Best Healthcare Equipment Companies To Invest In 2015

One of the most famous scenes in the cult classic, the Graduate, was when Mr. McGuire took Dustin Hoffman’s character aside and said “Ben, I want to say one word to you, just one word: Plastics”; but what about the Berry Plastics Group Inc (NYSE: BERY) and its performance verses that of the iShares S&P 500 Index ETF (NYSEARCA: IVV), iShares Russell Midcap Index Fund ETF (NYSEARCA: IWR) and iShares S&P SmallCap 600 Index ETF (NYSEARCA: IJR)? I should mention that plastics and the Berry Plastics Group was not the place to be yesterday as the stock took a tumble on reduced guidance.

What is the Berry Plastics Group?

The Berry Plastics Group is a leading provider of value-added plastic consumer packaging and engineered materials whose products include open top and closed top packaging, polyethylene-based plastic films, industrial tapes, medical specialties, flexible packaging, heat-shrinkable coatings, specialty laminates and FIBCs (bulk bags). In addition, the Berry Plastics Group has been one of the most active acquirers of plastic packaging businesses globally, having acquired more than 30 businesses since 1988.

Best Healthcare Equipment Companies To Invest In 2015: Inteliquent Inc (IQNT)

Inteliquent Inc, formerly Neutral Tandem, Inc., doing business as Inteliquent, incorporated on April 19, 2001, provides solutions for voice, data, and hosted services globally. With over 120 Ethernet sites across four continents, the Company is a global Ethernet interconnection provider, and has an Internet protocol version 6 (IPv6) network. Inteliquent is a network solutions provider, offering intelligent networking to solve interconnection and interoperability issues on a global scale. With multiprotocol label switching (MPLS) network, which is interconnected to carriers globally, it provides voice, Internet protocol (IP) transit and Ethernet solutions to carriers, service providers, and content management firms based in over 80 countries, across six continents. Its IP Transit provides bandwidth for Internet service providers (ISP), mobile operators, Telcos, enterprises and content providers. In September 2012, it announced the establishment of its Turkish subsidiary, as well as its strategic alliance with Turkey’s Turkcell Superonline. In April 2013, Neutral Tandem Inc acquired the global data services business of Global Telecom & Technology Inc.

The Company simplifies the complexities of data networking by making interconnection. Its EtherCloud transforms and simplifies the delivery of Ethernet and virtual private local area network (LAN) service (VPLS) services over a global footprint. A layer-II platform, EtherCloud connects partner networks into a seamless Ethernet cloud, which delivers end-to-end connectivity globally. It relies on Inteliquent’s global MPLS backbone as a distributed switched network, which is accessible in 120 point of purchases (PoPs) across four continents, to interconnect partners’ networks through standardized external network-to-network interfaces (E-NNIs). By interconnecting partner networks to create one holistic Ethernet cloud, EtherCloud enables you to both source and to sell Ethernet and VPLS connectivity. It provides a one-stop-shop to conne! ct globally.

The Company provides a range of voice services. Inteliquent’s voice services include streamlined session initiation protocol (SIP) interconnection options for domestic and international long distance traffic. It offers terminating and originating access, which supports billions of minutes of billable traffic each month. Its services include Access Homing Tandem and Gateway Tandem Services. It has the first wholesale, white-label hosted collaboration solution to be resold by value added resellers (VAR) and system integrators (SI). The hosted collaboration solution (HCS) offers a range of unified communication products and services, including single number reach, integrated messaging and presence, video calling, and WebEx integration.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By alicet236]

    Inteliquent Inc. (IQNT): CEO G. Edward Evans Sold 179,192 Shares

    CEO of Inteliquent Inc. (IQNT) G. Edward Evans sold 179,192 shares on 05/07/2014 at an average price of $14.52. Inteliquent Inc. provides wholesale voice services for carriers and service providers. Inteliquent Inc. has a market cap of $468.794 million; its shares were traded at around $14.45 with a P/E ratio of 8.50 and P/S ratio of 2.10. The dividend yield of Inteliquent Inc stocks is 1.82%.

  • [By Steve Symington]

    In fact, I had one such moment last year when I finally sold my shares of Inteliquent (NASDAQ: IQNT  )  around $12 per share after holding them for much less time than I had originally planned. At the time, the stock had already been beaten down from its 2009 highs over $30 per share, and I had high hopes that the company might eventually regain its former glory.

