Sunday, June 30, 2013

Hot Trucking Stocks To Watch For 2014

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of trucking company Arkansas Best (NASDAQ: ABFS  ) revved up the engine, and jumped as much as 17% after announcing its ABF Freight Systems employees had ratified a five-year collective bargaining agreement.

So what: According to Arkansas Best's press release, not only did the collective bargaining agreement pass, but it also passed a majority of the supplements in the ABF National Master Freight Agreement. There are still a few items left to be voted on over the near term, but this vote clears the way for Arkansas Best to be price competitive once again with its peers.

Hot Trucking Stocks To Watch For 2014: Netlist Inc.(NLST)

Netlist, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, designs, manufactures, and sells intelligent memory subsystems for the datacenter server, high-performance computing, and communications markets primarily in the United States and the People?s Republic of China. The company?s memory subsystems consist of combinations of dynamic random access memory integrated circuits, NAND flash memory components, application-specific integrated circuits, and other components assembled on printed circuit boards. It offers its products under the HyperCloud and NVvault trade marks. The company markets and sells its products through a direct sales force and a network of independent sales representatives to original equipment manufacturers and electronic manufacturing services providers. Netlist, Inc. was founded in 2000 and is headquartered in Irvine, California.

Hot Trucking Stocks To Watch For 2014: Southern Pacific Resource Corp (STP.TO)

Southern Pacific Resource Corp. engages in the exploration and development of in-situ oil sands properties located in northern Alberta, Canada; and development and production of heavy oil, conventional oil and gas, natural gas, and bitumen in western Canada. The company�s principal properties include 100 % working interests in STP-McKay oil sands leases covering approximately 59 sections or 37,760 acres of oil sands leases located in the Athabasca oil sands in north-eastern Alberta; and STP-Senlac thermal heavy oil asset that includes 3 sections of 100 percent owned lands and approximately 2 net sections of other lands located to the west of Unity, Saskatchewan. It also owns 85% working interests in 377 sections or 241,280 gross acres of oil sands mineral rights outside of the McKay Block in the Athabasca oil sands of Alberta. The company was formerly known as Southern Pacific Development Corp. and changed its name to Southern Pacific Resource Corp. in March 2006. Souther n Pacific Resource Corp. was incorporated in 1953 and is headquartered in Calgary, Canada.

Top 10 Diversified Bank Companies To Own In Right Now: Telus Corporation(TU)

TELUS Corporation provides telecommunications products and services primarily in Canada. Its telecommunications products and services include wireless, data, Internet protocol (IP), voice, and television. The company operates through two segments, Wireless and Wireline. The Wireless segment provides digital personal communications, equipment sales, and wireless Internet services. The Wireline segment offers voice local and voice long distance services; data services, which include television, and managed and legacy data services, as well as Internet, enhanced data, and hosting services; and other telecommunications services. TELUS Corporation was founded in 1993 and is based in Burnaby, Canada.

Hot Trucking Stocks To Watch For 2014: Resource Capital Corp.(RSO)

Resource Capital Corp. operates as a specialty finance company that focuses primarily on commercial real estate and commercial finance in the United States. The company?s commercial real estate-related investments include first mortgage loans, first priority interests in first mortgage real estate loans, subordinate interests in first mortgage real estate loans, mezzanine loans, and commercial mortgage-backed securities. It also invests in commercial finance assets, including senior secured corporate loans, other asset-backed securities, equipment leases and notes, trust preferred securities, and debt tranches of collateralized debt and loan obligations. The company qualifies as a real estate investment trust (REIT) for federal income tax purposes. As a REIT, it is not subject to federal corporate income tax to the extent that it distributes 90% of its REIT taxable income. The company was founded in 2005 and is based in New York, New York.

