Neil Cavuto was joined by Gregg Hymowitz, founder of Entrust Capital; Jim Rogers, president of JimRogers.com; Ben Stein, economist; Michelle Girard, Treasury Market strategist at Prudential Financial; Jordan Kimmel, president and portfolio manager at Magnet Investment; Jake Zamansky, securities fraud attorney at Zamansky and Associates.
Saddam or Usama?
Neil Cavuto: Who's head on a platter does Wall Street want more, Saddam or Usama? Our military says the noose is tightening on Saddam. But when it comes to our safety and your stocks, would we be better off finding Usama first?
Ben Stein: Usama is far more dangerous. It showed and demonstrated an ability to mount attacks on the U.S. I think we want Usama very quickly.
Jim Rogers: I agree. Saddam Hussein can't do anything right now. He can't raise an army. He can't do anything.
Michelle Girard: We've finally gotten to the point where terrorism has receded. If we were to have yet another attack, it would derail the economic recovery that finally seems to be taking hold.
Gregg Hymowitz: I think the question is how do we get at the root causes of terrorism. I think you're going to start to see a lot more pressure put on the Saudis to stop funding terrorism. And in a way, we're funding it ourselves by funding Saudi oil.
Neil Cavuto: I say it's a 500 point gain if we get Usama, nothing if we get Saddam.
Jim Rogers: If it's a 500 point gain, it'll be there for two hours and you better sell everything you've got.
Ben Stein: I agree. If we see that kind of point gain, I think everyone and their grandmother should sell short.
Gregg Hymowitz: I think there are two different issues. By killing Usama, people will feel safer vis a vis the terrorism issue. If we kill Saddam Hussein, people will think we can get out of Iraq sooner. I think the market is concerned about the bill that is being run up in Iraq.
Neil Cavuto: I think it was the same factor in the mid-term elections. It wasn't the, 'It's the economy stupid.' It was, 'I'm alive, stupid.' I think people are lot more concerned about being safe than having money in the bank.
Gregg Hymowitz: But if you ask Americans what they're biggest issue is, it is still the economy.
Michelle Girard: But Gregg, if you ask Americans what they care about more, terrorism or Iraq, they will say terrorism and feeling safe, not what's going on in Iraq.
Ben Stein: The market has been rallying a whole lot, even with the cost of occupation.
More for Your Money
Neil Cavuto: The small cap Russell 2000 index is up more than twice as much as the Dow. But will small stocks keep giving you more for your money? Jordan you say investors are still better off with small caps?
Jordan Kimmel: It's not because they've outperformed. The reason is because the earnings, the revenue and the margin increases all show up there. I think I'm very bullish on the market, but I can't find any big S&P stocks to buy right now.
Ben Stein: Small cap stocks are more volatile but over long term, produces more of a result. I have no confidence that I can pick those small stocks, except for a few in the Los Angeles area that I've faired well with. But the S&P 600 small cap is not a bad buy right now.
Jim Rogers: That's not how you invest. You invest by buying stocks that are cheap, that are sound, where fundamentals are changing.
Gregg Hymowitz: But you don't buy anything.
Jim Rogers: I own a lot of stocks.
Gregg Hymowitz: I think the valuation on the small caps is already there. The Russell 2000 on next year's earnings is trading at roughly 35 times earnings.
Jordan Kimmel: What happened was the big funds got so big and they're all buying the same stock. I need to buy at the discounted growth rate and look at valuation.
Gregg Hymowitz: But in general the Russell 2000 small cap stocks are already stretched at valuation. I'm not so sure there's a lot of opportunity left in the small cap area.
Neil Cavuto: Ok, in this environment, what are you buying?
Jordan Kimmel: I'm buying Western digital (WDC). They have revenue growth and margin growth. And they're trading at roughly 10 times next year's earnings.
Gregg Hymowitz: I'm buying SBS Broadcasting (SBTV). The stock is really cheap and the company has a great management team. They have strong advertising and improving ratings.
Ben Stein: I like the S&P 600 iShares (IJR). Of course, when they say it's a hedge against the dollar, and as the dollar continues to strengthen then it's a negative hedge against the dollar.
Head to Head
Neil Cavuto: Time to go head to head with Jake Zamansky, a securities fraud attorney and partner with Zamansky and Associates. Jake, do any individual investors who lost their savings get more back than any single attorney in these cases?
Jacob Zamansky: I sue big Wall Street firms and I represent the little guys. They get their money back. They can get a hundred cents on the dollar.
Neil Cavuto: Who's getting a hundred cents on the dollar?
Jacob Zamansky: I had a guy in Ohio, a Rubbermaid retiree, who sued Merrill Lynch. I got twice the amount of money back for this guy.
Neil Cavuto: But the guys in the big class action suits don't really get much back.
Jacob Zamansky: Now that's a different ball game. The big class action suits don't really do a lot for investors. You only get two to five cents on the dollar.
Neil Cavuto: Here's what gets me though, the lawyer gets one third of the money and the remaining two thirds is divided up between the thousands or maybe tens of thousands of burned shareholders.
Jacob Zamansky: There should be more money going back to investors. I agree with that. The judges should cut back on the legal fees. There are some cases like Enron where the regulators couldn't even figure it out.
Neil Cavuto: Do you feel that investors need to take more responsibility for their personal investments and that they put more time into buying a dishwasher than they do a long term investment?
Jacob Zamansky: I believe in personal responsibility. I don't think the traders deserve their money back. But if you're a novice, then you should be compensated. The real lesson here is, do your homework before you invest your hard earned money. Know where you're investing your money and who you're investing with.
FOX on the Spot
Jordan: Tech spending rebounds! Buy McDATA (MCDT)
Michelle: Economy grows nearly 5 percent in 3rd quarter.
Gregg: Saudi's 9/11 connections could hurt our economy.
Ben: Democratic presidential candidates drop out soon.
Jim: California's financial crisis worsens.
Neil: The inventories are low and companies are poised to start building them up. That should be good news for the economy and continued improvement.