5 Things to Watch on Wall Street This Week

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From an established homebuilder going public to the leading used car retailer slamming on the brakes long enough to announce quarterly results, there will be plenty of news waiting to break in the coming days. Let's go over some of the items that will help shape the week that lies ahead on Wall Street.

1. Home IPO, Sweet Home IPO: Unless you've been sleeping under a rock, you're probably aware that residential real estate has bounced back in a major way. Prices are inching higher, and available inventory is thinning out.

If you are sleeping under said rock, by the way, at least make sure it has central air, indoor plumbing, and room for a pool.

As homebuilders see their financials and share prices improve, privately held developers now want in on the action. TRI Point Homes (TPH) went public earlier this year, and this week it will be Taylor Morrison Home hanging the "Open House" sign on its IPO.

Taylor Morrison Home is hoping to raise roughly $500 million as it offers 23.8 million shares priced at $20 to $22 apiece. The stock should price on Tuesday for this developer that happens to be one of country's 10 largest homebuilders. Taylor Morrison Home should then begin trading on Wednesday.

2. Facebook Calls an Audible: Facebook (FB) unveiled a new platform for Android devices last week, and Facebook Home makes its debut on Friday.

The new program will run on some of the latest Android wireless devices, aiming to make the smartphone experience more about people than apps.
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Phones with Facebook Home installed will boost up to a screen where Facebook notifications are front and center with the latest photos uploaded by friends serving as a background. It's more impressive than it sounds, and more importantly it's reversible -- it's just a matter of uninstalling the program.

A bolder move by Facebook -- HTC First -- will also hit the market Friday. This is what many in the media are now calling the Facebook Phone since it's optimized for the new application. Even if the phone itself doesn't sell well, the future of Facebook Home can still be bright.

3. Good Buy, Ruby Tuesday?: The climate for casual dining is challenging. The end of the payroll tax stimulus is giving diners less money to eat out. It's certainly not helping that hungry customers are choosing "fast casual" places that provide quality food quickly at lower price points and without the tipping rite.

Ruby Tuesday (RT) has been a laggard, and a new CEO was brought in late last year to attempt a turnaround. The new helmsman has shed some of the smaller concepts, and he's also hoping that moving customers away from expecting coupons will help the bottom line.

We'll get a heaping plate of reality when Ruby Tuesday reports this week -- not on Tuesday, but Wednesday afternoon.

4. Sprucing Up Your Home: Now that the wintry weather is starting to pass through most of the country we can finally begin the annual rite of spring cleaning.

One byproduct of sprucing up our homes and heaving out the unwanted is that retailers specializing in home furnishings get a seasonal boost as homeowners and apartment dwellers update their digs.

Pier 1 Imports (PIR) and Bed Bath & Beyond (BBBY) report this week, giving investors a great snapshot on two of the more popular chains for soft goods and home decor. Analysts see both store operators posting improving profitability.

5. There Are No Lemons on This Lot: Auto sales are growing nicely. Industry tracker Edmunds boosted it outlook last week after automakers offered up strong sales for the month of March.

Edmunds now sees 15.5 million new cars sold this year, up from its earlier forecast of 15 million new cars.

We can't all afford new cars, and the cars being traded in need to go somewhere. CarMax (KMX) is there to address both matters. The leading used car retailer buys back trade-ins and offers the resale of secondhand cars without the high pressure hassle that many associate with used car dealers.

CarMax pulls up for its quarterly report on Wednesday. Wall Street's banking on a profit of 46 cents a share, just ahead of the 41 cents a share it posted a year earlier.


Motley Fool contributor Rick Munarriz has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Bed Bath & Beyond and Facebook. The Motley Fool owns shares of Facebook.

Test Your Financial Fluency
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5 Things to Watch on Wall Street This Week

From taxes and credit to saving and money management, you can get lost in the complexity and abundance of financial issues. But by learning some simple fundamentals, you can take control of your finances and feel secure in your money management skills.

How well do you know the basics of personal finance?

Put your knowledge to the test with this 12-question quiz.

