp., Microsoft Corp. and Oracle Corp. as stocks that will outperform U.S. Treasuries over the next five to 10 years, Faber, managing director of Hong Kong-based investment firm Marc Faber Ltd. and publisher of the Gloom, Boom & Doom Report, told Bloomberg Radio’s audience in an interview Friday.
“You could make a case that in the U.S. some equities have come down a lot and are inexpensive,” Faber said. “In Nasdaq stocks, in high-tech companies, we have a base-building period.”
Another tech giant sitting on a pile of cash is Apple, which has $28 billion in the bank and a stock price that has rebounded nicely from its low of 78.20 the week that Steve Jobs announced his leave of absence.
On Thursday, Piper Jaffray technology analyst Gene Munster predicted that Apple would sell 6.6 million AppleTV units this year, generating an additional 18 cents a share in profits in 2009 for Apple. He's also predicting new Apple TV hardware that will include live TV and DVR capabilities that will automatically sync with Macs, iPhones and iPods over a wireless network.
Apple is on its way to doing even some bigger things, says Munster: "With its iTunes ecosystem, Apple could develop a unique TV without any set-top-boxes or devices attached. With the use of a CableCARD for digital HD TV signal, Apple could effectively replace the home entertainment system (including a music stereo, cable box, Blu-ray/DVD player, and gaming console) with an all-in-one Apple television. Such a device would command a premium among a competitive field of budget TVs." It’s strange that on a day when the economy sheds 600,000 more jobs – the worst number since 1972 – tech stocks are looking almost rosy.
Almost. But if you focus on cash and think long-term innovation, companies like Apple are a good buy right now.