Cavuto on Business

Recap of January 18: Take Saddam's Oil?

Neil Cavuto was joined by Newt Gingrich, former speaker of the House; Jim Rogers, president of; Gregg Hymowitz, founder of Entrust Capital; Ben Stein, economist and former Nixon speechwriter; and Patricia Chadwick, president of Ravengate Partners.

Take Saddam's Oil?

It could cost us $100 billion or more if we attack Iraq. If we do attack and kick out Saddam, should we take Saddam’s oil to pay for the war?

Newt says that's a terrible idea. He says we are going as liberators and that the oil belongs to the people of Iraq. Jim agrees, saying it is not our oil to sell. Ben and Gregg also agree. Gregg says U.S. oil companies could help Iraq develop its oil industry and infrastructure, but he thinks it would be ludicrous for us to take Iraqi oil which is not ours to take.

Newt says the long-term price of oil will go down if we get a pro-western government set up in Iraq.

Gregg says oil prices will fall if there is a peaceful regime change. If it is not peaceful, he thinks we could see prices rise to $50 a barrel of higher.

More for Your Money: Profit Comeback!

Iraq, North Korea, and Al Qaeda are all big worries for investors, but are getting corporate profits back the real problem with the market? Profits for S&P 500 companies are down 17 percent over the past two years. S&P 500 Stock Index is down 33 percent for the same time. Neil asked his guests when they think earnings will come back and if that will bring back the bull market?

Patricia thinks there are signs of life. She points out that Fourth quarter earnings are coming out and they are not disastrous. She also says GDP for 2003 is estimated to grow at a 2-3 percent rate. And since there is no inflation eating it away, it should translate into about a 10 percent profit growth for U.S. companies.

Ben thinks there is a profits catastrophe because profits are no higher than they were in 1995.

Gregg and Jim disagree with Ben. Jim says even if profits declined they are on their way up now.

Neil also asked his guests what stocks they think will see a profit comeback: Patricia recommends and owns Kohl's (KSS). She says it is not a cheap stock at its current price, but likes the discount retailer because it is growing at about 20 percent pace this year.

Gregg's recommends sports apparel maker, Reebok (RBK). He owns it and says it is fairly inexpensive at 12 times earnings and that the company is taking market share away from Nike.

Ben's profit comeback stock pick is the Dow Diamonds (DIA). He thinks we're due for a profit recovery because historically it would be unprecedented if we did not.

FOX on the Spot

Patricia: Earnings will be surprisingly strong and may spur a rally in stocks.

Ben: Dow will rise significantly if dividend tax is repealed and we don’t go to war.

Jim: G7 finance ministers will stop meeting

Gregg: Dividend tax is not eliminated

Newt: Dividend tax is eliminated

Neil: More tech companies will start offering dividends