Hot Trucking Stocks To Watch For 2014: United Bancshares Inc.(UBOH)

United Bancshares, Inc. operates as a bank holding company for The Union Bank Company that engages in the provision of commercial banking services to small and middle-market businesses and individuals. It accepts various deposit products, including checking accounts, savings and money market accounts, time certificates of deposit, time deposits, and demand deposits. The company also offers various loan products that consist of commercial, consumer, agricultural, residential mortgage, and home equity loans. In addition, it provides automatic teller machine services, safe deposit box rentals, and other personalized banking services. The company serves primarily in the Ohio counties of Allen, Hancock, Putnam, Sandusky, Van Wert, and Wood, as well as with office locations in Bowling Green, Columbus Grove, Delphos, Findlay, Gibsonburg, Kalida, Leipsic, Lima, Ottawa, and Pemberville, Ohio. United Bancshares, Inc. was founded in 1904 and is headquartered in Columbus Grove, Ohio.< /p>

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Top 5 Net Payout Yield Stocks To Own For 2014

In 2007, the band Radiohead released its album In Rainbows through its website and allowed fans to pay what they wanted for it. As an experiment in distribution and dependence on record labels, the outcome for one of the most beloved bands was unclear. One firm estimated that only 38% of fans paid anything, arriving at an average $2.26 per album downloaded -- far from the current typical floor of $10 per album. However, lead singer Thom Yorke responded that "in terms of digital income, we've made more money out of this record than out of all the other Radiohead albums put together, forever." Even so, the band ditched the pay-what-you-want model for its next album.

Even with Radiohead's questionable outcome with the scheme,�Green Dot's� (NYSE: GDOT  ) GoBank, launched in January, is offering checking accounts where its members decide what to pay as a monthly fee, between $0 and $9. Does this make any sense for the company to think customers will voluntarily pay?

Top 5 Net Payout Yield Stocks To Own For 2014: Achieva Limited (A02.SI)

Achieva Limited, an investment holding company, engages in the marketing and distribution IT and computer peripherals, parts, and software. The company offers data storage devices, such as data storage devices, such as hard disk drives and opto-magnetic removable disk drives; modems; graphics and sound cards; monitors; digital cameras; and voice over IP devices. It also provides motherboards, multi-media peripherals, DVR surveillance systems, DIMM for PCs and notebooks, CPU and NAND flash products, PC systems, network attached storage products, and portable capsule speakers, as well as communicator, audio, and networking products. In addition, the company offers TV media player under its Astone brand; and portable hard disk under its Ovation brand. It has operations in Malaysia, Australia, the Philippines, Singapore, Indonesia, and Vietnam. The company was incorporated in 1993 and is based in Singapore.

Top 5 Net Payout Yield Stocks To Own For 2014: Crimson Exploration Inc. (CXPO)

Crimson Exploration Inc., an independent energy company, engages in the acquisition, exploitation, exploration, and development of natural gas and crude oil properties primarily in south, southeast, and east Texas; Colorado; Louisiana; and Mississippi. As of December 31, 2011, its estimated proved reserves comprised 200.4 billion cubic feet equivalent, consisting of 162.7 billion cubic feet of natural gas; and 6.3 million barrels of crude oil, condensate, and natural gas liquids. The company was founded in 1987 and is based in Houston, Texas.

Top 10 Railroad Companies To Buy Right Now: LSI Industries Inc.(LYTS)

LSI Industries Inc. provides corporate visual image solutions primarily in the United States, Canada, Australia, and Latin America. It operates in three segments: Lighting, Graphics, and Technology. The Lighting segment manufactures and markets outdoor and indoor lighting, canopy lighting, landscape lighting, light emitting diodes (LED) lighting, light poles, and photometric layouts products, as well as lighting analysis services. The Graphics segment manufactures and sells exterior and interior visual image elements for use in visual image programs. It offers signage and canopy graphics; pump dispenser graphics; building fascia graphics; decals; interior signage and marketing graphics; aisle markers; wall mural graphics; fleet graphics; prototype program graphics; and solid state LED video screens for the sports and advertising markets, as well as installation services for graphics products. The Technology segment designs, produces, and supports light engines and large fo rmat video screens using LED technology; and specialty LED lighting. Additionally, the company offers menu board systems. It serves commercial, industrial, and multi-site retail markets; petroleum/convenience stores; sports and advertising; and entertainment markets. The company sells its products through regional sales managers, independent sales representatives, and distributors. LSI Industries was founded in 1976 and is headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Top 5 Net Payout Yield Stocks To Own For 2014: Peregrine Pharmaceuticals Inc.(PPHM)

