This Week on StockHouse August 13 to 17

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The story of the week was the meltdown in the markets as various sources cited the credit crunch for selling that, at times took the major North American indices down 10%. Professional traders see a 10% decline as a market correction.

For a quick look back at the week that was, check out the StockHouse Top Five (http://www.stockhouse.ca/shfn/article.asp?edtID=20090), a look back at the top posters, boards and blogs of the week.

The approach of fall is often a harbinger of change. For StockHouse users, this autumn will bring a fresh new look and many changes (http://www.stockhouse.ca/shfn/editorial.asp?edtID=20084) to their favourite investment information web site. Publisher, executive editor Darin Diehl highlighted coming updates in his Publisher’s Notebook column.

Despite the worry evident in the market slide this week, Danny Deadlock wrote that China’s appetite for steel to build its burgeoning economy is not likely to disappear any time soon. He profiled a small metallurgical coal play, (http://www.stockhouse.ca/shfn/editorial.asp?edtID=20079) which is active in China.

Doug Casey weighed in on what the turmoil in equities could mean for investors. He advised readers to move into junior gold exploration stocks (http://www.stockhouse.ca/shfn/editorial.asp?edtID=20085), which he said would benefit from his predicted sharp run-up in the price of gold.

Many StockHouse commentators agreed: the markets are in the “wall of worry” stage. Negative sentiment is everywhere, and the focus has been on the slowdown in the U.S. housing market and the coinciding strains of the rise in foreclosures on subprime mortgages. The Institutional Research Partners reviewed the small-cap landscape for July, and suggested that investors will have to dig more deeply to find winners (http://www.stockhouse.ca/shfn/editorial.asp?edtID=20086) going forward.

But in Canada, lenders to high-risk borrowers have faced relatively less concern. Sean Mason followed the conversation at the Home Capital Group (TSX: T.HCG) BullBoard

http://www.stockhouse.ca/shfn/article.asp?edtID=20091 and found that investors were sticking with their stock of choice.

The growth in the money supply has been one of the big contributing factors to the ferocious bull market in base metals, maintained Steven Saville. However, the same inflationary policies that gave rise to triple digit gains in base metals could see investors heading for the safe haven of gold at the expense of metals like copper and aluminum, which look riskier in the light of the current credit worries.

So, where should investors go from here? Well, the Casey Research editors said a look at history (http://www.stockhouse.ca/shfn/editorial.asp?edtID=20096) suggested that four simple steps (and a steely dedication to your chosen path) could help investors turn the price of a night at the movies into a five figure profit.

John J. De Goey suggested that no matter how investors feel after the week’s market misery, they ought to take a smart and scientific approach to their portfolio investments. (http://www.stockhouse.ca/shfn/editorial.asp?