Monday, March 31, 2014

Tesla Motors Is Facing a Big Threat

Electric vehicles have been around for a very long time, but they were not popular because of various shortcomings like limited range and low speed. Tesla Motors (TSLA) was the first company to change all that, and as a result, it gained a lot of media attention and saw a massive jump in its share price in 2013.

However, many big and established automakers like Toyota Motor (TM) and Hyundai are looking for the next big technology to power tomorrow's cars and have bet on hydrogen fuel cells. Toyota is so confident that fuel cell electric vehicles, or FCEVs, will dominate the automobile market in the years to come and has even projected to sell 5,000-10,000 vehicles per year. Furthermore, Air Liquide SA is planning to expand its business by constructing filling stations for FCEVs as it foresees growing demand for such vehicles.

Tesla's CEO, Elon Musk, thinks that the technology is a dead end, but you'd expect him to talk down the competition as he is betting big bucks on EVs. The success of FCEVs will be bad for Tesla and its investors, and given the various advantages that FCEVs have over EVs, it may overshadow EVs and dominate the auto market in the long run. Let's take a quick look at these advantages.

Pollution-free myth

Tesla's Model S has a reputation for being eco-friendly because it does not emit harmful gases into the environment. However, manufacturing one battery for an EV releases between 10,000 and 40,000 pounds of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Furthermore, the lithium required for the production of these lithium-ion batteries is mostly extracted through solar brines. And that's not all; the European Commission on Science for Environmental Policy claimed that the extraction of lithium from these brines causes a significant environmental, health, and social impact to the places where li-ion is located.

In addition to all that, batteries lose charge overtime and sooner or later it becomes useless. Thus, EV drivers will have to replace the battery or buy a new car. Therefore, driving Tesla cars may be eco-friendly, but overall, it isn't as green as it appears.

In comparison, hydrogen-powered cars are more environment friendly as they use a mix of hydrogen and oxygen to create electricity. That results in zero emissions, and the car runs completely cleanly.


It is a well-known fact that hydrogen is widely available, therefore there wouldn't be any kind of fuel shortage if FCEVs become highly popular in the future and automakers will not have to worry about depletion. On the contrary, Tesla has struggled to boost its sales due to battery shortage, and it doesn't look like that the situation is going to change any time soon. Not to forget that Tesla only sells around 22,000 cars annually, which means that it will really struggle to keep up with the rising demand and expand globally.


Tesla cars are expensive because of the installed batteries, and it will be very difficult to bring down prices without compromising on quality or performance. Thus, it's evident that consumers will have to pay over the odds for buying a Tesla car. EV owners don't have to pay for refueling, so it does compensate for the high cost to an extent, but given that batteries lose charge overtime, replacing them further adds to the cost.

Fuel cells' drawbacks

For anyone wanting to accelerate quickly, FCEVs won't be satisfactory. Moreover, the range of a hydrogen car fuel vehicle is limited (around 250 miles). That makes it impossible to use for long trips until there's a network of hydrogen fuel stations. And setting up a network of fuel stations will require huge investment and the success of FCEVs largely depends on the solution of this problem.


The scale of production that Toyota and Hyundai have is a big threat for Tesla. They can easily ramp up production and bring down costs if FCEVs click in the mass market. In addition, they won't be constrained by things such as battery production. So, Tesla investors should definitely keep an eye on these developments in fuel cells as they are quite capable of hurting sales in the long run.

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Sunday, March 30, 2014

5 Best High Tech Stocks To Watch For 2014

5 Best High Tech Stocks To Watch For 2014: Synergy Resources Corp (SYRG)

Synergy Resources Corporation, incorporated on May 11, 2005, is an oil and gas operator in Colorado. The Company is focused on the acquisition, development, exploitation, exploration and production of oil and natural gas properties primarily located in the Denver-Julesburg Basin (D-J Basin) in northeast Colorado. Effective November 13, 2013, Synergy Resources Corp acquired 21 undisclosed oil and gas producing wells, located in Wattenberg Field, Colorado.

As of October 31, 2013, the Company has 374,000 gross and 245,000 net acres under lease, substantially all of which are located in the D-J Basin. Of this acreage, 12,550 gross acres are held by production. In addition to the approximately 22,000 net developed and undeveloped acres that the Company hold in the Wattenberg Field, it hold undeveloped acreage positions in the northern extension area of the D-J Basin, in an area around Yuma County that produces dry gas, and in western Nebraska.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Value Digger]

    As peers, I selected Artek Exploration (ARKXF.PK), RMP Energy (OEXFF.PK), Synergy Resources (SYRG) and Magnum Hunter Resources (MHR). The first two firms trade also on the main Toronto board under the tickers RTK.TO and RMP.TO respectively. These peers comply with the following criteria:

  • source from Top Stocks Blog:

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Tax Q&A: Itemizing vs. standard deduction

With the April 15 tax deadline fast approaching, you probably have questions. Fortunately, we have answers. Every day until April 15, members of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants have agreed to answer selected tax questions from USA TODAY readers. Submit your questions to

Q: I need to file taxes for several years and have few deductions. I know I can deduct work-related expenses, medical, school and charitable expenses; however, my children are grown and I do not own property. Where can I find extra savings? I'm nervous about filing for several years together; would it be better to break them up?

A: Let's first answer your question about deductions. Without knowing more about your situation, it's difficult for me to recommend where you might be able to find extra tax savings. As you have mentioned, the deductions available for federal tax returns are limited. New limitations apply to medical deductions for 2013 taxes, unless you or your spouse are 65 or older. There's a useful fact sheet about the changes to the medical deduction on the IRS website.

