Archive for March, 2010

2010 Stock Picks: Q1 results

By: ispeculatornew | Date posted: 03.31.2010 (6:03 pm)

After ending the 2009 competition on a high note and winning among peer bloggers, I obviously had very high expectations for this year’s picks and followed a similar strategy, picking two more general economic picks; UNG and JJN, two commodity picks as well as two tech stocks; Google (GOOG) and Sohu (SOHU).

Unfortunately, as you can see in these results, things have not been as good so far this year. Thankfully things have gone better in my picks done on this website! Of course, it is still very early and I still think I have a shot at winning, but to be honest, my pick on Natural Gas has turned into a disaster! So without further wait, here are my 4 picks:

JJN: +35.69% Great performance as nickel has continued to soar, I’d say things will ease down but I’m comfortable with the pick.

UNG: -31.27% – You know things are bad when companies such as Shell are working on ways to convert natural gas into oil. It means that Natural Gas is dirt cheap. And that is exactly what has been happening. Again, I can’t see prices going much lower so not too worried about the downside risk but I would not say I’m optimistic either a big rebound.

GOOG: -7.76% – Things have been hectic for Google so far this year as has been well discussed all over this blog, especially recently with the China debacle. But I remain optimistic and now that those things have more or less cleared up, I’m very comfortable with my pick, more on that next week but let’s just say I’m a strong Google (GOOG) believer right now.

SOHU: -1.75% – Sohu has struggled like almost all Chinese stocks (major exception would be Baidu (BIDU)), I do still think the stock looks attractive on valuation as its sales growth (20%) is actually higher than its P/E ratio (15).

Think things will turn around? In any case, here are the full results so far (links are either to the results post or to the picks post depending if the results were published yet on each blog, but results will be updated) :