Peregrine Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company, engages in the research and development of monoclonal antibodies for the treatment of cancer and viral infections. Its products under development include bavituximab, a phosphatidylserine-targeting antibody, which is in Phase II trials for the treatment of front-line and second-line non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), and pancreatic cancer; and Cotara, a DNA/histone-targeting antibody that is in Phase II trial for the treatment of recurrent glioblastoma multiforme. The company is also developing bavituximab in combination with ribavirin, which is in Phase II clinical trial for the treatment of patients with genotype-1 hepatitis C virus infection. In addition, it has investigator-sponsored trial programs that evaluate bavituximab for the treatment of patients with liver cancer, second-line castration resistant prostate cancer, HER-2 negative metastatic breast cancer, and locally advanced or metasta tic NSCLC. Further, the company, through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Avid Bioservices, Inc., provides integrated current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP) commercial and clinical manufacturing services in the United States, including contract manufacturing of antibodies, recombinant proteins, and enzymes; cell culture development; process development; and testing of biologics for biopharmaceutical and biotechnology companies under cGMP. It has licensing agreements with the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center; Merck KGaA; SuperGen, Inc.; and Affitech A/S. Peregrine Pharmaceuticals, Inc. intends to sell its products in the United States and internationally in collaboration with marketing partners or through a direct sales force. The company was founded in 1981 and is based in Tustin, California.

Top 5 Net Payout Yield Stocks To Own For 2014: Total Access Comm Pub Co Ltd (B2W.SI)

Total Access Communication Public Company Limited provides wireless telecommunication services in Thailand. It operates its mobile business on 800 MHz and 1800 MHz frequency bands. The company offers telephone, international roaming, voice, and interconnection services; value added services on mobile phones; and mobile Internet, online social network, and other data services. It also engages in base station sublease business; the sale of telephone sets, smart phones and tablets, SIM cards, SIM card packages, refill vouchers, and starter kits. As of December 31, 2011, the company had 23.2 million subscribers. Total Access Communication Public Company Limited was founded in 1989 and is based in Bangkok, Thailand.

Friday, June 28, 2013

5 Undeniable Reasons Your Prescription Drug Costs Are So Ridiculously High

Americans spend a little less than $1,000 annually per person on average for prescription drugs. That's the average, which means that many spend a lot more. Why are prescription costs so ridiculously high? You might not like the answers, but here they are.

1. You're paying for other drugs that you don't use.
When you put your money down at the pharmacy for Lyrica, the nerve and muscle pain drug from Pfizer (NYSE: PFE  ) , you're really paying for your Lyrica prescription plus a whole host of other drugs. How's that possible? The answer lies in the realities of the drug development process.

Dr. Josh Bloom with the American Council on Science and Health estimates that it takes a drugmaker an average of 14 years to bring a drug to market -- at a total cost of around $1.3 billion. However, only one out of every 50 drugs that start down the development path actually make it to market. And, of those that do, typically only two out of 10 will make a profit.

Pfizer spent around $890 million on cholesterol drug torcetrapib, only to cancel the drug's development program in 2006 after serious safety concerns. The big pharmaceutical company wrote off $2.8 billion on inhalable insulin Exubera after consumers simply didn't like it.

How did Pfizer make up for those and other losses? Like all the other drugmakers, it added to the cost of the drugs that did succeed -- so Lyrica and others cost more than they would have otherwise. 

2. You're paying for the world.
The weight of the world might not be on your shoulders, but the weight of subsidizing the world's drugs is. Prescription drug costs are higher in the U.S. than in any other country. Per-capita pharmaceutical spending in Canada, the second-highest nation, is a whopping 33% lower than in the U.S.

Two words explain why: price controls. Most other countries establish fixed price limits that they will pay for prescription drugs. What this means, though, is that pharmaceutical companies raise their prices for prescription drugs sold in the U.S. to make up for charging lower prices throughout the rest of the world.

