Saturday, January 31, 2015

Top 5 US Stocks For 2014

Should a reporter, a highly respected one, be fired over a single mistake?

I'd have to say no.

Standards matter, and every error eats away a little at a news organization's credibility. Mistakes have to be taken seriously.

But the death penalty for one error is overkill.

Yet that's what happened to Bob Lewis, a veteran Associated Press political reporter based in Richmond, Va.

Lewis' made a big mistake, no doubt. And he deserved to be punished. So suspend him. But kicking him to the curb just isn't warranted.

And Lewis' error had collateral damage, the AP also fired two editors over the incident: Richmond-based Dena Potter and Atlanta-based Norman Gomlak. That also seems over the top.

OK, I guess the wire service, which always, to its credit, has taken accuracy extremely seriously, wanted to send a message. No doubt it has been a little sensitive over the issue since, speaking of high-profile mistakes, it falsely reported that a suspect had been arrested in the Boston Marathon massacre. But you can send a message without cleaning house.

Hot India Companies To Watch For 2015: Flexpoint Sensor Systems Inc (FLXT)

Flexpoint Sensor Systems, Inc.(Flexpoint), incorporated on June 11, 1992, is a development stage company. The Company is principally engaged in designing, engineering and manufacturing bend sensor technology and products using its patented Bend Sensor technology. Flexpoint manufactures, and has jointly developed, six products that are being sold and supplied to customers. Flexpoint owns nine patents, including patents on specific devices that use the Bend Sensor. The Company works with various Tier 1 (major) automotive suppliers on a variety of products that are in various stages of development and implementation.

Bend Sensor Technology

Flexpoint owns the patent rights to the Company's Bend Sensor technology through Sensitron, Inc. (Sensitron), a wholly owned subsidiary of the Company. The Bend Sensor is a potentiometer bend sensor product consisting of a coated substrate, such as plastic, that changes electrical conductivity as it is bent in a consistent manner. Electronic systems can connect to this sensor and measure in detail the amount of bending or movement that occurs in a predictable manner. A potentiometer functions through the means of metal contacts swiping or rubbing across a resistive element. Flexpoin�� Bend Sensor potentiometer is a single layer with no mechanical assembly that makes it more reliable and smaller, and lighter in weight.

Automotive Products

Flexpoint has developed comfort seat for automobiles utilizing its patented Bend Sensortechnology and is working with Tier 1 suppliers on development of the seat and various seat related controls. Through a joint development arrangement with a Tier1supplier Flexpoint developed and delivered prototypes of the seat. Automobile manufacture has partnered with a Tier 1 supplier and is in the final stages of evaluating Flexpoint�� patented horn switch to replace their existing technology. The automobile manufacturer is also evaluating the use of the Bend Sensor as a switch to open rear! doors of SUV's and as a seat belt reminder (SBR). While working with various Tier 1 automotive suppliers the Company has developed and tested a SBR sensor that alerts the occupant of an automobile to fasten his/her seatbelt.

Flexpoint is working with multiple manufacturers to replace existing devices in the marketplace with a system superior in performance. Four separate and independent automotive suppliers and OEMs tested the Bend Sensor device for use in pedestrian impact detection device. The tests proved that the Bend Sensor device was able to detect impact with a human leg and in the event of an accident and trigger the desired safety response. Flexpoint has also developed a crash sensor, which is a series of sensors mounted in strategic places on the side and door panels of an automobile to detect an impact, as well as the speed, direction and force of the impact. This allows an onboard computer to deploy side air bags where needed. Using the same concept as the Company's automotive seat belt reminder (SBR), this device monitors cinema theater's paying customers and identifies available seats. Flexpoint has supplied a theater management firm with several prototype sensors, which have undergone extensive testing for this application.

As of December 31, 2012, Flexpoint developed and produced 20 prototype medical beds that assist in the management of bed sores. Using the Bend Sensor technology and accompanying electronics the bed is able to determine the position of the person in the bed and how they are moved. The Company has developed a vibration sensor, a rupture disc/bursting disc utilizing the Bend Sensor as the detection/alarm element of a rupture disc device, an infant bed cover using its patented sensors that is used to monitor infants in the prevention of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), toys and video gaming devices, and sports applications.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By CRWE]

    Today, FLXT has shed (-6.25%) down -0.0060 at $.0900 with 19,500 shares in play thus far (ref. google finance Delayed: 11:10AM EDT September 25, 2013).

    Flexpoint Sensor Systems, Inc. previously reported they expect to complete both Phase Two and Phase Three of development of the colonoscope application during the remainder of 2013. The company will receive milestone cash payments for each stage of the development process.

Top 5 US Stocks For 2014: Lucara Diamond Corp (LUCRF.PK)

Lucara Diamond Corp. (Lucara) is a diamond development company focused in Africa. The business of Lucara consists of the acquisition, exploration and development of diamond properties. The principal assets of Lucara and the focus of Lucara�� development and exploration activities are its interest in mining, exploration and prospecting diamond licenses in Lesotho, Botswana and Namibia. The Company�� project Mothae Diamond Project is located in northeast Lesotho. In May 2010, it commenced test mining in Mothae Diamond Project-Lesotho. Mothae Diamonds (PTY) Ltd (Mothae Diamonds), an indirect 75% owned subsidiary of the Company, holds a 100% interest in the Mothae project. As of March 23, 2011, a total of 175,000 dry tons had been processed from the C domain, producing 5,484 carats at an average grade of 3.13 carats per hundred tons. In December 2010, the Company completed the acquisition of African Diamonds PLC, upon which Lucara indirectly owns 100% of the AK6 Diamond Project. Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By John Leonard]

    Lucara Diamond (LUCRF.PK) is still being valued as a riskier exploration stage miner rather than a profitable and growing producer. The current "backward looking" valuation fails to reflect the recent and significant operational transition.

Top 5 US Stocks For 2014: Kayne Anderson MLP Investment Co (KYN)

Kayne Anderson MLP Investment Company, incorporated on June 4, 2004, is a non-diversified, closed-end investment company. The Company�� investment objective is to obtain a high after-tax total return by investing at least 85% of its total assets plus any borrowings in energy-related master limited partnerships (MLPs) and their affiliates, and in other companies that, as their principal business, operate assets used in the gathering, transporting, processing, storing, refining, distributing, mining or marketing of natural gas, natural gas liquids, crude oil, refined petroleum products or coal (collectively with MLPs referred to as Midstream Energy Companies). The Company�� portfolio investments principally consist of equity securities issued by MLPs.

Kayne Anderson MLP Investment Company may invest up to 15% of its total assets in any single issuer. It may invest up to 20% of its total assets in debt securities, which may include below investment-grade securities. The Company�� portfolio includes investments in pipeline MLPs, propane MLPs, shipping MLPs, coal MLPs and upstream MLPs. The Company�� investment advisor is Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors, L.P.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Jon C. Ogg]

    The ETFs and funds held up on Monday:

    JPMorgan Alerian MLP Index ETN (NYSEArca: AMJ) was down only 0.3% at $46.86, versus a 52-week range of $42.18 to $49.31. Volume was 1.1 million shares versus an average of about 628,000. ALPS Alerian MLP ETF (NYSEArca: AMLP) closed down 0.45 at $17.57, versus a 52-week range of $16.75 to $18.36. This ETF traded more than 3.1 million shares, up from an average of about 2.85 million shares. The closed-end fund of Kayne Anderson MLP Investment Company (NYSE: KYN) even managed to rise by 0.26% to $38.70 against a 52-week range of $33.11 to $40.22. Its volume was also almost 300,000 shares versus an average volume of closer to 218,000 shares.

    It still seems more than interesting that the investment community did not pound the rest of the sector in sympathy with Boardwalk. This Boardwalk MLP still has a $3.1 billion market cap, even after getting cut almost in half. Usually investors try to tie in peers when one implosion is seen versus others. It seems as though they are trusting that negative natural gas exposure here is not going to spill over into the rest of the sector, and maybe not even spill over into the price of units in its more direct peers.

Top 5 US Stocks For 2014: WisdomTree International Dividend Ex Financial Fund (DOO)

WisdomTree International Dividend Top 100 Fund (The Fund) is a non-diversified fund. It seeks investment results that closely correspond to the price and yield performance, before fees and expenses, of the WisdomTree International Dividend Top 100 Index (The Index). The fund is managed by WisdomTree Asset Management, Inc.

The Index measures the performance of the 100 highest dividend-yielding companies in the WisdomTree International LargeCap Dividend Index. The Index is created by selecting the top 100 companies ranked by highest dividend yield from the WisdomTree International LargeCap Dividend Index.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Eric Lam]

    ��ompanies that come to market are coming from sectors that work,��said Brian Huen, managing partner at Red Sky Capital Management Ltd. in Toronto. He helps manage C$220 million with the firm, and participated in the offerings for Choice Properties, Information Services Corp., and Ski-Doo maker BRP Inc. (DOO) ��eople certainly aren�� bringing any gold IPOs to market. So investors are focusing on buying deals in the right markets, as opposed to the wider market which has exposure to resources.��

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Mary Barra Prepares to Lead Detroit's No. 1 Automaker

mary Barra Profile gmCarlos Osorio/APIncoming GM CEO Mary Barra. DETROIT -- When Mary Barra was born in 1961, General Motors was selling half the cars on U.S. roads. In her booming middle-class suburb north of Detroit, the woman who will soon become GM's CEO remembers pining as a 10-year-old for her cousin's red Camaro convertible and tinkering in the garage with her father, a die maker who spent four decades at GM. In 33 years at GM, Barra has worked in engineering, communications and human resources. She's gained in-depth knowledge of a company whose complexity contributed to its losing ground to rivals and, four years ago, a trip through bankruptcy court. In each stop, Barra analyzed the situation and simplified things. For instance, she streamlined designs by using the same parts in many different models. One of her professors at General Motors Institute, now Kettering University, saw evidence of her managerial abilities early on. "She was great in getting jobs done, putting a team together and making sure that it's being done right," Mo Torfeh says. "She was always the person who took charge." Now it's up to Barra -- the first woman to lead a global automaker -- to ensure GM prospers for a new generation of 212,000 employees spread over 23 time zones. GM's board unanimously approved her for the post two weeks ago after CEO Dan Akerson announced he would step down to help his wife battle cancer. Barra, 52, inherits a company that's putting out strong new products and making money. Since leaving bankruptcy in 2009, GM has racked up almost $20 billion in profits. But it also faces intense competition in its home market and challenges in Europe and other regions. Friends and colleagues say Barra has an unusual mix of skills. She's fiercely intelligent yet humble and approachable. She's collaborative but is often the person who takes charge. And she's not afraid to make changes. "When you put her in a position that's completely new to her, she does an amazing job of getting grounded, understanding what's important and what's not and executing very well," said Gary Cowger, a former GM executive who mentored Barra. Aptitude for Math and Science Barra, who declined to be interviewed for this story, has said she had an early aptitude for math and science. Her mother, one of eight children who never attended college, encouraged Barra and made higher education a priority for her and her brother. "She was so supportive, not saying 'You have to do this or that,' but whatever you do, put your heart in it," Barra said at Inforum, a professional development group for women, at an event in Detroit last year. Barra joined GM at 18. She was a co-op student, working for several months at a time at GM's Pontiac division while studying for her engineering degree at General Motors Institute, a Flint, Mich., college then owned by the company. In a lab where students worked in teams to build electric motor controls, Barra showed natural management skills not often found in engineers, said Torfeh, the veteran professor who instructed Barra in at least two classes. Barra was near the top of her class, but wasn't the smartest engineer. Her people skills, however, were so strong that Torfeh thought at the time Barra would rise high in the male-dominated auto business. Through the years, Barra stayed in touch with Torfeh. Last June, when she spoke at Kettering's commencement, Barra took time to congratulate Torfeh and his daughter, who was graduating that day. GMI was the training ground for many female executives in the auto industry, including Diana Tremblay, a GM vice president, and Carla Bailo, head of Nissan Motor Co.'s research in the Americas. 'Man's World' Bailo, who graduated a year before Barra and serves with her on Kettering's board, said it's understandable how many of the women who started in the male-dominated 1980s became leaders. "If you had the guts and gumption to stick that out, to say, 'This is a man's world and I need to blend in,' that makes us some of the most adaptive people in the industry," she said. Barra graduated from GMI in 1985, and GM eventually sent her to Stanford University to earn an MBA. When she returned, she rotated through a number of jobs, including executive assistant to then-CEO Jack Smith, a role often given to rising stars. She headed midsize car engineering and managed GM's Detroit-Hamtramck plant. Just after the 2009 bankruptcy, then-CEO Ed Whitacre put her in charge of human resources, a stop that isn't normally along the CEO track. But in Barra's case HR was key. GM had to keep talented people from jumping ship so it had bench strength to recover. Few people left. In 2011, Akerson plucked Barra from HR to run GM's huge worldwide product development, an operation he says was in chaos at the time. Through all the moves, Barra did the same thing she did in college -- took charge and got people to work as a team, said Grace Lieblein, GM's vice president of purchasing and a close friend of Barra's. "It's almost always Mary who stands up and says she'll take that on," Lieblein says. One recent problem she took on was the Chevrolet Malibu, a midsize car with roots back to GM's pre-bankruptcy era. GM rushed an updated version to market in 2012. The car looked dull and sold poorly. Barra and her team made fixes in under a year, something unheard of at GM. The new version reached showrooms in the fall and sales are up. Barra does have holes in her resume. She has little experience in sales and marketing or accounting, two key areas that she'll have to rely on others to manage. But Whitacre said she'll overcome any knowledge gaps. "What she doesn't know she'll pick up quite quickly," he says. Uncapped Compensation Barra made $4.85 million last year, including a $750,000 base salary plus stock units. The pay for her new job hasn't been determined, but it's no longer capped by government pay restrictions. Much has been made about Barra's gender. At the Inforum meeting last year, she stiffened when the issue came up. "We all come to the table, we all work hard, we all bring out skills and that's the way I've always thought of it," she said. "I never went and said, 'That happened to me because I'm a woman.' Just don't go there." Barra believes in balancing work and family. She's been married for 27 years to Tony Barra, a technology consultant, and has two teenage children and a dog. She sometimes tells executives and engineers who are working late to go home. Because her job spans so many time zones, there's much travel and days are long. She's on several corporate, nonprofit and university boards. She likes to go to dinner with friends, but after kid activities, there's little time left for her own hobbies. "I don't have a lot of free time, but that's the life I've designed right now," she told Inforum. When Akerson announced Barra's appointment as CEO in a broadcast to employees, many of them applauded spontaneously, Lieblein said. "I just thought, 'wow, that is so cool,'" Lieblein said. "She cares about people and they know it."

By Michael Zak | AOL Autos

A recent study looked at the 25 largest metropolitan areas in the United States to see which median-income households in those respective areas can afford to purchase a new car, the average price of which was $30,550 in 2012, according to TrueCar. The study found that in only one city can residents actually afford a car with this sticker price -- Washington, D.C. Households with an average income in Washington, D.C. can afford a payment of up to $628, which would allow for purchase of a $31,940 vehicle. The next closest city, San Francisco, can only afford $537 per month, equating to a $26,786. While it's not news that Americans like to buy things that they can't afford, the data is a little surprising given how many great cars there are out there for well under $30,000. Solid hybrids, CUVs, sedans and sports cars can all be had for less than this.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Beware a Fiduciary ‘Wild West’: Graff

The “rumor” as of Friday was that the Department of Labor’s redraft of its fiduciary rule was on Labor Secretary Thomas Perez’s desk, so it’s likely it could be at the Office of Management and Budget by year-end, with a proposed regulation out by next April or May, said Brian Graff, executive director of the American Society of Pension Professionals and Actuaries as well as the National Association of Plan Advisors, on Tuesday.

Graff, speaking at Charles Schwab’s IMPACT conference in Washington, said the DOL’s fiduciary proposal — along with about a dozen states “getting more involved with retirement issues,” which Graff said makes him “nervous” — are two of the biggest issues retirement plan advisors should watch next year.

Best Mid Cap Stocks To Buy Right Now

As Phyllis Borzi, assistant secretary of labor for DOL’s Employee Benefits Security Administration, said Oct. 29 at ASPPA’s annual conference, EBSA is coming “very close” to finishing its work on the reproposed rule.

Graff pointed to the problems he sees with the DOL’s fiduciary reproposal. The “practical impact” on the marketplace will be “how do you get paid, and will certain forms of compensation no longer be allowed,” he said.

“It’s not so much that more people will be fiduciaries,” under the proposal, Graff said, “but how they will get paid.” From an enforcement standpoint, DOL will get at the fiduciary problem “by limiting forms of compensation.”

The potential limit on compensation will affect the small-business market, Graff said, in that if a small business “doesn’t have a [401(k)] savings plan, who’s going to sell them a plan if they won’t get paid?” The small-business problem “is a vexing problem in the context of getting paid under a fiduciary standard.”

Another problem, Graff said, is DOL including IRAs in the reproposal—which Borzi has confirmed will happen. If the definition of fiduciary advice is the same for retirement plans and IRAs, the DOL “will not have the authority to enforce” the IRA portion, Graff said, as IRAs are the jurisdiction of the Internal Revenue Service. The IRS, he said, has six employees devoted to IRAs.

“Here’s my concern with what Borzi is trying to do: It’s not so much the notion of a fiduciary standard … but if there’s no enforcement teeth, you could be creating a Wild West.”

As to the Securities and Exchange Commission’s rule to put brokers under a fiduciary mandate, Graff warned that the agency may indeed create “two kinds” of fiduciaries. Dodd-Frank “explicitly” says that if the SEC develops a uniform fiduciary standard the agency “cannot preclude the advisor from getting commission-based compensation and cannot require the advisor to monitor investments,” Graff told attendees.

David Tittsworth, executive director of the Investment Adviser Association in Washington, told ThinkAdvisor that two fiduciary standards could indeed be a “possible” outcome. /* .premium-promo { border: 1px solid #ddd; padding: 10px; margin: 0 10px 10px 0; width: 200px; float: left; } .premium-promo li, .premium-promo ul { list-style-type: none; margin: 0; padding: 0; } .premium-promo li { margin: 0 0 10px; padding: 0 0 10px; border-bottom: 1px dotted #ddd; } .premium-promo h3 { text-transform: uppercase; font-size: 11px; } .premium-promo h4 { font-size: 16px; } .premium-promo a { text-decoration: none !important; } .premium-promo .btn { background: #0069a1; border-radius: 4px; display: inline-block; padding: 5px 10px; clear: both; color: #fff; font-weight: bold; } .premium-promo .btn:hover { background: #034c92; } */ Section 913 of Dodd-Frank states that any rule promulgated by the SEC “cannot make the receipt of commissions, in and of itself, a violation of the fiduciary duty and that such a rule cannot make the sale of proprietary products, in and of itself, a violation of the fiduciary duty and that Section 913 does not require the ongoing monitoring of investments,” Tittsworth explained.

While the law “does not necessarily mean that there will be two different fiduciary standards — the existing fiduciary standard under the Advisers Act and a fiduciary standard for brokers that provide investment advice to retail customers,” that result is “possible.”

IAA, Tittsworth said, “has warned the SEC that establishing different fiduciary standards would not be in the interests of clients. Obviously, it would exacerbate the current confusion that exists about differences between brokers and advisors and the standards that govern their activities.”

As to states getting more involved in retirement planning issues, Graff says about 12 to 13 states are “seriously” looking at the issue of not enough workers having a retirement plan at work. He said that some states are mulling adopting “mandates,” which require, for instance, as in the case of California, that “any employer with five employees” provide a payroll deducted IRA.

Graff said that state-run plans can be problematic in that “they usually don’t have competitive prices,” and stressed “the important role that the private sector needs to play here to make sure that products are innovative.”


Check out Bernie Clark Warns: Next Gen Is Now This Gen. Better Keep Up on ThinkAdvisor

Sirius XM Radio Inc (SIRI) Q3 Earnings Preview: Turning Down The Dial

SIRIUS XM Radio Inc. (SIRI) plans to release third quarter 2013 financial and operating results on Thursday, October 24, 2013. SiriusXM will hold a conference call at 8:00 am ET on Thursday, October 24, to discuss these results.  Investors and the press can listen to the conference call via the company's website at

Wall Street anticipates that satellite radio company will earn $0.02 for the quarter. iStock expects the Dow Jones Index member to hit Wall Street's consensus number. The iEstimate is $0.02, too.

Sirius XM Radio Inc. provides satellite radio services in the United States and Canada. The company broadcasts music, sports, entertainment, comedy, talk, news, traffic, and weather channels on subscription fee basis through two satellite radio systems.

Last year, the company earned a penny for 2012's third quarter. iStock examined Google Trends to see how year-over-year (YoY) search volume intensity compares to get a sense of what to expect.

We used the keywords "Sirius" (the most searched), "XM Radio" and "Sirius XM Radio" (the least searched). What we found leads is to believe that it is possible for SIRI to… fall short of the street's consensus for the third time in the last five quarters.

YoY queries for "Sirius" declined 6.85%, "XM Radio" turned down the intensity by 20.64%, and "Sirius XM Radio" was the steadiest, dipping 4.08%. However, search volume intensity improved roughly 2.38% in the third quarter versus Q2.

In a more troubling sign, we added "login" to t the aforementioned keywords. We have found "login" to be a reliable proxy for new accounts. "Sirius login" searched crashed 26.67%, "XM Radio login" were cut in half, and not enough people Googled "Sirius XM Radio login" to register search volume intensity – OUCHIE!

5 Best Insurance Stocks To Buy Right Now

In the second quarter, Sirius XM Radio had total revenue of $! 940.11 million. The street is forecasting sales of $969.67 million for Thursday's announcement or 3.14% quarter-over-quarter (QoQ) growth.

When we put all the pieces together, SIRIUS XM Radio is likely to show slowing subscriber growth (potentially running in place), sales in the neighborhood of $965 million (below consensus), and EPS hitting the consensus and iEstimate.

Overall: It appears that increasing competition could start to eat into SIRIUS XM Radio Inc. (SIRI) growth rates. Although we believe earnings will be inline, a revenue miss and flat subscribers – should it happen – could prove to be costly for shareholders.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

4 Stocks Rising on Unusual Volume

DELAFIELD, Wis. (Stockpickr) -- Professional traders running mutual funds and hedge funds don't just look at a stock's price moves; they also track big changes in volume activity. Often when above-average volume moves into an equity, it precedes a large spike in volatility.

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Major moves in volume can signal unusual activity, such as insider buying or selling -- or buying or selling by "superinvestors."

