Recap of July 27: Why Not Buy Now?

Brenda Buttner and was joined by: Gary B. Smith, columnist; Pat Dorsey, director of stock research at; Tobin Smith, founder and chairman of ChangeWave Research; Scott Bleier, president of; and Joe Battipaglia, chief investment officer of Ryan, Beck, & Co.

Trading Pit

Even with last Wednesday's huge gains, it's painful to count up how much money our investments have lost.

The Dow, Nasdaq, and S&P 500 closed Friday at levels first seen years ago. So if you just hung in there like many of us, your investments have been dead money for that time.

But, it's very important to remember, the market will not go to zero. The economy is strong, and getting stronger, earnings are actually better than expected, and Wall Street is taking steps to clean up its act.

Joe says if you have cash and a time frame longer than a couple years, now's the time to be in the market. He believes that without inflation, low interest rates, and a growing economy in the U.S. and abroad, the market is the place for your money.

Scott also advised to buy stocks now. His reason is that when great companies tank, a bear market is coming to its end. And he thinks this one is near the end, so now is the time to buy stocks but be patient.

Pat thinks now is a great time to upgrade your portfolio because so many stocks are so cheaply priced. He said sell the tech stocks that you've been holding in your portfolio and take the tax loss. Then buy stocks like Colgate (CL), Pepsi (PEP), and Automatic Data Processing (ADP), and be happy over the long haul.

Gary B. charted the Dow's performance since the 1987 crash. He reasons now is a terrific buying opportunity because a long-term support line from the '87 low met a 5-year support line on Wednesday. Gary admitted that he doesn't know if this was the bottom, but he'd rather be in the market than out of it right now.

Tobin believes there will still be temporary issues that will take the market lower, but there are some real bargains out there. He especially likes REITs (Real Estate Investment Trust) and utilities because they are way down and are cheaply priced. But Toby strongly advised investors not to just buy any stock, because they'll wind up with big losses.

Scott said the good thing about stocks is that they now represent good values for first time in about 5 years. Joe predicts that new market rules will go into place, the economy will prove its resiliency, and profits will rise. This will give momentum to the market and bring people back. However, the Nasdaq will continue to suffer while the broader market performs well. Pat encouraged investors to learn something from the market's fall valuations do matter so don't buy those high-flying stocks!

Stock X-Change

Joe, Scott, and Tobin each picked their best Dow bargain right now.

Scott thinks Philip Morris (MO) is just too cheap to pass up. He advised investors to own quality stocks in times of uncertainty, and this company is a cash machine. He owns the stock. Toby also likes Philip Morris. Joe was skeptical on it because the company is starting to pay on some of its settlements and taxes on cigarettes are going through the roof.

3M (MMM) is the best bargain in the Dow for Toby because it is such a well-run company and its stock will split. He owns 3M. Scott likes 3M due to its diversification.

Joe said Exxon Mobil (XOM) is tops in the Dow to him because it just had a great merger and has a lot of cash flow. He owns the stock and thinks its headed to $45. (Exxon Mobil closed at $35.09 on Friday.) Toby thinks it will hit $40. Scott also likes the stock.


Gary B. and Pat looked over every stock in the Nasdaq 100 and each found the one he likes best.

Gary said the #1 chart in the Nasdaq 100 is Check Point Software (CHKP). He charted the stock's performance since a little before April of this year and noticed it was one of the few Nasdaq 100 stocks not in a downtrend. In fact, its downtrend was broken in the beginning of July. He thinks the stock can climb to the mid 20s. (Check Point Software closed at $15.69 on Friday.)

Pat likes the security software provider too. He agreed with the Chartman's choice because the security software is still a growing business and the company has big profit margins. Also, Pat thinks that Check Point is worth 50 percent more than its current price.

Pat is the bargain hunter in this pair, and for his top stock in the Nasdaq 100, he chose Paychex (PAYX). He thinks so much of the stock he even owns it himself. He said Paychex has an enormously profitable business with a lot of market share to gobble up. This is a true growth stock that could double.

In a rare feat on Bulls & Bears, Gary B. and Pat both liked each other's stock! Gary B. said investors can cash in if you buy this stock now. He took Paychex's chart back to 2000 and showed it was in a large downtrend. But, he thinks it's headed to the mid 30s. (Friday, Paychex closed at $23.82.)