Top 10 Electric Utility Companies To Watch For 2014

If you missed the recent surges from Neurometrix Inc. (NASDAQ:NURO) and/or OXiGENE Inc. (NASDAQ:OXGN), and decided to skip an entry on either or both because they were too frothy at the time, then here’s some good news…. you’re getting a second chance. Both NURO and OXGN are getting their proverbial second wind, and they’re doing so at a price much lower than the price you would have had to pay for either just a few days ago. There’s just one catch – you may want to hurry of you want in. This second wind is unfurling as rapidly as the first surges did.

Since a picture is worth a thousands words, let’s just start there and first take a closer look at Neurometrix. The big jump above the 200-day moving average line (green) from the 75th – a high volume surge that clearly wasn’t sustainable – ended up starting to unwind that very same day. By the 8th, NURO was back under the 200-day moving average line, and continued to lose ground through Monday.

Top 10 Electric Utility Companies To Watch For 2014: Giga-tronics Inc (GIGA)

Giga-tronics Incorporated (Giga-tronics), incorporated on March 5, 1980, includes the operations of the Giga-tronics Division and Microsource Inc. (Microsource), a wholly owned subsidiary. Giga-tronics Division designs, manufactures and markets a line of test and measurement equipment used in the development, test and maintenance of wireless communications products and systems, flight navigational equipment, electronic defense systems and automatic testing systems. These products are used primarily in the design, production, repair and maintenance of commercial telecommunications, radar, and electronic warfare equipment. The Company manufactures products used in test, measurement and control. The Company has two segments: Giga-tronics Division and Microsource. In April 2013, it completed the sale of its product line known as SCPM to Teradyne, Inc.

Giga-tronics

The Giga-tronics Division produces signal sources, generators and sweepers, and power me asurement instruments for use in the microwave and radio frequency (RF) range (10 kilohertz (kHz) to 50 gigahertz (GHz)). Within each product line are a number of different models and options allowing customers to select frequency range and specialized capabilities, features and functions. The end-user markets for these products can be divided into three segments: commercial telecommunications, radar and electronic warfare. These instruments are used in the design, production, repair and maintenance and calibration of other manufacturers’ products, from discrete components to complex systems.

The Giga-tronics Division also produces switch modules and interface adapters that operates with a bandwidth from direct current (DC) to optical frequencies. These switch modules may be incorporated within its customers’ automated test equipment. The end-user markets for these products are primarily related to defense, aeronautics, communications, satellite and electronic w arfare, commercial aviation and semiconductors.

Microsource

The Microsource segment develops and manufactures a broad line of yttrium, iron, garnet (YIG) tuned oscillators, filters and microwave synthesizers, which are used by its customers in operational applications and in manufacturing a variety of microwave instruments or devices.

Giga-tronics competes with Agilent, Anritsu, EADS, Aeroflex and Rohde & Schwarz.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Monica Gerson]

    Giga-tronics (NASDAQ: GIGA) dropped 14.84% to $1.32. Giga-tronics’ trailing-twelve-month profit margin is -30.58%.

    MER Telemanagement Solutions (NASDAQ: MTSL) dropped 14.62% to $2.09 after the company terminated MVNE solution provider agreement with SBC Communications.

Top 10 Electric Utility Companies To Watch For 2014: AXT Inc(AXTI)

AXT, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, designs, develops, manufactures, and distributes compound and single element semiconductor substrates for use in wireless communications, lighting display applications, fiber optic communications, and solar cell. It offers semi-insulating substrates made from gallium arsenide, which are used in power amplifiers and radio frequency integrated circuits of wireless handsets, direct broadcast televisions, high-performance transistors, and satellite communications applications. The company also provides semi-conducting substrates made from gallium arsenide that are used for applications in light emitting diodes, lasers, and optical couplers; substrates made from indium phosphide used in broadband and fiber optic communications; and substrates made from germanium used in satellite and terrestrial solar cells, and for optical applications. It manufactures its semiconductor substrates using its proprietary vertical gradient freeze technol ogy. In addition, the company, through its joint venture agreements, manufactures and sells gallium, arsenic, germanium, germanium dioxide, paralytic boron nitride crucibles, and boron oxide. AXT, Inc. sells its products through direct sales force in the United States, as well as through independent sales representatives in France, Germany, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and the United Kingdom. The company was formerly known as American Xtal Technology, Inc. and changed its name to AXT, Inc. in July 2000. AXT, Inc. was founded in 1986 and is headquartered in Fremont, California.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Eric Volkman]