Best Healthcare Equipment Companies To Invest In 2015: QCR Holdings Inc.(QCRH)

QCR Holdings, Inc., through its subsidiaries, provides commercial and consumer banking, and trust and asset management services for the Quad City, Cedar Rapids, and Rockford communities. The company accepts deposits and invests in loans/leases and securities. Its deposit products comprise interest bearing deposits, non-interest bearing and interest bearing demand deposits, savings deposits, time deposits, and brokered time deposits. The company also offers a range of commercial and retail lending and investment services to corporations, partnerships, individuals, and government agencies. Its loan portfolio comprises commercial loans, including loans to wholesalers, manufacturers, building contractors, business services companies, other banks, and retailers; business loans, which include lines of credit for working capital and operational purposes; term loans for the acquisition of facilities, equipment, and other purposes; commercial real estate loans; and consumer loans c omprising motor vehicle, home improvement, home equity, and signature loans, as well as small personal credit lines. In addition, the company engages in the direct financing lease contracts; holding the real estate property; and issuing various trust preferred securities. QCR Holdings was founded in 1993 and is headquartered in Moline, Illinois.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Tim Melvin]

    QCR Holdings (QCRH) is another bank that has consistently had a lower return on assets than its peer group. The Illinois based bank has 9 offices and about $2.4 billion in total assets. The bank has an equity-to-assets ratio of just 7.4, which is well below the national average. The Illinois market has seen strong merger and acquisition activity in the past year, and this bank could become a target .

Best Healthcare Equipment Companies To Invest In 2015: Electronic Arts Inc (EA)

Electronic Arts Inc., incorporated in 1982, develops, markets, publishes and distributes game software content and services that can be played by consumers on a variety of video game machines and electronic devices (platforms). Its offers products, such as video game consoles, such as the Sony PLAYSTATION 3, Microsoft Xbox 360 and Nintendo Wii; personal computers, including the Apple Macintosh (the Company refers to personal computers and the Macintosh together as PCs); mobile devices, such as the Apple iPhone and Google Android compatible phones; tablets and electronic readers, such as the Apple iPad and the Amazon Kindle, and Internet, including social networking sites, such as Facebook. In August 2011, it acquired PopCap Games Inc. (PopCap), a developer of casual games for mobile devices, tablets, PCs, and social networking sites.

The Company has created, licensed and acquired a portfolio of brands, which span a diverse range of categories, including action -adventure, casual, family, fantasy, first-person shooter, horror, science fiction, role-playing, racing, simulation, social, sports, and strategy. The Company’s portfolio of brands includes wholly owned brands, such as Battlefield, Mass Effect, Need for Speed, The Sims, Bejeweled, and Plants v. Zombies. Its portfolio also includes sports-based brands, such as Madden NFL and FIFA, and titles-based on other brands, such as Star Wars: The Old Republic. It provides a variety of online-delivered products and services, including through its Origin platform. Its packaged goods products are also available through direct online download through the Internet. The Company also offers online-delivered content and services that are add-ons or related to its packaged goods products, such as additional game content or enhancements of multiplayer services. It provides other games, content and services that are available only via electronic delivery, such as Internet-only games and game s ervices, and games for mobile devices.

The Comp! any operates development studios (which develop products and perform other related functions) in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia. It also engages third parties to assist with the development of its games at their own development and production studios. Internationally, the Company conducts business through its international headquarters in Switzerland and has wholly owned subsidiaries worldwide, including offices in Europe, Australia, Asia and Latin America. The Company’s studios and development teams are organized around its Label structure. Each Label operates globally with dedicated game development and marketing teams. These Labels are supported by the Company’s Global Publishing Organization that is responsible for the distribution, sales, and marketing of its products, including planning, operations, and manufacturing functions.

EA Games

EA Games is home to a number of the Company’s studios and development teams, which togethe r create a portfolio of games and related content and services marketed under the EA brand in categories, such as action-adventure, role playing, racing and first-person shooter games. The EA Games portfolio includes a number of franchises, such as Battlefield, Dead Space, Medal of Honor and Need for Speed. EA Games titles are developed primarily at the following EA studios, Criterion, DICE, EA Los Angeles, Visceral, and EA Montreal. EA Games also contracts with external game developers, to provide these developers with a variety of services, including development assistance, publishing, and distribution of their games.


EA SPORTS develops a collection of sports-based video games and related content and services marketed under the EA SPORTS brand. EA SPORTS games range from simulated sports titles with realistic graphics based on real-world sports leagues, players, events and venues to more casual games with arcade-style gameplay and grap hics. The Company’s EA SPORTS franchises include FIFA, Fig! ht Night,! Madden NFL, NCAA Football, NHL Hockey, and Tiger Woods PGA Tour. EA SPORTS games are developed primarily at the Company’s EA Canada studio in Burnaby, British Columbia, and its EA Tiburon studio located in Orlando, Florida.


BioWare develops role-playing games, focused on stories, characters and worlds to discover. BioWare’s portfolio includes the MMO role-playing game Star Wars: The Old Republic and the Mass Effect and Dragon Age franchises. BioWare operates in Texas, California, Canada and Ireland.


