Top Integrated Utility Companies To Watch For 2015

Since 1981, 25 million people have died from HIV/AIDS. An estimated 1.7 million died in 2011 due to AIDS-related causes, with another 2.5 million newly infected with HIV. Beyond the human cost, the U.S. government spent $28 billion fighting HIV in 2012, and some African countries lose 1% in GDP growth each year due to the disease. It’s difficult to grasp these numbers, but it’s a problem crying out for several solutions.

One such solution is offered by Female Health Company  (NASDAQ: FHCO  ) : FC2, the only female condom approved by the Food and Drug Administration and the World Health Organization.

Social opportunity
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation recently called for proposals for its Grand Challenges in Global Health grant program. One of the topics addressed this year is “reinventing the condom.” As the blog post describes the issue:

It may seem obvious, but the success and impact of any public health tool hinges on that tool being used consistently and correctly by those who need it. Vaccines sitting on shelves don’t prevent disease. New tuberculosis drug regimens won’t help if patients stop taking them halfway through the necessary days. Likewise, the potential value of condoms is limited by inconsistent use.

Top Integrated Utility Companies To Watch For 2015: Visa Inc.(V)

Visa Inc., a payments technology company, engages in the operation of retail electronic payments network worldwide. It facilitates commerce through the transfer of value and information among financial institutions, merchants, consumers, businesses, and government entities. The company owns and operates VisaNet, a global processing platform that provides transaction processing services. It also offers a range of payments platforms, which enable credit, charge, deferred debit, debit, and prepaid payments, as well as cash access for consumers, businesses, and government entities. The company provides its payment platforms under the Visa, Visa Electron, PLUS, and Interlink brand names. In addition, it offers value-added services, including risk management, issuer processing, loyalty, dispute management, value-added information, and CyberSource-branded services. The company is headquartered in San Francisco, California.

Advisors’ Opinion:


    That total was based on similar projections that have Alibaba raising between $15 billion and $20 billion in its initial public offering later this year. If Alibaba can raise $20 billion, it will be the largest U.S. IPO in history, eclipsing the $19.65 billion Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) raised in 2008, and the $18 billion General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) raised in 2010.

  • [By Steven Russolillo]

    The 30 blue-chip companies in the Dow needed 153 trading days to go from 16000 in November to 17000 on Thursday, the seventh-fastest 1000-point advance in the Dow’s history. Over that stretch, Caterpillar Inc.(CAT), Walt Disney Co.(DIS) and 3M Co.(MMM) were the three biggest drivers of the index. Visa Inc.(V) and American Express Co. rounded out the top five.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    International Business Machines climbed 2.9% to $186.62, making it the Dow Jones Industrial Average’s biggest winner, followed by Visa (V) and its 1.7% rise to $214.25 after Russia postponed a decision that would have forced them to deposit a large chunk of cash in the country.

Top Integrated Utility Companies To Watch For 2015: Questerre Energy Corp (QEC)

Questerre Energy Corporation (Questerre) is engaged in the exploration for, and the development, production and acquisition of oil and gas projects, particularly shale oil and gas. Questerre holds assets in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Quebec. Questerre has three core areas where it conducts the majority of its activity: Oil Shale Mining, Western Canada and the St. Lawrence Lowlands, Quebec. The Company has a 100% interest in two licenses covering approximately 100,000 acres in the Pasquia Hills area of east central Saskatchewan. The Antler area is approximately 200 kilometers from Regina in southeast Saskatchewan. The Vulcan area in Southern Alberta is prospective for natural gas and oil in multiple horizons. The Lowlands are situated in Quebec south of the St. Lawrence River between Montreal and Quebec City. As at December 31, 2011, the Company had an interest in 98 gross (55.2 net) producing and 40 gross (17.8 net) non-producing oil and natural gas . Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By James E. Brumley]

    Well, that answers that question. Questerre Energy Corp. (TSE:QEC) and Crescent Point Energy Corp. (TSE:CPG) likely knew they had some shale-oil mining neighbors in the Bakken Shale neighborhood in Saskatchewan, Canada, but they hadn’t seen much of that competition. That’s about to change soon. Adequately funded and eager to begin laying its final mining plans, Centor Energy Inc. (OTCBB:CNTO) is going to officially own 55% of a 21,000 acre shale oil property that’s anywhere from just a few miles away to just a few meters away from and Crescent Point Energy’s and Questerre Energy’s operations in one of the oil-richest known areas in the Bakken formation. And to be clear, it’s not like Centor Energy is just getting the ball rolling; the planning for this project has been underway for months. Once the property-acquisition deal is inked in mid-February, CNTO will likely finish up its feasibility study and begin the approval process for its facility later in the year. That’s pr etty quick, but as was noted, a great deal of the legwork has already been done.

