Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Investing success (or not) for 5/22/07

Today the markets were basically flat, and my TDAmeritrade accounts were up a combined $75. My accounts there are now above $95,000 in total, which is easily a new record for me. I have pumped some cash into them in the last few months, but the prospects for being able to do so in the next few months are looking pretty grim. Baby-related expenses, along with preschool for my almost 3-year-old daughter, are going to eat into the budget. My wife and I will both be receiving raises (me in July, my wife in September), which will hopefully offset these expenses to a degree.

Some interesting things happened in my portfolio today.

Investing success:
Planetout Inc. (LGBT) -- up 13.3%. This after being down throughout the day. This stock sucks so bad, where the hell is Rupert Murdoch to snap this company up and save me?!? Tell you what, since I'm already down huge in this stock (look at this one year chart!), this will be the last time I ever mention anything about Planetout in this column. Unless it goes up or down by more than 25% in a day.

Novastar Financial (NFI) -- up 7%. Another stock I don't care about. LGBT and this one are the two biggest dogs in my portfolio, so I actually hate listing them as successes. They did well today, but are an overall cancer on my portfolio. I think I'll stop listing this one too, unless it makes a 25% move. I see alot of bloggers stating, "Invest at your own risk, this site is for entertainment purposes only, I am not making official recommendations to buy stocks, don't sue me..." I can safely advise you to avoid LGBT and NFI. Just walk the other way.

Meritage Homes (MTH) -- up 4.6%. Home builders are a beaten down bunch. But these stocks cannot remain in the dumps forever. I bought this stock at a very unpopular time for homebuilding stocks, and I'm up 6.3% in total. I have hopes this will go higher.

Sadia (SDA) -- up 3.9%, and I'm up 80% in total on this stock.

Vail Resorts (MTN) -- up 3.3%. A ski resort operator has its stock go up in May? I know it's alot more complicated than that....

I had eight other stocks that were up between 1.5% and 3%.

Investing failures:
Kongzhong (KONG) -- down 25.8%. Oh dear. Out of my six Chinese holdings, this one is seriously underperforming. But down 25% in one day? KONG, you're killing me! I'm down 32% on this one overall.

Blackboard Inc (BBBB) -- down 6.5%. The stock fell on news of a downgrade from a single analyst. One guy dropped his rating to "Hold" from "Buy." One analyst. And he basically said the stock was approaching his $43 price target. The stock is now at $40.17. Does any of this add up? I don't think so. This is a prime example of how Wall Street overreacts to news - this is where you can profit. I did not add to my position today because of limited cash, but Warren Buffett's voice is ringing in my ear again... "Profit from folly rather than participate in it."

I am also still holding two $525 checks from my troublesome tenant. He gets paid on the 26th of each month, which falls on a Saturday this month. I assume he'll be getting paid on Friday then. I plan on calling him this week just to confirm that there's going to be $1,050 in his account ready to go.