Unusual volume can also be a major signal that hedge funds and momentum traders are piling into a stock ahead of a catalyst. These types of traders like to get in well before a large spike, so it's always a smart move to monitor unusual volume. That said, remember to combine trend and price action with unusual volume. Put them all together to help you decipher the next big trend for any stock.

>>5 Stocks Set to Soar on Bullish Earnings

With that in mind, let's take a look at several stocks rising on unusual volume today.

United Rentals

United Rentals (URI) is an equipment rental company and its network consists of 529 rental locations in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. This stock closed up 4.2% at $59.79 in Wednesday's trading session.

Wednesday's Volume: 6.21 million

Three-Month Average Volume: 1.64 million

Volume % Change: 232%

From a technical perspective, URI spiked higher here right off its 50-day moving average of $56.72 with above-average volume. This stock has been uptrending modestly over the last two months, with shares moving higher from its low of $52.39 to its intraday high of $61.43. During that uptrend, shares of URI have been making mostly higher lows and higher highs, which is bullish technical price action.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in URI as long as it's trending above its 50-day at $56.72 and then once it sustains a move or close above its new 52-week high at $61.43 with volume that's near or above 1.64 million shares. If we get that move soon, then URI will set up to enter new 52-week-high territory, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that move are $65 to $70.


Insulet (PODD) is a medical device company that develops, manufactures and markets an innovative, discreet and easy-to-use insulin infusion system for people with insulin-dependent diabetes. This stock closed up 6.6% at $37.69 in Wednesday's trading session.

Wednesday's Volume: 1.06 million

Three-Month Average Volume: 357,791

Volume % Change: 185%

From a technical perspective, PODD spiked sharply higher here right off its 50-day moving average of $35.02 with above-average volume. This stock has been uptrending strong for the last six months, with shares soaring higher from its low of $23.50 to its recent high of $38.27. During that uptrend, shares of PODD have been consistently making higher lows and higher highs, which is bullish technical price action. That move has now pushed shares of PODD within range of triggering a major breakout trade. That trade will hit if PODD manages to take out Wednesday's high of $37.85 to its 52-week high at $38.27 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in PODD as long as it's trending above its 50-day at $35.02 or above more near-term support at $34.39 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that hits near or above 357,791 shares. If that breakout hits soon, then PODD will set up to enter new 52-week-high territory, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that breakout are $43 to $45.


AngioDynamics (ANGO) provides medical devices used in minimally invasive, image-guided procedures to treat peripheral vascular disease, and local oncology therapy options for treating cancer. This stock closed up 3.4% at $14.96 in Wednesday's trading session.

Wednesday's Volume: 429,000

Three-Month Average Volume: 118,626

Volume % Change: 232%

From a technical perspective, ANGO trended higher here with above-average volume. This stock has been uptrending strong for the last month and change, with shares exploding higher from its low of $10.84 to its recent high of $15.15. During that uptrend, shares of ANGO have been consistently making higher lows and higher highs, which is bullish technical price action. That move has now pushed shares of ANGO within range of triggering a near-term breakout trade. That trade will hit if ANGO manages to take out Wednesday's high of $15.02 and then its 52-week high at $15.15 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in ANGO as long as it's trending above some near-term support levels at $14 or $13.50 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that's near or above 118,626 shares. If that breakout hits soon, then ANGO will set up to enter new 52-week-high territory, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that breakout are its next major overhead resistance levels at $16.50 to $17, or even $20.


SolarCity (SCTY) is engaged in designing, sales, engineering, installation, monitoring, maintenance and financing of solar energy systems to residential and commercial customers, and sale of electricity generated by solar energy systems to customers. This stock closed up 12.5% at $52.38 in Wednesday's trading session.

Wednesday's Volume: 14.78 million

Three-Month Average Volume: 2.97 million

Volume % Change: 337%

From a technical perspective, SCTY exploded higher here right above some near-term support at $45 with monster upside volume. This stock has been uptrending strong over the last month and change, with shares moving higher from its low of $28.31 to its intraday high of $52.65. During that uptrend, shares of SCTY have been making mostly higher lows and higher highs, which is bullish technical price action. That move has now pushed shares of SCTY within range of triggering a major breakout trade. That trade will hit if SCTY manages to take out its all-time high of $52.77 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in SCTY as long as it's trending above Wednesday's low of $47.12, and then once it sustains a move or close above $52.77 with volume that's near or above 2.97 million shares. If that breakout hits soon, then SCTY will set up to enter new all-time-high territory, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that breakout are $60 to $65.

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To see more stocks rising on unusual volume, check out the Stocks Rising on Unusual Volume portfolio on Stockpickr.

-- Written by Roberto Pedone in Delafield, Wis.


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Follow Stockpickr on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.

At the time of publication, author had no positions in stocks mentioned.

Roberto Pedone, based out of Delafield, Wis., is an independent trader who focuses on technical analysis for small- and large-cap stocks, options, futures, commodities and currencies. Roberto studied international business at the Milwaukee School of Engineering, and he spent a year overseas studying business in Lubeck, Germany. His work has appeared on financial outlets including and You can follow Pedone on Twitter at or @zerosum24.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Best Value Companies To Own In Right Now

SAN FRANCISCO ��Twitter's investment bankers are saying the company's IPO may value it as high as $12 billion.

But how can a retail investor with no deep understanding of Twitter's business figure out what the company is REALLY worth?

The easiest way is to examine what investors have been willing to pay for similar offerings, in this case the initial stock sales of Facebook, in May, 2013, and LinkedIn, in May, 2012.

Like Twitter, a social media site, those online social networks have a distinct advantage over traditional media companies or online news sites: They get their content for free from users.

Newspapers, television networks, cable systems and most Internet news sites all pay for the pictures, text or video that they then use to sell advertising.

But not Twitter.

Top 10 High Dividend Companies For 2015: Tupperware Corporation(TUP)

Tupperware Brands Corporation operates as a direct seller of various products across a range of brands and categories through an independent sales force. The company engages in the manufacture and sale of kitchen and home products, and beauty and personal care products. It offers preparation, storage, and serving solutions for the kitchen and home, as well as kitchen cookware and tools, children?s educational toys, microwave products, and gifts under the Tupperware brand name primarily in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, the Asia Pacific, and North America. The company provides beauty and personal care products, which include skin care products, cosmetics, bath and body care, toiletries, fragrances, nutritional products, apparel, and related products principally in Mexico, South Africa, the Philippines, Australia, and Uruguay. It offers beauty and personal care products under the Armand Dupree, Avroy Shlain, BeautiControl, Fuller, NaturCare, Nutrimetics, Nuvo, and Swissgar de brand names. The company sells its Tupperware products directly to distributors, directors, managers, and dealers; and beauty products primarily through consultants and directors. As of December 26, 2009, the Tupperware distribution system had approximately 1,800 distributors, 61,300 managers, and 1.3 million dealers; and the sales force representing the Beauty businesses approximately 1.1 million. The company was formerly known as Tupperware Corporation and changed its name to Tupperware Brands Corporation in December 2005. The company was founded in 1996 and is headquartered in Orlando, Florida.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Dan Caplinger]

    Where growth will come from
    One area that Newell Rubbermaid still has to tap fully is emerging markets. The company has done a good job of expanding overseas, with 17% annual growth in Latin America. But with barely a quarter of its sales coming from outside the U.S. and Canada, the company has a lot further to go. Storage rival Tupperware (NYSE: TUP  ) gets fully 60% of its total revenue from emerging markets, and it too has seen impressive gains in South America as well as the Asia-Pacific region.

Best Value Companies To Own In Right Now: Caterpillar Inc.(CAT)

Caterpillar Inc. manufactures and sells construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, industrial gas turbines, and diesel-electric locomotives worldwide. It operates through three lines of businesses: Machinery, Engines, and Financial Products. The Machinery business offers construction, mining, and forestry machinery, including track and wheel tractors, track and wheel loaders, pipelayers, motor graders, wheel tractor-scrapers, track and wheel excavators, backhoe loaders, log skidders, log loaders, off-highway trucks, articulated trucks, paving products, skid steer loaders, underground mining equipment, tunnel boring equipment, and related parts. It also manufactures diesel-electric locomotives; and manufactures and services rail-related products and logistics services for other companies. The Engines business provides diesel, heavy fuel, and natural gas reciprocating engines for Caterpillar machinery, electric power generation systems, marine, petrol eum, construction, industrial, agricultural, and other applications. It offers industrial turbines and turbine-related services for oil and gas, and power generation applications. This business also remanufactures Caterpillar engines, machines, and engine components; and offers remanufacturing services for other companies. The Financial Products business provides retail and wholesale financing alternatives for Caterpillar machinery and engines, solar gas turbines, and other equipment and marine vessels, as well as offers loans and various forms of insurance to customers and dealers. It also offers financing for vehicles, power generation facilities, and marine vessels. The company markets its products directly, as well as through its distribution centers, dealers, and distributors. It was formerly known as Caterpillar Tractor Co. and changed its name to Caterpillar Inc. in 1986. Caterpillar Inc. was founded in 1925 and is headquartered in Peoria, Illinois.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Dan Caplinger]

    Caterpillar� (NYSE: CAT  ) , down 6%
    Caterpillar has been the worst-performing stock in the Dow so far this year, as the heavy-equipment maker has faced new challenges on top of some of the problems it has had to deal with for a long time. On top of the sluggishness in the construction and infrastructure industries worldwide, the plunge in commodities like precious metals have crushed the mining sector, hurting prospects for Caterpillar's sales of mining equipment. With multiple reductions to its guidance and recent layoff announcements, Caterpillar could have further to fall before it hits bottom.

  • [By Dan Caplinger]

    Caterpillar (NYSE: CAT  ) , down 1.1%
    For Caterpillar, the past two months have been quite volatile, with the stock having dropped about 10% only to recover nearly all of that lost ground more recently. Just before earnings, Caterpillar took a big hit when the bottom fell out of the gold market, as gold prices fell more than $140 in a single day. The impact of gold's decline on its mining equipment business could be huge, as miners struggling with much narrower margins will have less money to spend on capital expenditures for Caterpillar equipment. Yet since then, macroeconomic moves to bolster world growth, including rate cuts from the European and Australian central banks, have given investors hope that commodities will bounce back and that mining activity will resume. Now, Caterpillar just needs to see that turn into a reversal of horrendous sales trends in recent months.

  • [By Rich Duprey]

    Having completed one share repurchase agreement last month for $1 billion, heavy-equipment manufacturer Caterpillar� (NYSE: CAT  ) announced today that it's launching a second round of buybacks, purchasing the stock from Societe Generale,�one of the largest European financial-services groups.

  • [By Alex Planes]

    Big labor loses big
    On April 14, 1992, the same day its future Dow compatriot beat back Apple's (NASDAQ: AAPL  ) legal assault, Caterpillar (NYSE: CAT  ) gained a critical victory against the United Automobile Workers union. More than 12,000 workers stopped picketing Caterpillar's Peoria, Ill., plant, despite having called the company's offer "a mean-spirited proposal" up until the end of the strike. The five-month action was the first in a series of major union efforts against the heavy-equipment manufacturer, and the UAW's capitulation in the spring of 1992 set the tone for the strikes yet to come.