You might think the simple solution is to implement price controls in the U.S., too. Such a move probably would lower prices for the drugs currently available.

The problem, though, is that it would provide financial disincentives for pharmaceutical companies to develop as many new drugs as they do now. If that happened, it could end up actually increasing overall health care costs, since taking prescription drugs is frequently much less expensive than other medical treatments.

3. You're paying for others to find out about the drug you use.
Marketing is king in the world of pharmaceuticals. And it demands a king's ransom. Unfortunately, you ultimately pay that ransom every time you buy a prescription drug.

Pfizer's advertising budget last year totaled more than $622 million. Over half of that budget was spent promoting three drugs -- Celebrex, Viagra, and Lyrica.Eli Lilly (NYSE: LLY  ) wasn't far behind with an ad budget topping $433 million. Nearly 94% of that amount was spent on only two drugs, in this case Cymbalta and Cialis.

Nielsen's tracking found that the top 10 pharmaceutical companies spent $2.7 billion last year on direct-to-consumer advertising. However, that figure doesn't include online advertising or physician promotions, so the actual marketing budgets for the big pharma companies is even larger. Research firm Cegedim estimates that total pharmaceutical industry spending on promoting drugs was around $28 billion in 2010.

You're also likely picking up part of the tab for the companies mistakes in how they promote their products. For example, Abbott Labs (NYSE: ABT  ) settled federal and state lawsuits accusing the company of inappropriate promotion practices for epilepsy drug Depakote for a cool $1.6 billion last year.

At the time of the settlement, the Justice Department said that the case demonstrated that "those who put profits ahead of patients will pay a hefty price." A hefty price was surely paid, but Abbott's profits for 2012 were more than 26% higher than either of the previous two years.

4. You're paying Uncle Sam.
Don't forget your good friends at the IRS. The passage of the Affordable Care Act brought new fees for large drugmakers totaling $80 billion. That amount is spread over multiple years, though. "Only" $2.8 billion was paid by pharmaceutical companies last year.

Technically, the big pharma companies pay these fees, which basically are excise taxes. However, those companies can't pay the IRS unless it first gets the money from its customers. Ultimately, you're paying Uncle Sam.

5. You're paying for profits.
Regardless of what product you purchase, you're paying for the maker of those products to make money. It's no different with prescription drugs. The concern is over whether prices paid by consumers contribute to excessive profits.

Most pharmaceutical companies generate nice profits. Despite Lilly's woes from losing patent protection for some of its big drugs, the company still had a profit margin of over 20%. Even though Abbott paid a steep fine last year for a legal settlement, its profit margin was 13% -- better than a lot of companies.

Pfizer ranks first among all Dow index stocks in terms of profit margin, with a margin of nearly 27%. The other two pharmaceutical companies in the Dow have profit margins higher than the average Dow company. However, of the top 10 Dow stocks ranked by profit margin, four are technology firms. Pharmaceutical companies generate high profit margins, but they're not always the highest among all industries.

A little good news
You're paying ridiculously high prices for prescriptions, but there is a little bit of good news. In 2012, Americans actually spent less on prescription drugs than the prior year for the first time on record. It was only 1% less -- but that's still better than spending more.

I figure this improvement amounts to maybe having an extra $10 in the wallet for the average American. You might want to hold on to that money. You'll probably need it soon enough.

Wondering if you'll spend more of your extra money because of Obamacare? Don't worry -- you're not alone. To help prepare investors for the massive changes coming to the American health care system, The Motley Fool created a special free report that makes this complex topic easily understandable. Download "Everything You Need to Know About Obamacare" and discover how the law may impact your taxes, health insurance, and investments. Click here for your free copy today.

Infographic: Does the Company Care That You Own Netflix Stock?

Netflix (NASDAQ: NFLX  ) held its annual shareholder meeting on June 7, and it was a stormy affair. Seemingly routine matters like reelecting directors met extremely high levels of shareholder resistance, and four out of five shareholder proposals passed muster despite the board recommending the opposite outcome.

