One of my favorite office visits is when the company’s 401(k) administrator comes each year to address the stock market and economic conditions.
For the last several years, it’s been Terry Conner of Financial Engines Inc., and The Mutual Fund Store LLC before that.
Conner’s recent visit illuminated the FAANG stocks. That’s Wall Street slang for the market’s five best-performing and most-popular stocks. The acronym is for Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix and Google.
Jim Cramer of CNBC coined the term as FANG, according to Investopedia, but investors and analysts have since welcomed Google’s parent company, Alphabet Inc. (NYSE: GOOG).
The biggest eye-opener among the FAANG stocks is what’s happening with Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL). Analysts project the company will be the first to reach a valuation of $1 trillion. That sounds a little like crazy talk, but it’s current market capitalization is $951.7 billion. Apple shares are trading in the low $190s. Side note: Apple’s per share price is lower than locally based O’Reilly Automotive Inc. (Nasdaq: ORLY), which currently is trading above $280. O’Reilly Auto’s market cap is $23.2 billion, but Apple’s average volume is 30.46 million, compared with O’Reilly’s 844,928 average trading volume. Huge difference.
Conner says such growth stocks – you can also throw in Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ), Alibaba Group (NYSE: BABA), Expedia Group (Nasdaq: EXPE) and plenty of others – have been leading value stocks for over eight years. And it’s been by a wide margin: 5 percent or more. Typically, he says one or the other leads by 2 percent-3 percent.
“We’re seeing a world tilted toward new innovations,” Conner says.
If you’re wondering where YouTube is among the FAANGs, it’s owned by Google parent Alphabet. It’s one of the most innovative media companies, and a financial analyst on CNBC’s “Squawk on the Street” last year said if it was a stock, it’d be worth at least $75 billion.
There is some caution being thrown at the FAANG stocks. Like all stocks, they go through trading slumps, too.
An eight-year run is pretty strong, but look out for value stocks – those trading at undervalued prices based on other performance measures such as earnings and sales. It might be time for them to take their share.
Greetings from …
A mural new to Springfield is up on the west side of the Discovery Center building downtown. It says, “Greetings from Springfield, Missouri.”
This kind of mural is nothing new, and there’s even more history behind the phrasing now painted prominently on bricks in cities coast to coast. You probably remember the “Greetings from …” postcards. They were popularized in the 1930s and ‘40s. I remember seeing the postcards as a kid in the tourist shops on our family vacations.
The recent trend is captured by two New York artists, who in 2015 hit the road in an RV on a mission to paint in every state. Victor Ving and Lisa Beggs called it the Greetings Tour, and they’ve complete 30 murals in 15 states, according to the website they created.
The mural at Discovery Center was painted by a Springfield-area artist named Andrea Ehrhardt. It’s mostly done – except for the final, and most important, step. The large, block letters spelling out “Springfield” are empty inside. Ehrhardt and the Discovery Center officials who welcomed the mural idea on their building say the content for the letters is being selected. They’re also accepting donations and sponsorships to cover the cost of the project.
Here’s my take on what should go inside Springfield’s letters to illustrate the local history, industry and culture:
S: A big fish, preferably a bass. P: A dish of cashew chicken. R: A vintage car driving down Route 66. I: The skyline, err, Hammons Tower. N: The Wonders of Wildlife building. G: Headshots of Brad Pitt, Bob Barker, Kathleen Turner and John Goodman. F: Logos of the multiple universities: Missouri State, Drury, Evangel and Ozarks Technical Community College. I: The Jefferson Avenue footbridge and railroad imagery. E: CoxHealth and Mercy hospitals. L: Scenery of the James River. D: Corporate logos of O’Reilly Automotive, Bass Pro Shops, Springfield ReManufacturing Corp. and BKD.
What else you got?
Springfield Business Journal Editorial Director Eric Olson can be reached at email@example.com.
The Doula Foundation of Mid-America Inc. moved; Steve Albrecht opened Dr. Steve Albrecht Coaching Services; and Common Sleep LLC got its start.
Vineese Knight with the Massengale Group Of Keller Williams says when she was a young salesperson the biggest mistake she made was looking at people as numbers. She started experiencing real success when she made the mental shift to thinking of her customers as people and genuinely caring about their needs above her own.
Cody Ritter, owner of Base Construction & Management LLC, attributes the company's fast growth in part to keeping customers happy. Base Construction & Management LLC is one of the Springfield Business Journal 2019 Dynamic Dozen companies, recognizing the 12 fastest growing companies in the area.
"You are a leader," says Carrie Richardson, Executive Director of Leadership Springfield. She gives suggestions as to how you can develop your leadership skills.
Michael Wehreberg, Wehrenberg Design Company, discusses the shift in the last five years in web site design to mobile-first designs. Ultimately, you have to think of the human first and serve them with ease, and Google will give you credit for being mobile friendly.
Ömer Önder, owner of Springfield Diner, struggles with the process of renaming his restaurant. The process led by Dustin Myers and Jeremy Wells, owners of the branding agency Longitude LLC. Ömer expresses all of the emotions he is going through as they work together to revise his seating, menu, hours, and a name to reflect those changes.
It is projected that 10,000 people in the United States will turn 65 years old everyday for 19 years, and non profits are going to be competing over the coming years in a fierce labor market. Give Five was developed as a civic matchmaking program to help connect capable retirees with charitable organizations that need help. Greg Burris outlines the problems the program addresses, opportunities for individuals and organizations, as well as how United Way of the Ozarks is licensing to the program to share with other communities.
Jamie Kinkeade noticed most of the women in her fitness classes at The Studio were wearing Lululemon. She knew her clients were driving to Kansas City to purchase the brand, so she approached the athletic apparel company to stock their merchandise in her store, The Movement. They said "no" at first because they were not looking to expand into the Springfield market, but her persistence paid off.
With more job openings than people to fill them, it is time for your company to evaluate how you are motivating and engaging your team to help you retain and attract the best talent. Sherry Coker, Executive Director at the OTC Center for Workforce Development, walks you through tangible and intangible incentives that encourage employee engagement, performance enhancement, and higher job satisfaction.
"When we first started we thought we could pretty much do this on our own," discloses Vera Gibbons with Baby Foot®. "We thought we knew what would be great...that's not really what happened." Gibbons recommends partnering with a strong marketing partner early and give them a budget.
With four generations in the workplace, understanding the strengths and weaknesses of how each approaches brainstorming can make all the difference in arriving at the best idea. Boomer Kay Logsdon, Director of Applications at CultureWaves, and self-described fossil Millennial Locke Hilderbrand share what their trends research at CultureWaves tells us about generational differences and tips on how to bridge the gaps. Generations in the Workplace is an ongoing multi-episode series tackling the issues of generational conflict.