Best Value Companies To Own In Right Now: Schlumberger N.V.(SLB)

Schlumberger Limited, together with its subsidiaries, supplies technology, integrated project management, and information solutions to the oil and gas exploration and production industries worldwide. The company?s Oilfield Services segment provides exploration and production services; wireline technology that offers open-hole and cased-hole services; supplies engineering support, directional-drilling, measurement-while-drilling, and logging-while-drilling services; and testing services. This segment also offers well services; supplies well completion services and equipment; artificial lift; data and consulting services; geo services; and information solutions, such as consulting, software, information management system, and IT infrastructure services that support oil and gas industry. Its WesternGeco segment provides reservoir imaging, monitoring, and development services; and operates data processing centers and multiclient seismic library. This segment also offers variou s services include 3D and time-lapse (4D) seismic surveys to multi-component surveys for delineating prospects and reservoir management. The company?s M-I SWACO segment supplies drilling fluid systems to improve drilling performance; fluid systems and specialty tools to optimize wellbore productivity; production technology solutions to maximize production rates; and environmental solutions that manages waste volumes generated in drilling and production operations. Its Smith Oilfield segment designs, manufactures, and markets drill bits and borehole enlargement tools; and supplies drilling tools and services, tubular, completion services, and other related downhole solutions. The company?s Distribution segment markets pipes, valves, and fittings, as well as mill, safety, and other maintenance products. This segment also provides warehouse management, vendor integration, and inventory management services. Schlumberger Limited was founded in 1927 and is based in Houston, Texas.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Paul Ausick]

    Oilfield services giant Schlumberger Ltd. (NYSE: SLB) saw short interest rise 12.5% to 14 million shares, about 1% of Schlumberger�� float. The largest oilfield services company reported fourth-quarter results last week and posted higher EPS and revenues than it did a year ago.

  • [By Taylor Muckerman and Joel South]

    Gulf of Mexico delivering boatloads of profit
    Already, several companies have spoken glowingly about activity levels in the Gulf of Mexico. Not just drillers like Noble Corp (NYSE: NE  ) �but also equipment and service companies like Halliburton (NYSE: HAL  ) and Schlumberger (NYSE: SLB  ) . What we are seeing here is a steady increase in both dayrates and utilization rates, which are both�very�positive signs for drillship operators.

  • [By reports.droy]

    In a recent article from the Financial Times, GE's Oil and Gas division head Lorenzo Simonelli stated that the company had started to become a major player in the oil and gas industry, taking market share from the "big four" in the industry- Schlumberger (SLB), Halliburton (HAL), Weatherford (WFT) and Baker Hughes (BHI). Although it still remains smaller than the big four it does have a promising future ahead.


    Schlumberger is best of breed in its industry, but the industry�� potential might not be as strong as advertised. There is a theory that decreasing energy prices will lead to increased demand, but that�� like saying someone flushed the toilet and then went to the bathroom. The truth is that global demand is on shaky ground, and if it falters, it will lead to a chain reaction that won�� benefit Schlumberger. In a somewhat related matter of importance, Schlumberger�� stock was hit hard during the financial crisis. The fact that it was deemed the financial crisis isn�� important in this case. What�� important is that it was a deflationary environment and Schlumberger couldn�� maintain its strength in that�environment. If the Federal Reserve removed all monetary stimulus, would a deflationary environment present itself once again? Nobody knows for sure, but it�� a possibility. In the meantime, potential rewards outweigh downside risks for Schlumberger. Therefore, Schlumberger is an OUTPERFORM.

Best Value Companies To Own In Right Now: Dollar Tree Inc.(DLTR)

Dollar Tree, Inc. operates discount variety stores in the United States and Canada. Its stores offer merchandise primarily at the fixed price of $1.00. The company operates its stores under the names of Dollar Tree, Deal$, Dollar Tree Deal$, Dollar Giant, and Dollar Bills. Its stores offer consumable merchandise, including candy and food, and health and beauty care, as well as household consumables, such as paper, plastics, household chemicals, in select stores, and frozen and refrigerated food; variety merchandise, which includes toys, durable housewares, gifts, party goods, greeting cards, softlines, and other items; and seasonal goods, such as Easter, Halloween, and Christmas merchandise. As of April 30, 2011, it operated 4,089 stores in 48 states and the District of Columbia, as well as 88 stores in Canada. The company was founded in 1986 and is based in Chesapeake, Virginia.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Lawrence Meyers]

    As a convenience store, it doesn’t have direct competition from�Dollar Tree (DLTR) or Family Dollar (FDO) because these dollar stores aren�� exclusively focused on food (and they have no gasoline or cigarette sales), and they��e targeted at the folks who are trying to save money over convenience, not vice versa. The convenience angle is another reason why�Walmart (WMT) and Costco (COST)�aren’t competitors, since those behemoths are about a total shopping experience.

Hot International Companies To Invest In 2014

One way or the other, small cap stocks mLight Tech, Inc (OTCMKTS: MLGT), Multi-Corp International Inc (OTCMKTS: MULI) and Brownie's Marine Group Inc (OTCMKTS: BWMG) have been getting some attention lately. For starters, one of these stocks has been the subject of paid promotions, another might be getting dragged into a controversy involving yet another small cap and the last stock sank 18.34% on Friday. So what�� going on with these three small cap stocks and what should be your trading or investing strategy? Here is a close look:

mLight Tech, Inc (OTCMKTS: MLGT) Announces Its Marketing or Sales Strategy

Small cap mLight Tech�� Ding King Training Institute is a Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education (BPPE) approved institution that teaches Paintless Dent Repair and other Automotive Appearance Programs. On Friday, mLight Tech fell 4% to $0.048 for a market cap of $10.20 million plus MLGT is down 52% over the past five trading days with no further data from Google Finance.

Hot Machinery Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Sequenom Inc.(SQNM)

Sequenom, Inc. provides products, services, diagnostic testing, applications, and genetic analysis products that translate the results of genomic science into solutions for biomedical research, translational research, molecular medicine applications, and agricultural and livestock research. The company operates in two segments, Molecular Diagnostics and Genetic Analysis. The Molecular Diagnostics segment researches, develops, and commercializes noninvasive molecular diagnostic tests for prenatal genetic disorders and diseases, women?s health related disorders and diseases, ophthalmology, oncology, infectious diseases, and autoimmunity. This segment markets diagnostic technology for prenatal diagnostics under the trademark SEQureDx. The Genetic Analysis segment designs and markets MassARRAY system, a nucleic acid analysis platform that comprises hardware, software applications, consumable chips, and reagents to measure genetic target material and variations. This segment o ffers its MassARRAY system for various DNA/RNA analysis applications, including single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP), genotyping, detection of mutations, analysis of copy number variants, and other structural genome variations, as well as quantitative gene expression analysis, quantitative methylation marker analysis, comparative sequence analysis of haploid organisms, SNP discovery, and oligonucleotide quality control. It also provides iPLEX multiplexing assay, which permits multiplexed SNP analysis and somatic mutation analysis. The company offers its products through direct sales, and sales and distribution partners to clinical research laboratories, bio-agriculture, bio-technology and pharmaceutical companies, academic institutions, and various government agencies worldwide. Sequenom, Inc. was founded in 1994 and is headquartered in San Diego, California.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Keith Speights]

    The check wasn't in the mail
    Genetic analysis solutions provider Sequenom (NASDAQ: SQNM  ) announced its second-quarter financial results this week. Mr. Market wasn't happy. Shares plunged nearly 30% for the week.

  • [By Brian Pacampara]

    What: Shares of diagnostic testing specialist Sequenom (NASDAQ: SQNM  ) plummeted 30% today after its quarterly results disappointed Wall Street.�

Hot International Companies To Invest In 2014: Guar Global Ltd (GGBL)

Guar Global Ltd., formerly ERE Management, Inc., incorporated on May 29, 2007, is a development-stage company. The Company focuses on developing its content management system (CMS) software product. It has developed a basic version of the CMS software, which enables real estate agents with no technical knowledge to easily build a Website to showcase their listings.

The Company's product is designed to include an administration page that allows the entry of mega tags and keywords to enhance search engine hits, and a set of tools to enhance Websites by enabling the creation of various Website sections, such as a contact us contact information page; an our team description of agents page, and a mortgage calculator. During the fiscal year ended July 31, 2010, the Company did not generate any revenue.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By John Udovich]

    Small cap OTC stocks Sovereign Lithium Inc (OTCMKTS: SLCO), Life Stem Genetics Inc (OTCMKTS: LIFS), Nevada Gold Corp (OTCMKTS: NVGC), Guar Global Ltd (OTCMKTS: GGBL) and Makism 3D Corp (OTCMKTS: MDDD) all saw their trading halted late last year by the SEC, but now all of these stocks are trading again. So what's going on and why the sudden crackdown? First, here is a quick look at what happened to the following five small cap stocks:

Hot International Companies To Invest In 2014: Protective Life Corporation(PL)

Protective Life Corporation and its subsidiaries engage in the production, distribution, and administration of insurance and investment products in the United States. Its Life Marketing segment markets universal life, variable universal life, level premium term insurance, and bank-owned life insurance products primarily through a network of independent insurance agents and brokers, stockbrokers, and independent marketing organizations. The company?s Acquisitions segment focuses on acquiring, converting, and servicing life insurance policies and annuity products sold to individuals, which are acquired from other companies. Its Annuities segment markets variable annuity products that offer the policyholder the opportunity to invest in various investment accounts; and fixed annuity products, such as modified guaranteed annuities, single premium deferred annuities, single premium immediate annuities, and equity indexed annuities primarily through broker-dealers, financial ins titutions, and independent agents and brokers. The company?s Stable Value Products segment offers guaranteed funding agreements to special purpose entities; fixed and floating rate funding agreements directly to the trustees of municipal bond proceeds, institutional investors, bank trust departments, and money market funds; and guaranteed investment contracts to qualified retirement savings plans. Its Asset Protection segment primarily markets extended service contracts, and credit life and disability insurance to protect consumers? investments in automobiles, watercraft, and recreational vehicles; and markets a guaranteed asset protection product primarily through a national network of approximately 3,750 automobile, marine, and recreational vehicle dealers. The company was founded in 1907 and is headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By David Sterman]

    My favorite insurers: AIG (NYSE: AIG) (which I discussed a few months ago), Protective Life (NYSE: PL) and Reinsurance Group of America (NYSE: RGA).

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    It was the night before the ECB–and two before US payrolls–and all through the market nothing was stirring, not even…Alright. Some things were stirring, like the shares of Protective Life (PL), Travelers Companies (TRV), Under Armour (UA), Broadcom (BRCM) and Vanda Pharmaceuticals (VNDA).

Hot International Companies To Invest In 2014: Entergy Corp (ETR)

Entergy Corporation (Entergy), incorporated on August 19, 1992, is an integrated energy company engaged primarily in electric power production and retail distribution operations. Entergy owns and operates power plants with approximately 30,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity, including more than 10,000 megawatts of nuclear power. Entergy delivers electricity to 2.8 million utility customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. Entergy operates through two business segments: Utility and Entergy Wholesale Commodities. The Utility business segment includes the generation, transmission, distribution, and sale of electric power in portions of Arkansas, Mississippi, Texas, and Louisiana, including the City of New Orleans; and operates a small natural gas distribution business. The Entergy Wholesale Commodities business segment includes the ownership and operation of six nuclear power plants located in the northern United States and the sale of the electric power produced by those plants to wholesale customers.


