On the first night I tried to sleep in my van, I was lying in my sleeping bag sprawled out on the back seat, parked in a mostly empty Wal-Mart parking lot. I’d wake up every 15 minutes because I was nervous that the security guard driving past my van would knock on my door and make me leave.
My new home had 60 square feet and four wheels. While most people would consider living in a van an embarrassment, a low point, or even a “rock bottom,” it would — though I didn’t realize it then — turn out to be the greatest financial decision I’d ever made.
No one would end up waking me up in the Wal-Mart lot, and, over the next two years, almost all of my other fears would prove to be entirely unfounded.
In January 2009, when I’d decided to move into the van, I was nearly broke. I had just $4,000 in the bank and no possessions other than a laptop, a camera, a cell phone, and a suitcase full of clothes and a backpack full of camping gear.
I had next to nothing because I’d just finished paying off my $32,000 undergraduate school debt. Still, after two and a half years of working, I wanted nothing more than to go back to school and get my master’s degree in liberal studies at Duke University. But how could I afford tuition and not go back into debt?
Best Mid Cap Stocks To Buy Right Now: Casella Waste Systems Inc (CWST)
Casella Waste Systems, Inc., incorporated on March 1, 1993, is a vertically integrated solid waste, recycling, and resource management services company. The Company provide resource management and services to residential, commercial, municipal, and industrial customers, primarily in the areas of solid waste collection, transfer, disposal, recycling, and organics services. The Company operates in Vermont, New Hampshire, New York, Massachusetts, Maine, and Pennsylvania. As of May 31, 2013, the Company owned and/or operated 35 solid waste collection operations, 38 transfer stations, 16 recycling facilities, nine Subtitle D landfills, four landfill gas-to-energy facilities, one landfill permitted to accept construction and demolition, or C&D, materials.
The Company manages its solid waste operations on a geographic basis through two regional operating segments: the Eastern and Western regions, each of which includes a range of solid waste services, and its larger -scale recycling operations and commodity brokerage operations through its Recycling segment.
Solid Waste Operations
The Company solid waste operations consists a range of non-hazardous solid waste services, including collections, transfer stations, material recovery facility ( MRFs) and disposal facilities. A majority of its commercial and industrial collection services are performed under one to three-year service agreements, with prices and fees determined by such factors as collection frequency, type of equipment and containers furnished, type, volume and weight of solid waste collected, distance to the disposal or processing facility and cost of disposal or processing. Its residential collection and disposal services are performed either on a subscription basis. The Company transfer stations receive, compact and transfer solid waste collected primarily by various collection operations, for transport to disposal facilities by larger vehicles.
The Company’s MRFs, receive, sort, bale and res! ell recyclable materials originating from the municipal solid waste stream, including newsprint, cardboard, office paper, containers and bottles. The Company operates six MRFs in geographic areas served by its collection divisions. Revenues are received from municipalities and customers in the form of processing fees, tipping fees and commodity sales. The Company’s MRFs, two of which are located in Vermont, two in Massachusetts and two in New York, are large-scale, high-volume facilities that process over 0.4 million tons per year of recycled materials delivered to them by municipalities and commercial customers under long-term contracts. The Company also operates MRFs as an integral part of its core solid waste operations, which generally process recyclables collected from its various residential collection operations.
The Eastern region consists of wastesheds located in Maine, southern and central New Hampshire and central and east ern Massachusetts. The Eastern region is vertically integrated, with transfer, landfill, organics and processing and recycling assets serviced by its collection operations. In February 2013, the Company aligned management of the NCES landfill with the Eastern region. NCES had been historically aligned with the Western region. In December, 2012 the Company acquired BBI Waste Services (BBI), which gave the Company additional hauling and transfer capacity in southern Maine.
The Western region includes wastesheds located in Vermont, north and south western New Hampshire and eastern New York that were previously included in the eliminated Central region. The portion of New York served by the Western region includes Clinton (operation of the Clinton County landfill), Franklin, Essex, Warren, Washington, Saratoga, Rennselaer and Albany counties. The Western region also consists of wastesheds in upstate New York (which includes Ithaca, Elmir a, Oneonta, Lowville, Potsdam, Geneva, Auburn, Dunkirk, Jame! stown and! Olean). Its collection operations include leadership positions in nearly every rural market outside of the larger metropolitan markets, such as Syracuse, Rochester, Buffalo and Albany.
Recycling is the processors and marketers of recycled materials in the eastern United States, consists six MRFs that process and then market recyclable materials that municipalities and commercial customers deliver to them under long-term contracts. Three of the 6 MRFs are leased, the other three are owned. During fiscal year ended April 30, 2013, Recycling segment processed and/or marketed approximately 0.5 million tons of recyclable materials including tons marketed through the Company’s commodity brokerage operation. Recycling facilities are located in Vermont, New York and Massachusetts.
The Company competes with Waste Management, Inc, Republic Services, Inc, Waste Connections, Inc., Owens Corning, CertainTeed Corporation and Johns Manville .
- [By James Miller Phd]
As we can see, the firm has a higher ROE than it peers: Sharps Compliance, Casella Waste Systems, Inc. (CWST), Donaldson Company, Inc. (DCI) and GSE Holding Inc. (GSEH).
Best Mid Cap Stocks To Buy Right Now: Select Income REIT (SIR)
Select Income REIT, incorporated on December 19, 2011, is a real estate company that primarily owns and invests in single tenants, net leased properties. As of March 12, 2012, the Company owned 251 properties, or the Initial Properties, with a total of approximately 21.4 million rentable square feet. As of December 31, 2012, the Company acquired 16 properties from unrelated third parties with approximately 3.2 million rentable square feet. As of December 31, 2012, the Company owned 267 properties with approximately 24.6 million rentable square feet that were approximately 95.3% leased (based on rentable square feet). These properties consists of 229 properties located on the island of Oahu, HI, or the Company’s Hawaii Properties, which included approximately 17.8 million rentable square feet that are primarily leased to industrial and commercial tenants and 38 office and industrial properties with approximately 6.8 million square feet located in 18 states throughout the ma inland United States, or its Mainland Properties.
The Company’s 267 properties were leased to 253 different tenants, with a weighted average remaining lease term of approximately 11.7 years. The Company’s Mainland Properties generally consist of properties that are net leased to single tenants.
- [By Marc Bastow]
Select Income REIT (SIR), a real estate investment trust that owns single-tenant, net-leased properties, raised its quarterly dividend 4.5% to 46 cents per share, payable Nov. 20 to shareholders of record as of Oct. 24.
SIR Dividend Yield: 7.06%
Best Mid Cap Stocks To Buy Right Now: Edwards Lifesciences Corporation (EW)
Edwards Lifesciences Corporation provides products and technologies to treat structural heart disease and critically ill patients worldwide. The company offers surgical heart valve therapy products, such as tissue heart valves and repair products, which are used to replace or repair a patients diseased or defective heart valve; and produces pericardial and porcine valves. Its surgical heart valve therapy products include Carpentier-Edwards PERIMOUNT pericardial valve that comprise PERIMOUNT Magna Ease valves for aortic and mitral replacement; ThruPort systems that enable minimal incision valve surgery; and protection cannulae used during cardiac surgery in venous drainage, aortic perfusion, venting, and cardioplegia delivery. The company also provides transcatheter heart valves portfolio that includes technologies designed to treat heart valve disease using catheter-based approaches, as well as critical care products, such as hemodynamic monitoring systems to measure a p atients heart function in surgical and intensive care settings; Swan-Ganz line of pulmonary artery catheters and PreSep continuous venous oximetry catheters for measuring central venous oxygen saturation; VolumeView sensor-catheters; FloTrac continuous cardiac output monitoring system, a minimally invasive cardiac monitoring technology for goal-directed fluid optimization; and EV1000 clinical monitoring platform, which displays a patient’s physiologic status. Its critical care products also include disposable pressure monitoring devices and closed blood sampling systems to help protect both patients and clinicians from the risk of infection; and products used to treat endolumenal occlusive disease, including balloon-tipped, catheter-based embolectomy products, surgical clips, and clamps. The company distributes its products through direct sales force and independent distributors. Edwards Lifesciences Corporation was founded in 1999 and is headquartered in Irvine, Californ i a.
- [By Ben Levisohn]
Each month, Credit Suisse’s small-cap strategists ask the firm’s analyst to name their favorite small- and mid-cap stocks. This month, six new stocks made the list: RPM International (RPM), SunCoke Energy (SXC), Zions Bancorp (ZION), Signature Bank (SBNY), Edwards Lifesciences (EW) and Rexnord (RXN).
- [By Myra P. Saefong]
After the close Monday, fourth-quarter results are due from the Hartford Financial Services Group Inc. (HIG) , which is projected to report earnings of 90 cents per share, Edwards LifeSciences Corp. (EW) , expected to post earnings per share of 82 cents and General Growth Properties Inc. (GGP) , expected to report a profit per share of 35 cents. For its first quarter, Hologic Inc. (HOLX) is expected to post earnings per share of 31 cents.
- [By Sue Chang and Ben Eisen]
Edwards Lifesciences Corp. (EW) declined 5.7%. Medtronic Inc. (MDT) , which recently lost a court fight with Edwards Lifesciences over a patent for a heart valve, said it plans to appeal the jury verdict which awarded Edwards $392.5 million for patent infringement.
Best Mid Cap Stocks To Buy Right Now: Ctrip.com International Ltd.(CTRP)
Ctrip.com International, Ltd., together with its subsidiaries, provides travel services for hotel accommodations, airline tickets, and packaged tours in the People?s Republic of China. It also sells independent leisure travelers bundled package-tour products, which include transportation and accommodation, as well as guided tours covering various domestic and international destinations. In addition, the company offers Internet-related advertising, aviation casualty insurance, and air-ticket delivery services. Further, it sells Property Management System, a hotel information software; travel guidebooks, which provide information for independent travelers; and VIP membership cards that allow cardholders to receive discounts from various restaurants, clubs, and bars. The company was founded in 1999 and is headquartered in Shanghai, the People?s Republic of China.
- [By Jim Jubak]
Among stocks that are available to US investors through a listing in New York, the list includes Ctrip.com International (CTRP), China’s biggest online travel retailer; Qihoo 360 (QIHU), a leading mobile security company; 58.com (WUBA), the Craigslist-like operator of a classified site, and SouFun Holdings (SFUN), the owner of China’s biggest real-estate site.
- [By Rick Aristotle Munarriz]
Shutterstock/Andrey Burmakin Folks are turning to the Internet more and more in planning business trips and personal getaways — and investors are cashing in on the trend. Shares of Orbitz Worldwide (OWW) soared 18 percent last week after posting better than expected quarterly results. Revenue climbing 4 percent and profitability clocking in at 5 cents a share may not seem very impressive, but analysts were settling for the volatile travel portal to merely break even on flattish revenue growth. Strength in its hotel bookings were more than enough to offset weakness in airline reservations. Orbitz Worldwide’s larger and faster-growing peers priceline.com (PCLN) and Expedia (EXPE) went along for the ride, climbing 7 percent and 4 percent respectively. They both went on to hit new all-time highs. Seeing an industry laggard start to grow profitably again — and Orbitz Worldwide is calling for modest continued growth into 2014 — was enough to get the market behind the popular providers of lodging, air travel, car rental, cruise and vacation package reservations. This isn’t just a one-week phenomenon. Priceline and Expedia shares have soared 174 percent and 171 percent since the end of 2011. Orbitz Worldwide has also more than doubled in that time, and it’s up a whopping 223 percent since the start of 2013. The Ins and Outs of Inn Outings Orbitz Worldwide’s report would have been better if it wasn’t held back by an 11 percent decline in airline ticket sales. Priceline and Expedia are growing their airfare sales, but modestly, compared to their hotel reservations. This isn’t a surprise. Airlines have done a good job of marketing directly to passengers. There are a lot of people on frequent flyer programs, so they often head directly to an air carrier’s website when it’s time to book a trip. Pricing is also pretty competitive between airlines. There may not be a lot of carriers offering the desired route, but they are quick to respond to what rivals are doing. Th
- [By Yiannis Mostrous]
Ctrip.com International (CTRP)
With a 48% market share, Ctrip.com holds the crown as China’s leading online travel agency, offering a one-stop shop for booking hotels, flights, and packaged tours.
