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Nine Stocks for 2009


Ones to watch in the coming year.


Holding true to the optimism that only a New Year can bring, financial analysts across the country are sure to offer their "best picks for 2009" in the coming days. But before we get ahead of ourselves, let's remind everyone of just a few of the recommendations they made for 2008.

This time last year, a certain TV celebrity was calling for the Dow to hit 16,000 in 2008. Goldman Sachs said oil was on its way to $100, and they were right on - right before they pushed their luck and started calling for it to hit $200. Google (GOOG) was being upgraded by everyone on the Street, and I can even remember a few calls for a $1,000 print for Google's stock before 2008's end. Gold was supposed to go to $2,000. Apple (AAPL) was headed to $300, Potash (POT) was supposed to hit $400, and First Solar (FSLR) was going to be a $50-billion company.

You get the point - so now I'll make mine. It's difficult to know what awaits us in the stock market over the next week, let alone the next year. Sure, there are technical indicators and historical trends we can use as a guide - but if 2008 taught us anything, it was that we couldn't have predicted just how volatile the market would become.

All that being said, let me just caution you to tread lightly with those "Top Stocks for 2009" lists. Do your homework, and stay on top of company performance and company news as the year progresses.

As a financial advisor, I would be remiss if I didn't share some of the positions I have my eye on as we head into the new year. The following ideas are poised to move in 2009 - if the market cooperates. Yes, there's the rub: Remember, you need a market that's trending higher to buy and hold stocks, and we haven't had a market like that for some time now.

We may be getting close, though. If so, here are my 9 ideas for 2009.

Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (GMCR) distributes coffees and teas, single-cup brewers and single-cup portion packs to supermarkets and food stores. As consumers tighten their belts and stop paying $6 for a coffee at Starbucks (SBUX), they're moving toward Green Mountain; the stock is poised to become a household name by the end of 2009.

Greatbatch (GB) develops electrical and power sources for implantable medical devices, such as pacemakers and neurostimulators. Quality Systems (QSII) develops healthcare practice and electronic records management software applications for medical and dental practices. Almost Family (AFAM) provides in-home nursing services and personal custodial care for recuperating and disabled patients. With the Obama administration's attention to healthcare and the push for electronic medical records, all 3 of these companies stand to benefit from the incoming administration.
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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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