Maxis (formerly EA Play) are focused on creating games and related content and services for a mass audience. Maxis products include wholly owned franchises, such as The Sims, SimCity, MySims, and Spore. During the fiscal year ended March 31, 2012 (fiscal 2012), the Company released titles in The Sims 3 franchise, and together with Playfish, The Sims Social game on Facebook. Maxis oversees internal studios and development teams located in California, Utah, Beijing, China and Guildford, England, and works with third-party developers.


PopCap develops easy-to-learn games. PopCap games, including Bejeweled, Plants vs. Zombies, Zuma, Peggle, and Bookworm are gameplays. PopCap games are developed primarily in Seattle, Washington.

Social/Mobile Studios

The Company’s Social/Mobile studios is focused on developing interactive games for play on mobile devices and Internet platforms, including social networking sites, such as Facebook. Through EA Mobile, the Company is a global publisher of games for mobile devices. Its customers purchase and download the Company’s games through a mobile carrier’s e-commerce service and mobile application storefronts accessed directly from their mobile devices. EA Mobile develops games for mobile devices at studios located in the United States, Canada, Romania, Australia, India and Kore a. Through Playfish, it offers free-to-play social games, in! cluding T! he Sims Social, Pet Society, EA Sports FIFA Superstars and Madden NFL Superstars that can be played on platforms, such as Facebook, Google, iPhone and Android. Playfish generates revenue through sales of digital content and Internet-based advertising.

The Company, through its Pogo online service, offers games, such as card, puzzle and word games on, as well as on Facebook and other platforms. In addition to paid subscriptions, Pogo also generates revenue through Internet-based advertising and sales of digital content. In addition, it has a licensing agreement with Hasbro, which provides the Company with the rights to create digital games for all platforms based on most of Hasbro’s toy and game intellectual properties, including MONOPOLY, SCRABBLE (for United States and Canada), YAHTZEE (excluding the Nordic countries), NERF, and LITTLEST PET SHOP. Hasbro games are developed by its EA Mobile, Pogo and Social studios.

The Company comp etes with Activision Blizzard, Take-Two Interactive, THQ, Ubisoft, Disney, Capcom Mobile, DeNA, Gameloft, Glu Mobile, Gree, Rovio, Zynga, Big Fish, Nexon, Tencent and Facebook.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By WWW.DAILYFINANCE.COM] Sometimes, the right answer when a potential suitor appears before you on bended knee is “Yes.” But there’s been no shortage of attractive offers getting spurned on Wall Street. Sometimes those offers just don’t make sense: Boards aren’t ready to sell; shareholders think their stock is worth more, and vote down the deals. AstraZeneca (AZN) recently became the latest big company to refuse a suitor’s advances. Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer (PFE) was shot down last week after making a $117 billion offer for AstraZeneca. Pfizer claims that was its final offer; apparently, it wasn’t enough. Sometimes, those disinterested companies are better off on their own. However, for every Facebook (FB) that correctly scoffed at a large figure (offered $1 billion, it’s worth north of $150 billion today), there are many companies that lived to regret turning down. Here are five companies whose owners really should have taken the money and run. Circuit City Circuit City is gone. The consumer electronics superstore chain filed for bankruptcy, liquidating all of its stores in 2009. It didn’t have to go out that way. There was no shortage of companies proposing to take over the once-vibrant retailer. It turned down private equity firms that wanted to pay $8 a share in 2003 and then $17 a share in 2005. Blockbuster Video — yes, that Blockbuster — even started to make buyout overtures in 2008. Blockbuster was hoping that teaming up with Circuit City would create “an $18 billion retail enterprise uniquely positioned for the convergence of media content and electronic devices.” It never panned out. Circuit City was out of business less than a year later. Take-Two Interactive (TTWO) Weeks before Take-Two Interactive’s “Grand Theft Auto IV” hit stores in 2008, Electronic Arts (EA) initiated a hostile takeover. It offered to pay $26 a share for Take-Two, but with the game expected to set industry sales records (which it eventually did), there was little reason

  • [By Leo Sun]

    It would be silly for any video game publisher to ignore that huge market for the sake of cutting-edge graphics. That’s why Electronic Arts (NASDAQ: EA  ) released Titanfall for both the Xbox One and Xbox 360, and why Take-Two will release Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel on the PS3 and Xbox 360 instead of next-gen consoles.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Over in the S&P 500, the surge in Electronic Arts (EA), which creamed earnings forecasts, was offset by plunge in Whole Foods Markets (WFM), which is feeling the heat from competition that’s impacting its bottom line. Electronic Arts gained 23% to $35.12, while Whole Foods Market fell 21% to $39.32.