    SciClone (NASDAQ: SCLN  ) has a new man leading its finance team. The company announced that it hired Wilson Cheung to be its new CFO. Cheung is a longtime executive who most recently served as chief compliance officer, Asia Pacific, at digital marketing agency Velti, following a stint as that company’s CFO. Before that, he was CFO and corporate secretary at AXT (NASDAQ: AXTI  ) and served in various managerial positions in firms such as KPMG and Yahoo!

Top 10 Electric Utility Companies To Watch For 2014: Community Bank System Inc (CBU)

Community Bank System, Inc., incorporated on April 15, 1983, which wholly owns five subsidiaries: Community Bank, N.A. (the Bank), Benefit Plans Administrative Services, Inc. (BPAS), CFSI Closeout Corp. (CFSICC), First of Jermyn Realty Company, Inc. (FJRC) and Town & Country Agency LLC (T&C). The Bank operates as a community bank providing a range of banking and financial services to retail, commercial, and municipal customers. As of December 31, 2012, the Bank operates 179 full-service branches throughout 35 counties of Upstate New York, where it operates as Community Bank, N.A. and five counties of Northeastern Pennsylvania, where it is known as First Liberty Bank & Trust, offering a range of commercial and retail banking services. BPAS provides administration, consulting and actuarial services to sponsors of employee benefit plans. In December 2013, the Company announced that it has acquired eight branch-banking locations across its Northeast Pennsylvania markets from B ank of America, N.A.Five of the branches are located in Luzerne County, one is located in Lackawanna County and two are located in Carbon County.

On July 20, 2012, the Bank completed its acquisition of 16 retail branches in Central, Northern and Western New York from HSBC Bank USA, N.A. (HSBC), acquiring approximately $106 million in loans and $697 million of deposits. On September 7, 2012, it completed its acquisition of three branches in Western New York from First Niagara Bank, N.A. (First Niagara), acquiring approximately $54 million of loans and $101 million of deposits.

Lending Activities

As of December 31, 2012, the Bank’s loan portfolio included consumer mortgage loans, business lending, Consumer indirect, Consumer direct and Home equity. Consumer indirect and direct loans consist of personal loans originated both in the branch network and in automobile, marine and recreational vehicle dealerships. Approximately 68% of loans outstanding as of December 31, 2012, were made to consumers ! borrowing on an installment, line of credit or residential mortgage loan basis. The consumer mortgage portion of the Company’s loan portfolio is comprised of fixed (98%) and adjustable rate (2%) residential lending and includes no exposure to subprime, Alt-A or other higher-risk mortgage products. The combined total of general-purpose business lending, including agricultural-related and dealer floor plans, as well as mortgages on commercial property, is characterized as the Company’s business lending activity.

Investment Activities

As of December 31, 2012, the Bank’s investment securities included held-to-maturity, available-for-sale and Other securities. As of December 31, 2012, its held-to-maturity portfolio included U.S. Treasury and agency securities, Obligations of state and political subdivisions, Government agency mortgage-backed securities, Corporate debt securities and Other securities. Its Other Securities included Federal Home Loan Bank common stock, Federal Reserve Bank common stock and Other equity securities.