That's why using the standard deduction, instead of itemizing, may provide a better tax break for taxpayers who do not have a mortgage interest deduction or dependent children. The standard deduction for 2013 is $6,100 for taxpayers who are single or who are married filing separately. It's $12,200 for taxpayers who are married and filing jointly. Other standard deductions apply for taxpayers who are over 65 or are legally blind. The standard deduction is generally adjusted annually for inflation. You should calculate your return using the standard deduction and using your itemized deductions to see which will save you the most in taxes.

Top 10 Medical Companies To Watch In Right Now

Topic 551, Standard Deduction, on the IRS website provides a concise summary about the standar! d deduction. In addition, IRS Publication 501 has more detailed information about the standard deduction, including a worksheet.

Regarding the second part of your question about filing returns due from prior years, I would file them as soon as possible. If there is a balance due for any of these years, then there will be penalties and interest charged. If this is the case, you might need assistance from a tax professional. There's no problem with filing the prior years' returns together.

Ken Rubin, partner, RubinBrown LLP, Saint Louis

Previous questions:

Deductions for a business with no income?

How to report 401(k) rollover?

Are health insurance premiums deductible?

Should my daughters file taxes?

Can pension income go to a Roth IRA?

What to do if you forgot a tax payment

Is a gift from an IRA taxable?

Deducting medical costs for an injury

Friday, March 28, 2014

Microsoft Corporation Launches Office App for iPad (MSFT)

The Redmond-based software bellwether, Microsoft (MSFT), followed through with its promise set forth on March 18th after it announced the official release of the Office app for the iPad.
In a polished debut, which set him apart from his often times overly-energetic predecessor, Microsoft CEO, Satya Nadella, showcased his firm’s efforts in making mobile apps its top priority. During the press conference, Microsoft unveiled a new “touch-first” version of its popular Office suite created specifically for the iPad. The company further surprised critics when it announced the app would be available as a free download to iPad users; however, it’s worth noting that a paid subscription will still be necessary for those who want to create or edit documents on their tablet.

Nadella did not make mention of when the “touch-free” version of Office would become available to Windows 8 users. Numerous analysts noted the lack of discussion about Windows during today’s press conferences showcases a meaningful strategic shift for the company, which many have been patiently waiting for as the software giant has undeniably fallen behind in a number of high-growth segments within the technology market in recent years.

Microsoft shares slumped lower on Thursday, shedding $0.43, or 1.08% per share, as the closing bell rang. The stock is up 39% over the trailing 52-week period.

MSFT Dividend Snapshot

As of market close on March 27, 2014

MSFT dividend yield annual payout payout ratio dividend growth

MSFT upcoming dividend payouts next ex-dividend date

Click here to see the complete history of MSFT dividends.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Another Convertible Appeal To Mark Zuckerberg

Dear Mark,

I tried a couple of weeks ago to get you to issue the biggest convertible bond ever to help you buy companies. My editors got a little upset when I jokingly suggested you buy my new company at the kind of valuation you're paying for hot new technologies, many of which are in no foreseeable danger of making money.  They said it distracted too much from the point of the article, which was that Facebook should be the company to do a landmark convertible.

So I wrote another piece talking about how you and Ken Griffin, both Harvard guys, should get together and talk about how Facebook should do the biggest convertible bond ever. Ken, after all, became a billionaire through his convertible prowess. You might say he's the Mark Zuckerberg of convertibles. Or you're the Ken Griffin of the Internet. Or something.

Here's the thing, Mark: it's clear that you're going to be doing a lot more shopping. And there are really only two things you can use for currency: cash and Facebook stock.  You used both of them, mostly your stock, to pay for your newest acquisition, Oculus.

English: Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder and...

Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder and CEO, during his European Tour. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I'm sure I don't need to explain to you, Mark, that the cost of using cash for a deal is the opportunity you have to give up, the other thing you could have bought instead. Clearly this is less of a problem for you and Facebook than it is for most of us. But even you guys have to make decisions.  Even you guys don't have infinite resources—of cash, stock, time or anything else. I think that's what the stock market is trying to tell you today. And even though you may not care, let's make no mistake: you do run a public company, and that makes you responsible to your shareholders.  That doesn't mean you have to worry every time your stock bobs and weaves, but it also doesn't mean you can ignore the people who are, in a real sense, your bosses now.

So let's look at another way you might have paid for Oculus. Let's say you issued a $2 billion convertible bond. I'd be willing to bet you could get terms as good as anyone—these days, they seem to max out at a 0% coupon and a 50% conversion premium for a five-year bond. Based on yesterday's close, that 50% premium would have gotten you to $97.33. Darn, so close to $100. But you know what, Mark? I bet you could have gotten a $100 conversion price yesterday.  Because your stock is volatile, and your company is so well known and (presumably) creditworthy, the convertible market would treat you like, well, like Mark Zuckerberg.

So let's say you did that. You raised the $2 billion to pay for Oculus with a 0% coupon with a $100 conversion price. That means that you would have done one of two things—you would have either gotten a five-year free ride on the cash, or (if Facebook stock does well) you would have effectively have paid for Oculus with $100 shares instead of $65 ones. Put another way, instead of having to pay with three shares, you could have bought the company for two.  And if you just went out and borrowed the $2 billion, well, I'm sure you could get nice terms—but I'm even surer the money wouldn't be free.

