Should I hold on to Alcatel-Lucent shares?

— -- Q: What's the latest for Alcatel-Lucent investors?

A: Alcatel-Lucent alu continues to be a source of trauma for investors.

Many investors in the telecom company wound up with shares due to several corporate events. AT&T shareholders, for instance, received shares of Lucent after the company was spun out from Ma Bell. And then, after a historically poor performance as an independent stock, Lucent was absorbed by Alcatel to form Alcatel-Lucent.

My advice for investors on Lucent in 2006 and Alcatel-Lucent in 2009 has been consistent: Sell and buy something else.

Despite the combination of Lucent and Alcatel, the company continues to struggle. While shares are up more than 11% this year, that's largely due to a bounce from its very low share price of about $3 a share.

Speculators might want to hold on and see if the recent momentum can continue. And there are glimmers of hope. For one thing, the company pays a more than 5% dividend yield, a pretty fat return given how low Treasury yields are. Alcatel-Lucent reported turning a small profit of $62 million in the second quarter, which was better than expected.

But the company's revenue growth continues to be anemic. Alcatel-Lucent continues to restructure so it can better take advantage of selling advanced computer networking gear, but the efforts are yet to pay off.

Investors would be better off, as I've been saying for years, to find a more lucrative investment elsewhere.

Matt Krantz is a financial markets reporter at USA TODAY and author of Investing Online for Dummies and Fundamental Analysis for Dummies. He answers a different reader question every weekday in his Ask Matt column at To submit a question, e-mail Matt at Follow Matt on Twitter at: