DISCLAIMER: THE FOLLOWING "Cost of Freedom Recap" CONTAINS STRONG OPINIONS WHICH ARE NOT A REFLECTION OF THE OPINIONS OF FOX NEWS AND SHOULD NOT BE RELIED UPON AS INVESTMENT ADVICE WHEN MAKING PERSONAL INVESTMENT DECISIONS. IT IS FOX NEWS' POLICY THAT CONTRIBUTORS DISCLOSE POSITIONS THEY HOLD IN STOCKS THEY DISCUSS, THOUGH POSITIONS MAY CHANGE. READERS OF "Cost of Freedom Recap" MUST TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR THEIR OWN INVESTMENT DECISIONS.
Bulls & Bears
This past week's Bulls & Bears: Gary B. Smith, Exemplar Capital managing partner; Tobin Smith, ChangeWave Research editor; Pat Dorsey, Morningstar.com director of stock research; Scott Bleier, HybridInvestors.com president; Charles Payne, Wall Street Strategies CEO; Tracy Byrnes, NY Post business writer, and Susan Estrich, Democratic strategist.
Trading Pit: Iran Defiance Good for America and Stocks?
Iran has been thumbing its nose at the rest of the world. Enriching a new batch of uranium the same week it blows off the UN nuclear deadline. Will the world finally take action—making this defiance a "good" thing for America and our stock market?
Charles Payne: It's good in the sense that there will be closure and Wall Street loves closure. I think it's a good thing that the market didn't sell off in the face of Iran's defiance. This is a form of terrorism and it's showing that our markets are becoming less vulnerable to terror sell-offs.
Gary B. Smith: The stock market's reaction would have been the same no matter what came out of Iran. We are very skeptical of them and are suspect no matter what they say. Right now stocks are focused on other things. Until Iran does something dramatic, which they have not done yet, stocks won't be affected.
Tobin Smith: Look at the lack of bad news! All the recent news has been good unlike the last 3-4 months of bad news. Everyone knows what Iran is doing. They are playing us for dummies. Everytime oil goes up $1 it adds $40 million to their cash pile. So all the have to do is say, "Boo!" and we do their bidding. The market could care less about Iran.
Scott Bleier: Could you imagine how high stocks would be if we didn't have this Iran situation? They'd definitely be considerably higher. We need to put Iran against the wall and call their bluff. The rest of the world has decided to not be on our side. Iran is going to get the bomb and we're going to have no choice but to go in with our military.
Tracy Byrnes: It's been this way forever! Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad means nothing to us. He's like a little gnat flying around and annoying us. We have to get rid of him, but no one on Wall Street is concerned about him. We knew he was going to blow off the deadline. And until we take him down, he'll have no effect on the market.
Pat Dorsey: The market is very short-term oriented. But in the long-term, if they get the bomb, it's a big deal. The world would be a much better place if we dealt with this and prevented them from getting a nuclear weapon. But is the stock market focusing on this? No.
GOP or Dems: Who Does Wall Street Think Will Protect Us Best From Terrorism?
The threat of a terrorist attack is still the nation's number one worry. And as the midterm elections start to heat up, Democrats are saying they're the best party for national security. Does Wall Street—which was the target on 9/11—believe the Dems are the best party to fight terror?
Susan Estrich: Yes the Democrats are the best party to fight terror. At the very least, we can say which party has proven worst, and that's the Republicans. Look at their mess. Not only did 9/11 happen under their watch, but in the five years since, have they made us safer? No. First they fought against an independent commission to investigate what went wrong, then virtually ignored its recommendations. They also have spent hundreds of billions of dollars on the wrong war. Has the war in Iraq made America more secure in he world? No.
Charles Payne: Wall Street isn't convinced the Democrats are ready to step up to the plate. Plus there hasn't been an attack on the US since 9/11.
Tobin Smith: The GOP have shown the willingness to do what has to be done and not hesitate. We've probably stopped 15-20 attacks that we don't know about.
Gary B. Smith: I agree with Toby. I think Wall Street believes the Republicans will keep us safer.
Pat Dorsey: Honestly, Wall Street doesn't care.
Scott Bleier: Sometimes Wall Street can be very brilliant. It knows that the Republicans are fighting a war on terror and the Democrats are fighting a war on George Bush. The Dems have put forth no concrete plan.
Back to school stocks—names our guys say will give you "A" plus profits.
Pat Dorsey: I love MasterCard (MA). Everytime anyone buys anything with one of their cards, they make money. I own it.
Tracy Byrnes: I like this one too, but I'm concerned that hackers were able to access millions of their cards a few months ago. (MasterCard closed at $56.55 on Friday.)
I like Children's Place (PLCE). Everything is up about this company. Sales are up. Guidance is up. Estimates are up. Plus they make great clothes.
Gary B. Smith: All this good news and the stock is stuck moving sideways. I'd avoid it right now. (The Children's Place closed at $57.13 on Friday.)
How can you not love Apple (AAPL)? It just broke through a downtrend and is headed to the $80s. The stock is in super buying position.
Scott Bleier: He should've loved this stock when it was in the $50s. Now is the time to sell it. (Apple closed at $68.38.)
I like GSI Commerce (GSIC). They partner up with other companies, put them on the internet, and then take a piece of the action. The stock got hammered earlier in the year. I own it and think it's worth $20.
Charles Payne: I'm a bear on GSI Commerce. It's not growing. Operating margins aren't moving at all. (GSIC closed at $13.27 on Friday.)
I like brick and mortar. I think the age of overpriced internet stocks is done. Barnes & Noble (BKS) got hit recently with an options' scandal and now it's extra cheap.
Tobin Smith: No way Charles! This is a bad pick. (Barnes & Noble closed at $36.51 on Friday.)
The one you should be buying is Hewlett-Packard (HPQ). It has had a good run. The stock's momentum has increased. Their back to school sales are off the chart. By the end of this year I think it will be up 25 percent.
Pat Dorsey: All their profits are coming from cost cutting and that stone has been squeezed dry. (Hewlett-Packard closed at $36.50 on Friday.)
Tobin Smith: OPEC cuts oil production; gas over $3/gallo n by end of month
Gary B. Smith: Weak hurricane season; AllState (ALL) up 20 percent by 2007
Tracy Byrnes: Fed raises rates: housing goes from bad to worse!
Scott Bleier: Housing isn't dead! Realogy (H) gains 20 percent
Charles Payne: Big 4th Quarter rally led by small cap tech like Level 3 (LVLT)
Pat Dorsey: Crosstex (XTEX) pays 6 percent yield and gains 20 percent in next year
Cavuto on Business
Neil Cavuto was joined by Ben Stein, "How Successful People Win"; Meredith Whitney, Executive Director at CIBC World Markets; John Layfield, Senior VP at Northeast Securities; Ellis Henican, NY Newsday Columnist; Claudia Rosett, Journalist in Residence at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies; Lenny Dykstra, TheStreet.com Columnist and former MLB All Star; Michael Gross, ACLU Member and Constitutional Lawyer; Rob Stein, Managing Partner at Astor Asset Management.
Neil Cavuto: Is the United Nations more corrupt than Enron on its worst day? Claudia?
Claudia Rosett: Absolutely. It's corrupt in more dimensions. It's corrupt in a danger sense that Enron was not. The United Nations is morally, financially and politically corrupt.
Neil Cavuto: And you have also said that if you're just comparing dollars, Enron is relative chump change.
Claudio Rosett: If you just look at the oil-for-food scandal, Saddam got away with at least $17 billion. And this week we have yet another scandal breaking in the U.N. procurement department, which spends your tax dollars. We had the money wasted on things like Unifil in Southern Lebanon, which was costing $100 million a year to do what? To watch Hezbollah take fortification and take arms. We have corruption going on in U.N. peacekeeping operations in Africa. The extent of it is just monumental.
Ben Stein: International organizations tend to be extremely corrupt. The U.N. has committed incredible sins of immorality. But I think it does perform some good functions. It's better to have these people there being corrupt than have people starting wars. But I agree. It's thoroughly corrupt.
Ellis Henican: The U.N. is the institution of last resort. We dump it on the U.N. and then complain when it doesn't go perfectly. Yes, there is corruption but the notion that we should pound on them because they don't solve all the problems that none of the rest of us can solve is sometimes a little ridiculous.
Neil Cavuto: Lenny, do you think we're just picking on an organization because it is so big and because we've perceived that this organization doesn't flip over us, the U.S.?
Lenny Dykstra: Absolutely not. Everyone is correct except the last gentleman. He is dead wrong. The U.N. is corrupt and it's all about money. Kofi Annan and his son, that was kind of weird to me. What France and Russia? They wouldn't back us on all the sanctions. You can't even compare Enron to the U.N. It's like the world versus a country.