Why do I keep bugging you about convertibles, Mark? Well, maybe a little bit of it is for old times' sake, when I think back to the times I would tell your father about the convertible market during the pauses while he was jamming metal instruments into my mouth and telling me I needed to floss better.

(Actually, that was usually his assistant). But that's not the real reason. The real reason is that I'm kind of a modern-day yenta, Mark. I like to connect people with one another, and I also like connecting companies and markets that need each other. The convertible market needs new issues, and it's more than happy to lend money on terms I think you'd really like, to make it easier for you to buy the technologies of the future.  If you don't believe me, Mark, keep reading this space: in the days to come I will tell you about some convertibles whose prices show just how hungry investors are for paper.

One last note, Mark: As I mentioned the other day, if Apple Apple hadn't issued a convertible back in 1996, Steve Jobs might not have gotten the chance to do his second act.


Tuesday, March 25, 2014

A Continued Look At Marijuana Stocks With Alan Brochstein

Related MCIG How Would a Hypothetical Marijuana ETF Do This Year? 5 Ways To Play The Hottest Trend In Cannabis

Last week, Benzinga sat down with Alan Brochstein of the 420 Investor newsletter. He has been one of the first analysts to cover the sector in-depth and offered his valuable outlook on the budding industry.

Brochstein will not be out there shorting Anheuser Busch Inbev (NYSE: BUD) and the beverage companies, or anticipating the country turning into a "bunch of stoners."

"The whole space has a market cap of between $12-14 billion, all these public companies added up," he said. "In the scheme of things, that's not a lot. Just one beverage company would be $30-40 billion -- and that company has a lot of profits."

Best Cheap Companies To Own For 2014

Brochstein's thesis remains that current users will now be able to acquire cannabis through "legal" channels. When asked how the change in this dynamic will affect the fundamentals of cannabis, specifically, the economics of "supply and demand," he answered by giving his take on the dynamic of "public" versus "private" investment -- and whether or not a new sector for the U.S. economy is emerging.

"A lot of people see what's going on and think there's going to be more demand because its legal," he noted. "There's a demand for legal marijuana [compared to black market marijuana]. There's companies out there that can help people be more productive in growing, and so you're seeing the build-out that's going to happen. Legal recreational marijuana creates the need for high-quality marijuana at an affordable, competitive price. On the black market, they didn't care about being efficient...It's not just about more people getting high."

Related: Feds Approve First-Ever Medicinal Marijuana Study

Benzinga asked what investors should look for if they desire to invest in the sector. Brochstein says try to identify companies that are doing the "right thing." In his view, "Everybody knows these stocks are expensive, there's no way you can make the case. But nobody knows the future."

One such example is mCig (OTC: MCIG).

"MCIG started off with a $10 vape pen," he said. "They almost envision themselves as being the Apple of the industry. CEO and founder Paul Rosenberg [is] strictly a businessman, he owns about half the stock. He then brought on some talent and gave them his stock to help the company. Why? Because he knows the stock is overvalued, but if you can [evolve a company] without diluting your shareholders, that's what I mean by doing the right thing."

One final tip from Brochstein for potential investors is to read the filings.

He emphasizes the "Three Ps: people, pecuniary, the plan. Does company have right capital structure? Or money to execute their plan? These are venture capital people -- these are not mature companies. You need forward-looking people that can adapt to change and that are shareholder friendly."

This is the second of a two-part interview.

For those interested in further analysis on this new and controversial sector, visit the homepage for the 420 Investor Letter.

Posted-In: Alan Brochstein Budweiser cannabis cannabis industry marijuana medicinal marijuana pot Recreational Marijuana vapeEducation Commodities Economics Markets General Interview Best of Benzinga

© 2014 Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.

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Monday, March 24, 2014

Fisker's Del. plant sold for $18 million

WILMINGTON, Del. — The Fisker Automotive plant property in Delaware officially was transferred Monday to an affiliate of new owner Wanxiang America, New Castle County, Del., confirmed.

The deal was recorded as Wanxiang officially closed on the purchase of Fisker's assets on Friday and Monday, said Paul Cumberland, Wanxiang America's director of investments.

The Delaware property near Newport was sold for $18 million, the same price Fisker paid for it in 2010, the county reported.

The buyer was WX Delaware Real Estate Holding Co., based in Elgin, Ill., said Antonio Prado, county spokesman.

Prado said the county and state each received $270,000 in real estate transfer taxes.

STORY: Delaware judge approves Fisker asset sale
STORY: Wanxiang lifts cash bid to win Fisker asset sale

That means Fisker's assets are now the property of Wanxiang America Inc., the U.S. arm of China's largest auto parts manufacturer.

Top 10 Defensive Companies To Buy Right Now

The company won an auction for Fisker's assets last month for $149 million in bankruptcy court, beating out another Chinese company, Hybrid Tech Holdings LLC, which had acquired Fisker's federal loan.

But until Monday, the sale was not official, and the value of the Delaware plant had never been broken out.

Gary Wetzel, Wanxiang chief operating officer, also based in Elgin, confirmed the holding company was an affiliate of Wanxiang.

Fisker, the plug-in hybrid auto manufacturer, planned to launch its second-generation line, the Atlantic, from the former General Motors plant, which shut down in 2009. Fisker acquired the plant shortly thereafter, with the help of federal and state incentives.

But a series of problems and miscalculations caused Fisker to file for bankruptcy protection last year.

Wanxiang has pledged to restart the brand and has said it would consider using the Delaware fac! ility for mass production.

Wanxiang recently indicated on its new Fisker Web page,, that it was actively deliberating about the future of the plant.

