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The RealMoney contributors are in the business of trading and investing all day on the basis of ongoing news flow. Below, we offer the top five ideas that RealMoney contributors posted today and how they played those ideas.

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1. JDS Uniphase Jumps to New Highs

By Gary Morrow
1:30 p.m. EST

Analysts at Thomas Weisel are pounding the table today for

JDS Uniphase


. They are repeating their "overweight" rating on the stock and lifting the price target to $15 from $12. Ajit Pai from Oppenheimer suggests "the current rebound reflects a true transformation in JDSU's business portfolio and operations and is still deeply undervalued relative to the market."

Investors have responded well to the news, sparking a gap-higher open that lifted the stock to 52-week highs. JDSU is now up more than 4% on heavy trade as it takes on the $10 area. This powerful action extends the strong run that began just below $8 two weeks ago. Since the Feb. 5 low, which was a retest of the January lows, JDSU has rallied nearly 25%.

The big move, much like earlier breakouts during the rally, has left behind a layer of solid support. A light-volume pullback to the January highs just above $9 would be a low-risk buying opportunity. A continued run up to Weisel's new price target is a huge move from here. There will be periods of profit-taking along the way, which will provide opportunities for patient JDSU bulls.

Position: None

2. Banks

By William Furber
1:15 p.m. EST

Banks may indeed stall here for a little bit. I believe the notion that we're in a trading range for the near-term is probably safer than being outright bullish. However, if I had to put my convictions in percentage terms, I'd be around 50% for the trading range, 40% for a breakout above it, and 10% for a breakdown below it.

Watching the stimulus/earnings/jobs debate, it's important to consider that, even though hiring will make the recovery more durable, the pickup in new, permanent jobs will lag behind earlier indicators, so we might better focus on these earlier signals, which could show the stimulus having at least some core effect first, perhaps, without expecting to see too much on the jobs front just yet.

Here's another anecdote that came my way. A client described to me a very recent conversation with a non-bank lender, in which the NBL was frustrated by an inability to offer loan rates competitive with either major and regional commercial bank rivals because of the banks' funding-cost advantage.

Position: Long BAC C


By Timothy Collins
12:56 p.m. EST

Salix Pharmaceuticals


has a date with the FDA looming tomorrow, so we are looking at adding to our play here. This is a tougher one than last week, especially now that the briefing docs are out; however, we are leaning bullish, with upside in the 30-35 area and downside around 18. So now that I've put the gun to my hire, and pulled the trigger, here's how I am going to try and dodge the bullet:

Long March 25-35 call spread around 2.90.

Long April 25 call, short 2x March 30 call, long 1x April 35 call around 1.65

Long Mar 22.5-17.5-15 put butterfly around 1.55.

Position: Long SLXP

4. Bank Index

By Helene Meisler
11:35 a.m. EST

William Furber observed the head-and-shoulders pattern in the Bank Index on Friday and 'asked' if I too saw it. (Probably because I see head-and-shoulders patterns everywhere!)

I would begin by saying I am not a fan of head-and-shoulders consolidation patterns, which is what this one would be. I can't say exactly why, but probably because they don't tend to have the same reliability factor as one that appears at bottoms or tops (i.e. sometimes they work, sometimes they don't).

So, yes, I see it, but there is a lot of resistance between here and the neckline around 48-49. Which, I suppose, goes back to my market thesis: We've come quite far and are at resistance, and we are unlikely to blast right through without some digestion.

Position: None

5. SLB being overly punished?

By Ben Thomas
10:15 a.m. EST

This morning,


(SLB) - Get Free Report


Smith International


made it official in an all-stock deal. Maybe I'm missing something here, but this selloff on SLB seems a little overdone.

Let's consider today's action alone. As I write this, SII is up 6% while SLB is down 6%. SLB's market cap is about 10 times what SII was trading for. So the market is saying that the total market cap of the two companies is worth more individually than together. The same decline in combined market cap happened Friday to a lesser extent. I realize some specialty funds are going to play in these two names until the deal closes, but for a longer-term investor, this could be a good entry point for SLB.

Position: Long SLB

This article was written by a staff member of