The Microsoft Waiting Game - Fast Money Recap (4/23/08)

by: Miriam Metzinger

Recap of CNBC's Fast Money, Wednesday April 23. Click on a stock ticker for more analysis.

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT)

Pete Najarian praised Apple's earnings report, but added the company was penalized by the market because it had sandbagged. Jeff Macke said Apple had good reason to sandbag because with the stock's rise of 40 points in the past six weeks, Apple had to keep expectations at a reasonable level. Guy Adami said the gross margins were troubling, but said Apple is on the way up and would buy it at $155.

The group discussed MSFT's earnings report on Thursday, and Adami predicted the company will "crush" on earnings based on its already substantial moves. He added $35 is a reasonable price for the stock. Najarian doesn't think rising Mac sales will hurt MSFT but would sell in the mid $30 range. Macke commented even if the stock doesn't rise on earnings, it has had a 20% overall gain. Finerman thinks MSFT might lower its bid for Yahoo. Macke doesn't think MSFT will raise its bid and predicts Yahoo will drop to $19 if the offer deal is scrapped.

Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX), Burger King (BKC), McDonald's (NYSE:MCD), CEC Entertainment (CEC), P.F. Chang's (NASDAQ:PFCB), Yum! Brands (NYSE:YUM), Brinker (NYSE:EAT), Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI), California Pizza Kitchen (NASDAQ:CPKI) Starbucks slashed its second-quarter and 2008 forecasts and cited the troubled consumer as the cause for the slump in sales. Macke didn't like this excuse, since coffee is an addictive product. He said the company gave the "namby-pambiest" warning and is selling the stock. He added he wouldn't consider buying back SBUX until he heard the company's business plan. Najarian suggested MCD and BKC as alternatives. As if to disprove SBUX's claim about consumer confidence slowing, there was a rally in casual dining stocks such as CEC, PFCB and YUM. EAT reported strong earnings and Macke thinks restaurants could be bottoming. He would recommend CPKI and DRI. (NASDAQ:AMZN), Google (NASDAQ:GOOG)

The group discussed AMZN's decline after strong earnings. Adami believes it is a case of the company's valuation playing catch up and says the AMZN will have trouble growing rapidly enough to reflect its price to earnings ratio. Macke likes AMZN and noted that it rose on Google's earnings beat. Najarian would sell stocks that rally ahead of earnings. TD Ameritrade Senior Vice President Jay Pestrichelli noted that after hours, AMZN did not have heavy option volume, but there was substantial put trading.

Ambac (ABK)

On ABK's 43% drop, Karen Finerman said The Street is not concerned enough about financial services and exposure to risky areas. Adami predicted a brief rally to $5 for the stock.

Boeing (NYSE:BA), BE Aerospace (BEAV)

In spite of oil prices, Adami sees an upgrade cycle for aerospace. Najarian noted a good result on BA's earnings and would take a look at BEAV. Adami says BA is cheap on a valuation basis, and predicts the Dreamliner release could bring the stock to $100.

Philip Morris International (NYSE:PM), Anheuser Busch (NYSE:BUD), Molson Coors (NYSE:TAP)

PM reported strong earnings, and Finerman gave management credit and commented that expectations were kept in line. BUD is suffering from rising grain prices which are responsible for declining revenue and higher costs. However, Macke said it was a good sign the stock didn't drop further. He prefers TAP, but thinks BUD is still a good stock.

Freeport-McMoRan (NYSE:FCX), Newmont Mining (NYSE:NEM)

Adami thinks rising copper prices and FCX's molybdenum business will bring the stock up, although he sees a temporary selloff due to gold prices. He added NEM's multiple is higher and said FCX has been unjustifiably held back.

CNBC's Dennis Gartman

While Gartman said he is a long-term bull on crude oil, he thinks it is the next to take a hit after gold and wheat. He predicts the commodity could decline $10, but he thinks the sector is still a good place to invest. He believes oil could fall as far as $100. Gartman noted gold failed to rise even as the dollar fell and he thinks gold may drop as much as $40. While other commodities tumble, natural gas should remain strong, said Gartman.

Trader Radar: Research in Motion (RIMM) traded on unusually heavy volume on Wednesday.

Procter& Gamble (NYSE:PG), Yum and Boeing

China is the place to go for companies bearing the brunt of a slowing domestic economy and the group commented on the success of PG and Yum in Asia. Zach Karabell predicted SBUX would also make in impact in China and Boeing has received a large number of orders from the East.

Final Trade: The group all selected Microsoft.

Seeking Alpha is not affiliated with CNBC, or Fast Money

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