Cumberland said some of the sale closed on Friday, and the real estate sale closed on Monday. The closing came after a federal antitrust review.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

FOMC Outlook Watch: More Tapering AND Slower Growth in 2014

The Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee has another meeting this week regarding U.S. interest rate policy. While no new rate announcement is expected to come, what is expected is the announcement of more tapering — some $10 billion by our take.

Janet Yellen and other Fed presidents have said on many occasions that they are comfortable with the $10 billion incremental notch in monthly bond buying. Most likely that will take place with another $5 billion less in Treasury buying and another $5 billion less in mortgage backed securities.

Investors also will need to remember that this is a two-day meeting, starting on Tuesday morning and ending with the formal announcement (statement) around 2:00 p.m. EST on Wednesday.

We will be watching for changes in how the Fed’s characterization of the economy, as well as changes in guidance, because the quarterly forecasts will be released on Wednesday as well. Look for a slightly lower growth forecast, but one that still allows for the bond tapering to continue.

Video David Winters - What Do You Look For in a Company's Quarterly Report?

Source: Wintergreen Advisers

Also check out: David Winters Undervalued Stocks David Winters Top Growth Companies David Winters High Yield stocks, and Stocks that David Winters keeps buying
About the author:Grass Hopper

Visit Grass Hopper's Website

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Saturday, March 22, 2014

FAA, Boeing conclude 787 'safe' after battery…

The Federal Aviation Administration and Boeing announced Wednesday that the Boeing 787 is safe after a comprehensive review of the Dreamliner because of initial problems with its lithium-ion battery.

"We do conclude that the aircraft is safe and that it meets its intended level of design and safety," FAA Administrator Michael Huerta said.

The FAA review of the design, manufacture and assembly of the 787 began Jan. 11, 2013, four days after a lithium battery fire aboard an empty Japan Airlines jet parked in Boston. Then an All Nippon Airways flight made an emergency landing in Japan on Jan. 16, 2013, because of a smoldering battery.

The review wasn't limited to the battery or electrical system, and, while the entire plane was deemed safe, Huerta didn't discuss the battery specifically because those incidents remain under investigation

The 71-page report that resulted from the review made seven recommendations for FAA and Boeing basically to focus their inspections and oversight more on higher-risk areas of a plane as it is developed. These areas are where less is known about the material or equipment, so there is not as much familiarity with how it will operate.

"We concluded that the aircraft was soundly designed, and that Boeing and the FAA had processes in place that were designed to identify and correct any issue that might arise during the manufacturing process," Huerta said. "It's many layered. You don't have single points of failure."

Boeing Commercial Airplanes CEO Ray Conner said the company has already taken significant steps to implement its recommendations, such as improving the flow of information, standards and expectations with suppliers.

"The findings validate our confidence in both the design of the airplane and the disciplined process used to identify and correct in-service issues as they arise," Conner said.

The FAA grounded the first six jets in the USA for more than three months, which led to a worldwide hiatus in flights for 49 planes.

Without knowing precisely what caused the problem, Boeing developed more insulation between each battery's cells and a fireproof shell for the battery to starve it of oxygen if there is a fire. The improvements were added before the plane returned to the skies.

Each jet carries two batteries, which are surrounded by a stainless steel box. Each battery has a titanium venting tube to a hole in the fuselage to carry flammable electrolytes and smoke overboard if a battery fails.

The National Transportation Safety Board continues to investigate the cause of the Boston fire. Another battery problem surfaced in January on a Japan Airlines jet parked in Tokyo, where Boeing discovered during routine maintenance that one cell of a battery released gas.

The Dreamliner is an innovative jet built largely from composite material, which makes it lighter and 20% more fuel-efficient. Passengers like the jet's quietness in flight and its larger windows equipped with electronic dimmers rather than shades.

Boeing delivered 65 of the jets last year and expects to deliver 110 this year. The company wants to sell 3,300 of the jets during the next 20 years.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Top Value Stocks To Invest In Right Now

Top Value Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Dollar Tree Inc.(DLTR)

Dollar Tree, Inc. operates discount variety stores in the United States and Canada. Its stores offer merchandise primarily at the fixed price of $1.00. The company operates its stores under the names of Dollar Tree, Deal$, Dollar Tree Deal$, Dollar Giant, and Dollar Bills. Its stores offer consumable merchandise, including candy and food, and health and beauty care, as well as household consumables, such as paper, plastics, household chemicals, in select stores, and frozen and refrigerated food; variety merchandise, which includes toys, durable housewares, gifts, party goods, greeting cards, softlines, and other items; and seasonal goods, such as Easter, Halloween, and Christmas merchandise. As of April 30, 2011, it operated 4,089 stores in 48 states and the District of Columbia, as well as 88 stores in Canada. The company was founded in 1986 and is based in Chesapeake, Virginia.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Lawrence Meyers]

    This isn't some growing new industry set to take the world further into the 21st century. It's an old concept that hasn't innovated, won't innovate, and will slowly but surely die out over this century. When I walk into a Walgreens, I see a miniature Target (TGT), a more expensive Dollar Tree (DLTR), and a provider of prescriptions in a world where everything is becoming mail order.

  • [By Paul Ausick]

    The other stock the firm likes is Dollar Tree Inc. (NASDAQ: DLTR). The company's shares have lost about 4.6% since reporting an earnings per share (EPS) miss for the third quarter and the Sterne Agee analysts see the lower price as a "great entry point" for buying the stock. Dollar Tree raised fiscal year 2013 EPS guidance from a range of $2.66 to $2.77 to a new range of $2.72 to $2.78, effectively raising the mid-point by $0.04. Sterne Agee reiterated its Bu! y rating on the stock with a price target of $63. Dollar Tree's shares are trading down nearly 0.4% at $55.99 in a 52-week range of $37.47 to $60.19.

