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Why economy’s pains don’t stop market’s gains (access required)

I am 63 and recently got laid off after 31 years with a Fortune 500 company. Considering the economy here and overseas, why would stocks increase in price? We have a record national debt, and the Federal Reserve prints $85 billion of new money every month and gives it to the banks that won’t lend it to consumers, who are charged $49 to bounce a check.

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Outs-go with Invesco: Sell, sell, sell (access required)

We bought 260 shares of Invesco Ltd. in December 2007 at $31.45, and the stock hasn’t been back there since. We have nine other stocks, but this is the only one we are concerned about. We need to raise about $7,500 more in cash to modify our home so our Marine son, who was injured in Afghanistan, can move in with us until he recovers.

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As long as there are fools, there will be scams (access required)

I'm a barber who loves your column and listens to lots of bad-luck stories. Your October column about the church people who invested $9,000 in 1,000 U.S. $1 silver certificates prompts me to ask why so many financial scams work. A customer told me he had lost $17,000 in an oil drilling partnership that had promised him a 32 percent return. Another invested $7,000 in Iraqi dinars, losing it all, and a bowling buddy lost $11,000 trading stock options.

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Beware the rising stock (access required)

I am convinced the Standard & Poor's 500 is headed to 1600 or higher this year. I've completed these (enclosed) detailed calculations, concluding the S&P 500 will earn $107.42 and trade at 15.1 times earnings. Then by extrapolating these numbers, I place the Dow Industrials at about 15,864.

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Buffalo nickels don’t make cents as investment (access required)

The Federal New York Mint is selling 1-pound bags of silver-clad Buffalo nickels of various dates for $49, which includes a free stone arrowhead with each order. If there are approximately 45 to 50 nickels per pound (my guess), and if silver-clad Buffalo nickels are worth an average of 75 cents each, about $35 per bag, then this sounds like a great investment.

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Are obscure stocks worth the risk? (access required)

My pharmacist son-in-law likes to research small, unknown stocks that trade below $10 a share and invest in a few hundred shares of each. He has had a few big wins, but over the past decade I think his many small losses have used up most of his big gains.

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