Market leaders cut your tech risk

Article Excerpt

Technology stocks tend to be riskier than other manufacturing firms. That’s because demand for their products is cyclical, and they must spend heavily on research and development. Even then, there’s no guarantee their efforts will boost their sales or protect them from start-ups with better technology. All four of these techs lead their niche markets, and they all have strong balance sheets. These factors temper their risk, but we still think they’ll make little progress in the next few months. APPLE INC. $119 (Nasdaq symbol AAPL; Aggressive Growth Portfolio, Manufacturing & Industry sector; Shares outstanding: 5.9 billion; Market cap: $702.1 billion; Price-to-sales ratio: 3.9; Dividend yield: 1.6%; TSINetwork Rating: Average; www.apple.com) continues to profit from strong demand for its iPhone smartphone, which accounts for 56% of its sales. Other products include Mac computers (16%), iPad tablets (13%) and iPod music players and other services (15%). In its 2014 fiscal year, which ended September 27, 2014, Apple’s earnings rose 6.7%, to $39.5…

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