  • [By Ben Eisen]

    Perpetually struggling department store J.C. Penney Co. (JCP)  said it expects a sales boost this holiday season as it returns to a promotional strategy. But for the most part, retailers including Dollar Tree Inc. (DLTR)  , GameStop Corp. (GME)   and Abercrombie & Fitch Co. (ANF)   gave dour outlooks in their earnings reports.

  • source from Top Stocks Blog:

Thursday, March 20, 2014

5 Best Growth Stocks To Invest In 2014

5 Best Growth Stocks To Invest In 2014: 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:
  • [By James Brumley]

    How so? In November, Smith & Nephew unveiled a biocomposite material for use in arthroscopic surgeries — the Healicoil suture anchor — and just last week the company announced encouraging results from a third-party study of its negative-pressure wound therapy system used on closed surgical incisions. It sounds minor, but t! hat technology could open a big door for Smith & Nephew as well as SNN stock owners.

    Medical Devices: Intuitive Surgical (ISRG)

    Intuitive Surgical (ISRG) shares took a big hit late last week following its fourth-quarter numbers, but bear in mind that ISRG stock had been through an overheated run-up in the days before that. Even with Friday’s 6% selloff, Intuitive Surgical shares are up 7% year-to-date — a paradigm shift compared to 2013′s 21% slide.

  • [By John Kell]

    Among the companies with shares expected to actively trade in Friday’s session are Intuitive Surgical Inc.(ISRG), Juniper Networks Inc.(JNPR) and Microsoft Corp.(MSFT)

  • [By Wallace Witkowski]

    Intuitive Surgical Inc. (ISRG)  is expected to report adjusted fourth-quarter earnings of $3.82 a share on revenue of $558 million.

  • [By Monica Gerson]

    Luna Innovations (NASDAQ: LUNA) jumped 95.45% to $2.58 as the company announced its plans to sell its shape-sensing technology to Intuitive Surgical (NASDAQ: ISRG).

  • source from Top Stocks Blog:

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

5 Best Warren Buffett Stocks To Own For 2014

5 Best Warren Buffett Stocks To Own For 2014: Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan Inc.(POT)

Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan Inc. produces and sells fertilizers and related industrial and feed products primarily in the United States and Canada. The company mines and produces potash, which is used as fertilizer. It also offers solid and liquid phosphate fertilizers; animal feed supplements; and industrial acids that are used in food products and industrial processes. In addition, the company produces nitrogen fertilizers, as well as nitrogen feed and industrial products, including ammonia, urea, nitrogen solutions, ammonium nitrate, and nitric acid. Further, it holds the right to mine 785,759 acres of land in Saskatchewan; and 58,263 acres of land in New Brunswick in Canada. The company sells its fertilizers primarily to retailers, dealers, co-operatives, distributors, and other fertilizer producers; industrial products primarily to chemical product manufacturers; and purified phosphoric acid directly to consumers of the product. Potash Corporation was founded i n 1953 and is based in Saskatoon, Canada.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Rich Duprey]

    There seems little worry that PotashCorp (NYSE: POT  )  will cut its dividend -- which it called "sacrosanct" this past December -- even though it's planning on cutting some 18% of its workforce this year in the face of flagging demand.

  • [By Tomi Kilgore]

    Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan(POT) rose 0.5%, Mosaic(MOS) gained 0.1% and Intrepid Potash(IPI) climbed 0.7%. In addition, CF Industries Holdings(CF) tacked on 1.4% and Agrium(AGU.T) advanced 1.1%.

  • [By Rich Duprey]

    Canpotex, the cartel's rival North American potash marketing association, comprised of Mosaic (NYSE: MOS  ) , PotashCorp (NYSE: POT  ) , and Agrium (NYSE: AGU  ) , is a major! supplier of potash to Brazil, with some analysts estimating it owns 38% of the market. In years past, Latin America -- primarily the Brazilian market -- has comprised as much as 26% of Canpotex's potash sales.

  • [By Jim Jubak]

    That's certainly not good news for such agriculture stocks as fertilizer producers Potash of Saskatchewan (POT), Mosaic (MOS), and Yara International (YARIY). And it's not good news for Deere for 2014, as a whole, either. The company lowered guidance for the quarter that ends in April to sales of $9.65 billion, versus the current Wall Street consensus of $9.89 billion. That would represent a 6% drop in sales in the quarter.

  • source from Top Stocks Blog:

Monday, March 17, 2014

Top India Stocks To Own Right Now

Top India Stocks To Own Right Now: Infosys Technologies Limited(INFY)

