Weekend Wrap: Apple, Gold, J&J and The Mobile War

Markets closed up Friday on Wall Street: S&P +0.40%,  Nasdaq +0.89%, Dow +0.63%, Oil +0.64%,  Gold +0.07%.

On the commodities front, Oil (NYSEARCA:USO) tips to $99 a barrel after breaking $100 earlier in the day. Precious metals were mixed with Gold (NYSEARCA:GLD) up to $1,774.20 per ounce, and  Silver (NYSEARCA:SLV) down just a fraction to $34.72.

Here’s your Cheat Sheet to Friday’s top stories:

It’s been a good week for Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and it looks to be ending on top after shares of the company touched a new record high on Friday. The stock was up 1.50 percent at $693.30 in the afternoon after having reached an all-time intraday high of $696.98 earlier. Through Thursday, the stock is up 69 percent this year.

Don’t Miss: Here’s Who the Mobile Wars Help and Hurt.

Peter Schiff, chief executive officer of Euro Pacific Capital, recently gave an interview discussing the prospects of gold. When asked how high the price of gold may reach, he responded that there is no ceiling for the precious metal, because there is no limit on how much money will be printed. The Federal Reserve’s latest announcement confirms this theory, and paves the way for much higher gold and silver prices.

Johnson & Johnson’s (NYSE:JNJ) 2nd Quarter earnings were less than impressive, but expected.  J&J’s revenue dropped 0.4% quarter over quarter to $16.6 billion with net income dropping a whopping 49% to $1.4 billion.  Despite these dismal numbers, the company came in at EPS of $1.30, slightly beating analyst estimates of $1.29.

To complete the gloom, J&J lowered its full year 2012 guidance to a range of $5.0 to $5.07 per share from the previous range of $5.07 to $5.17.  A sympathetic Wall Street bought the company’s rationale of weakening European economies and after a brief drop, the share price recovered.  Year to date JNJ shares are up 6.39%. We analyzed the stock with our CHEAT SHEET investing framework.

The mobile space is as crazy as ever. With the announcement of the iPhone 5, there are now three phones at the “top” of the market: The iPhone 5, the Samsung Galaxy S3, and the Nokia (NYSE:NOK) Lumia 920. Supporting them are three different operating platforms: iOS 6, Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android 4.0, and  Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows Phone 8, respectively. We unpacked what this battle of the brands looks like.

Catalysts are critical to discovering winning stocks. Check out our newest CHEAT SHEET stock picks now.