Sources of Funds

The Bank utilizes a variety of funding sources to support the earning asset base. Overall funding is comprised of three primary sources that possess a variety of maturity, stability, and price characteristics: deposits of individuals, partnerships and corporations (IPC deposits), municipal deposits that are collateralized for amounts not covered by FDIC insurance (public funds) and external borrowings. The various types of deposits offered by the Bank include Noninterest checking deposits, Interest checking deposits, Regular savings deposits, Money market deposits and Time deposits. Borrowing sources for the Company include the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York (FHLBNY) and Federal Reserve Bank of New York, as well as access to the brokered certificate of deposit (CD) and repurchase markets through relationships with primary market security dealers.

Subsidiary Activities

The Compan! y’s sub! sidiary, BPAS owns three subsidiaries, Benefit Plans Administrative Services LLC (BPA), a provider of defined contribution plan administration services; Harbridge Consulting Group LLC (Harbridge), a provider of actuarial and benefit consulting services, and Hand Benefits & Trust Company (HB&T), a provider of Collective Investment Fund administration and institutional trust services. HB&T owns two subsidiaries, Flex Corp. (Flex), a provider of administration, servicing and marketing of various flexible employee benefit programs and Hand Securities, Inc. (HSI), an introducing broker dealer. The Company also wholly owns two unconsolidated subsidiary business trusts formed for the purpose of issuing mandatorily redeemable preferred securities.

The Bank owns subsidiaries, such as CBNA Insurance Agency, Inc. (CBNA Insurance), CBNA Preferred Funding Corporation (PFC), CBNA Treasury Management Corporation (TMC), Community Investment Services, Inc. (CISI), First Liberty Service Corp. (FLSC), Nottingham Advisors, Inc. (Nottingham), Brilie Corporation (Brilie), and Western Catskill Realty, LLC (WCR). CBNA Insurance is a full-service insurance agency offering primarily property and casualty products. PFC primarily acts as an investor in residential real estate loans. TMC provides cash management, investment, and treasury services to the Bank. CISI provides broker-dealer and investment advisory services. FLSC provides banking-related services to the Pennsylvania branches of the Bank. Nottingham provides asset management services to individuals, corporate pension and profit sharing plans, and foundations. Brilie and WCR are inactive companies.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By GURUFOCUS]

    Community Bank System Inc. (CBU) operates as the bank holding company for Community Bank, N.A. that provides banking and financial services to retail, commercial, and municipal customers. August 21st the company increased its quarterly dividend 3.7% to $0.28 per share. The dividend is payable October 10, 2013 to shareholders of record as of September 16, 2013. The yield based on the new payout is 3.3%.

Top 10 Electric Utility Companies To Watch For 2014: Indochine Mining Ltd (IDC)

Indochine Mining Limited is an Australia-based company developing and discovering gold and silver projects. The Company’s flagship asset is the Mt Kare gold-silver project in the highlands of Papua New Guinea (PNG). Mt Kare gold-silver project is held through its wholly owned PNG subsidiary, Summit Development Limited. The deposit lies 15 kilometers from the giant Porgera gold mine, which contains approximately 30 million ounces of gold. The Company holds two packages of exploration leases in Cambodia with potential for the discovery of gold and copper deposits. The Company’s projects in Cambodia include Kratie and Ratanakiri. Its subsidiaries include Indochine Resources Limited, Indochine Resources (Cambodia) Limited, Asia Pacific Gold & Copper Company Limited, Asia Pacific Gold & Copper (Cambodia) Limited, Aries Mining Limited, Summit Development Ltd and Positive Developments Limited. Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Bill Smith]

    FDS operates in a highly competitive industry, some with more resources. Their competitors include:
    Thomson Reuters Corp. (TRI)BloombergInteractive (IDC)MSCI Inc. (MXB)Morningstar Inc. (MORN)Track Data Corp. (TRAC)Edgar Online (EDGR)McGraw-Hill (MHP )

Top 10 Electric Utility Companies To Watch For 2014: Texas Roadhouse Inc.(TXRH)