Infosys Ltd. provides information technology (IT) and consulting services worldwide. It offers IT services, such as application, architecture, independent validation and testing, information management, infrastructure, packaged application, SOA, systems integration, and knowledge services; product engineering services, manufacturing process and plant solutions, and product lifecycle management services; and consulting services in the areas of information and technology strategies, product innovation, next generation commerce, process excellence, and learning and complex change. The company also provides business process outsourcing solutions in the areas of business platforms, customer service outsourcing, finance and accounting, human resources outsourcing, legal services, sales and fulfillment, and sourcing and procurement outsourcing. In addition, it offers collaborative analytics solutions; digital consumer platform; Finacle universal banking solution; iProwe, a Web ac cessibility assessment product; mConnect, a real-time enterprise middleware; and research and analytical support services. Further, the company offers unified communications and collaboration solution that streamlines business processes between employees, customers, and suppliers; iTransform that helps healthcare organizations accelerate transition to new platforms; and supply chain visibility and collaboration product suite. It serves aerospace and defense, airlines, automotive, banking, capital markets, communication services, consumer packaged goods, manufacturing, education, energy, healthcare, high technology, hospitality and leisure, insurance, life sciences, logistics and distribution, publishing, resources, utilities, and retail industries. Infosys Ltd. has a strategic partnership with Alstom SA. The company was formerly known as Infosys Technologies Limited and ch! anged its name to Infosys Ltd. on June 16, 2011. Infosys Ltd. was founded in 1981 and is headquartered i n Bengaluru, India.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Robert Martin]

    Infosys (INFY), Housing Development Finance and Reliance Industries LTD are the top three holdings, with weightings between 8% and 10.5%. Of course, just about any India ETF will have a heavy  allocation to Infosys and Reliance. However, INDA dedicates a lower percentage to energy than some of the alternatives, and instead leans more on IT and consumer spending.

  • [By Aaron Smith]

    The government accused software developer Infosys (INFY) of using workers with B-1 visas, which only allow temporary entry into the U.S. for business purposes, to perform skilled labor jobs.

  • source from Top Stocks Blog:

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Best India Stocks To Invest In 2014

Best India Stocks To Invest In 2014: Tata Motors Ltd(TTM)

Tata Motors Limited, an automobile company, engages in the manufacture and sale of commercial and passenger vehicles primarily in India. The company offers cars, utility vehicles, trucks, buses and coaches, and defense vehicles, as well as develops electric and hybrid vehicles for personal and public transportation. It also involves in distributing and marketing cars; and financing the vehicles sold by the company. In addition, the company engages in the provision of engineering and automotive solutions, as well as machine tools and factory automation solutions; construction equipment manufacturing; automotive vehicle components manufacturing and supply chain activities; tooling and plastic and electronic components for automotive and computer applications; and automotive retailing and service operations. It offers its products and services through its dealership, sales, services, and spare parts network. The company also markets its commercial and passenger vehicles in Eu rope, Africa, the Middle East, South East Asia, South Asia, and South America. The company was formerly known as Tata Engineering and Locomotive Company Limited and changed its name to Tata Motors Limited in July 2003. Tata Motors Limited was founded in 1945 and is based in Mumbai, India.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Paul Ausick]

    Among car makers, the Cadillac brand from General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM), the Lincoln brand from Ford Motor Co. (NYSE: F), and Toyota Motor Corp.’s (NYSE: TM) Lexus brand make the list, as does Jaguar, which is owned by India’s Tata Motors Ltd. (NYSE: TTM).

  • [By Sophia Yan]

    Shares of Tata Motors (TTM) tumbled almost 5% in morning trading in Mumbai as investors reacted to news of Slym's death. Tata Motors also owns Jaguar and Land Rover brands.

  • [By Trey Thoelcke]

    The ! rise of VW could hit GM particularly hard, both in terms of reputation and in earnings. GM said it was looking to introduce four new Chevrolet models in China next year, as well as to expand its low-cost Baojun brand. Chinese buyers could already be looking elsewhere though, given the rise of VW and of Tata Motors Ltd. (NYSE: TTM), which sells cars under the Jaguar and Range Rover brands. Sales of Tata vehicles have risen sharply in the past year, and the company is set to begin producing cars in China.

  • [By James Well]

    Pfizer's Net Income Growth Is Increasing Leading to Increase in Its Operating Margins

    Net incomes and operating margins of a company give some insights into its financial health. Pfizer's net income growth has accelerated this year. In fact, when compared with its direct competitors like Merck, Novartis, and Sanofi, the rate of increase of net income growth trailing twelve months (TTM) is greatest at Pfizer with $10.68 billion followed by Novartis with $9.37 billion while Merck and Sanofi lagged behind with $4.53 billion and $4.05 billion respectively. Really, rather than increasing, there has been a decrease in Merck's and Sanofi's net incomes this year which should be a source of concern for investors. A healthy operating margin shows that a company is earning more per dollar of sales and, hence, able to pay for its fixed costs including interest on debt.

  • source from Top Stocks Blog:

Top Mid Cap Stocks To Buy For 2014

Top Mid Cap Stocks To Buy For 2014: BYD Co Ltd (BYDDF)

BYD COMPANY LIMITED is principally engaged in the research, development, manufacture and distribution of automobiles, secondary rechargeable batteries and mobile phone components. The Company operates its businesses primarily through secondary rechargeable battery business, which provides lithium-ion batteries and nickel batteries, which are applied in mobile phones, digital cameras, electric tools, electric toys and other portable electronic devices; mobile phone components and assembly businesses, which offers casings, keypads, liquid crystal display (LCD) modules, cameras, flexible circuit boards, chargers, and mobile phone design and assembly services, as well as automobile business, which provides automobiles, including G6, S6 and other series. Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Chris Isidore]

    Shares of Tesla (TSLA) shot up as high as $196, before easing off those highs later in the day. That topped the previous record set Sept. 30 Shares of Chinese electric carmaker BYD (BYDDF), in which Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway (BRKA, Fortune 500) has taken a stake, were also higher in trading in China and the United States.