The Utility business segment includes six wholly-owned retail electric utility subsidiaries: Entergy Arkansas, Entergy Gulf States Louisiana, Entergy Louisiana, Entergy Mississippi, Entergy New Orleans, and Entergy Texas. These companies generate, transmit, distribute and sell electric power to retail and wholesale customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas. Entergy Gulf States Louisiana and Entergy New Orleans also provide natural gas utility services to customers in and around Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and New Orleans, Louisiana, respectively. Also included in the Utility is System Energy, a wholly owned subsidiary of Entergy Corporation that owns or leases 90% of Grand Gulf. System Energy sells its power and capacity from Grand Gulf at wholesale to Entergy Arkansas, Entergy Louisiana, Entergy Mississippi, and Entergy New Orleans. The electric energy sales of the Utility operating companies are subject to seasonal fluctuations, with t! he peak sales period normally occurring during the third quarter of each year. On July 30, 2012, Entergy reached a 2012 peak demand of 21,866 megawatt hour.

Entergy New Orleans and Entergy Gulf States Louisiana provide both electric power and natural gas to retail customers. During the year ended December 31, 2012, Entergy New Orleans and Entergy Gulf States Louisiana sold 8,924,256 and 6,104,341 million cubic feet, respectively, of natural gas to retail customers. In 2012, 97% of Entergy Gulf States Louisiana�� operating revenue was derived from the electric utility business, and only 3% from the natural gas distribution business. In 2002, Entergy New Orleans, 86% of operating revenue was derived from the electric utility business and 14% from the natural gas distribution business.

Entergy Wholesale Commodities

Entergy Wholesale Commodities includes the ownership and operation of six nuclear power plants, five of which are located in the Northeast United States, with the sixth located in Michigan, and is primarily focused on selling electric power produced by those plants to wholesale customers. Entergy Wholesale Commodities��revenues are primarily derived from sales of energy and generation capacity from these plants. Entergy Wholesale Commodities also provides operations and management services, including decommissioning services, to nuclear power plants owned by other utilities in the United States. Entergy Wholesale Commodities also includes the ownership of two non-operating nuclear facilities, Big Rock Point in Michigan and Indian Point 1 in New York that were acquired when Entergy purchased the Palisades and Indian Point 2 nuclear plants, respectively. The Pilgrim and Vermont Yankee and Rhode Island plants fall under the authority of the Independent System Operator (ISO) New England and the FitzPatrick and Indian Point plants fall under the authority of the New York Independent System Operator (NYISO). The Palisades plant falls under the authority of ! the MISO.! The primary purpose of ISO New England, NYISO, and MISO is to direct the operations of the major generation and transmission facilities in their respective regions; ensure grid reliability; administer and monitor wholesale electricity markets; and plan for their respective region�� energy needs.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Richard Stavros]

    The Top Low-Carbon Utilities

    PG&E Corp (NYSE: PCG) Exelon Corp (NYSE: EXC) Entergy Corp (NYSE: ETR) Public Service Enterprise Group Inc (NYSE: PEG) NextEra Energy Inc (NYSE: NEE) Dominion Resources Inc (NYSE: D) Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE)

    But that is not to say that, over the long term, high-carbon utilities might not be able to crack the technology and cost issues that would make “clean coal” competitive with other low-carbon energy sources. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz has said, “No discussion of US energy security and reducing global CO2 emissions is complete without talking about coal and the technologies that will allow us to use this resource more efficiently and with fewer greenhouse gas emissions.”

Hot International Companies To Invest In 2014: Reed Elsevier PLC(RUK)

Reed Elsevier PLC provides professional information solutions worldwide. The company?s Elsevier segment offers scientific, technical, and medical information solutions. This segment publishes science and technology research articles and book titles; and abstract and citation database of research literature, as well as offers information and workflow tools that help researchers generate insights in the advancement of scientific discovery. The Elsevier segment also provides medical journals, books, reference works, databases, and online information tools to medical researchers, doctors, nurses, allied health professionals, students, hospitals, research institutions, health insurers, managed healthcare organizations, and pharmaceutical companies. Its LexisNexis Risk Solutions segment offers data and analytics for the insurance industry; risk management, identity verification, fraud detection, credit risk management, and compliance solutions for financial institutions; invest igative solutions; and employment-related, resident and volunteer screening services. The company?s Lexisnexis Legal and Professional segment provides legal, tax, regulatory, and business information solutions. Its Reed Exhibitions segment organizes exhibitions and conferences for the broadcasting, TV, music, and entertainment; building and construction; electronics and electrical engineering; alternative energy, oil, and gas; engineering, manufacturing, and processing; gifts; interior design; IT and telecoms; jewelry; life sciences and pharmaceuticals; marketing; property and real estate; sports and recreation; and travel sectors. The company?s Reed Business Information segment provides data services, information, and marketing solutions to business professionals; produces industry critical data services, lead generation tools, and online community and job sites; and publishes business magazines. Reed Elsevier PLC was founded in 1894 and is based in London, the United Kin gdom.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By David O��ara]

    2. Reed Elsevier�
    Reed Elsevier� (LSE: REL  ) (NYSE: RUK  ) is a provider of "professional information solutions." Products include leading industry journals -- Reed Elsevier is publisher of both�The Lancet�and�Gray's Anatomy.

  • [By Zarr Pacificador]

    A look at Reed Elsevier
    Today, I'm evaluating�Reed Elsevier� (LSE: REL  ) (NYSE: RUK  ) , a professional information solutions provider,�which currently trades at 743 pence. Here are my thoughts:

  • [By Rupert Hargreaves]

    Today I am looking at�Reed Elsevier� (LSE: REL  ) (NYSE: RUK  ) to determine whether you should consider buying the shares at 734 pence.

Hot International Companies To Invest In 2014: Acorn Energy Inc.(ACFN)

Acorn Energy, Inc., through its subsidiaries, provides technology driven solutions for energy infrastructure asset management worldwide. It offers sonar and acoustic related solutions for energy, defense, and commercial markets with a focus on underwater site security for strategic energy installations and other acoustic systems, as well as develops and produces real-time embedded hardware and software. The company also develops and markets remote monitoring systems to electric utilities and industrial facilities, which are used in a range of utility applications, including outage management, power quality monitoring, system planning, trouble shooting and proactive maintenance, and condition monitoring; and provides the intelligence to transmission and distribution network operators. In addition, it develops and produces fiber optic sensing systems for the energy, commercial security, and defense markets. The company?s patented ultra-high sensitivity fiber optic sensors a re designed to replace electronic sensors with fiber optic sensors. Further, it engages in the design, manufacture, marketing, and sale of wireless remote systems that monitor standby power generation, backup power generators, remote powered equipment, cellular towers, emergency towered communications, and remote tower sites; cathodic protection products to monitor pipeline integrity; and other wireless remote systems. Acorn Energy, Inc. was founded in 1986 and is based in Montchanin, Delaware.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Bryan Murphy]

    Neither Acorn Energy Inc. (NASDAQ:ACFN) nor Cardica, Inc. (NASDAQ:CRDC) may look all that compelling with just a passing glance. The longer one examines CRDC and ACFN, however - and really gets a grasp of their underlying stories - the more compelling each one becomes. In fact, newcomers may want to go ahead and put both budding stocks on their watchlists, if not in their portfolios.

Hot International Companies To Invest In 2014: Merrimack Pharmaceuticals Inc (MACK)

Merrimack Pharmaceuticals, Inc., incorporated in 1993, is a biopharmaceutical company discovering, developing and preparing to commercialize medicines paired with companion diagnostics for the treatment of serious diseases, with an initial focus on cancer. The Company�� product candidates include MM-398, MM-121, MM-111, MM-302 and MM-151. As of June 31, 2011, the Company owned approximately 74% interest of Silver Creek.

The Company�� Network biology is an interdisciplinary approach to drug discovery and development that enables the Company to build functional and predictive computational models of biological systems based on quantitative, kinetic, multiplexed biological data. The Company provides its scientists with insights into how the complex molecular interactions that occur within cell signaling pathways, or networks, regulate cell decisions and how dysfunction within these networks leads to disease. The Company applies network biology throughout the research and development process, including for target identification, lead compound design and optimization, diagnostic discovery, in vitro and in vivo predictive development and the design of clinical trial protocols.


MM-398 is a stable nanotherapeutic encapsulation, or enclosed sphere carrying an active drug, of the marketed chemotherapy drug irinotecan. MM-398 achieved its primary efficacy endpoints in Phase 2 clinical trials in pancreatic and gastric cancer. In an open label, single arm Phase 2 clinical trial of MM-398 as a monotherapy in 40 metastatic pancreatic cancer patients who had previously failed treatment with gemcitabine, patients treated with MM-398 achieved median overall survival of 22.4 weeks. Additionally, 20% of the patients in this Phase 2 trial survived for more than one year, and the Company observed a disease control rate, meaning patients exhibited stable disease or partial or complete response to treatment, of 47.5% at six weeks.

The Company focuses on initiati! ng a Phase 3 clinical trial of MM-398 for the treatment of patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer who have previously failed treatment with gemcitabine. The trial is expected to enroll approximately 250 patients and is designed to compare the efficacy of MM-398 as a monotherapy against the combination of the chemotherapy drugs fluorouracil, or 5-FU, and leucovorin. There are multiple ongoing Phase 1 and Phase 2 clinical trials of MM-398. In July 2011, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted MM-398 orphan drug designation for the treatment of pancreatic cancer.


MM-121 is a fully human monoclonal antibody that targets ErbB3, a cell surface receptor, or protein attached to the cell membrane that mediates communication inside and outside the cell, that the Company�� network biology approach identified as a target in a range of cancers. A monoclonal antibody is a type of protein normally produced by cells of the immune system that binds to just one epitope, or chemical structure, on a protein or other structure. MM-121 is designed to inhibit cancer growth directly, restore sensitivity to drugs to which a tumor has become resistant and delay the development of resistance of a tumor to other agents. In collaboration with Sanofi, the Company focuses on testing MM-121 in combination with both chemotherapies and other targeted agents across a range of spectrum of solid tumors, including lung, breast and ovarian cancers. The Company partnered MM-121 with Sanofi after it initiated Phase 1 clinical development of the product candidate.


MM-111 is a bispecific antibody designed to target cancer cells that are characterized by overexpression of the ErbB2 cell surface receptor, also referred to as HER2. A bispecific antibody is a type of antibody that is able to bind simultaneously to two distinct proteins or epitopes. The Company�� network biology approach identified that ligand-induced signaling through the complex of ErbB2 ! (HER2) an! d ErbB3 is a promoter of tumor growth and survival than previously appreciated.


MM-302 is a nanotherapeutic encapsulation of doxorubicin with attached antibodies that are designed to target MM-302 to cells that over express the ErbB2 (HER2) receptor. The Company is conducting a Phase 1 clinical trial of MM-302 in patients with advanced ErbB2 (HER2) positive breast cancer.


MM-151 is an oligoclonal therapeutic consisting of a mixture of three fully human monoclonal antibodies designed to bind to non-overlapping epitopes of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). EGFR is also known as ErbB1. An oligoclonal therapeutic is a mixture of two or more distinct monoclonal antibodies. The Company has designed MM-151 to block signal amplification that occurs within the ErbB cell signaling network. The Company has submitted an investigational new drug application (IND), to the FDA for MM-151 in July 2011.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Roberto Pedone]


    Another stock that insiders are jumping into here is Merrimack Pharmaceuticals (MACK), which is engaged in discovering, developing and preparing to commercialize medicines paired with companion diagnostics for the treatment of cancer primarily in the U.S. Insiders are buying this stock into major strength, since shares have ripped higher by 38% so far in 2014.



