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CES Kicks Off With Hollywood Fireworks By Charles Payne

Asked a girl what she wanted to be
She said baby, Can't you see
I wanna be famous, a star on the screen
But you can do something in between

-The Beatles

Baby you can drive my car
Yes I'm gonna be a star
Baby you can drive my car
And maybe I'll love you

The Consumer Electronics Show kicks off in Las Vegas today, and promises to be a spectacle. Products introduced this week will go on to be household names, and make life easier. From an investment point of view, opportunities will be revealed as well.

Looks like most of the gee-whiz stuff will revolve around the car-of-the-future which is looking more and more like a living room with wheels.

It's going to be all about in-vehicle infotainment (IVI) that boosts voice recognition and better connectivity with the driver, the passengers, their devices, the car and the Internet. These whips will hit the streets real soon and should be a hit.

Ø Autos with IVI estimated to be shipped by 2015 - 35 million
Ø Autos with Internet access by 2017 - 42 million

With all of this, we are also promised major strides toward "accident-free" automobiles. All of this means a lot of computer chips, wider pipes to carry data, and information at the speed of light; bigger clouds and amazing investment opportunities.

The hype has finally arrived. For a nation where the rite of passage of a new ride has been fading of late, making the car an extension of the bedroom and smart phone; this might be the thing to get young men and women back behind the wheel.

Because, baby, the car is definitely going to be a star:

Tora! Tora!Tora!

Michael Bay's meltdown at the CES was hard to fathom. It was reminiscent of the special effects from his movie "Pearl Harbor."

The director introduced Samsung's new 105-inch bendable television, and apparently something went wrong with the teleprompter because he became flustered then walked off the stage.

It's interesting that Bay was chosen in the first place, considering his penchant for producing bombs.

Sure his "Transformers" series rocked the box office, but other than that, not so much.

Book-ending the "Transformers" series was "The Island" starring Scarlett Johansson, but it bombed anyway; it was made for $126 million, it took in $12.4 million on opening weekend, and just $35.8 million total. Then last year, a full seven years since that boring remake of "Logan's Run," we got two box office studs in "Pain & Gain." The movie barely cracked $20.0 million on opening weekend.

Still, yesterday was a big day for Samsung.

The Korean electronics maker was a hit (not to be confused with being a bomb, or being the bomb). There was nothing but praise for:

> 105-inch bendable television

> Smart Home (connected home...taking phone calls from the refrigerator)

Ø Washers and Dryers
Ø Vacuums
Ø Kitchen Appliances

> More Tablets

Even with Michael Bay's instant classic and array of smart devices, Samsung and others understand the sizzle this year, which comes from wearable computing gadets and those cars. In the meantime, Samsung posted disappointing results, which means additional pressure for the stock, that's already lost $19.0 billion in market cap to usher in the New Year. Lighnting attack, lightning attack, lightning attack - Samsung is stung today, but has good stuff on the drawing board.

Today's Session

It's been tough sledding for the market thus far in 2014, as stocks just haven't been able to gain any traction. Strong starts aren't attracting buyers as those rallies fizzle quickly. The good news is that weakess brings a few fence-sitters off the sidelines, as it's clear most investors are waiting for some kind of signal. Just ahead, earning season begins and the first jobs report of the year will be released.
According to the U.S. Department of Commerce, the trade deficit during November totaled $34.3 billion, decreasing from the $39.3 billion reported for October and landing below the Street's consensus estimate of $40.4 billion.

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