LONDON — Successful investors use a disciplined approach to picking stocks, and checklists can be a great way to make sure you’ve covered all the bases.
In this series I’m subjecting companies to scrutiny under five headings: prospects, performance, management, safety and valuation. How does Shell (LSE: RDSB ) (NYSE: RDS-B ) measure up?
The oil price is driven by supply and demand for oil, which in turn is affected by geopolitics and the health of the global economy. The costs of production, and massive capital expenditures involved in exploration, complete the financial dynamics.
Shell has mature upstream operations that deliver solid cash flow, and reserves that cover over 10 years of current production.
The company has invested heavily in natural gas and LNG production. Big investment in U.S. shale gas has not (yet) paid off as the glut of supply depressed prices, but it has added to Shell’s reserves.
The search for new resources has pushed exploration into deep waters. Shell has under-sea fields in Latin America and Asia with the Arctic as a longer-term project. Reserves declined by 5% last year following a slight decline in 2011.
Hot Japanese Companies To Own For 2014: PGT Inc.(PGTI)
PGT, Inc. engages in the manufacture and supply of residential impact-resistant windows and doors. The company offers impact-resistant products, including heavy-duty aluminum or vinyl frames with laminated glass to provide protection from hurricane-force winds and wind-borne debris. It also provides a range of non-impact-resistant aluminum and vinyl frame windows and doors; Architectural Systems line of products, which offer protection from hurricane-force winds and wind-borne debris for mid-and high-rise buildings; and non-glass vertical and horizontal sliding panels for porch enclosures, such as vinyl-glazed and aluminum-framed products used for enclosing screened-in porches that provide protection from inclement weather. The company markets its products under the WinGuard, PremierVue, PGT Architectural Systems, Eze-Breeze, and SpectraGuard brand names. PGT, Inc. offers its products to residential new construction, and home repair and remodeling end markets through windo w distributors, building supply distributors, window replacement dealers, and enclosure contractors. It operates in the southeastern United States, the Gulf Coast, Coastal mid-Atlantic, the Caribbean, Central America, and Canada. The company was formerly known as JLL Window Holdings, Inc. and changed its name to PGT, Inc. in January 2004. PGT, Inc. was founded in 1980 and is based in North Venice, Florida.
- [By Eric Volkman]
A larger-than-previously announced block of PGT’s (NASDAQ: PGTI ) shares is up for grabs. Major stockholder JLL Partners Fund has increased the size of its sale; it is now offering an even 10 million shares in an underwritten secondary public offering priced at $7.75 per share. Also, the issue’s underwriters have been granted a 30-day option to buy up to an additional 1.65 million shares from the seller.
- [By Seth Jayson]
There’s no foolproof way to know the future for PGT (Nasdaq: PGTI ) or any other company. However, certain clues may help you see potential stumbles before they happen — and before your stock craters as a result.
Hot Japanese Companies To Own For 2014: DISH Network Corporation(DISH)
DISH Network Corporation, through its subsidiaries, provides direct broadcast satellite (DBS) subscription television services in the United States. It offers programming that includes approximately 280 basic video channels, 60 Sirius satellite radio music channels, 30 premium movie channels, 35 regional and specialty sports channels, 2,800 local channels, 250 Latino and international channels, and 55 channels of pay-per-view content. The company also offers local HD channels in approximately 160 markets and 215 national HD channels; and receiver systems, including a small satellite dish, digital set-top receivers, and remote controls. In addition, it provides DISHOnline.com, which enables DISH Network subscribers to watch 150,000 movies, television shows, clips, and trailers; DISH Remote Access that enables subscribers to remotely manage their DVRs using compatible mobile devices, such as smartphones, tablets, and laptops through their broadband-connected receiver; and Go ogle TV that enables DISH Network subscribers to search the Internet, check email, interact with social media, and find additional online programming content while simultaneously watching television. As of March 31, 2011, the company had approximately 14.191 million customers. DISH Network provides receiver systems and programming through direct sales channels; and independent third parties, such as small satellite retailers, direct marketing groups, local and regional consumer electronics stores, nationwide retailers, and telecommunications companies. The company was founded in 1980 and is headquartered in Englewood, Colorado.