Meredith Whitney: We're trying to compare a notion of accountability between Enron and United Nations. Ultimately, there was accountability for the guys at Enron. The U.N. is so gigantic that of course there's going to be bad apples. I don't think you can call these guys frauds like the guys at Enron were.
John Layfield: I'm not sure that they're frauds but I know they're inept. The United Nations needs to be thrown out of our country. The sanctions would've never worked in Iraq because $20.3 billion or whatever the figure is, was given to Saddam Hussein while he was still in power. These terrorists are using that money right now.
Neil Cavuto: Has the U.N. done anything good ever?
Meredith Whitney: I just said, don't shoot the messenger. A lot of the problems are the governments.
Ellis Henican: The world is a difficult place and sadly the world doesn't agree with us on everything. You have to have a body that's going to resolve these things. Let's clean up the corruption where we find it.
Neil Cavuto: Claudia, you were probably the premiere journalist to look at this body and discover a lot of the abuse there. Having discovered what you've discovered, would you say the world would be better off without the U.N.?
Claudia Rosett: Yes, we need an institution that is honest. The U.N. volunteers itself for projects that it cannot begin to handle and asks the rest of us to trust it and does not tell us when things are going wrong. Things like the peace deal that has just been brokered between Hezbollah. What on earth are they doing empowering Hezbollah to be anything? The actual cost in lives and in dollars is astronomical.
Neil Cavuto: Ben Stein, you touched on something that, flaws and all, there is a value to some of their services. Tell me what they would be?
Ben Stein: They pass out aid. They have commissions on refugees. It's true they don't aid them as efficiently as they should but they aid them a heck of a lot better than if they weren't aiding them. If it were not for the U.N. there probably would not be a cease-fire in Northern Israel and Southern Lebanon. The U.N. is made up of extremely fallible human beings. But to say that we can get along without the U.N. is a bit too much.
Lenny Dykstra: The bottom-line is the other countries are jealous of us because they all want to be an American.
John Layfield: The idea of the United Nations is good but it hasn't worked. They haven't done anything correctly or ethnically in the last 10 years.
Neil Cavuto: Meredith, going back to the financial angle. I can see the pros and cons. I can see Claudia's point. I can see everyone's point. But I think we really lost sight of the financial responsibilities. If you give it money it has to show how it spends that money.
Meredith Whitney: Is the U.S. someone to talk though when the U.S. is spending money like it's going out of style?
Neil Cavuto: But we show our excess. We show where it's being wasted.
Head to Head
Neil Cavuto: Homeland Security chief Michael Chertoff wants to share detailed information on airline passengers to prevent terror but some privacy laws won't allow it!
Would giving up the right to privacy for the right to fly save lives and money? Michael?
Michael Gross: What the administration and Mr. Chertoff need is a lesson on Constitutional law. They have been speaking with forked tongue. Go back to Congress, like the Supreme Court told them to do, and play it the way the checks and balances systems works.
Ben Stein: Checks and balances works. And the Constitution is the greatest document created by mankind. But we've got to get it in our heads that common sense requires that we start profiling passengers. We've let political correctness rule the roost for far too long in airline security.
Neil Cavuto: Does that sometimes, John, involve tapping phones prematurely ahead of a warrant?
John Layfield: We have to do what we have to do. Rights go outside when you're dealing with live bodies that could be dead. There's a point where common sense has to dictate what we do.
Neil Cavuto: Do you think with your best intentions that what you're doing is setting us up for another hit Michael?
Michael Gross: The problem is lying about it. It's not whether it should be done or not. There's a legitimate debate that should take place. For five years, the President has been telling us that he's not tapping anyone without a warrant when he was tapping us without a warrant against the law. It's the lying that's the offense.
Neil Cavuto: Would you feel safer with a few more rights or dead?
Michael Gross: It's not a fair way to put it that way Neil. It has to be done with everyone and every expert going before Congress and Congress telling us what the law will be and the executive branch executing the law, not lying about it.
More For Your Money
Neil Cavuto: Who says you can't have it all? In honor of Labor Day, we've got companies that keep their employees happy and make their investors wealthy. Rob, what do you like?
Rob Stein: I like FedEx (FDX). It's a great stock. They employ about 200,000 people. The stock got beat up earlier this year because of fears of higher oil prices. Oil prices are going down. It'll be a big contributor to FedEx's profits. FedEx closed at $101.82.
Neil Cavuto: Lenny, what do you think of that?