Texas Roadhouse, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, operates a full-service casual dining restaurant chain. It operates restaurants under the Texas Roadhouse and Aspen Creek names. The company also provides supervisory and administrative services for other license and franchise restaurants. As of December 27, 2011, it owned and operated 294 restaurants; and franchised and licensed an additional 72 restaurants in 47 states in the United States, and Dubai, the United Arab Emirates. The company was founded in 1993 and is based in Louisville, Kentucky.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Peter Saleh of Telsey Advisory Group assumes that Darden sells or spins off Red Lobster in the next three to six months. “At that point, the activists will have failed to break the company up, and will sell the stock.” In that event, then, investors might flee to an alternative like, say, Texas Roadhouse (TXRH), which trades at 20 times forward earnings, with estimated long-term earnings growth of 13.2%, versus Darden’s 18 times earnings and 9% earnings growth. Saleh thinks Darden is worth $45, somewhat less than today’s price, given “execution risk in spinning out Red Lobster.”

  • [By Marc Bastow]

    Full service restaurant group Texas Roadhouse (TXRH) raised its quarterly dividend 25% to 15 cents per share, payable April 4 to shareholders of record as of March 19.
    TRXH Dividend Yield: 2.25%

  • [By Rick Munarriz]

    Shares of Texas Roadhouse (NASDAQ: TXRH  ) opened 9% higher today after it clocked in with a strong report last night. The casual steakhouse chain is reporting comps growing 3.5% at company restaurants and 4.5% at franchised locations.

  • [By Seth Jayson]

    When judging a company’s prospects, how quickly it turns cash outflows into cash inflows can be just as important as how much profit it’s booking in the accounting fantasy world we call “earnings.” This is one of the first metrics I check when I’m hunting for the market’s best stocks. Today, we’ll see how it applies to Texas Roadhouse (Nasdaq: TXRH  ) .

Top 10 Electric Utility Companies To Watch For 2014: ATA Inc.(ATAI)

ATA Inc., through its subsidiaries, provides computer-based testing services in the People?s Republic of China. It offers services for the creation and delivery of computer-based tests utilizing its test delivery platform, proprietary testing technologies, and testing services; and provides logistical support services relating to test administration. The company?s computer-based testing services are used for professional licensure and certification tests in various industries, including information technology (IT) services, banking, securities, teaching, and insurance. Its e-testing platform integrates various aspects of the test delivery process for computer-based tests ranging from test form compilation to test scoring, and results analysis. ATA also provides career-oriented educational services, such as single course programs, degree major course programs, and pre-occupational training programs focusing on preparing students to pass IT and other vocational certification tests; test preparation and training programs and services to test candidates preparing to take professional certification tests in securities, futures, banking, insurance and teaching industries; online test preparation and training platform for the securities and banking industries; and test preparation software for the teaching industry. In addition, the company offers HR select employee assessment solution, an online system that utilizes its proprietary software and an inventory of test titles to help employers improve the efficiency and accuracy of their employee recruitment process. As of March 31, 2010, it had contractual relationships with 1,988 ATA authorized test centers. The company serves Chinese governmental agencies, professional associations, IT vendors, and Chinese educational institutions, as well as individual test preparation services. ATA Inc. was founded in 1999 and is based in Beijing, the People?s Republic of China.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Jake L’Ecuyer]

    Leading and Lagging Sectors
    Industrials stocks gained Friday, with ATA (NASDAQ: ATAI) leading advancers. Meanwhile, gainers in the sector included Plug Power (NASDAQ: PLUG), with shares up 22 percent, and Korn/Ferry International (KFY), with shares up 12 percent. In trading on Friday, basic materials shares were relative laggards, down on the day by about 1.36 percent.

  • [By Jake L’Ecuyer]

    Leading and Lagging Sectors
    Industrials stocks gained Friday, with ATA (NASDAQ: ATAI) leading advancers. Meanwhile, gainers in the sector included Plug Power (NASDAQ: PLUG), with shares up 22 percent, and Korn/Ferry International (KFY), with shares up 12 percent. In trading on Friday, basic materials shares were relative laggards, down on the day by about 1.36 percent.