- [By Jake L’Ecuyer]
Dish Network (NASDAQ: DISH) shares were also on the rise Wednesday, gaining 7.79 percent to $62.97 after a report surfaced that the company’s CEO had approached the DirectTV CEO about a merger.
- [By Alex Planes]
Time Warner threats
AMC Networks plans to launch the 10-episode series Halt and Catch Fire this June. Dish Network (NASDAQ: DISH ) will transmit several Disney channels on an a la carte basis, threatening Time Warner’s premium-cable-channel advantage. Time Warner has delayed the launch of Batman vs. Superman.
One dividend to rule them all
In this writer’s humble opinion, it seems that Disney has a better shot at long-term outperformance, thanks to its ubiquitous brand recognition and a more diversified business model. The company is likely to wind up creating more film franchises with the launch of Marvel’s new X-Men and Guardians of the Galaxy comics series. Orlando’s recent airport expansion project should also help lure a large number of new visitors to the legendary Disney World theme park. The company’s combined properties seem more defensible than Time Warner’s, which is the key differentiator in long-term investing for this type of industry. You might disagree, and if so, you’re encouraged to share your viewpoint in the comments below. No dividend is completely perfect, but some are bound to produce better results than others. Keep your eyes open — you never know where you might find the next great dividend stock!
- [By Rick Aristotle Munarriz]
Getty Images/Bloomberg/Gianluca Colla Companies can make brilliant moves, but there are also times when things don’t work out quite as planned. From a CEO busted for spying on a larger rival to a satellite television provider raising the bar, here’s a rundown of the week’s smartest moves and biggest blunders in the business world. DISH Network (DISH) — Winner In a deal with bigger implications than you may initially think, Disney (DIS) is giving DISH Network rights to stream live and on-demand shows from ABC, Disney and ESPN. This is a truly mobile service, opening the door for DISH to begin offering a standalone Web-based service. A lot of bigger companies than DISH have tried to talk major networks and broadcasters into similar arrangements, only to be shot down. DISH succeeded because it had a bargaining chip in its ad-skipping Hopper DVR technology. DISH agreed that users of the streaming service wouldn’t be able to zap through the commercials for newer Disney shows. Modell’s Sporting Goods — Loser Dick’s Sporting Goods (DKS) is filing a complaint in a New Jersey court after it caught Mitchell Modell — CEO of rival Modell’s — spying on it. The lawsuit claims that Modell posed as a Dick’s executive to gain access to private areas and learn business techniques at Dick’s. If the allegations hold up, Modell’s behavior was at the very least unethical, not to mention ironic — a sporting goods chain’s helmsman resorting to such unsportsmanlike conduct. Wouldn’t it have been easier to just hire a Dick’s executive? Zillow (Z) — Winner Speaking of the right way to pry away information from a competitor, Zillow announced on Wednesday night that it was bringing on a key executive from Realtor.com parent Move (MOVE). A new position of chief industry development officer is being created for Errol Samuelson, who previously served as president of Realtor.com and Move’s chief strategy officer. The beautiful thing about prying away a key employee from another
Hot Japanese Companies To Own For 2014: Agilysys Inc.(AGYS)
Agilysys, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, provides information technology (IT) solutions to corporate and public-sector customers primarily in North America. It operates in three segments: Hospitality Solutions Group (HSG), Retail Solutions Group (RSG), and Technology Solutions Group (TSG). The HSG segment offers application software and services that streamline management of operations, property, and inventory for customers in the gaming, hotel and resort, cruise lines, food management services, and sports and entertainment markets. The RSG segment provides solutions for retailers to enhance productivity, operational efficiency, technology utilization, customer satisfaction, and in-store profitability that comprise customized pricing, inventory, and customer relationship management systems. This segment also offers implementation plans and supplies the hardware package required to operate the systems, including servers, receipt printers, point-of-sale terminals, and wireless devices for in-store use by retail store associates. The TSG segment provides various solutions that comprise enterprise architecture, infrastructure optimization, storage and resource management, identity management, and business continuity for the finance, government, healthcare, telecommunications, education, and other industries. The company was founded in 1963 and is headquartered in Solon, Ohio.