Lenny Dykstra: This stock is over-priced. It's $100,000. How does a normal person buy 1,000 shares of FedEx? Let it pull back then I'd say buy it.
Neil Cavuto: Ben, what do you like?
Ben Stein: AMR (AMR), the parent company of American Airlines has been hit very hard by oil prices as all the airlines have been. It's managed to keep its employees very well paid. It hasn't proposed draconian cuts on them like other companies have. It is currently losing money and has no earnings whatsoever but I think oil prices are headed down. And I think they will turn around. I own a little tiny bit of this company. AMR closed at $20.40.
Neil Cavuto: John, do you like it?
John Layfield: I've flown 4 million miles on American Airlines alone. These guys couldn't make money if you gave them free fuel and free airplanes. They've lost business since the inception of business flying. Don't buy airlines stocks.
Neil Cavuto: Ok, John then what do you like?
John Layfield: You want a company that treats its employees well, go to any golf course in New York and you see a bunch of Goldman Sachs employees. These guys are making a fortune because they deserve it. They treat their investors well too. Goldman Sachs closed at $149.14
Neil Cavuto: Ben, what do you think of that?
Ben Stein: Goldman Sachs has truly got a license to steal. They are manufacturing money. Their problem is exactly what John said. Too much of the money sticks to the little paws of the people who work there and not enough of it goes to the stockholders. The employees are wildly excessively overpaid.
Neil Cavuto: Meredith, what do you like?
Meredith Whitney: My pick is Commerce Bancorp (CBH). It's a renegade banking company in its dedication to customers. You can't deliver that kind of service unless you treat your employees well. It closed at $33.49.
Neil Cavuto: John?
John Layfield: Meredith, to put your customers first and have no fees? That'll never work.
Neil Cavuto: Lenny, what do you like?
Lenny Dykstra: Helix Energy Solutions (HLX). I love this company and I own it. I think you should buy it. It closed at $39.15.
Neil Cavuto: Rob, do you like it?
Rob Stein: It's a good play if you think the energy cycle will continue like it has. But with the slowdown and decline in energy prices, I think this company is going to suffer along with that.
FOX on the Spots
Rob: Housing slowdown prompts Fed to CUT rates by year-end!
Lenny: Fed can't save economy from housing fallout!
Meredith: Falling home prices won't slow spending!
Ben: Dem Win means Bush impeachment & terror victory
John: Video game stocks top Christmas lists; buy ATVI.
Neil Cavuto: Housing. It's not crashing. It's slowing in hot areas, but not crashing. Anytime I hear all the media reporting it's over, I know this much, it's not.
Forbes on FOX
In Focus: Could the Stock Market "Live" With an Iranian "Bomb"?
Steve Forbes, editor-in-chief: If the Iranians get the bomb it’s going to hurt the stock market. The market will survive but it will be much smaller than it would be otherwise. This crisis is going to come to the floor in the next few months. If we don’t do something the Israelis will. They’re not going to let Iran get the bomb. This is a bigger crisis than Iraq or Lebanon.
Lea Goldman, associate editor: If Iran gets the bomb the entire world and the U.S. becomes an unstable playing field. Remember, the issue isn’t them having the bomb, it’s them using the bomb. And then we have a lot more to worry about than the stock market.
Jim Michaels, editorial vice president: The stock market will survive this, it’s survived two World Wars, the worst depression in history and it survived Jimmy Carter’s presidency. As long as this bunch of Hitlers with beards rule Iran the world is going to be an unstable place and the stock market is going to be subject to shocks.
Mike Ozanian, senior editor: We know that they are going to get the bomb and we know what they want to do with it. They want to annihilate us. We know where they want to build these things. We should put it on the map and then blow it to smithereens. We shouldn’t wait for them to use it. That’s a recipe for disaster.
Neil Weinberg, senior editor: What do you want to do Mike, nuke them now? The ones that are hyperventilating over this are the Republican administration that is in trouble and the Iranians. Last month the stock market had a nice run at a time when Iran was defying the U.N. The cool heads aren’t worried about this short-term because we’ve had Pakistan, India and North Korea develop bombs. And none of them have used them and there is good reason for that, we would annihilate them if they did.
Quentin Hardy, Silicon Valley bureau chief: The administration blew it and let North Korea get the bomb, the market seemed to handle it ok. Think about what the market would do if we bombed Iran like Mike wants to do. Oil would go over $100 a barrel, the Dow would drop to 9,000 and there would be suicide terror bombings throughout the Shiite world in Southern Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Israel and Lebanon. I think the market would suffer far more damage if we were to do that kind of damage to Iran.