    Merrimack Pharmaceuticals has a market cap of $765 million and an enterprise value of $713 million. This stock trades at a premium valuation, with a price-to-sales of 16.04. Its estimated growth rate for this year is 12.1, and for next year it's pegged at 17.2%. This is just barely a cash-rich company, since the total cash position on its balance sheet is $124.18 million and its total debt is $113.81 million.


    A director just bought 36,000 shares, or about $246,000 worth of stock, at $6.84 per share. Another director also just bought 32,390 shares, or about $221,000 worth of stock, at $6.84 per share.


    From a technical perspective, MACK is currently trending above both its 50-day and 200-day moving averages, which is bullish. This stock recently sold off from around $8 a share to right around its 50-day moving average of $6.69 a share. Following that move, shares of MACK have started to rebound and re-fill a previous gap-down-day zone that started near $8. That spike higher into the gap is starting to push shares of MACK within range of triggering a big breakout trade.


    If you're in the bull camp on MACK, then I would look for long-biased trades as long as this stock is trending above its 50-day at $6.69 and then once it breaks out above some near-term overhead resistance levels at $7.97 to its 52-week high of $8.25 a share with high volume. Look for a sustained move or close above those levels with volume that hits near or above its three-month average action of 2.24 million shares. If that brea

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Top 10 Forestry Companies To Watch For 2014

DELAFIELD, Wis. (Stockpickr) -- Professional traders running mutual funds and hedge funds don't just look at a stock's price moves; they also track big changes in volume activity. Often when above-average volume moves into an equity, it precedes a large spike in volatility.

>>5 Stocks Poised for Breakouts

Major moves in volume can signal unusual activity, such as insider buying or selling -- or buying or selling by "superinvestors."

Unusual volume can also be a major signal that hedge funds and momentum traders are piling into a stock ahead of a catalyst. These types of traders like to get in well before a large spike, so it's always a smart move to monitor unusual volume. That said, remember to combine trend and price action with unusual volume. Put them all together to help you decipher the next big trend for any stock.

>>5 Stocks Under $10 Set to Soar

With that in mind, let's take a look at several stocks rising on unusual volume today.

Top 10 Diversified Bank Companies For 2015: Oppenheimer Holdings Inc.(OPY)

Oppenheimer Holdings Inc., through its subsidiaries, operates as a middle-market investment bank and full service broker-dealer. It offers full-service brokerage services covering various investment alternatives, such as exchange-traded and over-the-counter corporate equity and debt securities, money market instruments, exchange-traded options and futures contracts, municipal bonds, mutual funds, and unit investment trusts. The company also provides financial and wealth planning services; margin lending; securities lending; and online equity investing and discount brokerage services. In addition, it offers asset management services for equity, fixed income, large-cap balanced, and alternative investments offered through vehicles, such as privately managed accounts, and retail and institutional separate accounts. Further, the company provides strategic advisory services and capital markets products; institutional equity sales and trading; equity research; equity options and derivatives; convertible bonds; and event driven sales and trading services. Additionally, it trades in non-investment grade public and private debt securities, mortgage-backed securities, sovereign and corporate debt, and distressed securities; provides fixed income research, public finance, and municipal trading services; and is involved in proprietary trading and investment activities. The company also participates in loan syndications and operates as underwriting agent in financing transactions; trades syndicated corporate loans in the secondary market; offers various trust services; and provides mortgage services to developers of commercial properties. It serves high-net-worth individuals and families, corporate executives, small and mid-sized businesses, endowments and foundations, and institutions in the United States, Europe, the Middle East, Asia, and South America. The company was founded in 1977 and is headquartered in New York, New York.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Hilary Kramer]

    With this news, some Wall Street firms finally ��albeit a bit late ��jumped on the ICPT bandwagon.� Citigroup (C) raised its target to $400, stating that its market cap (at the time $5.4 billion) didn�� reach the opportunity for these liver disease treatments.� They estimated that the OCA could exceed a $5 billion sales level.� Oppenheimer (OPY) also raised its target to $360 while Bank of America/Merrill’s (BAC) target is set at $872, the only one not yet exceeded with the most recent move.

  • [By Ben Rooney]

    Tamayo then handed that information over to Vladimir Eydelman, a stock broker at Oppenheimer (OPY) and Morgan Stanley (MS). Eydelman in turn used it to trade stocks for Tamayo and other customers.

Top 10 Forestry Companies To Watch For 2014: NN Inc.(NNBR)

NN, Inc. engages in the manufacture and sale of metal bearing, plastic and rubber, and precision metal components for bearing manufacturers worldwide. It operates in three segments: Metal Bearing Components, Plastic and Rubber Components, and Precision Metal Components. The Metal Bearing Components segment manufactures precision steel balls that are used primarily by manufacturers of anti-friction bearings; steel rollers comprising tapered rollers used in automotive gearbox applications, automotive wheel bearings, and various industrial applications; cylindrical rollers; and precision metal retainers for roller bearings. The Plastic and Rubber Components segment offers precision bearing seals for use in the automotive, industrial, agricultural, and mining markets; precision plastic retainers for ball and roller bearings used in various industrial applications; and precision plastic components, including automotive under-the-hood components, electronic instrument cases, pre cision electronic connectors and lenses, and various specialized industrial and consumer parts. The Precision Metal Components segment provides engineered shafts, fluid power assemblies, and complex precision assembled and tested parts used in the automotive, HVAC, fluid power, and diesel engine markets. The company was founded in 1980 and is based in Johnson City, Tennessee.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Marc Bastow]

    Precision ball-bearings and tapered rollings manufacturer NN, Inc. (NNBR) raised its quarterly dividend 16.6% to 7 cents per share, payable March 14 to shareholders of record as of Feb. 28.
    NNBR Dividend Yield: 1.47%

Top 10 Forestry Companies To Watch For 2014: Anthem Inc (ANTM)

Anthem, Inc., formerly WellPoint, Inc. (WellPoint), incorporated on July 17, 2001, is a health benefit company. The Company manages its operations through three segments: Commercial, Consumer, and Other. The Company is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association (BCBSA), an association of independent health benefit plans. The Company offers a spectrum of network-based managed care plans to the large and small employer, individual, Medicaid and senior markets. Its managed care plans include preferred provider organizations (PPOs); health maintenance organizations (HMOs); point-of-service plans (POS) plans; traditional indemnity plans and other hybrid plans, including consumer-driven health plans (CDHPs); and hospital only and limited benefit products.

The Company serves its members as the Blue Cross licensee for California and as the Blue Cross and Blue Shield (BCBS), licensee for Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Missouri (excluding 30 counties in the Kansas City area), Nevada, New Hampshire, New York (as BCBS in 10 New York city metropolitan and surrounding counties, and as Blue Cross or BCBS in selected upstate counties only), Ohio, Virginia (excluding the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington, District of Columbia), and Wisconsin. The Company does business as Anthem Blue Cross, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia, Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield, or Empire Blue Cross (in its New York service areas). The Company also serves customers throughout the country as UniCare and in certain California, Arizona and Nevada markets.

The Company provides an array of managed care services to self-funded customers, including claims processing, underwriting, stop loss insurance, actuarial services, provider network access, medical cost management, disease management, wellness programs and other administrative services. The Company also provides an array of specialty products and services including life a! nd disability insurance benefits, dental, vision, behavioral health benefit services, radiology benefit management, analytics-driven personal health care guidance and long-term care insurance. The Company provides services to the Federal Government in connection with the Federal Employee Program (FEP), and various Medicare programs.

The Company�� Commercial and Consumer segments both offers a diversified mix of managed care products, including PPOs, HMOs, traditional indemnity benefits and POS plans, as well as a variety of hybrid benefit plans including CDHPs, hospital only and limited benefit products. Its Commercial segment includes Local Group (including UniCare), National Accounts and certain other ancillary business operations (dental, vision, life and disability and workers��compensation). Business units in the Commercial segment offer fully-insured products and provide an array of managed care services to self-funded customers, including claims processing, underwriting, stop loss insurance, actuarial services, provider network access, medical cost management, disease management, wellness programs and other administrative services.

The Company�� Consumer segment includes senior, state-sponsored and individual businesses. Its senior business includes services, such as Medicare Advantage (including private fee-for-service plans and special needs plans), Medicare Part D, and Medicare Supplement, while its State-Sponsored business includes its managed care alternatives for Medicaid and State Children�� Health Insurance Plan programs. Individual business includes individual customers under age 65 and their covered dependents. Its Other segment includes the Comprehensive Health Solutions business unit (CHS). Its Other segment also includes results from its Federal Government Solutions (FGS), business. FGS business includes FEP and National Government Services, Inc. (NGS), which acts as a Medicare contractor in several regions across the nation.

Preferred P! rovider O! rganization products offer the member an option to select any health care provider, with benefits reimbursed by the Company at a higher level when care is received from a participating network provider. Consumer-Driven Health Plans (CDHPs) provide consumers with increased financial responsibility, choice and control regarding how their health care dollars are spent. Indemnity products offer the member an option to select any health care provider for covered services. Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) products include managed care benefits, generally through a participating network of physicians, hospitals and other providers. Point-of-Service (POS) products blend the characteristics of HMO, PPO and indemnity plans.

The Company provides administrative services to large group employers that maintain self-funded health plans. These administrative services include underwriting, actuarial services, medical management, claims processing and other administrative services for self-funded employers. Self-funded health plans are also able to use its provider networks and to realize savings through its negotiated provider arrangements, while allowing employers the ability to design certain health benefit plans in accordance with their own requirements and objectives. The Company also underwrites stop loss insurance for self-funded plans.

BlueCard host members are generally members who reside in or travel to a state in which a WellPoint subsidiary is the Blue Cross and/or Blue Shield licensee and who are covered under an employer sponsored health plan serviced by a non-WellPoint controlled BCBS licensee, who is the home plan. The Company performs certain administrative functions for BlueCard host members, for which it receives administrative fees from the BlueCard members��home plans. Other administrative functions, including maintenance of enrollment information and customer service, are performed by the home plan. The Company offers a variety of senior plans, products and options, ! such as M! edicare supplement plans, Medicare Advantage (including private fee-for-service plans and special needs plans) and Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plans (Medicare Part D). Medicare Advantage plans provide Medicare beneficiaries with a managed care alternative to traditional Medicare and often include a Medicare Part D benefit. In addition, its Medicare Advantage special needs plans provide Medicare beneficiaries who have chronic diseases and conditions with tailored benefits designed to meet their needs. Medicare Part D offers a prescription drug plan to Medicare and dual eligible (Medicare and Medicaid) beneficiaries. The Company offers these plans to customers through its health benefit subsidiaries throughout the country, including CareMore.

The Company offers a range of health insurance plans with a variety of options and deductibles for individuals under age 65 who are not covered by employer-sponsored coverage. Some of its products target certain demographic populations, such as uninsured younger individuals between the ages of 19 and 29, families and those transitioning between jobs or early retirees. The Company has contracts to serve members enrolled in Medicaid, State Children�� Health Insurance programs and other publicly funded health care programs for low income and/or high medical risk individuals. The Company provides services in California, Indiana, Kansas, Massachusetts, New York, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia and Wisconsin. It markets and sells an integrated prescription drug product to both fully-insured and self-funded customers through its health benefit subsidiaries throughout the country. The product includes features, such as drug formularies, a pharmacy network and maintenance of a prescription drug database and mail order capabilities. The Company has delegated certain functions and administrative services related to its integrated prescription drug products to Express Scripts, under a 10 year contract. Express Scripts manages the network of ph! armacy pr! oviders, operates mail order pharmacies and processes prescription drug claims on its behalf, while it sells and support the product for clients, make formulary decisions and set drug benefit design strategy and provide front line member support.

