Ray BlancoRay Blanco

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Thoughts on Steve Jobs’ Passing, Apple Introduces New iPhone and Portfolio News

Wednesday night, America lost one of its most important innovators. Steve Jobs has passed away after a long battle with pancreatic cancer. In an all-too-short 56 years of life, Jobs and the iconic company he co-founded revolutionized personal computing, mobile computing, music and more. From a now famous garage, he helped build the world's most influential technology company and changed the world.

In the Midst of Turmoil, Tech Opportunities Abound

While all eyes nervously watch European parliaments, fundamentally sound technology companies with strong growth prospects are taking fire from panicky investors. Sentiment is sharply negative, the sky is falling, and Chicken Little is frantic...but our tech companies are quietly making progress in the middle of the storm. Compounding the overall negative environment, semiconductor technology companies are typically at cyclical lows this time of year, to be followed by year-end sales that bump up share prices.The portfolio has taken a beating, but ironically, bad news is often good news for long-term investors that keep their heads. It is a great time to break out the tech shopping list and buy.

Vertex Pipeline Progresses

This week, Vertex reported a promising update on an experimental drug candidate in clinical trials, VX-509. VX-509 selectively inhibits JAK3. Tyrosine kinases are an important family of enzymes in human biology. They act as master switches for many cellular functions. In autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, JAK3 is part of an abnormal immune response, which results in chronic inflammation and irreversible damage to cartilage and bones.

Market Correction Means You Can Buy on Sale

The equities markets were down deep yesterday, with the Dow racking up a loss of 513 points. Of course, with the markets shedding heavily since July, this plunge is just icing on the cake. All of the major indexes are now in negative territory for the year. But there is some good news...