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the week’s highlights

Every day ROB Insight delivers exclusive analysis on breaking business news and market-moving events. Streetwise offers news and analysis on Bay Street and the world of finance. Inside the Market delivers up-to-the-minute insights on market news as it develops.

Here are our editors' picks of some of the best reads available to Globe Unlimited subscribers this week.

A bubble on wheels?

As if housing bubbles weren't enough to keep markets up at night, a new one has been bubbling up. As the New York Times reported earlier this year, some lenders may be extending loans for new cars to people who can't really afford them. Sound familiar? And with many consumers already neck-deep in mortgage debt, the last thing they (or lenders) need is another segment in trouble. In Streetwise, Tim Kiladze looks at the growing concerns.

A buyer's guide for dividend stocks

When looking for signposts to good-quality domestic dividend stocks, it may be that a lesser-followed TSX subindex provides the best guide. With three-year valuation data just becoming available, sifting through the numbers reveals some interesting trends. In Inside the Market, Scott Barlow compares three valuation metrics, two of which turn up nothing, but a third appears to accurately forecast the direction of dividend-paying stocks.

Singing the blue-chip blues

Investors can always rely on good ol' blue chips, right? Well, not always. Some of the old standbys for widows and children have had a bumpy ride of late, with such iconic names as IBM, Coca-Cola, and McDonald's all reporting poor results this week and seeing their share prices roughed up. A slow-growing economy is partly to blame, but the malaise has also focused attention on financial-engineering strategies that may be past their best-before dates, explains Ian McGugan in ROB Insight.

There's big bucks in being boring

It's those "exciting" investments that can often prove the most painful. And that's one reason Mawer Investment Management likes to keep it boring. The Calgary-based company has quintupled its assets under management to $25-billion over the past five years. The approach has paid off so well for Mawer that it's proud to trumpet its approach with the tagline: "Be boring. Make money." In Streetwise, Boyd Erman takes a look at the strategy the asset manager has employed to scoop up industry awards and go from strength to strength.

Six reason oil prices will rebound

Global oil production is up, and demand is down – two realities largely responsible for the recent precipitous drop in crude prices. How much further can prices be expected to drop? Not very far, suggests Colin Czieszynski in Inside the Market, where he examines six of the factors that could provide fuel for a rebound.

The Greek turnaround that isn't

While the Greek government has made efforts to tout an economic resurgence, pointing to successful new bond offerings earlier this year, the reality is not so rosy. Debt yields see-sawed violently last week when oil prices and stock markets took a hammering, another indication of the fact the country is still not out of the woods despite the support of the ECB and a massive bailout program. In ROB Insight, Eric Reguly takes a look at the reality of Greece's struggle to find its footing again.

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