Flipside: Government Should Get Out of the Disaster Relief Business!
Jim Michaels: Any big government program throwing $120 billion at anything, like we did for Katrina, is bound to be a waste of money. Not only that, it retards rebuilding. I was in Mexico right after Wilma hit last year. The Yucatan was devastated, but two months later everything was up and running again. They didn’t have any big government to help. They just put the roofs back on their houses, cleared the roads and went back to business.
Quentin Hardy: There is a role for government. The Japanese rebuilt after Kobe and Clinton did a pretty good job after the Mississippi floods. It’s not a failure of government, it’s a failure of this government.
Mike Ozanian: I don’t have a problem with the wasting of $120 billion, per say. We waste more than that on other things that are far less noble than people trying to get their lives back together. The problem I have is that we’re going to take all these people and they are going to go back and create the exact same situation, with weak levees and a weak economy. Another welfare state because it’s going to be run by the same corrupt politicians.
Lea Goldman: When the local and state governments are overwhelmed by catastrophes the Federal Government has an ethical obligation to get people back on their feet. It’s part of the Constitution, the general welfare of the public.
Steve Forbes: Obviously, after a disaster you want to get food and medicine in. You want to help with the infrastructure. But the best thing the government can do, instead of throwing money at it and wasting it, is remove tax burdens and regulations. Let a little free enterprise in.
Informer: $eptember $izzler$
Mike Ozanian: I like Nike (NKE). You’ve got the NFL and college football starting. They have big endorsements at the U.S. Open. All this is great for the brand appeal.
Lea Goldman: I think they are out-pricing their biggest fans. Sneaker prices are going up and up. What kid is paying $160 for sneakers? I like General Mills (GIS). I don’t know how the market is going to do, but I’m a little weary about gas prices and everything. This is a good defensive stock and it’s a growth stock too.
Mike Ozanian: The stock is just as soggy as the cereal. I don’t like this stock.
Chana Schoenberger, associate editor: I like Hewlett-Packard (HPQ). They’ve started to embrace the Carly Fiorina vision, their former CEO who they got rid of years ago. One of the things they’ve started to do is to beat Dell.
Jim Michaels: The stock is up 30%. It’s made some gains against Dell and notebooks, but I’d still bet on Dell. I like USG (USG), they make wallboards. The stock has been depressed because of the housing slowdown. But with a housing slowdown you have more remodeling and you need more wallboards. Warren Buffet also owns a big chunk of this.
Chana Schoenberger: I think that housing starts are going to go down more and we don’t need more houses. That is generally bad for a company that makes wallboards.
Makers & Breakers
• Norsk Hydro (NHY)
Jeanette Schwarz Young, President J.A. Schwarz: MAKER
This is a triple play. It’s a play on oil and gas, it’s a play on soft metals and it’s a play on currency because they’re on Euros and we’re not. I think it can go to $32 in one year. (Friday’s close: $26.59)
Chana Schoenberger: BREAKER
I don’t have a problem with the company, but I think all these oil services companies have run up a lot. I think that this ship has sailed.
Neil Weinberg: MAKER
For this stock the ship hasn’t sailed. It’s still fairly cheap at about 10 or 12 times earnings. That’s not something you can say about some of these other companies. The other reason you can like it is that it is diversified, it’s not just in gas and oil.
• Tetra Technologies (TTI)
Jeanette Schwarz Young: MAKER
Remember Katrina and Wilma, well this company disassembles those oil platforms that are out there in the Gulf. Not only that, they’ve just signed a contract with Venezuela to help with their production. I think it can go to $37 in one year. (Friday’s close: $28.24)
Neil Weinberg: BREAKER
This stock has run up and it’s expensive. You could buy Halliburton (HAL) for a lot less.
Chana Schoenberger: BREAKER
The stock has tripled in the last two years. I don’t like it.
Jeanette Schwarz Young: I still like it and think it can go a lot higher.
Our crew this week: Wayne Rogers, Wayne Rogers & Company; Jonathan Hoenig, Capitalistpig Asset Management; Dagen McDowell, FOX Business News; Jonas Max Ferris, MAXfunds.com; Rebecca Gomez, Fox Business News; Stuart Varney, FOX Business News.
Stock Smarts: Can Dems Deliver Lower Gas Prices?