The video king has crossed voting swords with shareholders before, and hasn't always come out on the winning side. But Netflix seems slow to implement these non-binding votes. Will the sheer weight of this year's opposing votes force Netflix to take action?

Netflix Shareholder Votes, 2013 | Infographics.

Check out the final proxy statement to dive into fine detail on what each of the shareholder measures actually means.

The four proposals that met shareholder approval despite Netflix's objections are all designed to increase transparency and corporate governance processes. Corporate governance advisory firm ISS rates Netflix's governance structure a dismal 10, where a score of 1 is excellent and 10 is the worst you can get. The company scores particularly poorly in terms of shareholder rights and audit processes, reflecting the heavy dose of anti-takeover measures Netflix has put in place. Three of the newly approved shareholder actions would make the company an easier target for potentially unwanted buyouts. You can bet your favorite goat that activist investor Carl Icahn voted his nearly 10% holdings in favor of these measures.

The company has failed to act on shareholder votes before, and probably won't implement all of these measures this time. I voted my modest holdings against all of them personally, because I believe in the company's strategic direction and appreciate the need to stave off unwanted takeover proposals. I can think of several oft-rumored buyers that would largely ruin Netflix's global domination strategy due to clashing corporate cultures and long-term goals. And I can't come up with a single buyout idea that makes sense.

Still, I'm in the minority here. I may not agree with your vote, but I'll fight for your right to cast it or the democratic process becomes a moot point. So I'm rooting for Hastings and Co. to take these votes to heart, sooner rather than later. It's the right thing to do if Netflix respects its shareholders at all.

The television landscape is changing quickly, with new entrants like Netflix and disrupting traditional networks. The Motley Fool's new free report "Who Will Own the Future of Television?" details the risks and opportunities in TV. Click here to read the full report!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Top 10 Freight Companies To Buy For 2014

Watch out, grocery chain investors: The $250 billion freight train that is Wal-Mart (NYSE: WMT  ) is looking to push you off the rails.

On Monday Wal-Mart announced changes across its sourcing, training, and operations "that will ensure the quality and freshness of the fruits and vegetables that it offers customers."

The plan
So how, exactly, does this corporate behemoth intend to achieve its goal?�

First, the initiative includes plans to purchase produce directly from growers with the guidance of new produce experts hired by the company. As a result, Wal-Mart will be able to take greater advantage of its own industry-leading network of distribution centers and trucking systems to bring fruits and vegetables to store shelves even faster than its current system allows.

Top 10 Freight Companies To Buy For 2014: State Street Corporation(STT)

State Street Corporation, a financial holding company, provides various financial products and services to institutional investors worldwide. The company?s Investment Servicing business line provides products and services, including custody, product- and participant-level accounting; daily pricing and administration; master trust and master custody; record-keeping; foreign exchange, brokerage, and other trading services; securities finance; deposit and short-term investment facilities; loan and lease financing; investment manager and alternative investment manager operations outsourcing; and performance, risk, and compliance analytics. This segment also offers shareholder services, which comprise mutual fund and collective investment fund shareholder accounting. Its Investment Management business line provides a range of investment management, investment research, and other related services, such as securities finance; and strategies for managing passive and active financ ial assets, such as enhanced indexing and hedge fund strategies for U.S. and global equities and fixed-income securities. The company serves mutual funds, collective investment funds and other investment pools, corporate and public retirement plans, insurance companies, foundations, endowments, and investment managers. State Street Corporation was founded in 1832 and is headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts.