  • [By John Udovich]

    While the Bakken formation is already on most investor radars, few American investors may realize that the formation stretches North into the oil and gas rich Canadian province of Saskatchewan where stocks like Surge Energy Inc (TSE: SGY), Questerre Energy Corp (TSE: QEC), Crescent Point Energy Corp (TSE: CPG), Keyera Corp (TSE: KEY) and Centor Energy Inc (OTCBB: CNTO) have been pumping out a good flow of newsworthy news in recent weeks. I should mention that Canada’s oil reserves are ranked #3 after to Venezuela and Saudi Arabia with over 95% of these reserves being the oil sands of Alberta while the neighboring province of Saskatchewan (which the Bakken formation stretches into from South Dakota and Montana) along with offshore areas of Newfoundland also contain substantial production and reserves (Note: Excluding oil sands, Alberta would have 39% of Canada’s remaining conventional oil reserves, followed by offshore Newfoundland with 28% and Saskatchewan with 2 7%).

  • [By James E. Brumley]

    What do Questerre Energy Corp. (TSE:QEC) and Crescent Point Energy Corp. (TSE:CPG) know about oil in Saskatchewan that Centor Energy Inc. (OTCBB:CNTO) doesn’t? Absolutely nothing. All three companies know there’s oil in the southern part of the Canadian province, and they know exactly how to go get it. The only difference between QEC, CPG, and CNTO is, Questerre Energy and Crescent Point Energy are further along the development of their operations there than Centor Energy.

Top Integrated Utility Companies To Watch For 2015: Just Energy Group Inc (JE)

Just Energy Group Inc. (Just Energy), formerly Just Energy Income Fund, is engaged in the sale of natural gas and/or electricity to residential and commercial customers under long-term, fixed-price, price-protected or variable-priced contracts and green energy products. It also offers green products through its JustGreen and JustClean programs. In addition, through National Home Services (NHS), it rents and sells tankless water heaters, air conditioners and furnaces to Ontario residents. Through its subsidiary, Hudson Energy Solar, the Company completes solar power installations for customers in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts.The Company also produces and sells wheat-based ethanol. The Company markets its gas and electricity contracts in Canada and the United States under trade names which include Just Energy, Hudson Energy, Commerce Energy, Amigo Energy and Tara Energy. On October 3, 2011, the Company acquired Fulcrum Retail Holdings LLC. Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Jake L’Ecuyer]

    Just Energy Group (NYSE: JE) shares tumbled 12.60 percent to $6.31 on Q1 results. Just Energy reported its Q1 earnings of $1.06 per share on revenue of $3.61 billion.

  • [By Rich Duprey]

    Natural gas and electricity retailer Just Energy (NYSE: JE  ) announced yesterday its monthly July dividend of $0.07 Canadian per share, the same rate it’s paid for the past three months after cutting the payout 32% from $0.10333 Canadian per share in April.

Top Integrated Utility Companies To Watch For 2015: Novartis AG (NOVN)

Novartis AG provides healthcare solutions. The Company is a multinational group of companies specializing in the research, development, manufacturing and marketing of a range of healthcare products led by pharmaceuticals. Its portfolio includes medicines, eye care, cost-saving generic pharmaceuticals, preventive vaccines and diagnostic tools, over-the-counter and animal health products. It has five segments: Pharmaceuticals, which include patent-protected prescription medicines; Alcon, which include surgical, ophthalmic pharmaceutical and vision care products; Sandoz, which include generic pharmaceuticals; vaccines and diagnostics, which include human vaccines and blood-testing diagnostics, and consumer health, which include over-the-counter medicines (OTC) and Animal Health. In February 2014, it acquired CoStim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Corinne Gretler]

    Novartis AG (NOVN) climbed 2 percent to 69.25 Swiss francs after raising its full-year forecasts. Sales will increase at a low-to mid-single-digit percentage rate in constant currencies, and core operating income will match or exceed the previous year, Europe’s biggest drugmaker said. In July, the company forecast a low-single-digit percentage decline in earnings in 2013, with sales rising at a similar rate.