In recent weeks, the price of gas has been coming down a bit. But the national average is still near the $3/gallon level. The Democrats have been saying they can bring prices even lower if elected in November.
Does anyone have that kind of power?
Jonathan Hoenig says he just doesn't believe it when it is coming from the Democrats. They are the ones always protesting about the oil companies gouging consumers, and they are the ones always protesting any kind of new oil drilling. The thing that is ultimately going to bring down the price of gas is the free market, and he doesn't think the Democrats have any respect for that at all. If they had any interest in cutting the price of gas, they would try and get rid of the huge taxes placed on consumers when they fill up.
Wayne Rogers thinks that this whole thing is insane. So many people think that there is a "political bias" when it comes to gas prices; gas prices are "apolitical". Neither Democrats nor Republicans can control gas prices. The market controls oil price. It's all about supply and demand. One factor that is important to keep an eye on is consumption from emerging markets like China and India. But the key thing for America is to develop alternative fuel so we can stop our reliance on foreign oil.
Stuart Varney says that (for once!) he agrees with Wayne Rogers: politicians are irrelevant when it comes to the prices of gas. He does think that gas prices will be lower by Election Day because of supply and demand issues. He thinks that BP will fix its pipeline problem in Alaska, thus increasing the supply of gas.
Rebecca Gomez thinks that even if politicians have nothing to do with the price of gas, they will still jump in and take credit (Democrat or Republican) if prices fall. This was a big issue the Democrats were using for the fall elections. But now that the price of gas has started to come down, it could become a non-issue for the campaign.
Jonas Max Ferris still believes that the government does have a good amount of control when it comes to gas prices. Regulations in the form of gas taxes and fuel efficiency standards can ultimately help to lower the price if gasoline in the future. It might not be something we want (regulation), but it is something that can help.
Dagen McDowell thinks that Democrats and Republicans can take control over gas prices, but they won't because they are all "gutless" when it comes to telling Americans they can't drive big cars and when it comes to telling Americans how fuel efficient our cars should be.
Slow Summer Housing Gone Cold?
The housing market: usually white-hot in the spring and summer. Not the case in 2006. Could this be the start of an epic fall for homes the rest of the year?
Wayne Rogers says this isn't the beginning; it already started six month ago. What you are seeing in areas like Manhattan is a huge supply of condos staying on the market. At the same time, prices have actually gone up a bit. So what you are going to see is those prices coming way down with things getting a lot worse.
Stuart Varney again agrees with Wayne Rogers, that housing prices are going to get worse. He does not think that there is going to be a real estate crash however. Inventories are high, no doubt. The worst place to be right now is sitting on one of the "McMansions" – not a prayer of selling on of those now in a previously hot market.
Jonathan Hoenig says that everyone is looking for the housing crash; he's not sure we are going to get it. No one should own a home that they can't afford. He has been really impressed with the exchange-traded real estate plays.
Rebecca Gomez thinks that one of the things that might be "softening" the blow when it comes to the real estate market is that the economy is on pretty good ground. People have jobs and are able to make their mortgage payments. People also are taking some homes that might have been for sale and turning them into rentals.
Jonas Max Ferris thinks that we will see a 10 percent year-over-year decline in national home prices.
Dagen McDowell says what we have seen is an increase in the inventory and an increase in prices, and that is when you will see the sellers start to "cry Uncle".
Face-Off: Scrap The Minimum Wage?
Mike Norman of the BizRadio Network joined Jonathan Hoenig for this debate.
Jonathan – Scrap the minimum wage. Jonathan thinks that the minimum age is "immoral". Free trade means free trade, and there is no such thing as the right to a wage or a salary in America. Employers have the right to offer a wage they chose, and employees have the right to accept those wages.
Mike – Keep the minimum wage. At its base, the minimum wage creates a level for the value of work. Without it, workers would essentially be forced to sell their services for virtually nothing, barely survive. He also points out states with a minimum wage higher than the federal level produce 40 percent of this countries economic output.
Question: "What does the crew think about Quiksilver (ZQK)?"
Jonathan would take a look at Quiksilver at these levels. If you buy it at $14, maybe put a stop-loss order in at $12. Dagen and Wayne do not like the stock.
Question: "What's the deal with mining stocks, specifically Inco (N)?"
Wayne says that Inco is being taken over, so you can't really talk about it in its independent state anymore. But he says we've had a huge run-up in metal stocks, so he would be cautious with those plays right now.