- [By Brian Pacampara]
What: Shares of Chinese travel website Ctrip.com International (NASDAQ: CTRP ) surged 19% today after its quarterly results and outlook topped Wall Street expectations.
Best Mid Cap Stocks To Buy Right Now: WABCO Holdings Inc (WBC)
WABCO Holdings Inc. (WABCO) is a provider of electronic, mechanical and mechatronic products for the commercial truck, trailer, bus and passenger car manufacturers. The Company manufactures and sells control systems, including advanced braking, stability, suspension, transmission control and air compressing and processing systems. Its products are included in approximately two out of three commercial vehicles with advanced vehicle control systems and offered in niche applications in cars and sport utility vehicles (SUVs). WABCO develops, manufactures and sells advanced braking, stability, suspension and transmission control systems primarily for commercial vehicles. In September 2012, it acquired Ephicas.
The Company’s products include pneumatic anti-lock braking systems (ABS), electronic braking systems (EBS), automated manual transmission systems, air disk brakes, and a large variety of conventional mechanical products, such as actuators, air compressors a nd air control valves for heavy- and medium-sized trucks, trailers and buses. It also supplies advanced electronic suspension controls and vacuum pumps to the car and SUV markets in Europe, North America and Asia. The Company sells replacement parts, diagnostic tools, training and other services to commercial vehicle aftermarket distributors, repair shops, and fleet operators and provide remanufacturing services.
The Company’s key product groups include Actuator, Air Processing/Air Management System, Foundation Brake, Conventional Braking System, Electronic and Conventional Air Suspension Systems, Transmission Automation, Vehicle Electronic Architecture (VEA), and Vehicle Electronic Stability Control (ESC) and Roll Stability Support (RSS). WABCO sells its products primarily to four groups of customers worldwide: truck and bus (OEMs), trailer (OEMs), commercial vehicle aftermarket distributors for replacement parts and services, and major car manufacturers. Its customers include Daimler, Volvo, Ashok Leyland, BMW, China! National Heavy Truck Corporation (CNHTC), Cummins, Fiat (Iveco), Hino, Hyundai, Krone, MAN Nutzfahrzeuge AG (MAN), Meritor, Meritor WABCO (a joint venture), Paccar (DAF Trucks N.V. (DAF), Kenworth, Leyland and Peterbilt), First Automobile Works, Otto Sauer Achsenfabrik (SAF), Scania, Schmitz Cargobull AG, TATA Motors and ZF Friedrichshafen AG (ZF).
The Company competes with Knorr-Bremse, Haldex, Bosch, Continental and Siemens-VDO.
- [By Adam Haigh]
Declines in other Australian financial shares limited gains on the MSCI Asia Pacific excluding Japan Index. Commonwealth Bank of Australia, the country’s largest bank, declined 2 percent to A$71.06, a third day of losses. Westpac Banking Corp. (WBC), the second-biggest, slid 1 percent to A$33.55 even after saying it will pay a special dividend for the first time since 1988.
- [By Adam Haigh]
Westpac Banking Corp. (WBC) and Commonwealth Bank of Australia, the two biggest Australian lenders, each slid at least 1 percent as minutes from a central bank meeting highlighted concern about business conditions. ICBC, the world’s largest lender by market value, sank 2.1 percent in Hong Kong. Tokyo Electric Power Co. (9501) gained 12 percent, taking this month’s rise to 90 percent.
- [By Yoshiaki Nohara]
Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index retreated 0.7 percent, led by energy and financial shares. Woodside Petroleum Ltd. (WPL), Australia’s second-biggest oil and gas producer, dropped 2 percent to A$34.67. Westpac Banking Corp. (WBC), Australia’s No. 2 lender by market value, shed 1.2 percent to A$27.47.