John J. Edwards III Chats on AOL

<I>TSC's</I> markets editor chats about personal investing, Net stocks and more.
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SageCrystl:

Sage is proud to introduce Mr. John Edwards, Markets Editor for

TheStreet.com.

SageCrystl:

Thanks for joining us today.

JEdwards:

Thanks for having me. Great to be here.

Question:

Is there any rule of thumb for how investors should allocate their assets amongst stocks, bonds and cash?

JEdwards:

There are no hard and fast rules, but investors can allocate to different asset classes based in part on their age and their investment goals. For example, you might choose a mix favoring bonds if you are seeking reliable returns with very low risk. A younger investor might choose a more aggressive, stock-focused strategy.

Question:

What are some of the special risks and considerations of investing in international and emerging markets?

JEdwards:

You should assess each emerging market separately, and carefully. Some of the factors to be aware of are the political stability of the region, the health of the currencies involved and the degree of exposure to multinational corporations.

Question:

Hi John, what are your thoughts on NITE and CMGI here ?

JEdwards:

Sorry, can't comment on individual stocks.

Question:

When is aol earnings report due

JEdwards:

Wednesday.

Question:

MSN.com? Will MSFT holders automatically get shares of the new issue?

JEdwards:

I'm not sure exactly how the MSFT plan would work, but in those situations current holders generally do get a stake in the tracking stock of a unit.

Question:

Yeah!

TheStreet.com

rocks! I want to ask him about what he sees in the future for the volatility of internet stocks: is the era of double digit rises/falls over?

JEdwards:

Thanks for the kudos. I think Net stocks will continue to be volatile for as long as we continue seeing stocks in the sector with limited current revenue but seemingly limitless potential.

JEdwards:

I think the days of automatic 100% or 200% rises for any Net-related IPO are over, and investors are generally becoming more selective in the group. It's still not nearly the staid old steel sector, though!

Question:

I think it makes sense for aol and T to make some deal on cable access. How do you feel?

JEdwards:

While I can't comment directly on the individual stocks involved, I think you should definitely watch for more deals that unite broadband access providers and Internet service providers, either on the alliance level or in mergers.

Question:

Where would a 26 year old with 20 k invest for best returns? Thanks.

JEdwards:

Well, that's an enviable position to be in. With that kind of long-term time horizon, you can probably afford to be fairly aggressive in your approach.

JEdwards:

I would suggest designating some portion of the money, whatever you feel comfortable with, as risk capital, with the rest devoted to bonds or cash.

JEdwards:

With the risk capital, do some research and try to identify stocks you think show the possibility of particularly strong returns. That can be in the tech area, but not necessarily. Good luck!

Question:

Is AOL'S idea of free internet in Europe and Great Briton a good idea?

JEdwards:

It seems that AOL needs to respond to the clear trend in those areas, which is indeed toward free Net access. Just a competitive reality.

Question:

Bless you, my boy! Be on this show more often! Where do you see Elot finally ending up?

JEdwards:

Thanks for the kind words. Unfortunately, I can't really offer an opinion on that stock?

Question:

John, enjoy your show here on the west coast although its on at 6 a.m.!

JEdwards:

Thanks for getting up early!

Question:

Do you see a big market stumble in the tech/net stocks in the next four months?

JEdwards:

I think that while we may indeed see downdrafts, and some that are severe, longer-term the tech arena will still be the growth driver for the powerful U.S. economy. Buying the dips won't work forever, of course, but with prudent research and attention, most investors with a longer time horizon should continue to do well in tech.

SageCrystl:

: Thanks for joining us today John. We appreciate your insights.

JEdwards:

Thanks very much. Wonderful chatting with all of you. See you next week -- and keep reading

TheStreet.com

!