Top 10 Freight Companies To Buy For 2014: Nucor Corporation(NUE)

Nucor Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the manufacture and sale of steel and steel products in North America and internationally. It operates through three segments: Steel Mills, Steel Products, and Raw Materials. The Steel Mills segment produces hot and cold-rolled sheet steel; plate steel; structural steel comprising wide-flange beams, beam blanks, and sheet piling; and bar steel, such as blooms, billets, concrete reinforcing bar, merchant bar, and special bar quality products. The Steel Products segment offers steel joists and joist girders, steel deck, fabricated concrete reinforcing steel, cold finished steel, steel fasteners, metal building systems, light gauge steel framing, steel grating and expanded metal, and wire and wire mesh products. The Raw Materials segment produces direct reduced iron (DRI); brokers ferrous and nonferrous metals, pig iron, hot briquetted iron, and DRI; supplies ferro-alloys; and processes ferrous and nonferrous scrap metal products. The company?s operations also include various international trading companies that buy and sell steel and steel products. It sells its hot-rolled steel and cold-rolled steel to steel service centers, fabricators, and manufacturers; steel joists and joist girders, and steel deck to general contractors and fabricators; and cold finished steel and steel fasteners to distributors and manufacturers. The company?s products are used by contractors in constructing highways, bridges, reservoirs, utilities, hospitals, schools, airports, stadiums, and high-rise buildings. Nucor Corporation was founded in 1940 and is based in Charlotte, North Carolina.

10 Best Recreation Stocks To Watch For 2014: Lions Gate Metals Inc(LGM.V)

Lions Gate Metals Inc., a junior resource company, engages in the acquisition, exploration, and development of natural resource properties in North America. The company explores for copper, molybdenum, and gold deposits. It principally holds a 100% interest in the Poplar copper - molybdenum deposit that consists of 175 claims covering an area of 69,185 hectares located near Houston, British Columbia. The company was formerly known as Fortress Base Metals Corp. and changed its name to Lions Gate Metals Inc. in July 2008. Lions Gate Metals Inc. was incorporated in 1980 and is headquartered in Vancouver, Canada.

Top 10 Freight Companies To Buy For 2014: HF Financial Corp.(HFFC)

HF Financial Corp. operates as the holding company for Home Federal Bank that provides consumer and commercial business banking services in the United States. It offers deposit accounts, such as savings accounts, checking accounts, money market accounts, and certificate of deposits. The company?s loan portfolio comprises one- to four-family residential, commercial business, agriculture, multi-family, commercial real estate, and construction loans; and consumer loans, including automobile loans, home equity loans, loans secured by deposit accounts, and student loans. In addition, it provides annuities, mutual funds, life insurance, and other financial products and services, as well as equipment leasing services. As of June 30, 2011, the company had 34 banking centers. HF Financial Corp. was founded in 1929 and is headquartered in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

Top 10 Freight Companies To Buy For 2014: Yongmao Holdings Limited (E6A.SI)

Yongmao Holdings Limited, an investment holding company, engages in the design, manufacture, and sale of tower cranes, components, and accessories for infrastructure projects, construction sites, and shipbuilding industry in the People�s Republic of China. Its tower cranes are primarily used to lift building materials and equipment. The company offers various tower cranes with lifting capacities in the range of 80 to 1200 tonne meters. In addition, it is involved in the sale, distribution, rental, financial leasing, and service of tower cranes, construction machinery, and related components. The company provides its products under the Yongmao brand name primarily to construction equipment distributors and equipment rental companies. Yongmao Holdings Limited also exports its products to approximately 70 countries and areas worldwide. Yongmao Holdings Limited was founded in 1992 and is based in Singapore. Yongmao Holdings Limited is a subsidiary of Sun & Tian Investment Pte . Ltd.

Top 10 Freight Companies To Buy For 2014: RigNet Inc.(RNET)

RigNet, Inc. provides remote communications services for the oil and gas industry. It offers remote communications services through a controlled and managed Internet protocol/multiprotocol label switching (IP/MPLS) global network, enabling drilling contractors, oil companies, and oilfield service companies to communicate. The company offers a communications package of voice, data, video, networking, and real-time data management to offshore and land-based remote locations. It primarily provides voice-over-Internet-protocol, data, and high-speed Internet access, as well as other value-added services, such as video conferencing solutions, TurboNet solutions for wide area network, real-time data management solutions, Wi-Fi hotspots and Internet kiosks, wireless intercoms, and handheld radios. The company also offers Secure Oil Information Link, a managed members-only communications network hub that enables collaborative partners, suppliers, and customers to transfer and share data. It serves the owners and operators of offshore drilling rigs and production facilities, land rigs, remote offices, and supply bases primarily in the United States, Brazil, Norway, the United Kingdom, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, and Australia. The company was founded in 2000 and is headquartered in Houston, Texas.

