Cory Johnson chatted on AOL Wednesday, April 19 at 4:15 p.m. EDT. As with all chats, this transcript is unedited.

Sage Lion:

It's great to have you with us in MarketTalk today Cory!

CoryJohns:

Bring it on!

Question:

With election season upon us, do you think the

Fed

will keep raising rates past the 2nd quarter?

CoryJohns:

Yep. I think that the Fed is unafraid of spoiling anyone's political waters

Alan Greenspan

as

Braveheart

? Maybe not, but he could care less about Al Gore's chances.

Question:

Will the stronger than expected earnings of

Intel

,

IBM

, and

America Online

sustain this week's market rally?

CoryJohns:

Now, let's start with the preface that I know nothing. But ...I think that there is more selling to go on. Everyone I talk to thinks there's another bad day on the horizon. These stocks went up inspite of their earnings, or at least, without direct relation to their earnings ...a stock with revenues growing at 30% q-over-q would see it's shares rising 300%. So the fact that those revenues continue to pop, well ...revenues had little to do with it on the way up, it probably won't save 'em on the way down. God, I sound like a bear. Somebody stop me before I hurt someone!

Question:

How will

Cisco's

alliance with

SBC

contribute to overall growth?

CoryJohns:

Cisco is fearless, it seems. They really are going after this telco business, the one area that has (sort of) elluded them. I have to think that it helps both companies. SBC, me thinks, is an Internet company. Their fastest growing segment is their DSL service. They're blowing out the doors with its deployment. So I think they know that the Internet is where their bread is buttered. How many metaphors was that?

Question:

When do you think, stocks will start rising again?

CoryJohns:

Down again today, short answer: not soon. Long answer: well, I wrote a piece about a smart money manager named

Jerry Appodaca

. I talked to him Monday and he was predicting a good month of

malaise. But really, he says the market is gonna wait a while. Maybe he's right. He certainly has been for the last three days.

Question:

Where is he chip sector going?

CoryJohns:

Short answer? Up. Hows that? I think the chip sector's sucess is largely independent of these market moves. These guys are all selling everything they can make. I can't own stocks, but if I could, that's where I'd be looking. But back to the caveat, what the hell do I know? Can I say "hell" here? Man that'd be funny if AOL kicked me off of my own chat.

Question:

Your thoughts on the

Bell Atlantic

,

GTE

and

Vodaphone

mergers and the future outlook for

Verizon

. I think that the telco biz is about rounding out tools. Everybody has to have one of everything. So these deals all follow a trend of filling out missing parts. But in the end, that game is going to be about lowering costs, and offering more upsell services. So I'd rather own those services, which will have faster growth, than owning the carriers themselves. As for Verizon. I love it, I'd own it, I'd kiss it ... if it existed. What the heck is Verizon?

Question:

Long, long term (15 yrs.) what signs do I look for in an individual stock before buying it, and what would you be buying?

CoryJohns:

Again, I don't own stocks, so we're deep into fantasy land, but ... actually, in fantasy land, I'd be so rich that I wouldn't have to own stocks. But I think you want to look for big markets you want to find steady earnings growth. You want to find a company that embraces and understands new technology. What do I mean? I like

Kodak's

near term prospects, for example, but I am not convinced that they know how to deal with a future that is digital and online. I'd also say that you want to diversify your notions -- don't load up on the Internet and ignore software, or chips, or bonds for that matter. But you probably already know that.

Question:

OK Cory,

Cubs

in the

World Series

-- long or short?

CoryJohns:

If Jose Cardenal was still in center field, I'd be long. Remember when he had that big afro? He looked like Mickey Mouse when he put on his cap.

Question:

Would the Fed be happier if we were in a depression? Seems Mr. Greenspan has way too much power.

CoryJohns:

You know, we loved him on the way up. He's set the stable economic table that this boom has been served on -- there I go with the metaphors again -- So I really think his best efforts will insure that it can continue. Back the question of long term understanding of technology, Greenspan has shown the most remarkable and rare of human characteristics ...he has learned. And he has changed. This dude gets technology, and now recognizes that we're in a different economic era. He gets it, as we say out here.

Question:

What do you think of the electric utilities?

CoryJohns:

You know, I'm embarassed that I don't. I've really focused my journalism on high growth ... trying to answer the questions that investors can't find answered anywhere else. But it's a gap in my education that's for sure. Sorry.

Sage Lion:

Thank you for joining us today Cory! Any parting shots?

CoryJohns:

Keep on reading, sorry I didn't have time for all your questions. There is a bulletin board to discuss my latest column on

TheStreet.com

. Bulleting? What the hell am I saying. Anyway, log on to

TheStreet.com

, click on, and you'll see the latest link.

CoryJohns:

Go Cubs!