- [By Evan Niu, CFA]
What: Shares of Agilysys (NASDAQ: AGYS ) have soared today by as much as 11% after the company reported earnings.
So what: Revenue in the fiscal fourth quarter rose 21% to $63 million, with the company’s retail segment driving nearly all of those gains. Non-GAAP net income per share came in at $0.15, swinging into the black relative to the $0.16 per share adjusted loss a year ago. CEO James Dennedy said the company outperformed its expectations for the year.
- [By Seth Jayson]
Calling all cash flows
When you are trying to buy the market’s best stocks, it’s worth checking up on your companies’ free cash flow once a quarter or so, to see whether it bears any relationship to the net income in the headlines. That’s what we do with this series. Today, we’re checking in on Agilysys (Nasdaq: AGYS ) , whose recent revenue and earnings are plotted below.
Hot Japanese Companies To Own For 2014: News Corporation(NWSA)
News Corporation operates as a diversified media company worldwide. Its Cable Network Programming segment produces and licenses news, business news, sports, general entertainment, and movie programming for distribution through cable television systems and direct broadcast satellite operators primarily in the United States, Latin America, Europe, and Asia. The company?s Filmed Entertainment segment produces and acquires live-action and animated motion pictures for distribution and licensing in entertainment media, as well as produces and licenses television programming worldwide. Its Television segment operates 27 broadcast television stations in the United States. The company?s Direct Broadcast Satellite Television segment distributes programming services via satellite and broadband directly to subscribers in Italy. Its Publishing segment provides newspapers and information services, such as publishing national newspapers in the United Kingdom, approximately 146 newspapers in Australia, and a metropolitan and a national newspaper in the United States; book publishing services, including the publishing of English language books worldwide; and integrated marketing services comprising the publishing of free-standing inserts, which are marketing booklets containing coupons, rebates, and other consumer offers, as well as provides in-store marketing products and services, primarily to consumer packaged goods manufacturers in the United States and Canada. The company also sells advertising, sponsorships, and subscription services on the company?s various digital media properties and outdoor advertising space on various media primarily in Russia and eastern Europe; and provides data systems and professional services that enable teachers to use data to assess student progress and deliver individualized instructions. News Corporation was founded in 1922 and is headquartered in New York, New York.
- [By Sue Chang and Saumya Vaishampayan]
News Corp (NWS) (NWSA) added 8.4%. The media company said late Thursday its fiscal second-quarter profit slid to $150 million, or 26 cents a share, from $1.4 billion, or $2.42 a share, a year ago. Last year’s earnings were affected by a $1.3 billion gain from an acquisition. But on an adjusted basis, it earned 31 cents a share, ahead of the 21-cent profit forecast by analysts. News Corp is the parent of MarketWatch, the publisher of this report.
- [By Pato Kehoe]
Quality video content has continuously increased in value over the past years, and this firm has a made a point of following the money trail by producing and broadcasting an ample amount of high quality products. From award winning shows like “Modern Family” or “The Simpsons,” to its popular sports programming, Twenty-First Century Fox has constantly satisfied the market’s thirst for entertainment. The News Corp (NWSA) spin-off, for one, was a highly beneficial strategy for this company, setting it apart as a pure-play entertainment firm. By concentrating resources and management on the cable network business and shaking off Rupert Murdoch’s print segment, the firm was able to boost its EBITDA growth as well as its return on capital (ROC). The current metrics of 28.80% and 154% respectively are quite impressive and will be highly beneficial for investors if they can be sustained.