TickerNamePriceDividend YieldPayout RatioEx-DvdIndustry
RIGTransocean Ltd18.416.363.792/18/2015Oil&Gas Drilling
WINWindstream Holdings Inc8.5411.71250.773/27/2015Telephone-Integrated
DODiamond Offshore Drilling Inc33.9110.3288.6902/12/2015Oil&Gas Drilling
ESVEnsco PLC29.9410.0236.903/12/2015Oil&Gas Drilling
NENoble Corp plc17.978.3525.202/06/2015Oil&Gas Drilling
FCXFreeport-McMoRan Inc18.986.5984.824/16/2015Metal-Copper
FTRFrontier Communications Corp7.345.72362.4203/09/2015Telephone-Integrated
TAT&T Inc34.345.48154.7104/01/2015Telephone-Integrated
CTLCenturyLink Inc39.595.46#VALUE!2/27/2015Telephone-Integrated
MATMattel Inc28.0655.42103.282/17/2015Toys
OKEONEOK Inc46.785.17117.54/29/2015Pipelines
WMBWilliams Cos Inc/The46.084.95222.6203/11/2015Pipelines
PMPhilip Morris International Inc82.244.8668.073/24/2015Tobacco
HCPHCP Inc46.814.83106.9202/05/2015REITS-Health Care
IRMIron Mountain Inc40.24.73213.913/18/2015REITS-Storage
VZVerizon Communications Inc47.834.689.1804/08/2015Telephone-Integrated
PBCTPeople's United Financial Inc14.594.5219.264/29/2015S&L/Thrifts-Eastern US
KMIKinder Morgan Inc/DE41.484.34192.824/29/2015Pipelines
CNPCenterPoint Energy Inc22.844.33114.1502/11/2015Gas-Distribution
COPConocoPhillips67.744.3161.2402/12/2015Oil Comp-Explor&Prodtn
SESpectra Energy Corp34.944.2480.5602/11/2015Pipelines
SOSouthern Co/The50.84.14107.3602/12/2015Electric-Integrated
PPLPPL Corp36.384.179.7903/09/2015Electric-Integrated
TETECO Energy Inc21.684.0696.662/13/2015Electric-Integrated
HPHelmerich & Payne Inc67.854.0537.5202/11/2015Oil&Gas Drilling
HCNHealth Care REIT Inc81.764.043110.7702/06/2015REITS-Health Care
VTRVentas Inc79.733.96164.0603/06/2015REITS-Health Care
POMPepco Holdings Inc27.433.94245.4503/06/2015Electric-Integrated
PCLPlum Creek Timber Co Inc44.83.93145.3202/11/2015REITS-Diversified
CVXChevron Corp109.533.9141.2102/12/2015Oil Comp-Integrated
WYNNWynn Resorts Ltd155.83.8596.5902/11/2015Casino Hotels
FFord Motor Co15.653.8461.374/28/2015Auto-Cars/Light Trucks
RAIReynolds American Inc69.913.8379.103/06/2015Tobacco
MOAltria Group Inc54.263.8376.923/13/2015Tobacco
EDConsolidated Edison Inc68.993.7767.892/13/2015Electric-Integrated
CCICrown Castle International Corp87.243.76179.323/17/2015REITS-Diversified
GEGeneral Electric Co24.473.7658.262/19/2015Diversified Manufact Op
ETREntergy Corp89.423.7183.1102/10/2015Electric-Integrated
LOLorillard Inc66.463.769.922/25/2015Tobacco
DUKDuke Energy Corp86.783.6782.3802/11/2015Electric-Integrated
STXSeagate Technology PLC59.253.6535.8502/06/2015Computers-Memory Devices
DRIDarden Restaurants Inc60.763.62157.3704/10/2015Retail-Restaurants
MCDMcDonald's Corp93.923.6267.62/26/2015Retail-Restaurants
AEEAmeren Corp45.433.6175.8103/09/2015Electric-Integrated
DOWDow Chemical Co/The46.893.5852.23/30/2015Chemicals-Diversified
GRMNGarmin Ltd53.653.5857.4403/12/2015Electronic Compo-Misc
GASAGL Resources Inc57.193.5770.9302/11/2015Gas-Distribution
FEFirstEnergy Corp40.443.56245.2302/04/2015Electric-Integrated
GMGeneral Motors Co33.983.53003/09/2015Auto-Cars/Light Trucks
CINFCincinnati Financial Corp52.13.5352.223/16/2015Multi-line Insurance
GMEGameStop Corp37.53.5237.2103/05/2015Retail-Computer Equip
OXYOccidental Petroleum Corp82.153.5134.8403/09/2015Oil Comp-Explor&Prodtn
PFEPfizer Inc32.023.574.0202/04/2015Medical-Drugs
COHCoach Inc38.693.4947.8803/06/2015Retail-Apparel/Shoe
PEGPublic Service Enterprise Group Inc43.23.4358.5703/06/2015Electric-Integrated
HSTHost Hotels & Resorts Inc23.313.43169.523/27/2015REITS-Hotels
KIMKimco Realty Corp28.063.42174.483/30/2015REITS-Shopping Centers
NOVNational Oilwell Varco Inc54.083.428.6503/11/2015Oil Field Mach&Equip
PNWPinnacle West Capital Corp70.463.3860.314/30/2015Electric-Integrated
AEPAmerican Electric Power Co Inc62.763.3860.7502/06/2015Electric-Integrated
EXCExelon Corp36.933.3673.5502/11/2015Electric-Integrated
TEGIntegrys Energy Group Inc81.273.3561.842/27/2015Electric-Integrated
CATCaterpillar Inc83.923.3345.14/16/2015Machinery-Constr&Mining
SCGSCANA Corp63.763.2960.303/11/2015Electric-Integrated
KRFTKraft Foods Group Inc66.973.2945.053/30/2015Food-Misc/Diversified
WYWeyerhaeuser Co35.573.2672.432/25/2015REITS-Diversified
PBIPitney Bowes Inc23.013.2663.7402/11/2015Office Automation&Equip
NUENucor Corp45.733.2666.413/27/2015Steel-Producers
PAYXPaychex Inc46.913.2481.3705/08/2015Data Processing/Mgmt
LYBLyondellBasell Industries NV86.93.2233.6703/05/2015Chemicals-Diversified
CACA Inc31.183.2150.392/17/2015Enterprise Software/Serv
AESAES Corp/VA12.483.2143.114/29/2015Electric-Generation
XELXcel Energy Inc37.643.1959.23/17/2015Electric-Integrated
ABBVAbbVie Inc61.653.18150.6504/10/2015Medical-Drugs
EMREmerson Electric Co59.443.1656.3602/11/2015Electric Products-Misc
KLACKLA-Tencor Corp63.473.1551.292/19/2015Semiconductor Equipment
MCHPMicrochip Technology Inc45.5853.1371.142/19/2015Electronic Compo-Semicon
LMTLockheed Martin Corp1923.1348.122/26/2015Aerospace/Defense
PCGPG&E Corp58.853.09100.613/30/2015Electric-Integrated
GISGeneral Mills Inc53.263.0853.4104/10/2015Food-Misc/Diversified
DDominion Resources Inc/VA78.583.0772.882/25/2015Electric-Integrated
DTEDTE Energy Co90.033.0768.533/19/2015Electric-Integrated
CMSCMS Energy Corp37.843.0761.3602/04/2015Electric-Integrated
CVCCablevision Systems Corp19.63.06122.8603/12/2015Cable/Satellite TV
KMBKimberly-Clark Corp110.173.0685.3503/04/2015Consumer Products-Misc
HASHasbro Inc56.1453.0672.8805/01/2015Toys
SYYSysco Corp39.543.0472.3104/01/2015Food-Wholesale/Distrib
NAVINavient Corp21.083.04#VALUE!03/04/2015Finance-Consumer Loans
WECWisconsin Energy Corp55.963.0256.9602/11/2015Electric-Integrated
PGProcter & Gamble Co/The85.953.01614/22/2015Cosmetics&Toiletries
XOMExxon Mobil Corp92.252.9935.5702/06/2015Oil Comp-Integrated
IPInternational Paper Co53.732.98110.2802/11/2015Paper&Related Products
MSFTMicrosoft Corp41.62.98422/17/2015Applications Software
NUNortheast Utilities56.042.9858.872/26/2015Electric-Integrated
MRKMerck & Co Inc61.022.97116.5303/12/2015Medical-Drugs
BAXBaxter International Inc70.452.9557.103/04/2015Medical Products
XLNXXilinx Inc39.3052.9542.4105/11/2015Electronic Compo-Semicon
KOCoca-Cola Co/The41.632.9457.8503/11/2015Beverages-Non-alcoholic
KKellogg Co66.652.9436.162/27/2015Food-Misc/Diversified
VLOValero Energy Corp54.382.9414.9502/09/2015Oil Refining&Marketing