Top 10 Electric Utility Companies To Watch For 2014: American International Group Inc.(AIG)

American International Group, Inc. is an international insurance organization. The company operates property and casualty insurance networks worldwide and conducts activities in the U.S. life insurance and retirement services industry. It also involves in commercial aircraft leasing and residential mortgage guaranty insurance businesses. The company, through Chartis Inc., provides various property and casualty insurance products under commercial and consumer categories worldwide. These products include surplus lines, executive liability/directors? and officers? liability, employment practices, excess casualty, and travel/assistance lines. American International Group, through SunAmerica Financial Group, offers a suite of life insurance and retirement products and services, including term life, universal life, accident and health, fixed and variable deferred annuities, fixed payout annuities, mutual funds, and financial planning products and services to individuals and grou ps in the United States. The company, through International Lease Finance Corporation, operates as an aircraft lessor that acquires commercial jet aircraft from various manufacturers and other parties, and leases those aircraft to airlines worldwide. It also sells aircraft from its fleet to other leasing companies, financial services companies, and airlines, as well as provides management services to third-party owners of aircraft portfolios. American International Group, through United Guaranty Corporation, issues residential mortgage guaranty insurance that covers mortgage lenders from the first loss for credit defaults on high loan-to-value conventional first-lien mortgages for the purchase or refinance of one- to four-family residences in the U.S. and internationally. The company was founded in 1967 and is based in New York, New York.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By George Putnam]

    For example, American International Group (AIG), one of the poster children for the 2008 financial collapse, accounts for roughly 40% of the fund’s holdings. Troubled government-sponsored mortgage lender Fannie Mae (FNMA) is another big holding.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    American International Group (AIG) has made oodles of progress since its bad pre-financial-crisis bets nearly took it down. If nothing else, American International Group’s 49% annualized return during the past five years is a sign of that progress.

    Bloomberg News

    Just don’t expect more of the same, say Deutsche Bank’s Joshua Shanker and Phil Stefano who downgraded American International Group. They explain why:

    After making significant improvements in its core operations, elevated expenses continue to impose a ceiling on the profitability of [American International Group’s] the property and casualty business. Management indicates that Fuji unit integration costs will keep expenses high through 2014, which suggests that core ROE may stagnate at around 6% for the foreseeable future. While we believe cash flow will ultimately exceed core and GAAP EPS, we believe incremental buyers will need to see additional combined ratio improvement to be motivated to purchase [American International Group] stock.

    Shanker and Stefano expect shares of American International Group to remain range bound near $50 in the short-term.

    Shares of American International Group have dropped 1.7% to $49.67 at 1:19 p.m. today, while American Financial Group (AFG) has, dropped 0.2% to $57.23, HCC Insurance (HCC) is little changed at $45.12, Travelers (TRV) has dipped 0.1% to $83.52 and Chubb (CB) is off 0.1% at $86.58.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    It’s been a good day for life insurers across the board today, thanks to speculation that the Fed could get more hawkish following today’s jobs report–and higher interest rates would benefit insurers. Shares of Prudential have gained 2% to $88.47 at 2:53 p.m. today, while Metlife (MET) has risen 1.3% to $53.04 and Lincoln National (LNC) has advanced 1.6% to $52.75. American International Group (AIG) has dropped 0.2% to $51.05.

