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Two Ways: Starbucks Shakes Up Its Daily Grind


Strengthen your portfolio in good times and bad.

Today, Starbucks (SBUX) said it will change the way it grinds and brews coffee in an effort to promote the "Starbucks experience."

According to the Wall Street Journal, employees will now grind the beans each time they make a new pot, instead of the old method of grinding all beans in the morning. Timers will sound at 8- to 24-minute intervals to alert them when it's time to make a new pot.

Starbucks spokeswoman Deb Trevino confirmed the changes, which will be rolled out at stores around the US beginning next month. In doing so, the company hopes to win back the loyalty of its customers during a time of global economic weakness all while increased competition from rivals like McDonald's (MCD) and Dunkin' Donuts have taken its toll.

Trevino said, "We are pleased that these changes to our brewed-coffee process will ensure an even fresher cup of coffee."

See related column: Professor Lance Lewis' A Slippery Slope Down for Green Moutain Coffee?

From the Bull Pen: For those playing Starbucks, watch if the 50 DMA ($13.50) holds. Aggressive traders may consider taking a long position at that point, with a tight sell stop below. McDonald's may be a better option, though: Traders can fade (read: buy) the weakness into its 50 DMA ($56), with a sell stop below that level.

From the Bear Cave: Professor Lewis laid out a sound argument to put Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (GMCR) in the bear cave. On a technical basis, we see it slipping below its 20 DMA ($57). Those playing the downside can set a buy stop above today's high ($59). Be wary of near term support at $54 and $52.

Have a great night!
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