Quick news – March 31 2010

By: ispeculatornew | Date posted: 03.31.2010 (3:14 pm)

Research in Motion (RIMM) reported earnings of 1.27$ per share, meeting forecasts but missing on revenue forecasts which sent the shares down
Panasonic Corp decided against using Google’s (GOOG) Android  in its next tv generation
Yahoo (YHOO) steps up its news coverage and opens Washington office
NY Times on why Research in Motion (RIMM) will buy Palm (PALM) – (more)
Rumours are that Apple (AAPL) will do a global launch of the Ipad on April 24
Google (GOOG) called out the Vietnamese government for its role in cyber attacks on Vietnamese government critics
Yahoo (YHOO) is shutting down its publisher network, which was competing with Google’s (GOOG) adsense

April 2010 Best Dividend Stock picks – S&P500

By: ispeculatornew | Date posted: 03.31.2010 (5:00 am)

Hello everyone! Like every month, today is the time to post the top dividend yields in the S&P500.

This time, I included the top 100, also added the ex-dividend date for those interested!

Anything of interest in your opinion?

TickerNamePricePE RatioPE Next YearSales GrowthAnalyst ratingBook ValueBetaRevenue/ShareSales 5Y Avg GrowthEPS 5Y Avg Growth
FBFacebook Inc75.6368.5529.5558.364.6112.910.714.77N/AN/A
TZOOTravelzoo Inc9.1411.238.92-

Apple’s (AAPL) rise to heaven

By: ispeculatornew | Date posted: 03.31.2010 (5:00 am)

To think that only a decade ago or so, Apple (AAPL) seemed like a unworth competitor for the PC systems which were backed by might Microsoft. Now, with a new decade that started about 4 months ago, Apple is almost ready to officially take over Microsoft (MSFT) in terms of market cap!! About 9 years ago, Microsoft had a market share over 30 times higher than Apple and the Mac line looked very weak compared with the monopoly that Microsoft had for both its operating system (Windows) and its Office Suite.

How things have changed

Both parties are probably responsible but nowadays, you can find a significant portion of users that prefer buying Mac computers and either are doing so or they are saving up to do it. Why? Because Apple charges significantly more for its computers than any PC company, both because of the high quality of its product but also because Mac consumers are generally willing to pay the price.

How Apple did it

Unless you have been on another planet, you know that Apple’s comeback did not happen because of the Mac line. It all started off with the launch of the Ipod, the first mainstream MP3 player, which remains to this day known as the one used by almost everyone. Competitors have come and gone, trying every single tactic without coming close to being significant competition. How dominant is it? It currently has 73.8% of the market share with competitors such as Sony, Microsoft, Dell and others all sharing the rest. That is with little spent on marketing, and comparable pricing; truly amazing.

Then came the Iphone, which targets the very important smartphone market. It came a bit later in the game with rival Research in Motion already in the lead with a significant market share.  But Apple produced a high quality product targeting consumers instead of businesses and has exceeded all expectations very quickly.  The Iphone has close to 20% of market share, a very significant portion in such a short time period.

And now, it is time for the Ipad. There are very high expectations for the new product but as we approach the deadline, analysts have been impressed with the previews and have helped Apple shares to move to all time highs in recent days. How high can it go? Difficult to say of course, but given its momentum, I would say that taking over Microsoft does not look like a huge challenge!