Hot Japanese Companies To Own For 2014: Ishares Msci Korea (EWY)
iShares MSCI South Korea Index Fund (the Fund) seeks to provide investment results that correspond generally to the price and yield performance of publicly traded securities in the aggregate in the South Korean market. The Fund’s performance is measured by the MSCI Korea Index (the Index).
The Fund invests in a representative sample of securities in the Index, which has a similar investment profile as the Index. iShares MSCI South Korea Index Fund’s investment advisor is Barclays Global Fund Advisors.
- [By Benjamin Shepherd]
The iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index (NYSE: EEM) seems to have halted its slide. The index bottomed out year-to-date on February 3, when it was down 11.2 percent. Since then, it has gained 1.5 percent, but bargains in the emerging markets still abound.
As I discussed in “A Plan, Not a Panic” two weeks ago, emerging markets are in much better economic shape today than they were even just a few years ago, much less during the currency crisis that peaked in 1998. Foreign exchange reserves are generally much more robust, budget deficits are narrower if they exist at all and, so far at least, the full-blown currency war that many were predicting last year isn’t likely to breakout.
With rationality finally setting in, this is a terrific time to do a little bargain hunting in the emerging markets.
The most obvious play here is the iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index itself. Covering China (18.8 percent of assets), South Korea (16 percent), Taiwan ( 12 percent) and Brazil (10.2 percent) with smaller positions spanning Asia and Europe, the fund is most exposed to any shift in sentiment.
The fund is currently trading at just 10.2 times forward one-year earnings, well below its average of about 18 times over the past two decades. On a price-to-sales basis it is even more attractive valued at just 1.03 times; the last time the index was this cheap on a sales basis was early 2009.
So while there are always dangers in trying to call a bottom to any market move, valuations alone are attractive enough to start pulling bargain hunters back in.
A broadly diversified play on an emerging market turnaround, iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index is a great buy up to 45, which leaves plenty of room to run back to the average.
For those who can tolerate a bit more risk, you can also drill down and make more country-specific bets.
At this point my favorite would be iShares MSCI South Korea Index Fund (NY SE: EWY).
- [By Jeff Reeves]
Of course, Samsung’s massive presence has weighed on the region lately. In the last 12 months, the iShares MSCI South Korea Index Fund (EWY) has declined about 4%, pretty much the same performance as Samsung’s stock.
Hot Japanese Companies To Own For 2014: SK TELECOM ADR EACH REP 1/9 KRW500(CIT)
SK Telecom Co., Ltd. provides wireless telecommunications services using code division multiple access (CDMA) and wide-band CDMA technologies. It offers cellular voice services, such as wireless voice transmission services; and wireless global roaming services. The company also provides wireless data transmission services, such as wireless Internet access services, which allow subscribers to access online digital contents and services, as well as to send and receive text and multimedia messages. In addition, it offers broadband Internet and fixed-line telephone services, such as video-on-demand and IP TV services; and local, domestic, and international long-distance fixed-line telephone services to residential and commercial subscribers. Further, the company provides wireless entertainment-related contents and services, wireless finance-related contents and m-commerce services, and wireless news and search services; and international calling services, such as direct-dial, pre and post paid card calling services, bundled services for corporate customers, voice services using Internet protocol, Web-to-phone services, and data services. Additionally, it offers satellite digital media broadcasting services; telematics services; and fixed-line and online community portal services. The company also operates 11th Street, an online shopping mall; and T Store, an online open marketplace for mobile applications. As of March 31, 2011, SK Telecom Co. had 26 million wireless subscribers. It has strategic alliances with Bridge Alliance; Orange SA; Telecom Italia Mobile S.p.A.; T-Mobile International AG & Co; and Teliasonera Mobile Networks AB. The company was formerly known as Korea Mobile Telecommunications Co., Ltd. and changed its name to SK Telecom Co., Ltd. in March 1997. SK Telecom Co., Ltd. was founded in 1984 and is based in Seoul, South Korea.