Best Healthcare Equipment Companies To Invest In 2015: Express-1 Expedited Solutions Inc.(XPO)

XPO Logistics, Inc. provides third-party logistics services using a network of relationships with ground, sea, and air carriers in the United States, Mexico, and Canada. It operates in three segments: Express-1, Concert Group Logistics, and Bounce Logistics. The Express-1 segment offers ground expedited surface transportation services for freight. It operates a fleet ranging from cargo vans to semi tractor trailer units. The Concert Group Logistics segment provides domestic and international freight forwarding services through a network of independently owned stations. Its domestic freight forwarding services include air charter, expedites, and time sensitive services, as well as cost sensitive services comprising deferred delivery, less than truckload, and full truck load services; and international freight forwarding services consist of on-board courier and air charters, time sensitive services, less-than-container and full-container-loads, and vessel charters. This segm ent also offers documentation on international shipments, customs clearance and banking, trade show shipment management, time definite and customized product distributions, reverse logistics and on site asset recovery projects, installation coordination, freight optimization, and diversity compliance support services. The Bounce Logistics segment provides premium freight brokerage services for truckload shipments. The company serves approximately 4,000 retail, commercial, manufacturing, and industrial customers through 6 U.S. operations centers and 22 agent locations. It offers its services to the automotive manufacturing, automotive components and supplies, commercial printing, durable goods manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, food and consumer products, and high tech sectors. The company was formerly known as Express-1 Expedited Solutions, Inc. and changed its name to XPO Logistics, Inc. in September 2011. XPO Logistics, Inc. was founded in 1989 and is based in Buchanan, Mich i gan.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Jake L’Ecuyer]

    XPO Logistics (NYSE: XPO) shot up 7.06 percent to $30.01 after the company announced its plans to acquire Pacer International (NASDAQ: PACR) in a deal valued at $335 million.

  • [By Travis Hoium]

    What: Shares of XPO Logistics (NYSE: XPO  ) jumped 13% today after announcing an acquisition.

    So what: The company will pay $365 million for logistics provider 3PD, consisting of $357 million in cash an $8 million in XPO restricted stock. Is will use its own cash and borrow $195 million from Credit Suisse Group for the remainder of the purchase.  

Best Healthcare Equipment Companies To Invest In 2015: Nikon Corp (NINOY)

NIKON CORPORATION is a Japan-based company mainly engaged in the manufacture and sale of optical products. The Company is active in four business segments. The Precision Apparatus segment offers semiconductor exposure apparatus and liquid crystal (LC) exposure apparatus. The image segment provides digital cameras, film cameras and interchangeable lens. The Instruments segment offers microscopes, measuring machines and semiconductor inspection equipment. The Others segment provides glass materials, telescopes, glasses and survey airplanes.

As of August 19, 2009, the Company held a 92.17% stake in Metis NV. The Company has 65 subsidiaries and 10 associated companies in the country and overseas markets.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Dan Carroll]

    Unfortunately, the yen’s impact on stocks has blurred the lines on investments. Look no further than down-on-its-luck camera maker Nikon (NASDAQOTH: NINOY  ) . Nikon’s shares gained more than 8% over the past week due to the yen’s weakness, as the company rakes in more than a quarter of its sales in Europe. Still, the stock’s lost more than 43% year to date.

Best Healthcare Equipment Companies To Invest In 2015: Pinnacle Foods Inc (PF)

Pinnacle Foods Inc., incorporated on July 28, 2003, is a manufacturer, marketer and distributor of branded food products in North America. The Company operates in three segments: the Birds Eye Frozen Division, the Duncan Hines Grocery Division and the Specialty Foods Division. The Birds Eye Frozen Division and the Duncan Hines Grocery Division, which collectively represent its North America Retail operations, include the brands. Its brand portfolio enjoys household penetration in the United States, where its products can be found in approximately 85% of U.S. households. Its products are sold through supermarkets, grocery wholesalers and distributors, mass merchandisers, super centers, convenience stores, dollar stores, drug stores and warehouse clubs in the United States and Canada, as well as in military channels and foodservice locations. On June 24, 2011, the Company completed the sale of its Watsonville, California facility which had been recorded as an asset held for sale.

Birds Eye Frozen Division

The Company’s Birds Eye Frozen Division includes its steamed and non-steamed product offerings, with a 27.0% market share, making Birds Eye the recognized frozen vegetables brand in the United States. Birds Eye was the Company to capture a nationwide market share with a product that enables consumers to conveniently steam vegetables in microwaveable packaging.

Duncan Hines Grocery Division

Duncan Hines is the division’s brand and includes cake mixes, ready-to-serve frostings, brownie mixes, muffin mixes, and cookie mixes. During the fiscal year ended September 23, 2012, the Company added two additional items to the line. In February 2012, the Company introduced a line of frosting products, Duncan Hines Frosting Creations, which uses a patent pending frosting system to allow consumers to customize their frosting into one of 12 different flavors. The Company also offers a complete line of shelf-stable pickle products that we market and distribute n! ationally, primarily under the Vlasic brand, and regionally under the Milwaukee’s and Wiejske Wyroby brands. In 2012, the Company introduced Vlasic Farmers Garden, artisan-quality pickle line.

Specialty Foods Division

The Company’s snack products primarily consist of Tim’s Cascade, Snyder of Berlin and Husman’s. These direct store delivery brands have local awareness and hold market share positions in their regional markets. The Company also manufactures and distributes certain products, mainly in the frozen breakfast, canned meat, and pie and pastry fruit filling categories, through food service channels. The Company also manufactures and distributes certain private label products in the canned meat, shelf-stable pickles and frozen seafood. As part of its ongoing strategic focus over the last several years, the Company has deemphasized the food service and private label businesses for the benefit of its higher margin branded food products.

Advisors’ Opinion:


    Joe Raedle/Getty Images NEW YORK — Tyson Foods (TSN) has won a bidding war to gobble up Hillshire Brands (HSH), the maker of Jimmy Dean sausages and Ball Park hot dogs. Tyson had been vying with rival poultry producer Pilgrim’s Pride for Hillshire, which wrapped up its bidding process Sunday. Tyson ended up raising its offer to $63 a share. It had previously offered $50 a share, after which Pilgrim’s Pride (PPC) raised its bid to $55 a share. Pilgrim’s Pride, which is owned by Brazilian meat giant JBS, said Monday that it is withdrawing its offer. Still, the deal isn’t sealed yet. It is contingent on the termination of Hillshire’s offer to acquire Pinnacle Foods (PF), which makes Birds Eye frozen vegetables and Wish-Bone salad dressings. Pinnacle could choose to cut bait and walk away with $163 million breakup fee, or force the deal to a vote by Hillshire shareholders. A Pinnacle representative didn’t immediately return a call for comment. In a conference call with reporters, Tyson CEO Donnie Smith said he was confident the $63 offer would end up being worthwhile for Tyson shareholders, despite how high the price went. “Great brands like Jimmy Dean and Ball Park just don’t become available very often,” Smith said. Hillshire’s stock closed at $36.95 on May 9, the day before the company announced the Pinnacle deal. Tyson, like Pilgrim’s Pride, has been looking to boost its presence in brand-name, prepared foods like Jimmy Dean breakfast sandwiches. Those types of products are more profitable than fresh meat, such as chicken breasts, where there isn’t as much wiggle room to pad prices. While Tyson and Pilgrim’s Pride already sell some brand-name products, their businesses have been more focused on supplying supermarkets and restaurant chains. In particular, Tyson said it was drawn by Hillshire’s stable of breakfast foods, which would better position it in the fast-growing category. Tyson also noted the potential for cost savings by combining suppl


    Paul Sakuma/AP NEW YORK — Hillshire Brands says it will hold separate talks with Pilgrim’s Pride and Tyson Foods, as the two meat processing heavyweights engage in a bidding war for the maker of Jimmy Dean sausages and Ball Park hot dogs. The announcement by Hillshire (HSH) comes a day after Pilgrim’s Pride raised its bid to $55 a share, or $6.8 billion, from $45 a share. That tops Tyson’s offer of $50 a share, or $6.2 billion, made last week. Those values are based on Hillshire’s 123 million shares outstanding. Pilgrim’s Pride puts the total value of its new bid at $7.7 billion. Tyson Foods values its proposal at $6.8 billion, including debt. The takeover bids by Pilgrim’s Pride (PPC) and Tyson Foods (TSN) are being driven by the desirability of brand-name, convenience products like Jimmy Dean breakfast sandwiches. Those types of products are more profitable than fresh meat, such as chicken breasts, where there isn’t as much wiggle room to pad prices. While Pilgrim’s Pride and Tyson both sell such products, their businesses have been more focused on supplying supermarkets and restaurant chains. Both offers are contingent on Hillshire abandoning its plan to acquire Pinnacle Foods (PF), which makes Birds Eye frozen vegetables and Wish-Bone salad dressings. Some investors had questioned the wisdom of that deal, given the outdated image of some of Pinnacle’s brands and the differences in the two companies’ product portfolios. In its statement issued Tuesday, Hillshire noted that it can’t just scrap its deal with Pinnacle. But a term in Hillshire’s deal with Pinnacle allows it to consider alternative proposals that would be superior for stockholders. Pilgrim’s Pride has said it would pay the $163 million breakup fee to call off the deal between Hillshire and Pinnacle. Hillshire, based in Chicago, had been trying to diversify its own portfolio by moving into other areas of the supermarket with the $4.23 billion acquisition of Pinnacle. Based in Greeley,

  • [By Sue Chang and Ben Eisen]

    Hillshire Brands (HSH)  jumped more than 8.9% as potential buyers courted the food-maker. Pilgrim’s Pride Corp. (PPC)  said Tuesday it would boost its bid to $55 a share in cash, raising the stakes after Tyson Foods Inc. (TSN)  offered $50 a share last week. Pilgrim’s bid values the company at $7.7 billion, which is $1.3 billion more than its previous bid. Hillshire said it will hold talks with both bidders, but that it would not back away from its own plan to buy Pinnacle Foods Inc. (PF) .

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Tyson’s bid came just a couple of days after Hillshire Brands received a bid from Pilgrim’s Pride (PPC), and while it seems like ancient history now, Hillshire made its own bid for Pinnacle Foods (PF) earlier this month. Pilgrim’s Pride dropped 1.1% to $25.09 today, while poor jilted Pinnacle Foods gained 1% to $31.68.

Best Healthcare Equipment Companies To Invest In 2015: Advance Auto Parts Inc(AAP)

Advance Auto Parts, Inc., through its subsidiaries, operates as a retailer of automotive aftermarket parts, accessories, batteries, and maintenance items. It operates in two segments, Advance Auto Parts (AAP) and Autopart International (AI). The AAP segment operates stores, which primarily offer auto parts, including alternators, batteries, chassis parts, clutches, engines and engine parts, radiators, starters, transmissions, and water pumps; accessories comprising floor mats, mirrors, vent shades, MP3 and cell phone accessories, and seat and steering wheel covers; chemicals consisting of antifreeze, freon, fuel additives, and car washes and waxes; and oil and other automotive petroleum products. This segment also provides battery and wiper installation, battery charging, check engine light reading, electrical system testing, video clinics and project brochures, loaner tool programs, and oil and battery recycling services; and sells its products through online. The AI segm ent operates stores that offer replacement parts for domestic and imported cars, and light trucks to customers in northeast and mid-Atlantic regions, as well as to warehouse distributors and jobbers in North America. As of January 1, 2011, the company operated 3,369 AAP stores, including 3,343 stores located in the northeastern, southeastern, and Midwestern regions of the United States under the Advance Auto Parts and Advance Discount Auto Parts trade names; 26 stores situated in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands under the Advance Auto Parts and Western Auto trade names; and 194 stores under the Autopart International trade name in the United States. It serves do-it-yourself, do-it-for-me, or commercial customers. The company was founded in 1929 and is based in Roanoke, Virginia.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Shares of AutoZone have fallen 1.7% to $531.87 at 11:52 a.m., while Advance Auto Part (AAP) has dropped 1.6% to $121.27 and O’Reilly Automotive (ORLY) has declined 0.9% to $147.25. Pep Boys (PBY), however, has bucked the selling–its shares have gained 1.9% to $10.57.

  • [By Peter Graham]

    The fiscal Q3 2014 earnings report for auto parts retailer stock AutoZone, Inc (NYSE: AZO), a peer of Advance Auto Parts, Inc (NYSE: AAP), O’Reilly Automotive Inc (NASDAQ: ORLY) and The Pep Boys – Manny, Moe & Jack (NYSE: PBY), is scheduled for before the market opens on Tuesday. Aside from the AutoZone earnings report, it should be said that Advance Auto Parts, Inc reported Q1 2014 earnings on May 15th (results were better than expected and they upped guidance); O’Reilly Automotive Inc reported Q1 2014 earnings on April 24th (results topped expectations); and The Pep Boys reported Q4 2013 earnings on April 15th and will report Q1 2014 earnings on June 10th (PBY reported a surprise loss as tire pricing negatively hit revenue). However and given the current uncertain economy that is keeping most consumers in their old cars, you would think that auto parts retailers in general would all be doing well.

  • [By James E. Brumley]

    O’Reilly Automotive Inc. (NASDAQ:ORLY), AutoZone, Inc. (NYSE:AZO), The Pep Boys – Manny, Moe & Jack (NYSE:PBY), and Advance Auto Parts, Inc. (NYSE:AAP) may all technically be in the same business, but they’re hardly in the same proverbial boat. In fact, their performances – sales and earnings – are oddly disparate. Which among PBY, AZO, ORLY, and AAP are the winners and the losers, and perhaps more important, why? The question can at least partially be answered by a chart, and what the chart can’t tell us about each, the narrative can.

    O’Reilly Automotive

  • [By kcpl]

    Monro Muffler Brake (MNRO) is a popular name in the DIFM & Services segment, while Pep Boys – Manny, Moe & Jack (PBY) is a hybrid of DIFM-DIY. The present perspective seems bright for such aftermarket service providers. However, these two are entirely different from aftermarket retailers such as Advance Auto Parts (AAP). Let us take a look at the present aftermarket scenario and its prospects.

Best Healthcare Equipment Companies To Invest In 2015: Agent155 Media Corp (AGMC)

Agent155 Media Corp., formerly Freshwater Technologies Inc., incorporated on December 10, 1999, is a development-stage company. It will offer a free, online presence for the global artistic and athletic communities through its Website, provides fashion, performer, art, sports, music, film, writer professionals and amateurs a multi-media content management solution, enabling a collaborative forum to network and develop through It also provides talent agencies, agents, producers, directors, and recording companies a location to search and view the profiles. It also re-distributes member content through traditional media channels, such as television, radio, film and print. It will produce films, music tours, commercials, and various events using talent from, and recording companies a location to search and view the profiles and work of talent. In addition, the Company will provide targeted advertising opportu nities for members and businesses.

Agent155 Media Corp fulfills the role of a matchmaker allowing talented individuals direct access to those who seek specific talents. Agent155 Media Corp provides talent agencies, agents, producers, directors and recording companies a location to search and view pool of profiles and work of talent.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Peter Graham]

    Small cap stocks Profitable Developments Inc (OTCMKTS: PRDL), Dynamic Applications Corp (OTCMKTS: DYAP) and Agent155 Media Corp (OTCMKTS: AGMC) have been getting some attention lately in various investment newsletters. One of these small caps has been getting attention thanks to paid promotions while another saw a trading volume spike for the first three days of last week and the last one has seen a steady rise in share price over October. So what’s going on with these small cap stocks? Here is a quick reality check to help you decide how hot they might be or become:

Best Healthcare Equipment Companies To Invest In 2015: Northern Tier Energy LP (NTI)

Northern Tier Energy LP, formerly Northern Tier Energy, Inc., incorporated in October 21, 2011, is an independent downstream energy company with refining, retail, and pipeline operations that serves the PADD II region of the United States. The Company operates its assets in two business segments: the refining business and the retail business. The Company owns three pipelines. The Company’s operations will be conducted through, and its operating assets will be owned by, its wholly owned subsidiary, Northern Tier Energy LLC, and its subsidiaries. Effective November 12, 2013, Western Refining Inc acquired a 38.681% interest in Northern Tier Energy LP.

Refining Business

The Company’s refining business primarily consists of a 74,000 barrels per calendar day (84,500 barrels per stream day) refinery located in St. Paul Park, Minnesota. Its location allows it to distribute its refined products throughout the midwestern United States. The Company’s ref inery produces a slate of refined products, including gasoline, diesel, jet fuel and asphalt, which are then marketed to resellers and consumers primarily in the PADD II region. It also owns various storage and transportation assets, including a light products terminal, a heavy products terminal, storage tanks, rail loading/unloading facilities and a Mississippi river dock. The Company’s refining business also includes its 17% interest in the Minnesota Pipe Line Company, which owns and operates the Minnesota Pipeline, a 455,000 barrels per calendar day crude oil pipeline system that transports crude oil (primarily from Western Canada and North Dakota) for approximately 300 miles from the Enbridge pipeline hub at Clearbrook, Minnesota to its refinery.

As of March 31, 2012, the Company’s storage assets included 84 hydrocarbon storage tanks with a total capacity of 3.7 million barrels (156 million gallons), 0.8 million barrels of crude oil storage and 2.9 million barrels of feedstock and product storage. The Company’s r! efinery supplies all of the gasoline and diesel sold in its company-operated and franchised convenience stores, as well as all of the gasoline and diesel sold in 90 independently owned and operated Marathon branded stores in its marketing area. The Minnesota Pipe Line Company owns the Minnesota Pipeline, a crude oil pipeline system in Minnesota that transports crude oil to the St. Paul area. The Minnesota Pipeline system has multiple lines that run approximately 300 miles from Clearbrook in Clearwater County, Minnesota to Dakota County, Minnesota, transporting crude oil received through the Enbridge pipeline connections at Clearbrook from Western Canada and North Dakota to our refinery and Koch Industries’s Flint Hills Resources refinery in Minnesota.

Retail Business

As of March 31, 2012, the Company’s retail business operated 166 convenience stores under the SuperAmerica brand and also supported 67 franchised convenience stores, which are also operated under the SuperAmerica brand. These convenience stores are located primarily in Minnesota and Wisconsin and sell various grades of gasoline and diesel, tobacco products and immediately consumable items, such as non-alcoholic beverages, beer, prepared food and a range of snacks and prepackaged items. It also owns and operates SuperMom’s Bakery, which prepares and distributes baked goods and other prepared food items for sale in its company-operated and franchised convenience stores and other third party locations.