A. Under your mattress
B. Stocks
C. Bonds
D. Bank savings account
You want money you plan to use within the next three to five years to be safe and easily accessible. Lock it up in a savings or money market account. You won't earn much interest on it with rates so low, but you also won't lose any of it to the volatility of the stock market. You can find search for which accounts are offering the best rates on Bankrate.com.
A. Suck up to the boss
B. Get a second job
C. Adjust your tax withholding
If you typically get a tax refund each spring (and most of you do), file a new Form W-4 with your employer to increase the number of exemptions you claim - and lower the amount Uncle Sam takes from your paycheck. Try our easy-to-use tax withholding calculator to help you figure the right number for your situation.
A. Pay bills on time and keep credit-card balances low
B. Limit applications for new credit and keep old accounts open
C. Sweet-talk the credit-card company phone rep
The simple act of paying bills on time and keeping your balances low accounts for 65% of your credit score. New credit and the length of your credit history make up 25% of your score. The remaining 10% factors in the types of credit you use. Sorry, sweet-talking will get you nowhere.
A. Treasury bonds
B. Money market account
C. Stocks
D. Residential real estate
Stocks fare best over long stretches of time. Take the 20-year period through 2012, for example. The average taxable U.S. money-market fund returned 2.8% annualized. Residential real estate, as measured by Standard & Poor's Case-Shiller index, did just slightly better with 3.0% annualized. Barclay's U.S. Treasury index earned 6.3% a year, on average. And the S&P 500 trumped them all, delivering 8.2% annualized.
A. Life insurance
B. Health insurance
C. Auto insurance
You only need life insurance if you have someone depending on you financially. Bob is unwed and childless, so he doesn't need it. However, he will need health insurance and auto insurance to protect himself against disaster.
A. 401(k)
B. 529 plan
C. Municipal bonds
D. Certificate of deposit
E. None of the above
A bank CD falls under federal protection if it's FDIC insured. That means up to $250,000 is protected in case a bank goes under, and you get up to $250,000 of insurance at each bank where you buy CDs. Municipal bonds, 529 plans, 401(k)s and other investments are not covered. You invest at your own risk.

Ashley, age 20, contributes $3,000 per year to an individual retirement account for ten years, then stops, letting her money sit in the account. Adam, age 30, contributes $3,000 each year to an IRA for 35 years. Who will have more money at age 65, assuming they get identical investment returns?


A. Ashley
B. Adam

Ashley comes out ahead, thanks to the magic of compounding. Even though she stopped contributing after only ten years, her money will grow to about $694,000 by the time she retires, assuming an 8% annual return. Adam, who got a late start, but pitched in more money out of pocket, will amass about $558,000.
A. Your credit score
B. Your car make and model
C. Your car color
D. Your address
Insurers look at a variety of factors to calculate your risk, but the color of your car isn't one of them. Your financial habits, the type of car you drive and where you drive do matter.
A. At age 16
B. At age 18
C. When they get their first job
D. When their income reaches certain levels
A child's age or job has nothing to do with it. Rather, the IRS cares about how much the child made and the source of the income. For example, children who have investment income of more than $950 or have wage income of more than $5,950 in 2012 need to file a return. Children who receive a paycheck and have taxes withheld may want to file even if they don't have to - they could reclaim most or all of their income taxes.

You can withdraw contributions you made to a Roth IRA at any time, for any purpose without paying any taxes or penalties, and without having to pay it back - ever.


A. True
B. False

Any money you put into your Roth IRA is yours for the taking - even if you aren't retired. The money your account earns, however, cannot be touched until you're 59½ and have had a Roth for at least five years. Otherwise, you'll owe taxes and a 10% early withdrawal penalty on earnings. An exception: Once the money's been in your account for five years, you can tap your earnings to buy your first home.
A. Cry
B. Notify your bank and credit-card companies
C. Contact the credit bureaus
D. Call the Social Security office
Put your tears of frustration on hold. First, notify your credit-card companies and bank to monitor your accounts for fraudulent charges, just in case your wallet falls into the wrong hands. Second, contact the credit bureaus and put a fraud alert on your report. This will require lenders to make an effort to verify your identity before issuing new credit in your name. It also gives you a free copy of your credit report so you can review it for suspicious activity.

A. Upgrade your lifestyle: You've been pinching pennies for too long. It's time to reward yourself and live it up.

B. Maintain your lifestyle: Take this opportunity to pay off your high-interest debts and boost your savings. It's time to get ahead. 

Sure, it's tempting to spend the money, but using it to strengthen your financial footing is the smarter choice that'll pay off exponentially in the long run.

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