'Fast Money' Recap: Hot Seats in Tech

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Will Research In Motion ( RIMM)'s big shakeup have reprecussions in the tech sector?

Melissa Lee, the host of CNBC's "Fast Money" show asked the trading panel whether other CEOs might be in trouble after RIM's co-CEOs resigned.

Joe Terranova said the RIM's biggest problem was that it failed to reattract the institutional money it lost. He said the same could be said of Yahoo! ( YHOO), but he said it would be a mistake to put other so-called "old-tech" companies like Microsoft ( MSFT), Hewlett-Packard ( HPQ) and Cisco ( CSCO) in that category. Both he and Ron Insana said those companies have turned things around.

Tim Seymour said Microsoft has done some interesting things, including its move to stay current through its Nokia deal. Guy Adami said Cisco ( CSCO) also has turned itself around in the past six to nine months.

Eric Jackson, a senior contributor for TheStreet, was of the opposite opinion. He said Cisco CEO John Chambers is also on the hot seat as he has watched the company's stock tank over the past five years, down 24% compared to a rise of 15% in the Nasdaq.

He said Cisco did have one decent quarter recently but that was due to lowered expectations. But he said Cisco has suffered from a lack of focus and has not followed through on getting rid of a lot of questionable acquisitions. He said the shareholders will find out how the company is doing in a couple of weeks when it reports its earnings.

Jackson said Michael Dell, chairman and CEO of Dell ( DELL) is in a similar situation. He said Dell has done little since his return to the company five years. He said Dell still carries an image of a gray PC maker that has no nowhere in mobile.

Is there a possiblity for the S&P to rise above 1400 in 2012? Paul Hickey, of Bespoke Investment Group, said a compelling case could be made that the index is trading below average valuations. He said the S&P was flat last year while earnings grew more than 10%. In addition, he said U.S. equities will perform well the rest of the year as the dollar rallies.

In the same vein, Mary Ann Bartels, Bank of America-Merrill Lynch Global Research, said she expects the S&P to rally to 1350 and 1365. She referred to several charts showing that investors will be better off sticking with mega cap stocks with yield and growth.

Lee noted the decline in the rail sector of CSX ( CSX) and Kansas City Southern ( KSU) after the two companies missed estimates.

Adami said it was a case of too much, too fast for Kansas City Southern, but he said investors will have a chance to get back into the stock on a pullback.

In a huge energy deal today, Apache ( APA) agreed to buy Cordillera Energy Partners, a privately held oil and gas company, for $2.85 billion.

Apache CEO Steve Farris said the deal will add 254,000 acres in one of the most prolific hydrocarbon basins in North America and provide an additional 18,000 barrels of oil equivalent.

He said he sees no changes in the situation in Egypt where Apache has 27 rigs. He said the company remains on cordial relations with the petroleum ministry.

Shifting to a segment on trading in volatility, Nick Chereney, CIO for Velocityshares, talked about the growth of leveraged and inverse ETFs. He said interest has grown in trading in volatility. For example, he said VIX futures were up 157% in the third quarter of last year when the markets declined 10%.

He said his firm handles six products that are focused on risk management in a volatile market climated.

Options trader Scott Nations was wary of the products, saying investing in futures VIX products can be expensive and problematic.

With Apple set to report Tuesday, CNBC tech reporter said he would be looking for Apple to come up with some pretty good numbers, such as revenue of more than $40 billion, 30 million iPhones sold, 5 million Macs sold, 14 million iPads and a gross margin of 42% or better.

In the final trades, Seymour liked Cemex ( CX). Adami said to look at InterDigital ( IDCC). Insana said he was going to long the euro the next couple of days, while Terranova said he was going to reduce his long exposure.

-- Written by David Tong in San Francisco.

>To contact the writer of this article, click here: David Tong.

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