- [By Lee Jackson]
CIT Group Inc. (NYSE: CIT) has been consistently striving to expand its market share. In 2012, the company launched Maritime Finance, which offers secured loans to operators of oceangoing and inland cargo vessels, as well as offshore vessels and drilling rigs. In 2011, the company announced establishment of CIT Real Estate Finance business and an online bank. All these initiatives are expected to drive revenue growth going forward. Investors receive a tiny 0.4% dividend. Oppenheimer raises their 2014 price target to $59 from $55. The consensus target is at $55. CIT closed Monday at $51.64.
- [By Jonas Elmerraji]
CIT Group (CIT) has been stuck in a trading range since the start of July, churning sideways at the same time that the S&P was broadly pushing higher. But with shares testing a key resistance level this week, CIT could be about to make a big directional move again.
The sideways churn in CIT is caused by a rectangle pattern, a consolidation setup that’s formed by a horizontal resistance level above shares at $51 and horizontal support at $47. The rectangle gets its name because it basically “boxes in” shares of a stock — the break outside of the box is the trade to take. So, if LKQ pushes above $51, then it’s time to buy. Upside looks like the more likely outcome from here; since CIT’s price action leading up to the rectangle in early 2013 was bullish, it’s more likely to break out from the setup to the upside.
Kraft is committing a cardinal sin when it comes to relative strength. With a market that’s correcting in December, relative strength is the single most important technical indicator to use with price — and KRFT’s RS line turned bullish months ago with no signs of strength.
This food stock is lagging the market big time, and not just because of a shape on a chart.
Whenever you’re looking at any technical price pattern, it’s critical to think in terms of buyers and sellers. Triangles and the other setups we’ve looked at are a good quick way to explain what’s going on in a stock, but they’re not the reason it’s tradable. Instead, it all comes down to supply and demand for shares.
That support level at $52 is a price where there had been an excess of demand of shares; in other words, it’s a place where buyers were more eager to step in and buy shares at a lower price than sellers were to sell. That’s what makes a breakdown below $52 so significant — the move would indicate that sellers are finally strong enough to absorb all of the excess demand above that price level. Wait for that trigge
- [By Dan Caplinger]
Getty Images Interest rates in the bond market have risen dramatically this year, which has left borrowers shopping for mortgages or car loans facing higher financing costs. But here’s the paradox: Even though rising rates have made it more costly to borrow, savers haven’t seen much improvement on the interest rates they’re getting on savings account balances and bank certificates of deposit. Rates on Savings Have Barely Budged In the money-market account category, savers have actually seen the rates they get paid fall, despite the run-up in bond-market rates. Average rates have fallen from around 0.50 percent this time last year to 0.40 percent currently, according to Bankrate. Looking at the average isn’t always the best indication of the rates available, as it includes offerings from stingier banks that you’d want to avoid in any event. But even among banks paying the best rates on money-market accounts, it’s hard to find any bank offering more than 1 percent. General Electric’s (GE) GE Capital Bank and CIT’s (CIT) CIT Bank both weigh in at 0.90 percent, while Ally Bank and American Express (AXP) Bank currently pay 0.85 percent. CD Rates: Better But Still Bad On the CD front, savers are faring a little bit better. After having fallen as low as 0.5 percent earlier this year, rates on one-year CDs have bounced back to about 0.7 percent. That’s still below where they were in late 2012, though, and top rates from GE and other banks only fetch about 1.05 percent. Even if you’re willing to lock up your money for a longer period of time — five years — banks are still pretty tight-fisted, with rates averaging 1.35 percent. That’s up only slightly from mid-year lows around 1.15 percent. Although a few outliers will top the 2-percent mark, five years is still a long time to lock in rock-bottom savings rates — especially when five-year CDs paid well over double that rate before the financial crisis. What’s Behind the Skimpy Rates? Savers aren’t benefiting fro
- [By Rich Smith]
What does it mean to you?
