This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

What Do Japan, Energy and Dividends Have in Common?

The firm's Web site -- -- is a little short on details right now, as is to be expected for a relatively new fund. But the prospectus said the fund's expense ratio is 1.5%, which is more than reasonable; the average Japan-focused fund carries a 2.28% expense ratio, according to Morningstar.

Since (MJFOX) Matthews Japan and (FJSCX) Fidelity Japan Small Company are proven commodities, I'm still inclined to recommend them first. However, consider Sparx Japan officially on the radar screen as a fund to watch.

The fund doesn't have a ticker symbol yet (a telephone service rep kindly informed me that a fund needs 100 investors before it can get a ticker; who knew?). However, investors can find out more information about Sparx Japan, or buy shares in the fund, by calling 1-800-632-1320.



Auto Values

Another reader asked a question about the following passage from the same column on Japan. He cited the passage I wrote:

Back in June , I wrote a column suggesting that it was finally time to consider investing in Japan after more than a decade of devastating declines. And the Nikkei 225 returned 24.5% for the year. While 2004 may not be quite as robust, plenty of big-cap Japanese multinationals such as Sony (SNE) and Honda (HMC) still look cheap relative to U.S. peers.

This reader asked: "How can Honda be cheap; it has a bigger market cap than GM?"

My reply: On a forward-earnings basis, GM and Honda both have a price-to-earnings multiple of about 10. Ford's forward P/E is about 15 and DaimlerChrysler's forward P/E is about 21. That's the simplest measure to employ for relative valuations.

Even after a solid run-up since December, GM looks to be the most undervalued of the U.S. Big Three -- and that dividend is starting to look nice and plump. While the stock market's gains and hefty borrowing helped GM erase the $18 billion shortfall in its pension, GM is far from out of the woods when it comes to pension and retiree health care costs. Honda isn't saddled with such looming issues, which in my opinion makes the Japanese automakers' forward P/E of 10 look a lot cheaper than GM's.

2 of 3

Select the service that is right for you!

Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!


DOW 17,804.80 +26.65 0.15%
S&P 500 2,070.65 +9.42 0.46%
NASDAQ 4,765.38 +16.9840 0.36%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs