4 Consumer Stock Stories For Savvy Investment Shopping

General Motors Company (NYSE:GM): Closing price $32.85

GM is getting into the electric car price battle with a lease arrangement on the Chevrolet Spark EV at $199 per month. The deal, announced Thursday morning, comes after the recent offerings of $199 leases on Nissan’s Leaf and the newly-released Fiat 500e. Commencing in June, the Spark EV will be available at select dealers in California and Oregon, says Chevrolet. GM spokesman Kevin Kelly said that the increasing number of EVs and the price competition should help all automakers in selling more cars in the segment.

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GM

Target Corporation (NYSE:TGT): Closing price $68.67

Target has enjoyed a number of weeks seeing blockbuster sales in Canada, but it now needs to sell in the key categories like repeat-business market segments that are dominated by Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) and grocery chains. Chief Executive Gregg Steinhafel told investors Wednesday, “We are encouraging our new Canadian guests to make Target a preferred destination for categories throughout the store, including food, health, beauty, and household essentials.”

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TGT

Monsanto Company (NYSE:MON): Closing price $104.99

The worldwide crop protection firms BASF and Monsanto intend to commercially debut a drought-tolerant variety of genetically modified corn in the United States in 2013, according to a senior BASF official on Thursday. BASF’s president for crop protection Markus Heldt said at a conference on food security that “We are working with Monsanto to develop a new GM corn variety, which is currently under trial and expected to be ready for launch next year.” The two parties have a revenue sharing arrangement, with 60 percent of revenue going to Monsanto and the rest to BASF, according to Heldt.

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MON

Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F): Closing price $14.81

On Thursday, Ford said that it is shutting its two Australian auto facilities and ending output there in 2016, amid rising manufacturing costs and plunging sales. The closure of the plants in the state of Victoria will cause the loss of 1,200 jobs, and will change the company into an import-only brand in Australia. The iconic automaker began building cars in Australia in 1925 and is the number-three auto manufacturer there.

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F

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