Top 10 Freight Companies To Buy For 2014: China Farm Equipment Limited (A8J.SI)

China Farm Equipment Limited, an investment holding company, engages in the design, development, production, and sale of farm equipment and diesel engines. Its products include combine harvesters, rotary plough machines and components, and soil tillages, as well as air cooling and water cooling diesel engines. The company offers combine harvesters and plough machines under the Dragon Boat brand name to farmers; and diesel engines under the Binhu and Dragon Boat brand names to the manufacturers of automobiles, plough machines, harvesters, grinders, water pumps, rice mills, road rollers, spiral propellers, and electric generators. China Farm Equipment Limited sells its products through distributors in the People�s Republic of China, as well as exports its products to Vietnam, Myanmar, Thailand, and Bangladesh. The company was incorporated in 2006 and is based in Miluo City, the People�s Republic of China. China Farm Equipment Limited is a subsidiary of China Longzhou Techn ologies Holdings Co., Ltd.

Top 10 Freight Companies To Buy For 2014: Mutiny Gold Ltd(MYG.AX)

Mutiny Gold Limited, a diversified resource company, engages in the exploration and development of gold, copper, and nickel tenements in western Australia. Its lead project, the Deflector Gold/Copper deposit, which is within Gullewa tenements located in south Murchison region of western Australia. The company was founded in 2002 and is based in South Perth, Australia.

Top 10 Freight Companies To Buy For 2014: Ridley Corporation Ltd(RIC.AX)

Ridley Corporation Limited, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the production and marketing of stockfeed and animal feed supplements to primary producers and rural communities in Australasia. The company produces and markets stock and poultry feeds, aqua feeds, animal protein meals, vitamin and mineral supplements, and rural merchandise under the Barastoc, Rumevite, Cobber, and Ridley Aqua-Feed brand names. It also produces and refines solar salt. The company markets salt under the Mermaid, Kooka, Crown, and Saxa brand names. It serves food producers in the beef, dairy, poultry, pig, sheep, and aquaculture industries; producers in the laboratory animals, and the equine and canines in the recreational sector; and consumer retail, water treatment, and food manufacturing industries, as well as the pool sector. The company was founded in 1987 and is headquartered in Melbourne, Australia.

Top 10 Freight Companies To Buy For 2014: MAP Pharmaceuticals Inc.(MAPP)

MAP Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a development stage company, focuses on the enhancement of the therapeutic benefits and commercial attractiveness of proven drugs in the field of neurology through its formulation and inhalation technologies. The company?s lead product candidate includes LEVADEX, an orally inhaled version of dihydroergotamine mesylate (DHE) that has completed Phase III clinical trials for the acute treatment of migraine in adults. Its proprietary technologies consist of particle creation and formulation technologies, which can be applied to small or large molecules, including peptides and proteins; and aerosol delivery platforms, such as TEMPO inhaler, a pressurized metered dose inhaler (MDI) that dispenses drug automatically when the patient inhales. MAP Pharmaceuticals, Inc. was founded in 2003 and is based in Mountain View, California.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

A Closer Look at 5 FTSE Boardrooms

LONDON -- Management can make all the difference to a company's success -- and thus its share price.

The best companies are those run by talented and experienced leaders with strong vested interests in the success of the business, held in check by a board with sound financial and business acumen. Some of the worst investments to hold are those run by executives collecting fat rewards as the underlying business goes to pot.

In recent weeks, I've assessed the boardrooms of five companies within the FTSE 100: Admiral Group (LSE: ADM  ) , Babcock International (LSE: BAB  ) , Capita (LSE: CPI  ) , InterContinental Hotels (LSE: IHG  ) and Legal & General (LSE: LGEN  ) .Today I am going to summarize what I found.