The Company has a retail-marketing network of 233 convenience stores, as of March 31, 2012, located throughout Minnesota, Wisconsin and South Dakota, of which it operates 166 stores and support 67 franchised stores. All of its company-operated and franchised convenience stores are operated under the SuperAmerica brand. It also owns and operates SuperMom’s Bakery, which prepares and distributes baked goods and other prepared items for sale i n its retail outlets and for other third parties. Its refine! ry suppli! es all of the gasoline and diesel sold in its company-operated and franchised convenience stores. The Company has retail customers, which primarily include retail end-users, motorists and commercial drivers. It had a retail-marketing network of 233 convenience stores, as of March 31, 2012, located throughout Minnesota, Wisconsin and South Dakota, of which it operated 166 stores and support 67 franchised stores.

The Company competes with Koch Industries’ Flint Hills Resources Refinery, Holiday, Kwik Trip and Wal-Mart.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Delek US, Western Refining and Phillips 66 are most exposed to the consensus thinking Westlake and Advani say. They kept Tesoro (TSO) and Northern Tier Energy (NTI) rated outperform.

  • [By Igor Greenwald]

    On November 12, Western Refining announced an agreement to pay $775 million to the private-equity sponsors of Northern Tier Energy (NTI) for the general partner interest in that MLP, along with the 38.7% of its limited partner units not held by the public.

Best Healthcare Equipment Companies To Invest In 2015: ONEOK Partners L.P.(OKS)

ONEOK Partners, L.P. engages in the gathering, processing, storage, and transportation of natural gas in the United States. The company?s Natural Gas Gathering and Processing segment gathers and processes natural gas produced from crude oil and natural gas wells located in the Mid-Continent region; and gathers natural gas in the Williston Basin, which spans portions of Montana and North Dakota, and the Powder River Basin of Wyoming. Its Natural Gas Pipelines segment primarily owns and operates regulated natural gas transmission pipelines, natural gas storage facilities, and natural gas gathering systems for non-processed gas. It also provides interstate natural gas transportation and storage services. This segment?s interstate natural gas pipeline assets transport natural gas through FERC-regulated interstate natural gas pipelines in North Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Texas, and New Mexico. In addition, it transports intra state natural gas through its assets in Oklahoma; and owns underground natural gas storage facilities in Oklahoma, Kansas, and Texas. Its Natural Gas Liquids segment gathers, fractionates, and treats natural gas liquids (NGLs), as well as stores NGL products primarily in Oklahoma, Kansas, and Texas. This segment owns FERC-regulated natural gas liquids gathering and distribution pipelines in Oklahoma, Kansas, Texas, Wyoming, and Colorado; terminal and storage facilities in Missouri, Nebraska, Iowa, and Illinois; and FERC-regulated natural gas liquids distribution and refined petroleum products pipelines in Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, and Indiana that connect its Mid-Continent assets with Midwest markets, including Chicago, Illinois. ONEOK Partners GP serves as the general partner of the company. The company was formerly known as Northern Border Partners, L.P. and changed its name to ONEOK Partners, L.P. in May 2006. The company was founded in 1993 and is base d in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Paul Ausick]

    Large MLPs with geographically diversified operations will fare better because they can shift assets around and make sure that all their distribution-paying subsidiaries meet the payroll, so to speak. Here are the seven largest MLPs by market cap:

    Enterprise Product Partners LP (NYSE: EPD) – $61.23 billion Kinder Morgan Energy Partners LP (NYSE: KMP) – $35.13 billion Williams Partners LP (NYSE: WPZ) – $21.95 billion Plains All American Pipeline LP (NYSE: PAA) – $19.3 billion Energy Transfer Partners LP (NYSE: ETP) – $17.78 billion Magellan Midstream Partners LP (NYSE: MMP) – $15.52 billion Oneok Partners LP (NYSE: OKS) – $12.95 billion

    Size is not the only thing that matters, but size can help overcome some of the cash flow issues these MLPs face. The differentiating factor is a company’s distribution coverage ratio which is the cash the MLP has to distribute to its limited partners divided by its maintenance capex and interest on the company’s debt. Anything number larger than 1 is solid.

  • [By Lauren Pollock]

    Oneok Partners LP(OKS) issued guidance for 2014 that surpasses its estimate for the current year, citing growth in natural-gas volumes.

    QEP Resources Inc.(QEP) plans to separate its midstream business, QEP Field Services Co., into a separate entity, including its interest in QEP Midstream Partners LP(QEPM).

  • [By David Dittman]

    Answer: ONEOK is running wild in anticipation of its completion of transactions that will make it essentially a general partner, with interests in ONEOK Partners LP (NYSE: OKS) and the soon-to-be-spun-out ONE Gas Inc (NYSE: OGS). ONEOK already has an admirable record of dividend growth, and these moves will drive acceleration in 2014 payout growth.

  • [By Lauren Pollock]

    Oneok Partners L.P(OKS). on Tuesday said it planned to invest $650 million to $780 million on Bakken Shale projects in North Dakota, including a new natural-gas processing plant. The spending plan is set to run through the second quarter of 2016. Oneok has already announced $6 billion to $6.4 billion in total investments through 2016.