3 Hot Reads on Stocks From TheStreet's Top Columnists

The markets began the week higher on Monday as oil prices in the U.S. climbed above $70 a barrel to prices not seen in nearly four years, helping oil sector stocks like Exxon (XOM) and Chevron (CVX) advance.

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Here are three top takes from the columnists of Real Money and Real Money Pro, our premium sites for Wall Street professionals and active investors:

Jim Cramer: Estée Lauder Is the Prettiest Stock in its Market Segment

TheStreet's Jim Cramer asks, "What do we want from a consumer-packaged-goods company? Are we asking for too much? Should we be content with so many companies that are struggling to grow low-single digits in percentage terms on the top line? Maybe it's just not fair that we hold the food, beverage and grooming companies to the old standards of solid top- and bottom-line growth."

"I was mulling over just this concept," Cramer continues, "until we got quarterly earnings last week from Estée Lauder Cos. (EL)  . The company's results seemed like a throwback to the good old days, where you got genuine growth through innovation, share take and emerging markets."

Why More Companies Might Issue 'Special Dividends' Soon

"Companies ranging from Action Alerts PLUS holding Microsoft (MSFT)  to heavy-truck maker Paccar (PCAR)  have over the years declared so-called 'special dividends' -- one-time extra payments to shareholders. With the new U.S. tax law granting corporations a limited window to repatriate overseas profits at low tax rates, many companies might use the extra cash for special dividends. Let's discuss how this impacts income investors," writes Real Money Pro columnist Christopher Versace.

Two Oncology Stocks I Like Now

Real Money Pro columnist Bret Jensen says, "Oncology has been a hot space for takeover activity over the past two years, and I expect it will continue to be so. Here are a couple of names I like as stand-alone entities but also could make logical acquisition targets. I own almost both mainly through Buy-Write option strategies as I think that is how you play the current market."

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