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Substance over Style: Kellogg, Pepsico, Anheuser-Busch...

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...rather than focusing on the sexy, media attention getting stocks, if you desire to wade into the mess with a small piece of your portfolio, think boring and mundane.

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So many individuals are focused on what most traders refer to as "battleground stocks." These are the stocks that constantly warrant all of the attention, especially from the financial media.

Currently, standing front and center are the financial stocks. The debate continues to circulate around whether or not these stocks are worthy of your dollars after the recent decline. Stocks like Goldman Sachs (GS), Lehman Brothers (LEH), Citigroup (C) and Bank of America (BAC) serve as great storylines and tend to spark just about everyone's curiosity.

Furthermore, if it isn't the financials, maybe it is tech heavyweights such as Apple (APPL) or Garmin (GRMN) which have been the hot tickets over the last several months until only recently meeting some heavy selling. The temptation to jump into a stock like this that will often be discussed around the water cooler or at the cocktail party is great, however it still is a battleground stock where it is often much easier to discuss than it actually is to trade.

While the markets have been bruised and battered and while one has no real clue where we will go from here, should an investor decide to wade back in, why not consider avoiding the battleground and stick with the boring and predictable? No, it won't make you any new friends, and you may not be able to identify with the rapid fire names dropped on the television, but your portfolio may thank you in the long run.

Despite the global credit crunch, I suspect Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) will continue to produce Band Aids and regardless of how many mortgages may be in trouble, will people switch from Bud to Duff beer? With a nice dividend and solid brand, Anheuser-Busch (BUD) may be a boring yet sound solution to curb your buying desire.

On the other hand, if you're not the bottom fishing type and desire something actually showing some relative strength, why not take a second look at Kellogg (K), a stock only 3% off 52 week highs and consolidating nicely around the $54.00 level? Or how about Pepsico (PEP) the stodgy drink maker that is only slightly under 4% off highs at levels not seen since 1996?

My point is simple: rather than focusing on the sexy, media attention getting stocks, if you desire to wade into the mess with a small piece of your portfolio, think boring and mundane. No, it won't raise any eyebrows around the water cooler and there may not be any hip blogs devoted to the company products, but most of the boring stodgy companies are yawning at the current market challenges and almost taking on a "been there done that" attitude. While it may still be early, if you must wade in, I will take boring and predictable over popular and chaotic any day of the week.
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