This Week's 5 Smartest Stock Moves


If you're feeling good about the market, you're not alone. Take my hand as we go over some of this week's more uplifting headlines.

1. SodaStream scores
After winning some street cred-building notoriety for the controversial ban of its SodaStream Effect commercial in the U.K., SodaStream is turning to the biggest stage of all.

The company behind the popular carbonated beverage maker revealed this week that a new version of the same ad will air during February's Super Bowl. It's the most watched television broadcast of the year and, even though the ad won't come cheap it should pay off nicely for the consumer-facing speedster.

It's a smart move on many different levels. For starters, there's always the possibility that it stirs up new controversy. Coke and Pepsi have been Super Bowl advertisers for years, and they may resent the ad that denigrates the eco-unfriendly ways of consuming soda in bottles and cans. It's also reaching the right audience. Beer and heartier libations may be the beverages of choice for viewers, but the convenience of home-based soda is a point that is going to be made in tens of millions of households.

Folks also like to get together on Super Bowl Sunday, and the ad may inspire those that actually own a SodaStream to play ambassadors as they talk it up to friends.

2. You go, yoga
Bears will argue that lululemon athletica shares are as pricey as the apparel maker's yoga pants, but there's nothing like a strong report and pointing to overseas expansion to send the shorts scurrying to cover their positions.

Lululemon posted better-than-expected results on Thursday morning. Its revenue guidance for the holiday quarter was a bit light, but the stock still rallied 7% on the report.

The Canadian retailer plans to open its first full store in Hong Kong, and it's going to test an entry into 15 different countries over the next two years.

3. Oracle triples your fun
Oracle is making sure that its shareholders get their distributions ahead of next month's tax changes that may nearly triple the top 15% rate on qualified dividends.

Plenty of companies have been moving up their January distributions up to late December, but Oracle is declaring all three of its next quarterly dividends and distributing them now.

There's no special dividend here, but getting three quarterly dividends at once may seem like one.

Investors here will simply need to keep in mind that companies moving up 2013 disbursements to 2012 are doing so in lieu of paying them next year. Income investors may have a dry start to next year if more companies double or triple up on their payouts.

4. When you wish upon a star
officially opened its New Fantasyland addition to its Magic Kingdom theme park in Florida yesterday. Between the new attractions, themed character greeting areas, amazing Be Our Guest restaurant, and even a flying fire-breathing dragon, the family entertainment giant is hoping that the ambitious expansion will help beef up turnstile clicks.

All it has to do is see what happened a few miles up the road. Universal Studio's Islands of Adventure experienced a nearly 30% uptick in attendance last year after adding a well-received Harry Potter section to the high-tech park. All four of Disney's Florida parks saw reported increases of no more than 1% last year.

Disney's Florida parks needed a new draw, and it got it.

5. Netflix is no Mickey Mouse company
Shares of Netflix rallied on Tuesday, after securing exclusive U.S. streaming rights for Disney's first-run movies during the pay TV window.

Sure, the deal doesn't kick in until Disney theatrical releases in 2016, which means the fresh content won't start until the latter half of the year. It also probably didn't come cheap. Reports indicate that Disney will pay between $300 million to $500 million a year during the multi-year deal.

It's still a smart deal. The exclusivity will keep competitors away. It pads Netflix's offerings for young families, and they won't have to wait, because some older Disney titles, including Dumbo and Pocahontas, became available for streaming this week.

In a nutshell, Netflix is reversing the event back in September of last year, when Starz refused to re-up with Netflix on the Disney licensing rights. Since the Starz diss triggered a month in which Netflix shed more than half of its value, getting Disney back is a pretty major catch.

Keep it coming

The precipitous drop in Netflix shares since the summer of 2011 has caused many shareholders to lose hope. While the company's first-mover status is often viewed as a competitive advantage, the opportunities in streaming media have brought some new, deep-pocketed rivals looking for their piece of a growing pie. Can Netflix fend off this burgeoning competition, and will its international growth aspirations really pay off? These are must-know issues for investors, which is why we've released a brand-new premium report on Netflix. Inside, you'll learn about the key opportunities and risks facing the company, as well as reasons to buy or sell the stock. We're also offering a full year of updates as key news hits, so make sure to click here and claim a copy today.

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Longtime Fool contributor Rick Aristotle Munarriz owns shares of SodaStream, Netflix, and Walt Disney. The Motley Fool owns shares of Walt Disney, Netflix, Oracle, and SodaStream. Motley Fool newsletter services recommend Walt Disney, Lululemon Athletica, Netflix, and SodaStream. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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