The life products include term life and accidental death and dismemberment. The Company offers short-term and long-term disability programs, usually in conjunction with its health plans. The Company offers specialized behavioral health plans and benefits management. These plans cover mental health and substance abuse treatment services on both an inpatient and an outpatient basis. The Company offers outpatient diagnostic imaging management services to health plans. These services include utilization management for advanced diagnostic imaging procedures, network development and optimization, patient safety, claims adjudication and provider payment. The Company offers evidence based and analytics-driven personal health care guidance.

The Company�� dental plans include networks in certain states in which it operates. Many of the dental benefits are provided to customers enrolled in its health plans and are offered on both a fully-insured and self-funded basis. Its members also have access to additional dental providers through its participation in the National Dental GRID, a national dental network developed by and for BCBS plans. Additionally, the Company offers managed dental services to other health care plans to assist those other health care plans in providing dental benefits to their customers. Its vision plans include networks within the states where the Company operates. Many of the vision benefits are provided to customers enrolled in its health plans and are offered on both a fully-insured and self-funded basis.

The Company offers long-term care insurance products to its California members through a subsidiary. The long-term care products include tax-qualified and non-tax qualified versions of a skilled nursing home care! plan and! comprehensive policies covering skilled, intermediate and custodial long-term care and home health services. Through its subsidiary, NGS, the Company serves as a fiscal intermediary, carrier and Medicare administrative contractor providing administrative services for the Medicare program, which generally provides coverage for persons who are 65 or older and for persons who are disabled or with end-stage renal disease. Part A of the Medicare program provides coverage for services provided by hospitals, skilled nursing facilities and other health care facilities. Part B of the Medicare program provides coverage for services provided by physicians, physical and occupational therapists and other professional providers, as well as certain durable medical equipment and medical supplies.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Sean Williams]

    This is extremely important for Anthem (NYSE: ANTM  ) (formerly WellPoint) which was the big Obamacare enrollment winner last year and has banked its success on courting Medicaid expansion enrollees as well. California's strong Medi-Cal enrollment so far is encouraging, but I'd reserve judgment until Anthem's fourth-quarter earnings report.

Top 10 Forestry Companies To Watch For 2014: Mitcham Industries Inc.(MIND)

Mitcham Industries, Inc., through its subsidiaries, engages in the leasing, sale, and service of geophysical and other equipment to the seismic industry worldwide. The company operates in two segments, Equipment Leasing and Seamap. The Equipment Leasing segment leases seismic equipment for short-term leasing primarily to seismic data acquisition contractors and oil field service providers. Its land equipment lease pool includes seismic recording land channels, geophones and cables, and other peripheral equipment; marine seismic equipment lease pool comprises streamers, air compressors, air guns, streamer positioning equipment, energy source controllers, and other equipment; and downhole equipment lease pool consist of downhole seismic tools. This segment is also involved in the sale of new seismic equipment of other manufacturers; heli-pickers and related equipment used in the deployment and retrieval of seismic equipment by helicopter; and equipment, consumables, systems integration, engineering hardware, and software maintenance support services to the seismic, hydrographic, oceanographic, environmental, and defense industries, as well as sells used equipment from its lease pool. The Seamap segment designs, manufactures, and sells a range of products for the marine seismic industry. Its products include GunLink seismic source acquisition and control systems, which are designed to provide operators of marine seismic surveys with precise control of energy sources; and BuoyLink RGPS tracking systems that are used to offer precise positioning of seismic sources and streamers. The company was founded in 1987 and is headquartered in Huntsville, Texas.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Dimitra DeFotis]

    The market seems to be showing fatigue particularly with positive onshore oil service data points that may no�longer seem incremental. Investors have become especially focused on potential issues and macro concerns. We believe this phase�of enhanced risk perceptions will pass and still recommend owning selective stocks based on attractive valuations and healthy�fundamentals. Of the 16 oilfield services companies having reported their quarters to date, the share price changes have at times�been difficult to tie to specific results. �… Five of the 12 companies who have beaten earnings expectations have seen their share prices drop on the day, including Basic Energy Services (BAS) (-9.0%), Baker Hughes (BHI) (-2.5%), National Oilwell Varco (NOV) (-1.5%), Oceaneering (OII) (-4.2%), and Schlumberger (SLB) (-2.0%). Other stocks beating expectations have traded higher as expected, including Cameron International (CAM) (+4.1%), FMC Technologies (FTI) (+3.1%), Mitcham Industries (MIND) (+3.8%), Nabors Industries (NBR) (+1.2%), Patterson-UTI Energy (PTEN) (+1.8%), RPC (RES) (+8.4%), and Weatherford International (WFT) (+2.3%). Companies which have missed have universally seen their share prices decline, including Diamond Offshore Drilling (DO) (-4.3%), Gulfmark Offshore (GLF) (-0.1%), and Hercules Offshore (HERO) (-6.9%). Halliburton (HAL) was in line and flat on the day.

Top 10 Forestry Companies To Watch For 2014: Axiall Corp (AXLL)

Axiall Corporation (Axiall), formerly Georgia Gulf Corporation, incorporated on April 16, 1984, is a manufacturer and an international marketer of chlorovinyl and aromatic chemicals and also manufacture and market vinyl-based building and home improvement products. The Company operates in three business segments: Chlorovinyls segment consists of two product groups: Electrovinyls products, which are composed of chlorine, caustic soda, ethylene dichloride (EDC), vinyl chloride monomer (VCM), and vinyl resins; and Compound products, which are composed of vinyl compounds, compound additives and plasticizers; Building Products segment consists of two primary product groups: Window and Door Profiles and Mouldings, and Outdoor Building Products, which consists of siding, pipe and pipe fittings and deck, fence and rail products, and Aromatics segment also contains two commodity chemical product groups: cumene; and phenol and acetone. In January 2013, the combined company formed by uniting Georgia Gulf with PPG's former commodity chemicals business is named Axiall Corporation.

Chlorovinyls segment

The chlorovinyls segment consists of an integrated chain of products, which including chlor-alkali and derivative products (chlorine, caustic soda, vinyl chloride monomer (VCM), vinyl resins, ethylene dichloride, chlorinated solvents, calcium hypochlorite, hydrochloric acid and phosgene derivatives and compound products (vinyl compounds and compound additives and plasticizers). In North America, the Company is one of the producers of VCM, vinyl resins, and vinyl compounds.

During the year ended December 31, 2012, approximately 45%t of its vinyl resins production was sold into the United States and Canadian merchant markets where its vinyl resins were used in a variety of flexible and rigid vinyl end-use applications. During 2012, the largest end-uses of its products were for pipe and pipe fittings, siding, extruded sheet and film and window profiles. Approximately 24% of its pro! duction was sold into the export market, and approximately 31% of its vinyl resins were used internally in the manufacture of its vinyl compounds and vinyl building products. During 2012, the Company used substantially all of its VCM production in the manufacture of vinyl resins in its PVC manufacturing operations. The Company sells all of its caustic soda to customers domestically and overseas in numerous industries, with the pulp and paper, chemical and alumina industries constituting its markets. Other markets for its caustic soda include soap and detergents and the water treatment industries.

Vinyl compounds are highly customized formulations that offer specific end-use properties based on customer-determined manufacturing specifications that enable its customers to utilize them directly in their manufacturing processes to fabricate their finished products. The Company produces flexible and rigid compounds, which are used in many different applications, including wire and cable insulation and jacketing, electrical outlet boxes and pipe fittings, window and furniture profiles and food-grade and general-purpose bottles. It also supplies chlorinated vinyl compounds (CPVC), to the extrusion and injection molding markets, mainly for production of hot water pipe and pipe fittings. The Company produces lubricants, stabilizers, impact modifiers and process aids used in the production of compounds, and which are part of the typical compound formulations. The majority of its additives and plasticizers are consumed internally.

Building Products Segment

The Window and Door Profiles and Mouldings Products have a level of customization based on customer specifications, whereas Outdoor Building Products are based more on industry standards. The Company manufactures and extrude vinyl window profiles, including frames, sashes, trim and other components, as well as vinyl patio door components and fabricated patio doors, which are sold primarily to window and door fabricators. I! ts sales ! are primarily to the custom segment of the vinyl window profile market with the profile design customized to a window fabricator's specific requirements. It manufactures and markets extruded decorative mouldings and millwork. Its decorative trim products are used for interior mouldings, such as crown, base and chair rail. For exterior mouldings, its products are used in applications, such as brick mouldings, and as components used in the fabrication of doors, windows and spas. This product line includes a series of offerings, such as bendable trim and paintable/stainable trim.

The Company�� outdoor building products (OBP) include siding; pipe and pipe fittings; and deck, fence, and rail. It manufactures vinyl siding, and it also offers a range of accessories, including vinyl soffit, aluminum soffit, fascia and trim and molded vent mounts and exterior shutters. These additional product offerings to its existing offerings include rich, dark, color-fast shades, as well as a siding system, which enables siding panels to withstand harsh wind conditions. It manufactures pipe and pipe fittings for the municipal and electrical markets, as well as pipe for plumbing applications. Its municipal pipe and pipe fittings product lines are used in potable water applications, as well as in storm and sewer applications. Its plumbing lines are used in residential and industrial applications to move storm and sanitary wastewater from the building to the municipal sewer at the property line. This product line is focused on at drain, waste and vent applications. Electrical, pipe, conduit and fittings are available in a range of sizes and configurations, to meet the needs of both commercial and residential applications.

The Company manufactures vinyl deck products that are sold by distributors and used primarily by professionally installed market segments. The Company�� deck product lines are positioned as a lower-maintenance alternative to conventional wood products.

Aromatics Seg! ment

The aromatics segment is integrated and consists of cumene and phenol/acetone products. Phenol/acetone products are co-products made from cumene in the same production process. The Company�� aromatic products are primarily commodity based products. It operates cumene plant located in Pasadena, Texas. About 28 % of its cumene was consumed internally, during 2012, to produce phenol and acetone. Cumene is used as an intermediate to make phenol and acetone and specialty chemicals and can be sold as an additive for gasoline blending.

Phenol is sold to a base of customers who are producers of a range of phenolic resins, engineering plastics and specialty chemicals. Phenolic resins are used as adhesives for wood products, such as plywood and Oriented Strand Board (OSB). Engineering plastics are used in compact discs, digital video discs, automobiles, household appliances, electronics and protective coating applications. It also sells phenol for use in insulation, electrical parts, oil additives and chemical intermediates. Acetone is a chemical used primarily in the production of acrylic resins, engineering plastics and industrial solvents. The Company sells the majority of its acetone into the acrylic resins market, where it is used in the manufacture of various plastics and coatings used for signage, automotive parts, household appliances, paints and industrial coatings. Other uses range from solvents for automotive and industrial applications to pharmaceuticals and cosmetics.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Rich Duprey]

    Specialty chemicals maker�Axiall� (NYSE: AXLL  ) �announced yesterday its second-quarter dividend of $0.08 per share, the same rate it's paid for the past four quarters after reinstating the payout.

