'Fast Money' Recap: Good Start

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The markets were up slightly Monday on light volume .

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 18.24, or 0.79%, to 10,216.27, while the S&P 500 added 0.79, or 0.07%, to 1,078.75. The Nasdaq added 1.91, or 0.09%, to 2,198.36.

Tim Seymour said on CNBC's "Fast Money" TV show that Alcoa's ( AA) outlook off a strong earnings report, was encouraging with an forecast for a 10% to 12% increase in the demand for aluminum. "These guys told us everything they wanted to."

Melissa Lee, the moderator of the show, said the bar was set low for Alcoa going into its earnings report.

For a breakout of some stocks from a recent "Fast Money" TV show, check out Dan Fitzpatrick's "3 Stocks I Saw on TV."

3 Stocks I Saw on TV

Joe Terranova expressed doubts about the longer-term story of Alcoa and its pricing power going forward.

Karen Finerman said the key this week for her is whether some of the major financials like Bank of America ( BAC), Citigroup ( C) and JPMoragan Chase ( JPM) can beat low expectations.

Seymour countered, saying he believes the bar has been set high for earnings expectations and low for outlooks.

Dennis Gartman said Alcoa's CFO said in a conference call that the company produced some pretty strong numbers, including free cash flow, and a "fairly clean quarter." He said the only hitch might be weak aluminum prices.

Gartman said the company reported a loss of 37,000 jobs, an improvement in every area of business and an agreement reached with the steelworkers union.

Seymour said Alcoa's success might not translate into a lift for the entire market, while Brian Kelly said a better bet might be in oil.

Lee also noted that CSX ( CSX), another important market indicator, was trading slightly higher today.

Kelly said he wanted to heard what the company is going say in Tuesday's conference call. Seymour said he was impressed with CSX's revenues, which were up 22% for the quarter. Terranova said the rail stocks are improving, showing better margins, pricing power and volumes.

Shifting to tech, which saw Microsoft ( MSFT) move higher on some bullish analyst comments, Finerman said the tech behemoth is a kind of big-cap value stock that hasn't been trading well. Seymour said Microsoft's chart needs to "bust" through the 20-day moving average convincingly.

Looking ahead to the financials which report their earnings later in the week, Finerman said she was looking for signs of improved credit quality as the catalyst to drive the stocks in this sector.

Seymour said he was worried about the profitability of the European banks like Deutsche Bank ( DB). Kelly said the problems of the European banks could spill over to the U.S. banks.

Bull market or BS? Gary Silling, president of A. Gary Shilling & Co., called the current rally a huge short-covering, with investors cutting their short positions in commodities, stocks and bonds.

He said only one engine is working in the economy: inventory liquidation. He said the other four aren't, including job creation, a spurt in consumer spending and a rebound in housing.

He said the second half is critical and expects slower growth. "Nothing is pushing the economy."

In a segment that looks at a stock from a number of perspectives, three experts rated Intel ( INTC) highly. One liked its inline-quarter guidance and dividend, while another pointed out how the company chart shows rebound potential. A third, Pete Najarian, said the options activity surrounding Intel has been exploding in expectation of a bullish earnings report.

Lee brought in Eric Jackson, president of Ironfire Capital, to get his thoughts about companies like Microsoft ( MSFT) that are sitting on lots of cash.

He said it's time for these companies to accept the fact that they are mature businesses that need to pay big-time dividends to attract the widows, orphans and pension funds of the world.

He said Microsoft, in particular, should double size its dividend and cut its research and development budget in half.

Apple ( AAPL) shares were down after a Consumer Reports article pointed out antenna problems with its iPhone 4.

Gene Munster said the problem is certainly a "black eye" for Apple and may cause some people not to buy the phone. However, he said it won't change the trajectory for sales. He said Apple simply can't produce enough phones to meet demand.

In a segment called "Smash 'Em Up," Dennis Keale, CNBC media and tech editor, cited a number of companies that are worth much more after a split up. For example, he said IAC/InterActive's ( IAC) total return is up 194% after it split up.

In the final trades, Gartman was short gold and the euro. Seymour liked Rio Tinto ( RTP). Kelly liked Citigroup ( C). Finerman liked Bank of America ( BAC). Terranova liked Merrill Lynch Semiconductor HOLDRs ( SMH).

-- Written by David Tong in San Francisco

To watch replays of Cramer's video segments, visit the Mad Money page on CNBC.

"Check out "'Fast Money' Portfolios of the Week" on Stockpickr every Thursday.

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