As the major market indices rallied for another week, optimism truly sprung eternal as traders and portfolio managements sought to bring in the New Year with a bang. Historically, though, holiday seasons are always positioned upward due to several important factors, including the lack of market participants due to holiday vacations. The light volume, generally speaking, makes asset prices easier to manipulate both upward and downward, and a generally more optimistic view helped push the market close to a monthly high.

Our principal pick

last week

was

Monsanto

(MON)

, which finished up a respectable 8% on the week as international markets rebounded and the re-inflation trade took force. Still near its 52-week low, Monsanto is probably a bit overheated despite being attractive in the long run.

This week's

Rocket Stocks portfolio

focuses on both earnings and momentum plays. It includes some names to avoid this week as well.

To read more,

visit Stockpickr.com

.

At the time of publication, Altucher and/or his fund had no positions in stocks mentioned, although positions may change at any time.

TST Recommends

James Altucher is president of

Stockpickr

LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of TheStreet.com and part of its network of Web properties, and a managing partner at Formula Capital, an alternative asset management firm that runs a fund of hedge funds. He is also a weekly columnist for the

Financial Times

and the author of

Trade Like a Hedge Fund

,

Trade Like Warren Buffett

and

SuperCa$h

. Under no circumstances does the information in this column represent a recommendation to buy or sell stocks. Altucher appreciates your feedback;

click here

to send him an email.

TheStreet.com has a revenue-sharing relationship with Trader's Library under which it receives a portion of the revenue from purchases by customers directed there from TheStreet.com.