Yum’s Continuing Poultry Problems, and 2 Morning Hot Stocks Trading Now

Yum! Brands (NYSE:YUM): Current Price $67.90

After warning that same-store sales will drop more than originally forecast because of continuing chicken contamination issues, shares of the fast food restaurant company fell 4.8 percent in pre-market trading on Tuesday. Yum! said in filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that because of adverse publicity resulting from a government review of its Chinese poultry supply and corresponding low sales at KFC locations in China, sales in its China division are expected to be down 6 percent in the fourth quarter, compared to an earlier prediction for a 4 percent decrease.  However, according to Jim Cramer’s researcher Nicole Urken, the company’s near-term volatility is a long-term opportunity.


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Monsanto Company (NYSE:MON): Current Price $95.86

Shares of the agriculture products provider rose 4.2 percent before the market opened on Tuesday following the announcement of strong fiscal first quarter results. The company reported earnings per share of $0.62 and a revenue of $2.94 billion, which beat analysts’ expectations by $300 million and represented an increase of 20.5 percent year-over-year. Company executives cited the “cumulative strength” of its broad business portfolio for the increase in earnings. The results also reflected continued expansion in Monsanto’s Latin American corn business, momentum in its U.S. seeds and genomics business, and an improved performance of its agricultural productivity segment. With these positive results shares look to be headed to a new 52-week high.

MonsantoAmazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) Current Price $268.56

Amazon Chief Executive Jeff Bezos said in a January 3 interview with the Harvard Business Review that he would prefer to reward investors through free cash flow instead of boosting the company’s margins. The Internet retailer’s free cash flow position has been projected to increase 65 percent in 2013 to $10.68 per share. “It’s the absolute dollar free cash flow per share that you want to maximize,” he said, according to Bloomberg. “If you can do that by lowering margins, we would do that. Free cash flow, that’s something investors can spend.”


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