Barron's Picks And Pans: Dividend Aristocrats, Alibaba, GameStop, Walmart And More

  • This weekend's Barron's cover story explores the new opportunities and risks that arise for investors as Democrats take power in Washington.
  • Other featured articles examine why it is more important than ever to create a diversified portfolio, what investors will be looking for in upcoming earnings reports and how some century-old stocks have fared.
  • Also, the prospects for a top retailer, a struggling retailer, social media stocks, Dividend Aristocrats and more.

Cover story "New Opportunities and Risks Arise for Investors as Democrats Take Power" by Daren Fonda suggests that investors need to look beyond the chaos to economic growth as more stimulus arrives and the pandemic recedes. Yet tax increases and greater regulation also are likely under the incoming administration of President-elect Joe Biden. Are Southwest Airlines Co LUV or Walt Disney Co DIS worth a look now?

See Also: How To Buy Disney Stock

Sarah Max's "Walmart Throws Its Weight Behind ESG" indicates that Walmart Inc WMT has rolled out ambitious environmental initiatives and introduced programs to improve workplace conditions, support public health and champion gun safety. Does that make the giant retailer a pick for socially conscious investors?

See Also: How To Buy Walmart Stock

In "GameStop Is Caught in a Vicious Cycle," Connor Smith points out that videogame retailer GameStop Corp. GME faces multiple threats, from e-commerce to downloadable games. See why Barron's believes that investors are ignoring those threats but that may soon change.

Surviving the past 100 years has not been easy, particularly for public companies. So says "Oldies but Goodies: Some Century-Old Stocks Still Deliver" by Al Root and Jacob Sonenshine. See how really long-term investors in Altria Group Inc MO, United States Steel Corporation X and others have fared.

In Evie Liu's "Working Harder for a Diversified Portfolio," the case is made that with S&P 500 index funds skewed toward the largest stocks, like Apple Inc AAPL or Tesla Inc TSLA, investors have to work harder to get diversified. The article shows how and explains why it matters.

See Also: How To Buy Apple Stock

See Also: How To Buy Tesla Stock

"Earnings Season Is About to Begin. Investors Are Already Looking Past It" by Nicholas Jasinski discusses why investors likely will pay more attention to how management teams at the likes of Caterpillar Inc. CAT and General Electric Company GE address the post-pandemic future. Will optimism prevail?

See also: Benzinga's First Bulls And Bears Of 2021: Ford, Mastercard, PepsiCo, 3M, Tesla And More

Social media firms finally may be feeling pressure to take responsibility for our nation's discourse and behavior, according to Eric J. Savitz's "The Risks Are Rising for Big Tech." See what Barron's thinks comes next for Facebook, Inc. FB, Twitter Inc TWTR and their peers.

In "Where Is Jack Ma? His Absence Is a Deal Breaker for Alibaba Stock," Jack Hough claims that while internet giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd BABA is a fast-growing juggernaut, the risks from a Chinese government crackdown are too great. Does Barron's think it is time for investors to head for the sidelines?

See Also: How To Buy Alibaba Stock

Lawrence C. Strauss's "These 5 Dividend Aristocrats Are on Deadline: Raise Payouts or Lose Status" explains how AT&T Inc. T, Exxon Mobil Corporation XOM and others did not increase their quarterly dividend payouts last year, but they remain Dividend Aristocrats for now.

Also in this week's Barron's:

  • One indicator that signals a frothy market
  • How 401(k)s could soon offer annuities for lifetime income
  • Why target-date funds did well in 2020
  • Activists that are primed for action in 2021
  • Why the recovery may take a lot longer than some think
  • Whether it is time to buy post-Brexit British stocks
  • Why the market needs a good correction now
  • Whether the jump in bond yields could be a problem for stocks
  • What could boost palladium prices this year
  • Betting on Kentucky whiskey as a crypto asset
  • Some considerations for post-Covid retirement

At the time of this writing, the author had no position in the mentioned equities.

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