  • [By Marc Bastow]

    Global insurance company AIG (AIG) raised its quarterly dividend 25% to 12.5 cents per share, payable March 25 to shareholders of record as of March 11.
    AIG Dividend Yield: 1.03%

Top 10 Electric Utility Companies To Watch For 2014: Primoris Services Corporation(PRIM)

Primoris Services Corporation, a specialty contractor and infrastructure company, provides a range of construction, fabrication, maintenance, replacement, water and wastewater, and product engineering services in the United States and internationally. It offers construction services, including installation of underground pipeline, cable, and conduits for entities in the petroleum, petrochemical, and water industries; installation and maintenance of industrial facilities for petroleum, petrochemical, and water industries; installation of commercial and industrial cast-in-place structures; and construction of highways, as well as industrial and environmental constructions. The company also engages in designing, supplying, and installing high-performance furnaces, heaters, burner management systems, and related combustion and process technologies for clients in the oil refining, petrochemical, and power generation industries, as well as furnishes turnkey project management se rvices and delivers custom engineering solutions. It serves public utilities, petrochemical companies, energy companies, municipalities, state departments of transportation, and other customers. Primoris Services Corporation is based in Dallas, Texas.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Holly LaFon] ris is a contractor and infrastructure company founded in 1946. It provides services related to construction fabrication, maintenance, replacement, water and wastewater and engineering to clients that are typically major public utilities, petrochemical companies, energy companies, municipalities and others. It doubled its size in 2009 and 2010 when it purchased the James Construction Group and Rockford Corporation, respectively. Primoris’ predecessor company, Rhapsody acquisition Corp., had its IPO in 2006, and Primoris merged with Rhapsody in 2008.

    Joel Greenblatt bought 59,076 shares at an average price of $13.56 in the fourth quarter. After being relatively flat since its IPO, Primoris’ stock price began to rise dramatically in 2011, and Greenblatt bought on a dip in the fourth quarter. In the last year it has appreciated 87 percent.

    Primoris’ free cash flow and revenue in 2010 bounced back from a down year in 2009 and EBITDA grew each year in the same span of time. Return on equity and return on assets have both declined over the three years, but in the third quarter of 2011 came back strongly. ROE increased to 29.3 percent from 16.1 at year-end 2010, and ROA has increased to 11.4 percent from 4.8 percent at year-end 2010.

    The third quarter was good in other ways. The company reached its highest revenue and net income in its 60-year history. However, fluctuations in revenue and earnings may occur over the next several quarters as it completes several major projects. On November 30, it announced $181 million in new contracts.

    Primoris’ P/E, P/S and P/B ratios:

    PRIM pe,ps,pb Interactive Chart

    Caribou Coffee (CBOU)

    Caribou Coffee is a gourmet coffee company that owns the second-largest number of coffeehouses in the U.S. After rising significantly in the second quarter of 2011, its stock price dropped in the fourth quarter, when Joel Greenblatt purchased it. He bought 52,794 shares at an ave rage price of $13.27.

Top 10 Electric Utility Companies To Watch For 2014: Denny’s Corporation(DENN)

Denny’s Corporation, through its subsidiaries, engages in the ownership and operation of a chain of family-style restaurants. The company operates traditional American-style food restaurants under the Denny?s brand name. As of December 28, 2011, it had 1,479 franchised/licensed restaurants and 206 company-owned and operated restaurants in the United States, Canada, Costa Rica, Mexico, Honduras, Guam, Puerto Rico, and New Zealand. The company was founded in 1980 and is headquartered in Spartanburg, South Carolina.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Michael Lewis]

    Family-style restaurant chain Denny’s (NASDAQ: DENN  ) delivered earnings early this week, and the numbers weren’t so shabby, but they also weren’t much to rally behind. Denny’s as a concept has long been considered dated, and many of its peers are finding it difficult to attract new customers. But the largely franchised chain is actually seeing more customers coming through the doors and higher transactions, if only slightly. Of course, there is much more data to digest and analyze beyond one period’s store-level sales growth, but investors should keep in mind that this is a chain that’s looking toward 2,000 locations — making it one of the largest of its kind. Here’s what investors need to know.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Shares of Cracker Barrel have gained 0.9% to $113.29 and Biglari Holdings (BH), Sandar Biglari’s holding company, has fallen 0.4% to $516.96, on a day when DineEquity has advanced 1% to $85.03, Red Robin Gourmet Burgers (RRGB) has risen 0.5% to $76.64 and Denny’s (DENN) is up 0.7% at $7.45.