  • [By Sofia Horta e Costa]

    Novartis AG (NOVN) slipped 1.3 percent to 67.20 Swiss francs after JPMorgan Chase cut its recommendation on the drugmaker to neutral from overweight, a rating similar to buy. The stock has rallied 17 percent so far this year, compared with a 15 percent increase for the Swiss Market Index.

  • [By Corinne Gretler]

    Novartis AG (NOVN) climbed 1.3 percent after saying a psoriasis treatment met all its objectives in a clinical study. Lloyds (LLOY) Banking Group Plc advanced 3.8 percent after a person with knowledge of the matter said a former Standard Chartered Plc executive may mount a bid for a stake in the U.K.’s biggest mortgage lender. TGS Nopec Geophysical ASA declined the most since May 2012 after cutting its full-year revenue guidance.

Top Integrated Utility Companies To Watch For 2015: Intuitive Surgical Inc.(ISRG)

Intuitive Surgical, Inc. designs, manufactures, and markets da Vinci surgical systems for various surgical procedures, including urologic, gynecologic, cardiothoracic, general, and head and neck surgeries. Its da Vinci surgical system consists of a surgeon?s console or consoles, a patient-side cart, a 3-D vision system, and proprietary ?wristed? instruments. The company?s da Vinci surgical system translates the surgeon?s natural hand movements on instrument controls at the console into corresponding micro-movements of instruments positioned inside the patient through small puncture incisions, or ports. It also manufactures a range of EndoWrist instruments, which incorporate wrist joints for natural dexterity for various surgical procedures. Its EndoWrist instruments consist of forceps, scissors, electrocautery, scalpels, and other surgical tools. In addition, it sells various vision and accessory products for use in conjunction with the da Vinci Surgical System as surgical procedures are performed. The company?s accessory products include sterile drapes used to ensure a sterile field during surgery; vision products, such as replacement 3-D stereo endoscopes, camera heads, light guides, and other items. It markets its products through sales representatives in the United States, and through sales representatives and distributors in international markets. The company was founded in 1995 and is headquartered in Sunnyvale, California.

Advisors’ Opinion:


    If the Apple stock split does succeed in putting splits back into vogue, these companies are most in need of one:

    Priceline Group Inc. (Nasdaq: PCLN) – Share price: $1,232.43
    The online travel company famous for its commercials with William Shatner actually did a 1-for-6 reverse stock split back in 2003 following the dot-com bust. That bad memory has probably been a factor holding PCLN back from doing a stock split. But at this point a 10-to-1 split would make perfect sense. Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. (NYSE: CMG) – Share price: $568.09
    The Mexican restaurant chain has enjoyed a lot of growth and is a star player in the casual dining sector. It has never had a stock split. Management has frequently scoffed at the idea of a stock split, but that doesn’t mean it won’t happen. Until about a year ago, Apple said the same thing. Autozone Inc. (NYSE: AZO) – Share price: $533.84
    AutoZone is a retailer and a U.S. distributor of automotive replacement parts and accessories. The company has had two 2-for-1 splits in its history, in 1992 and 1994, so it certainly is due. Netflix Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX) – Share price: $421.54
    Growing from a by-mail DVD rental and subscription service into a full-blown Internet-based TV network has pushed NFLX to impressive heights. Netflix had one 2-for-1 split back in 2004. But the dramatic fall of the stock back in 2011 – from just over $300 to $50 – no doubt has kept the company from pulling the trigger on a stock split. The price will have to go even higher to convince management it’s safe to split. Intuitive Surgical Inc. (Nasdaq: ISRG) – Share price: $373.90
    Intuitive Surgical designs, manufactures, and markets its own da Vinci Surgical Systems and related instruments and accessories. As ISRG has pulled back from highs of about $575 a share over the past couple of years, a stock split for Intuitive would seem counterintuitive for now. Inc. (Nasdaq

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Shares of Intuitive Surgical (ISRG) have jumped this morning after the maker of surgical robots announced that it would buy back $1 billion dollars of its shares from Goldman Sachs (GS).

    ISI Group’s Vijay Kumar calls the buyback “huge for investors.” He explains why:

    This is a huge positive for shareholders, and reiterates our belief in the long term opportunity for robotic surgery. Recall that the company reiterated its commitment to grow OpEx by 12-15% on its 1Q call (April 22) while lowering procedure estimates by ~500bps at the mid-point, implying its belief in new product opportunity and willingness to spend. We had urged management…to back this belief by share repurchases and send a proactive message to the Street. We are encouraged to see this announcement, and would further note that our recent channel checks on the new Xi product has been very positive. Given this, we reiterate our Strong Buy rating of [Intuitive Surgical] shares.

    …[Intuitive Surgical] could repurchase ~2-2.8MM of shares, which implies earnings accretion by ~5-7% (and consequently expect shares to be up at least ~7%).

    Shares of Intuitive Surgical have gained 1.7% to $365.24 at 2:04 p.m., while Goldman Sachs has dropped 1% to $158.81.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Can you decide which is the bigger disaster? On the one hand, there’s the Other Woman, the new Cameron Diaz flick that’s most notable for a slow motion shot of her and a bikini-clad Kate Upton running. On the other, there’s the stock market which finished down this week after tumbles by Netflix (NFLX) and Intuitive Surgical (ISRG) outweighed big gains in Apple (AAPL), Micron Technology (MU) and Diamond Offshore (DO).

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    All good things must come to an end. And so it is with the S&P 500′s six-day winning streak, as AT&T (T), Intuitive Surgical (ISRG), International Game Technology (IGT), Amgen (AMGN) and Netflix (NFLX) helped lead the market lower.

Top Integrated Utility Companies To Watch For 2015: Ashley(l)

Laura Ashley Holdings plc, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the design, manufacture, sourcing, distribution, sale, and licensing of clothing, accessories, and home furnishings in the United Kingdom and internationally. It offers various furniture products, including beds, upholstered furniture, mirrors, and cabinet furniture; home accessories, such as lighting products, gifts, bed linen, rugs, throws, cushions, and children?s accessories; and decorative products comprising curtains, blinds, fabrics, paints, decorative accessories, and wall coverings. The company also offers fashion products, such as clothing that include dresses, knitwear, tops, blouses, skirts, trousers, leggings, coats, jackets, swimwear, and shoes, as well as accessories comprising bags, purses, jewellery, and scarves. In addition, it provides design services for homes; and licenses various products, such as stationery, wooden flooring, blinds, interior window shutters, carpets, nursery produ cts, fireplaces, garden products, eyewear, tiles, promotional gifting, toiletries, shoes, and Fairtrade clothing. The company sells its products through retail stores, online, and mail order. As of January 29, 2011, it operated 217 stores, including 138 mixed product stores, 55 home stores, 22 home concession stores, 1 gifts and accessories store, and 1 clearance outlet in the United Kingdom; and 240 franchised stores in 29 countries. The company is based in London, the United Kingdom.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Robert Rapier]

    Meanwhile, sponsor Loews (NYSE: L) has added to the cash drain by converting its class B units into common that will cost Boardwalk an additional $25 million in distributions annually. The Bluegrass Pipeline Boardwalk is marketing in a partnership with Williams (NYSE: WMB) is looking more and more as a defensive measure to replace lost business than as a path to future glory. And it now faces competition that could drive expected returns lower.

  • [By Paul Ausick]

    Big Earnings Movers: Petroleo Brasileiro SA (NYSE: PBR) is up 9.1% at $17.35 after reporting earnings and getting a ratings boost. Merck & Co. Inc. (NYSE: MRK) is down 2.5% at $45.39 as the company struggles to boost revenues. Burger King Worldwide Inc. (NYSE: BKW) is up 5.8% at $20.91 as franchise revenues rose much faster than costs. Loews Corp. (NYSE: L) is down 0.2% at $48.70.

  • [By Julius Ferraro]

    Diamond offshore is a $9 billion dollar offshore driller that is currently 50.4% owned by Loews Corporation (L). I like that the Tisch family has a significant ownership because in the case of an economic downturn, Diamond Offshore can be provided with the capital that it may need by some of Loews other businesses. Its Expected to earn $4.80 for this year and trades at a fair valuation of 11.8 times earnings. In addition, out of all of the offshore drillers Diamond is the most conservative with $1.2 billion in cash and $1.5 billion in debt. Diamond Offshore is the only A rated drilling contractor.