If you are a shareholder, GE’s earnings report contains quite a few good tidings. Already, GE is showing its strongest revenue growth (9% in Q2) in its two most profitable business segments: oil and gas (14% operating profit margin), and aviation (16% margin). New engines to power Boeing (NYSE: BA ) and Airbus aircraft are (literally) flying off the shelves, as airlines such as AirAsia and United Airlines (NYSE: UAL ) , and airplane lessors including CIT Group (NYSE: CIT ) pay up to outfit their new planes.
Hot Japanese Companies To Own For 2014: Pacific Coast Oil Trust (ROYT)
Pacific Coast Oil Trust is a statutory trust formed by Pacific Coast Energy Company LP (PCEC) to own interests in the Underlying Properties. As of December 31, 2011, the Underlying Properties consisted of the proved developed reserves on the Underlying Properties, which it refers to as the Developed Properties, and all other development potential on the Underlying Properties, which it refers to as the Remaining Properties. The Underlying Properties are located in California in the Santa Maria and Los Angeles Basins. PCEC produces oil and natural gas from its Orcutt properties in the Santa Maria Basin. The production in the Orcutt oilfield is produced from formations utilizing conventional production methods.
PCEC is engaged in the production and development of oil and natural gas from properties located in California. As of December 31, 2011, PCEC held interests in approximately 276 gross (215 net) producing wells, and had proved reserves of approximately 34. 1 million barrels of oil equivalent. The Underlying Properties consist of producing and non-producing interests in oil units, wells and lands located onshore in California in the Santa Maria Basin, which contains PCEC’s Orcutt properties, and the Los Angeles Basin, which contains PCEC’s West Pico, East Coyote and Sawtelle properties. As of December 31, 2011, there were 37 producing wells and six waterflood injection wells in the West Pico Unit. West Pico also includes three wells held by the Stocker JV, a joint venture between PCEC and PXP.
- [By Rich Duprey]
Perpetual royalty trust Pacific Coast Oil Trust (NYSE: ROYT ) announced yesterday its July distribution of $0.15721 per unit. The amount of the trust’s monthly distributions will fluctuate depending on the proceeds it receives from its owner, Pacific Coast Energy, as a result of actual production volumes, oil and gas prices, and development expenses. The current distribution relates to net profits and overriding royalties generated during May 2013.
- [By Jake L’Ecuyer]
Pacific Coast Oil Trust (NYSE: ROYT) down, falling 7.13 percent to $16.70 after the company priced a public offering by Pacific Coast Energy Company LP and other selling unitholders of 13,500,000 trust units at a price of $17.10 per unit.
Hot Japanese Companies To Own For 2014: Morgan Stanley China A Share Fund Inc.(CAF)
Morgan Stanley China A Share Fund, Inc. is a closed-ended equity mutual fund launched and managed by Morgan Stanley Investment Management Inc. It is co-managed by Morgan Stanley Investment Management Company. The fund invests in the public equity markets of China. It seeks to invest in the stocks of companies operating across diversified sectors. The fund invests in the growth stocks of companies. It employs fundamental analysis with bottom-up stock picking approach to create its portfolio. The fund benchmarks the performance of its portfolio against the Morgan Stanley Capital International China A Share Index. Morgan Stanley China A Share Fund, Inc. was formed on July 6, 2006 and is domiciled in the United States.
- [By pamatlarge]
As the Chinese economy slows down, investors can profit by shorting a long ETF that holds Chinese stocks in major industries. The iShares China Large-Cap ETF (FXI) has a market cap of $5.12 billion and is among the most heavily traded ETFs. The ETF concentrates its holdings in financial services, communication services and technology. The SPDR China ETF (GXC) is another large-cap ETF that is heavily invested in Chinese financial service companies and technology companies. The Morgan Stanley China A Share Fund (CAF) has a much smaller market cap of $474 million. This ETF invests in a broad range of industries including Chinese commercial banks, insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies. Holding a short position with these ETFs could pay off when one or more sections hits a downturn.