Market Overview

Four Stocks for July 4th

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July 4th celebrates the Constitutional Congress's adoption of the Declaration of Independence in Philadelphia. This significant event sparked the Revolutionary War and eventually led the U.S. to win its independence from the British Empire. Below are four stocks for the holiday that represent the essence of American culture.

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1. Boston Beer (NYSE: SAM): As the producer of Sam Adams, Boston Beer Company exemplifies the American past time of drinking beer. According to Nielsen, in the U.S., the 4th of July is biggest beer consumption day of the year. Beer stocks such as Boston Beer may be banking on strong sales for the holiday. However, as the holiday falls mid-week for the first time since 2007, beer consumption may be more relaxed than normal. On this July 4, consumers might drink less because the next day is a work day. As a result, Beer companies may be more reliant on strong sales from other summer holidays, including Labor Day and Memorial Day. These two are second and third, respectively, on the Nielsen list of biggest beer consumption days. As earnings season approaches, investors might anticipate forthcoming comments, regarding summer holiday beer sales, from beer CEOs.

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2. Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation (NASDAQ: SWHC): Guns are notoriously American in the modern era. The Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution explicitly gives Americans the right to bear arms, and this right has been of debate in American politics throughout the nation's history. Smith & Wesson is a historic American company that produced the famous Model 3 pistol famously used by lawman Wyatt Earp. This historic company has performed well in 2012, seeing its stock more than double since January 3. The company beat fiscal fourth quarter earnings estimates by nearly 64 percent, and the First Call Consensus recommendation on the stock is buy.

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3. Ford Motor Corp. (NYSE: F): Ford produces the F-series line of pickup trucks, which in May 2012 was the most popular vehicle in the United States. Almost 55,000 F-series pickup trucks were sold in May. This figure beat the next highest seller, the Toyota Camry, by more than 15,000 units. Ford also reported on Tuesday that F-series pickup sales in June 2012 totaled 55,025 vehicles. Pickup trucks are a staple of American culture as American consumers like goods to be big. As of the end of May, Ford had sold 246,116 F-series pickups year-to-date, outpacing sales from the same period in 2011 by 14.8 percent.

4. General Dynamics (NYSE: GD): National defense and the U.S. military are focal points of American nationalism and pride. Relatedly, General Dynamics embodies the American spirit. The maker of defense products, including the M1 Abrams Tank, Virginia Class nuclear powered submarines, and advanced military telecommunications systems, is a mainstay of the U.S. economy. Durable goods, which include defense and vehicle sales, represented approximately 6.55 percent of U.S. GDP in 2011 according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Therefore, defense spending will likely continue to be a large part of the U.S. economy, even as the federal government plans to cut back. So, General Dynamics will likely continue to innovate and protect U.S. soldiers around the world.

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