  • source from Top Stocks Blog:

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Top Clean Energy Stocks To Own Right Now

Top Clean Energy Stocks To Own Right Now: Town Sports International Holdings Inc.(CLUB)

Town Sports International Holdings, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, owns and operates fitness clubs in the northeast and mid-Atlantic regions of the United States. Its facilities include cardiovascular equipment; free weight and strength equipment; group exercise and cycling studios; the entertainment system network; locker rooms, including shower facilities and towel services; and other amenities, such as saunas, babysitting, and a pro-shop. The company also provides swimming pools, and racquet and basketball courts; and programs, which include small group training, children?s programs, and other programs targeting adult members. As of December 31, 2011, it operated 160 fitness clubs comprising 108 New York Sports Clubs, 25 Boston Sports Clubs, 18 Washington Sports Clubs, and 6 Philadelphia Sports Clubs, as well as 3 clubs located in Switzerland. The company is based in New York, New York.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Seth Jayson]

    Town Sports International Holdings (Nasdaq: CLUB  ) reported earnings on July 24. Here are the numbers you need to know.

    The 10-second takeaway
    For the quarter ended June 30 (Q2), Town Sports International Holdings met expectations on revenues and met expectations on earnings per share.

  • source from Top Stocks Blog:

Monday, March 10, 2014

Top Long Term Stocks To Buy Right Now

Top Long Term Stocks To Buy Right Now: Atmel Corporation(ATML)

Atmel Corporation designs, develops, manufactures, and sells semiconductor integrated circuit (IC) products. The company?s Microcontrollers segment provides various proprietary and standard microcontrollers, such as Atmel?s capacitive touch products, including maXTouch and QTouch, AVR 8-bit and 32-bit products, ARM-based products, and Atmel?s 8051 8-bit products. Its Nonvolatile Memories segment offers serial interface electrically erasable programmable read-only memory and serial interface flash memory products; and parallel interface flash memories, as well as parallel interface electrically erasable programmable read-only memory and erasable programmable read-only memory devices. The company?s Radio Frequency and Automotive segment provides products designed for the automotive industry, including automobile electronics, networking and access systems, and engine, lighting, and entertainment components. This segment produces and sells wireless and wired devices for in dus trial, consumer, and automotive applications; and offers foundry services, which produce radio frequency products for the mobile telecommunications market. Its Application Specific Integrated Circuit segment provides custom application specific ICs designed to meet specialized single-customer requirements of high performance devices in a range of specific applications. This segment provides products that provide hardware security for embedded digital systems; and products with military and aerospace applications, as well as develops application specific standard products for space applications, power management, and secure crypto memory products. The company sells its products directly to original equipment manufacturers; and indirectly through a network of distributors. It has operations in the United States, Asia, Europe, South Africa, and Central and South America. Atmel Co! rporation was founded in 1984 and is headquartered in San Jose, California.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By John Udovich]

    If you are looking for a semiconductor stock that's focus on an area that's not so cyclical, mid cap microcontroller (MCU) stock Atmel Corporation (NASDAQ: ATML) could be a good choice – meaning its worth taking a closer look at the stock along with other microcontroller players like Microchip Technology Inc (NASDAQ: MCHP), STMicroelectronics N.V. (NYSE: STM) and Cypress Semiconductor Corporation (NASDAQ: CY). Microcontrollers are programmable and embedded chips that are increasingly hidden inside a all sorts of products these days e.g. if you have an appliance with a LED or LCD screen and a keypad, it contains some kind of microcontroller plus all new automobiles contain at least one and often several. I should mention that we have also recently added Atmel Corporation to our SmallCap Network Elite Opportunity (SCN EO) portfolio and we are down about 5.6% mostly due to the recent market volatility.

  • [By Selena Maranjian]

    Among holdings in which SAC Capital Advisors increased its stake was Atmel (NASDAQ: ATML  )  SAC reduced its stake in companies such as PNC Financial Services, and Akamai Technologies. Atmel, which makes touchscreen controllers, is sitting near a 52-week high, despite posting shrinking revenue and earnings lately. The company is cutting costs to boost profit margins, and is optimistic, seeing improving business conditions and a healthier backlog.

  • [By Selena Maranjian]

    Among holdings in which Gotham Asset Management increased its stake was Atmel (NASDAQ: ATML  ) , which makes touchscreen controllers. The stock recently hit a 52-week high, but it has been posting shrinking revenue and earnings lately. The company is plumping up its profit margins by cutting costs, has a growing backlog, and expects improving business conditions. Some see the stock as u! ndervalue! d, with its forward P/E near 14.

  • source from Top Stocks Blog:

Friday, March 7, 2014

3 Death-Defying Dividend Stocks to Buy Now

RSS Logo Lawrence Meyers Popular Posts: 3 Dividend Stocks to Sell Before It's Too Late4 Monthly Dividend Stocks for a Steady Diet of IncomeNaked Puts: Make a Grand This Month With Options Recent Posts: 3 Death-Defying Dividend Stocks to Buy Now RICK Stock: Rick’s Cabaret Might Have Legs 3 Dividend Stocks to Sell Before It's Too Late View All Posts

There is a lot of anxiety in the fixed income markets, which is especially unsettling for folks living on fixed incomes. 

Forever185 3 Death Defying Dividend Stocks to Buy Now Source: Flickr

Bond yields — forever the backbone of the fixed income investor — have vanished. But the entire concept of retirement investing is built on having investments that are considered safe. Retirees aren't crazy about risk; they want to know their life savings are safe in investments designed to offer capital preservation while throwing off that regular monthly income. 

However, they've been forced to move further out on the risk curve in order to replace those bond yields. That means many are now buying dividend stocks.