  • [By Jake L'Ecuyer]

    Leading and Lagging Sectors
    In trading on Thursday, basic materials shares were relative leaders, up on the day by about 1.20 percent. Among the leading sector stocks, gains came from Axiall (NYSE: AXLL), Materion (NYSE: MTRN), Huntsman (NYSE: HUN) and Joy Global (NYSE: JOY).

Top 10 Forestry Companies To Watch For 2014: Laredo Petroleum Inc (LPI)

Laredo Petroleum, Inc., formerly Laredo Petroleum Holdings, Inc., incorporated in August 12, 2011, is an independent energy company focused on the exploration, development and acquisition of oil and natural gas in the Permian and Mid-Continent regions of the United States. The Company�� activities are primarily focused in the Wolfberry and deeper horizons of the Permian Basin in West Texas and the Anadarko Granite Wash in the Texas Panhandle and Western Oklahoma, where it has assembled 134,680 net acres and 37,850 net acres, respectively, as of December 31, 2011.

Permian Basin

The Permian Basin, located in west Texas and southeastern New Mexico, is an onshore oil and natural gas producing regions in the United States. The Company�� Permian activities are centered on the eastern side of the basin approximately 35 miles east of Midland, Texas in Glasscock, Howard, Reagan and Sterling Counties. As of December 31, 2011, it held 134,680 net acres in over 300 sections with an average working interest of 96% in wells drilled as of that date. The overall Wolfberry interval, the principal focus of its drilling activities, is an oil play that also includes a liquids-rich natural gas component. Its production/exploration fairway extends approximately 20 miles wide and 80 miles long. While exploration and drilling efforts in the southern half of its acreage block has been centered on the shallower portion of the Wolfberry (Spraberry, Dean and Wolfcamp formations) the emphasis in the northern half has been on the deeper intervals, including the Wolfcamp, Cline Shale, Strawn and Atoka formations.

As of December 31, 2011, the Company had drilled and completed approximately 600 gross vertical wells and had defined the productive limits on its acreage throughout the trend. It has expanded its drilling program to include a horizontal component targeting the Cline and Wolfcamp Shales. The Company has drilled four gross horizontal Wolfcamp Shale wells as of December 31, 2011. A! s of December 31, 2011, it had drilled a total of 27 gross horizontal wells in the Wolfcamp and Cline formations, of which 23 are in the Cline Shale and four in the Wolfcamp Shale. It had over 5,600 total gross identified drilling locations (both vertical and horizontal) in the Permian, all of which are within the Wolfberry and Cline Shale interval during the year ended December 31, 2011.

Anadarko Granite Wash

Straddling the Texas/Oklahoma state line, its Granite Wash play extends over a large area in the western part of the Anadarko Basin. As of December 31, 2011, it held 37,850 net acres in Hemphill County, Texas and Roger Mills County, Oklahoma. The Company�� play consists of vertical and horizontal drilling opportunities targeting the liquids-rich Granite Wash formation. As of December 31, 2011, it had drilled and completed over 150 gross vertical wells. During 2011, its horizontal Granite Wash program was in the development phase. As of December 31, 2011, it had approximately 100 gross identified potential drilling locations for the horizontal Granite Wash, which included both its Texas and Oklahoma acreage.

Other areas

The Company, in addition to its Permian Wolfberry and Anadarko Granite Wash plays, evaluated opportunities in three other areas within its core operating regions during 2011. The Dalhart Basin is located on the western side of the Texas Panhandle. As of December 31, 2011, the Company held 83,295 net acres in the Dalhart Basin. As of December 31, 2011, it had drilled two gross vertical wells in the Dalhart Basin. The second area is centrally located in the Central Texas Panhandle, where its operations were conducted through its joint venture with ExxonMobil as of December 31, 2011. As of December 31, 2011, it held 46,915 net acres in the Central Texas Panhandle. The third area is located in the eastern end of the Anadarko Basin, in Caddo County, Oklahoma. As of December 31, 2011, the Company held 33,306 net acres in the Eastern An! adarko. Advisors' Opinion:

  • [By Tony Daltorio]

    Other companies already drilling in the Cline include Apache Corp. (NYSE: APA), Gulfport Energy Corp. (Nasdaq: GPOR), and another pioneer in the region, Laredo Petroleum Holdings Inc. (NYSE: LPI).

  • [By Tyler Crowe]

    Who's doing it the best?
    It can be pretty handy to evaluate the entire industry on how efficiently it's replacing reserves, but reserve replacement costs can be more effective in evaluating individual companies. The lower the costs, the better it is. According to Ernst & Young, the most effective company at controlling reserve replacement costs is private company�Antero Resources, with a three-year average reserve replacement cost of about $2.88 per barrel of oil equivalent. Antero, and four of the other top five companies on Ernst & Young's list, are almost pure natural gas plays. If we've learned one thing over the past couple of years, it's that oil reserves and natural gas reserves are two totally different things when it comes to value. The five following companies have more than 50% liquids on�their�reserves and had the lowest reserve replacement costs for 2012.

    Company % Liquids in�Portfolio Oil Production Replacement Rate (3 Years) Reserve Replacement Costs (3-Year Average) Per boe Rosetta Resources� (NASDAQ: ROSE  ) 57% 846% $6.99 Continental Resources� (NYSE: CLR  ) 72% 827% $12.61 Laredo Petroleum� (NYSE: LPI  ) 52% 1,042% $13.51 SM Energy� (NYSE: SM  ) 53% 392% $14.67 SandRidge Energy� (NYSE: SD  ) 58% 704% $14.85

    Sources: Ernst & Young and S&P Capital IQ; author's calculations.

Top 10 Forestry Companies To Watch For 2014: LHC Group Inc (LHCG)

LHC Group, Inc. (LHC Group), incorporated on January 1, 2005, provides post-acute health care services to patients through its home nursing agencies, hospices and long-term acute care hospitals (LTACHs). As of December 31, 2012, through the Company's wholly- and majority-owned subsidiaries, equity joint ventures and controlled affiliates, the Company operated in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia and Washington. The Company operates in two segments: home-based services and facility-based services. As of December 31, 2012, the Company owned and operated 274 home-based service locations, with 232 home nursing agency locations, 32 hospices, three specialty agencies and four private duty agencies. In February 2014, LHC Group Inc acquired two home health providers.

As of December 31, 2012, the Company also managed the operations of three home nursing agencies in which the Company does not have an ownership interest. The Company's facility-based services included six long-term acute care hospitals with nine locations, a pharmacy, and a family health center. The Company provides home-based post-acute health care services through its home nursing agencies and hospices. The Company's home nursing locations offer a wide range of services, including skilled nursing, medically-oriented social services and physical, occupational and speech therapy. The nurses, home health aides and therapists in the Company's home nursing agencies work closely with patients and their families to design and implement individualized treatments in accordance with a physician-prescribed plan of care.

The Company's hospices provide end-of-life care to patients with terminal illnesses through interdisciplinary teams of physicians, nurses, home health aides, counselors and volunteers. Of the 274 home-based services locations, 140 are wholly-owned by the Company, 124 ar! e majority-owned or controlled by the Company through joint ventures, seven are operated through license lease arrangements, and the Company manages the operations of three home nursing agencies in which the Company has no ownership interest.

The Company's LTACH locations provide services primarily to patients with complex medical conditions who have transitioned out of a hospital intensive care unit but whose conditions remain too severe for treatment in a non-acute setting. As of December 31, 2012, the Company's LTACHs had 220 licensed beds. Of the Company's 11 facility-based services locations, six are wholly-owned by the Company and five are majority-owned or controlled by the Company through joint ventures.

Home-Based Services

The Company�� registered and licensed practical nurses provide a range of medically necessary services to homebound patients who are suffering from acute or chronic illness, recovering from injury or surgery, or who otherwise require care, teaching or monitoring. These services include wound care and dressing changes; cardiac rehabilitation; infusion therapy; pain management; pharmaceutical administration; skilled observation and assessment, and patient education. It has also designed guidelines to treat chronic diseases and conditions, including diabetes, hypertension, arthritis, Alzheimer�� disease, low vision, spinal stenosis, Parkinson�� disease, osteoporosis, complex wound care and chronic pain. Its home health aides provide assistance with daily living activities, such as light housekeeping, simple meal preparation, medication management, bathing and walking. Through its medical social workers, it counsels patients and their families with regard to financial, personal and social concerns that arise from a patient�� health-related problems.

The Company provides skilled nursing, ventilator and tracheotomy services, extended care specialties, medication administration and management, and patient and family assistance an! d educati! on. It also provides management services to third-party home nursing agencies, often as an interim solution until proper state and regulatory approvals for an acquisition can be obtained. The Company�� physical, occupational and speech therapists provide therapy services to patients in their home. Its therapists coordinate multi-disciplinary treatment plans with physicians, nurses and social workers to restore basic mobility skills, such as getting out of bed and walking safely with crutches or a walker. Its therapists assist patients and their families with improving and maintaining a patient�� ability to perform functional activities of daily living, such as the ability to dress, cook, clean and manage other activities safely in the home environment. Its speech and language therapists provide corrective and rehabilitative treatment to patients who suffer from physical or cognitive deficits or disorders that create difficulty with verbal communication or swallowing.

All of the Company�� home nursing agencies offer 24-hour personal emergency response and support services through Philips Lifeline (Lifeline) for qualified patients who require close medical monitoring but who want to maintain an independent lifestyle. These services consist principally of a communicator that connects to the telephone line in the subscriber�� home and a personal help button that is worn or carried by the individual subscriber which, when activated, initiates a telephone call from the subscriber�� communicator to Lifeline�� central monitoring facilities. Lifeline�� trained personnel identify the nature and extent of the subscriber�� particular need and notify the subscriber�� family members, neighbors and/or emergency personnel, as needed.

The Company�� Medicare-certified hospice operations provide a range of hospice services designed to meet the individual physical, spiritual and psychosocial needs of terminally ill patients and their families. Its hospice services are primaril! y provide! d in a patient�� home but can also be provided in a nursing home, assisted living facility or hospital. Key services provided include pain and symptom management accompanied by palliative medication, emotional and spiritual support, spiritual counseling and family bereavement counseling, inpatient and respite care, homemaker services, dietary counseling and social worker visits for up to 13 months after a patient�� death.

Facility-Based Services

The Company�� LTACHs treat patients with severe medical conditions who require a care and frequent monitoring by physicians and other clinical personnel. Patients who receive its services in an LTACH are too medically unstable to be treated in a non-acute setting. It also treats patients diagnosed with musculoskeletal impairments that restrict their ability to perform normal activities of daily living. As part of its facility-based services, the Company operates an institutional pharmacy, which focuses on providing a full array of services to its long-term acute care hospitals. All coding, medical records, case management, utilization review and medical staff credentialing are provided at the hospital level. Centralized functions that are provided by the home office include payroll, accounting, financial reporting, billing, collections, regulatory and legal compliance, risk management, pharmacy, information technology and general clinical oversight accomplished by periodic on-site surveys.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Sean Williams]

    What: Shares of home health providers Amedisys (NASDAQ: AMED  ) , Gentiva Health Services (NASDAQ: GTIV  ) , and�LHC Group (NASDAQ: LHCG  ) �swooned as much as 28%, 20%, and 15%, respectively, following a public proposal by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, or CMS, late yesterday that in-home health care reimbursements be cut by 1.5% in 2014.