  • [By Rich Smith]

    This series, brought to you by Yahoo! Finance, looks at which upgrades and downgrades make sense, and which ones investors should act on. Today, our headlines include upgrades for both Denny’s (NASDAQ: DENN  ) and Green Dot (NYSE: GDOT  ) . But stocks can reach buy ratings in ways other than actual upgrades. So before we get to those two, let’s first take a quick look at why …

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Shares of Ruby Tuesday have gained 4.8% to $7.59 this morning, making it the third-best performer in the S&P 1500 and outpacing other restaurant stocks. Jack in the Box (JACK) has dropped 0.8% to $38.76, DineEquity (DIN), which operates Applebee’s and IHOP, has gained 0.1%% to 66.12, Denny’s (DENN) has fallen 0.2% to $6.06 and recent-IPO Potbelly (PBPB) has gained 1.7% to $30.73.

Top 10 Electric Utility Companies To Watch For 2014: Sun Communities Inc (SUI)

Sun Communities, Inc. is a self-administered and self-managed real estate investment trust (REIT). The Company leases individual parcels of land (sites) with utility access for placement of manufactured homes and recreational vehicles (RV) to its customers. It operates in two segments: Real Property Operations, and Home Sales and Rentals. The Real Property Operations segment owns, operates, and develops manufactured housing communities concentrated in the Midwestern, southern, and south-eastern United States and is in the business of acquiring, operating, and expanding manufactured housing communities. The Home Sales and Rentals segment offers manufactured home sales and leasing services to tenants and prospective tenants of its communities. In May 2011, it acquired Orange City RV Resort, a Florida RV community comprised of 525 developed sites. In February 2012, it acquired three additional Florida RV communities, Three Lakes RV resort, Blueberry Hill RV resort and Grand L ake Estates.

As of December 31, 2011, it owned and operated a portfolio of 159 properties located in 18 states, including 141 manufactured housing communities, eight RV communities, and 10 properties containing both manufactured housing and RV sites. As of December 31, 2011, the Properties contained an aggregate of 54,811 developed sites consisted of 47,935 developed manufactured home sites, 3,867 permanent RV sites, 3,009 seasonal RV sites, and approximately 6,400 additional manufactured home sites suitable for development. Most of the Properties include amenities oriented toward family and retirement living. Of the 159 Properties, 73 have more than 300 developed manufactured home sites, with the having 1,003 developed manufactured home sites. As of December 31, 2011, the Properties had an occupancy rate of 85.3 % excluding seasonal RV sites.

The Company’s properties contain improvements similar to garden-style residential developments, including centralized entrances, paved streets, curbs and gutters, an! d parkways. In addition, these communities also often provide a number of amenities, such as a clubhouse, a swimming pool, shuffleboard courts, tennis courts and laundry facilities. The owner of each home on its Properties leases the site, on which the home is located. The Company owns the underlying land, utility connections, streets, lighting, driveways, common area amenities and other capital improvements. Some of the properties provide water and sewer service through public or private utilities, while others provide these services to residents from onsite facilities. Each owner within its properties is responsible for the maintenance of the home and leased site.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Anna Prior]

    Sun Communities Inc.(SUI) said it has launched a public offering of 4.2 million shares and intends to use the proceeds to repay borrowings  under its credit facility. The real-estate investment trust also said it plans to use any remaining proceeds to fund possible future acquisitions of properties.

  • [By Bill Stoller]

    After a banner 2013, the overall market has had a challenging start to 2014. However, these four companies have been crushing it: Alexander Real Estate (NYSE: ARE  ) , BioMed Realty Trust (NYSE: BMR  ) , CommonWealth REIT (NYSE: CWH  ) , and Sun Communities (NYSE: SUI  ) early on in 2014 vs. the S&P 500. Their relative out-performance can also be seen when compared to the Vanguard REIT Index ETF (NYSEMKT: VNQ  ) a good yardstick to measure sector performance.