Of course, there is a wide range of dividend stocks out there. But for retirees who want safety, the best investments are companies that are both powerhouses and that have a long history of paying dividends — death-defying dividend stocks, if you will. I'm particularly focused on dividend stocks that maintained their payments during the financial crisis.

Here are three of the best dividend stocks if you’re seeking safety.

Death-Defying Dividend Stocks: Coca-Cola (KO)

Coca Cola 3 Death Defying Dividend Stocks to Buy NowDividend Yield: 2.92%

Coca-Cola Co. (KO) definitely checks all the boxes for our list of death-defying dividend stocks. When I first began investing in 1995, KO stock was my first purchase. I wanted safety, security and dividend payments for my first foray. And this stock has only improved since that day some 19 years ago.

Dividend stocks like Coca-Cola always ran the risk of resting on their laurels, but KO has done anything but that. In fact, it’s mind-blowing how many brands and beverages the company now owns. Management remains on the cutting edge too, as evidenced by its recently-announced 10% ownership stake in Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (GMCR).

Today, Coca-Cola stock pays a nearly 3% yield, and its dividend remained solidly in place during the financial crisis. In fact, KO has paid a dividend since 1920. For the cherry on top, its free cash flow runs between $7 billion and $8 billion dollars annually, so Coca-Cola can easily afford the $4.6 billion it pays out.

Death-Defying Dividend Stocks: Dupont (DD)

DuPontLogo e1282585884678 3 Death Defying Dividend Stocks to Buy NowDividend Yield: 2.82%

Dupont (DD), which by the way is short for E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Company, is also one of the most solid dividend stocks you will find. Sure, a chemical company isn't the sexiest play in the world, and it is amazing that all the chemophobia and negative publicity surrounding chemicals hasn't really affected its business.

But like KO, DD stock has remained on the forefront of changing times. Dupont is slowly transforming its straight-up chemical business into a more agricultural-driven entity.  The company’s agribusiness saw an 18% increase in sales in the most recent quarter, driven by its newest products: corn seed and insecticides.

That’s just one reason DD, with its 2.8% yield, is still one of the best dividend stocks. Plus, the payout has historically been about 50% of free cash flow.

Death-Defying Dividend Stocks: Genuine Parts Co. (GPC)

GenuineParts185 3 Death Defying Dividend Stocks to Buy NowDividend Yield: 2.53%

One of my favorite boring companies also makes our list of the best dividend stocks for retirees. Genuine Parts Co. (GPC) is a name you may not know … but you have probably heard of its 1,100 Napa Auto Part stores.

I love auto parts companies because there are zillions of cars on the road, all of which age, need maintenance and therefore need parts. There's an endless supply … kind of like coffee drinkers and smokers.

Plus, GPC has a lot to like that specific to the world of dividend stocks. Its payout is solid as a rock, yielding over 2.5%, and rarely does that amount exceed 50% of free cash flow.

As of this writing, Lawrence Meyers did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. Alas, he sold his Coke stock in 1999.

Monday, March 3, 2014

J.C. Penney Shares Fall Below $5

The last time J.C. Penney Co.'s(JCP) stock price traded this low, the New York Mets were an expansion team.

Shares of the struggling department-store chain dropped 14% on Tuesday and fell below $5, a level it hasn’t closed below on a split-adjusted basis since October 1962.

The latest decline comes after J.C. Penney reported a slim holiday sales gain, making only the barest progress in climbing out of its deep hole. J.C. Penney said comparable-store sales rose about 2% in the fourth quarter, the first time since the second quarter of 2011 that the company reported growth in the closely watched figure.

The quarterly sales gain “is a step in the right direction (but) the slope of the improvement continues to disappoint,’ said analysts at Sterne Agee, adding that Penney’s “sales trend need to improve materially better…and quickly.”

J.C. Penney shares have been mired in a steep downtrend for years. Shares traded above $40 two years ago and as high as $87 in 2007. The company, which was an original member of the S&P 500 going back to its start in 1957, was booted out of the index last year. It currently sports a market capitalization of about $1.5 billion, according to FactSet.

Top 10 Financial Stocks For 2015

“J.C. Penney needs the improvement to be much better than currently tracking and it is becoming increasingly critical that the company starts to see meaningful improvement if it is to survive as currently constituted,” Sterne Agee says.

As an aside, the Mets finished that 1962 season with a woeful 120 losses. The team rebounded to win its first World Series seven years later.

If only J.C. Penney could stage such a turnaround.

–Kevin Kingsbury and Ben Fox Rubin contributed to this report.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Pier 1 Imports Exports Guidance

Pier 1 Imports (NYSE: PIR  ) has cut full-year guidance for the second time in as many months. Like many other retailers, it blames the exceptionally severe winter weather for the reduced foot traffic that the company experienced this winter. Pier 1 was even forced to close some of its locations temporarily, which hurt the company's sales even further.

In this segment from Friday's Investor Beat, host Chris Hill and Motley Fool analyst Ron Gross discuss Pier 1, and the trend of retailers citing the weather for this quarter's troubles. They also talk about why the market gives some companies a pass with this excuse, but why it didn't let Pier 1 off the hook this time.

Now here are two retailers that are dominating the competition
To learn about two retailers with especially good prospects, take a look at The Motley Fool's special free report: "The Death of Wal-Mart: The Real Cash Kings Changing the Face of Retail." In it, you'll see how these two cash kings are able to consistently outperform, and how they're planning to ride the waves of retail's changing tide. You can access it by clicking here.