The best part about it

Thanks to its product designs and its multiplying fans, Apple has been able to generate such a strong user base that it can count on millions of users of almost any product it would launch as well as get millions more to try its mac line. This makes it easy for developers and content producers to work on their visibility on Apple’s Itunes store which in turn makes Apple’s products even better. I personally do not see an end in sight and already the Ipad is looking more promising than it was initially when it was officially announced in January…

How high can Apple go? Difficult to say, but I would remain a buyer for now…

Quick news – March 30 2010

By: ispeculatornew | Date posted: 03.30.2010 (8:08 pm)

Apple (AAPL) will introduce a new Iphone model later this year, rumoured to be compatible with Verizon’s network, ending AT&T’s monopoly
Google’s (GOOG) website was unavailable to China mainland residents for a good portion of the day by its own fault, a technical error
EBay (EBAY) will be renaming its Kijiji classified ads service to

We have a new design!!!

By: ispeculatornew | Date posted: 03.30.2010 (5:00 am)

It was very much overdue, but we are very thrilled to have a new design for our website! There are a lot of new elements, mainly it is more spaced out and the logo is much better. I would love to hear your thoughts and comments on the new design!! Also, we have a few bugs or missing things that we are working on so we appreciate your patience. Please let us know of anything you see that looks odd or does not work, so we can add it to our todo list:)

The additional space will give us more possibilities both for stock charts and tables like we have displayed in the past few months.

We hope that the new design will be part 1 of several improvements on the website so we`d love to hear your thoughts and opinions about it!

As you can see, there are Facebook and Youtube logos at the top, these are part of future projects so we hope you will stay tuned!

Quick news – March 29 2010

By: ispeculatornew | Date posted: 03.29.2010 (5:48 pm)

Apple (AAPL) Ipad start shipping on Saturday
Morgan Stanley estimates that Apple (AAPL) will ship 6 million Ipads in 2010
Research in Motion (RIMM) raised to Neutral by Atlantic Equities
Expedia (EXPE) and Priceline (PCLN) gained as Davenport & Co began coverage with a “Buy” rating

Top stock Picks: Bond & fixed income ETF’s

By: ispeculatornew | Date posted: 03.29.2010 (5:00 am)

Last Thursday, I wrote a post about the highest ETF dividends (measured by dividend yield). I was expecting to see many of the higher yields come from bond ETF’s. Why? Because usually bond funds are seen as fixed income ETF’s and generally investors that are buying wish to receive steady income flows. Diversification is certainly a reason to buy bonds but so is getting a steady flow of income.

It came as a bit of a surprise to see that in fact many of the Top Dividend ETF’s were not fixed income. So I decided to take a closer look at bond ETF’s (and deeper look than what I did 3 weeks ago) to see what type of dividend yield they are offering and how well they have been doing in the past year.  So what I did is find all of the bond/fixed income ETF’s that are active on US markets (let me know if I missed one). They are ranked by market cap in the table below.

Here are some of my conclusions:

-While there are many new bond ETF’s, I’m surprised to hear how little variety of corporate bond ETF exists. There are many many type of government and municipal bond, by duration, protected against inflation and more. But not that much variety in corporate bonds.

-While there are a few international bond ETF’s, there is little variety once again. I would expect this to change in the coming months.

A few bond ETF’s do not offer dividends. This might actually be a tendency for some as ETF’s can convert income gains from the bond into capital gains through the structure of the actual ETF. This makes it easier for investors to postpone paying taxes among other things. It really depends on each individual investors but when holding it for several years, this can make a difference.

TickerNamePricePE RatioPE Next YearSales GrowthAnalyst ratingBook ValueBetaRevenue/ShareSales 5Y Avg GrowthEPS 5Y Avg Growth
MSFTMicrosoft Corp41.2815.4813.9411.543.6711.181.0110.466.91-0.94
ADBEAdobe Systems Inc71.11138.1421.582.263.813.620.918.338.17N/A

Financial Ramblings

By: ispeculatornew | Date posted: 03.28.2010 (7:25 am)

Greetings readers! It was another interesting week in the tech space with the Google (GOOG) story finally becoming clearer as Google has partially pulled out of mainland China. The next few weeks will be interesting but I’m now much more comfortable picking Baidu as the uncertainty regarding its market share in China is probably past its peak.

Here are some of the better readings from the past week:

Do asset prices determine the economy? @ ZeroHedge
The right time to sell dividend stocks @ DividendGrowthInvestor
Exonerating the shorts @ TheBigPicture
Riddles @ Macro Man
Making money in real estate @ MillionDollarJourney
How do you say bubble in Chinese? @ CanadianCapitalist
Why the loonie is as strong as a bear @ TheFinancialBlogger
Middlemen @ FourPillars

Quick news – March 26 2010

By: ispeculatornew | Date posted: 03.26.2010 (3:24 pm)

Credit Suisse raised their target price for Apple (AAPL) to 300$
Research in Motion (RIMM) raised to overweight by JP Morgan (JPM)
Research in Motion (RIMM) recommended by Bank of America (BOA)
Ctrip (CTRP) cut to hold at Kaufman Bros
Facebook hires former Google (GOOG) sales executive David Fisher