U.S. stocks opened higher this morning, with the S&P 500 (SNPINDEX: ^GSPC ) and the narrower, price-weighted Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI ) down % and %, respectively, at a.m. EDT.
3 Signs irrational exuberance is back
Irrational exuberance is back, and the process by which it returned is well-documented. As legendary hedge-fund manager Leon Cooperman of Omega Advisors told Barron’s this month (sign-up may be required to view article):
Everyone is in the process of moving up the risk curve. We have an investor who put all of his money in T-bills when he retired, because he didn’t want duration risk or credit risk. So for the guy who bought T-bills, he can’t get any return anymore, so he migrated to T-bonds. The guy who bought T-bonds has migrated into industrial credits. The buyers of industrial credits have migrated into high yield. The high-yield buyers have migrated into structured credit, where we are now in our credit exposure at Omega, and the structured-credit people are increasingly looking at equities.
Top 5 Dividend Stocks For 2016: Cedar Shopping Centers Inc (CDR)
Cedar Shopping Centers, Inc., real estate investment trust, engages in the ownership, operation, development and redevelopment of supermarket-anchored community shopping centers and drug store-anchored convenience centers in the United States. As of December 31, 2007, it owned 118 properties, aggregating approximately 12.0 million square feet of gross leasable area primarily in Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Virginia, Ohio, Connecticut, New Jersey, Maryland, Michigan, and New York. Cedar Shopping has elected to be treated as a REIT for federal income tax purposes and would not be subject to federal income tax, if it distributes at least 90% of its REIT taxable income to its stockholders. The company was founded in 1984 and is based in Port Washington, New York.
- [By Bill Smith]
Lastly, because of the negative perception the entire industry has received, prices in this sector have been absolutely pummeled. ESI now trades at the lower end of all of its historical valuation bands: P/E, P/B, and P/S.
Guru ownership and avg price: ESI owned by Hussman ($76.15), Weitz ($75.32), and Greenblatt ($73.29)Over 35% of shares are short, potential short squeezeStock buyback plan: ESI reduced outstanding shares by 19% yoy at the end of the 4th quarter. They repurchased 370K shares in 3Q11.The business model is scalable; the incremental cost to educate each additional student is low, leading to high marginsESI acquired Daniel Webster College, giving them a regional accreditation which they can use to broaden their reach in online classes
High costs of education, in general, rightly or wrongly attract government intervention and could squeeze margins over time. Total student debt surpassed credit card bal ances, and sits at $1 Trillion as of the end of 2011.Subject to compliance with Dept of Education’s 90/10 rules, which states a college can’t collect more than 90% of revenue from students participating in federal loan programs.Cohort Default Rate (CDR): for-profit colleges must monitor the federal loan default rates of students who graduate or leave the school. If a school’s CDR exceeds 25% for 3 consecutive years, or 40% in any one year, its students won’t be eligible for federal financial aid.ESI competes on quality of product which is measured by graduation rates and ability to secure employment. For 2010, 70% of ESI graduates got employment in positions using skills taught in their program of study within 1 year. As of Oct 2011, this rate was 600 bp higher. The average annual salary reported by employed 2011 grads was $32K, compared to $32.4K for 2010 grads.With an improving economy, there’s a potential ESI would see declining new student enrollmentsOver 35% of shares a re short