Five FTSE boardrooms
I analyze management teams from five different angles, giving each a score out of five to make a maximum score of 25. Here's my overall assessment:













InterContinental Hotels




Legal & General





















InterContinental Hotels




Legal & General








A tale of two start-ups
Admiral is one of those few companies that have grown from a start-up to an FTSE 100 member under the same management. CEO Harry Engelhardt and chief operating officer David Stephens were both in at the beginning in 1993. They have below-market remuneration and multimillion-pound shareholdings to align their interests with investors. A well-qualified chairman and nonexecutive team provide checks and balances to the entrenched management.

Like Admiral, public-sector outsourcer Capita grew from a start-up to an FTSE 100 company with members of the current management, but the similarity stops there. The CEO and finance director have been with the company since its formation in the 1980s, though the company lost founder Sir Rodney Aldridge in 2006 when it emerged that he had secretly lent £1 million to the Labor Party.

Whereas Admiral has established the best of corporate-governance practices, Capita contravenes the Governance Code by having a majority of executive directors, which it justifies by the "complexity" of its business. It previously had an executive chairman and appointed a nonexec from the executive ranks. Perhaps it's no coincidence that Capita's directors have few cross-directorships with other FTSE boards.

Babcock has a relatively long-serving CEO. Peter Rogers has been at the helm since 2003. He has grown the company organically and through acquisition, increasing the market cap from £150 million to £4 billion and multiplying the share price 10 times. It's a clever board, with the four executives having respective qualifications in accountancy, surveying, engineering, and law. With half its business coming from the Ministry of Defense, the presence of the former U.K. Security and Intelligence Coordinator must be a great help.

InterContinental Hotels' CEO has only been in the role since 2011 but has worked for the company and its predecessors since 1992 and was finance director for eight years. He looks a safe pair of hands, but the chairman and other executives are also relatively new in their current roles. The executives have substantial shareholdings.

Legal & General has announced a new management structure since my review last week. It has appointed one of the divisional directors to the finance director vacancy. However, the CEO has only been in the role since June of last year, having been finance director previously, and his overseas expansion strategy has yet to be tested. The board is almost entirely composed of people with finance-sector or finance-director backgrounds.

I've collated all my FTSE 100 boardroom verdicts on this summary page, and you can read more by following the individual company links.

Buffett's favorite FTSE share
Legendary investor Warren Buffett has always looked for impressive management teams when picking stocks. His recent acquisition, Heinz, has long had a reputation for strong management. Indeed, Buffett praised its "excellent management," as well as its high-quality products and continuous innovation.

So it's important to tell you about the FTSE 100 company in which the billionaire stock-picker has a substantial stake. A special free report from The Motley Fool -- "The One U.K. Share Warren Buffett Loves" -- explains Buffett's purchase and investing logic in full. And Buffett, don't forget, rarely invests outside his native United States, which makes this British blue chip -- and its management -- all the more attractive. So why not download the report today? It's totally free and comes with no further obligation.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Top 10 Quality Companies To Watch In Right Now

Korean auto giant Hyundai (NASDAQOTH: HYMTF  ) and its corporate cousin Kia (NASDAQOTH: KIMTF  ) , which said �Wednesday that they would jointly recall over 1.8 million vehicles in the U.S. to fix a faulty brake-light switch, now say they will expand the recall globally.

It's a necessary move: Any failure involving brake lights could obviously lead to accidents. But the recall, which is Hyundai's largest ever in the U.S., has raised concerns that the company's quality may have been sacrificed for quantity during the company's rapid global expansion.

Did Hyundai expand too rapidly?
A Reuters report on Thursday cited a number of well-placed sources calling Hyundai's quality control into question. They aren't the only ones: While Consumer Reports still rates the company's bread-and-butter Elantra and Sonata models as average or better for reliability, the company fell to 18th�(from 11th) in a key J.D. Power quality survey last year.

Top 10 Quality Companies To Watch In Right Now: Franklin Financial Corporation(FRNK)

Franklin Financial Corporation operates as a holding company for Franklin Federal Savings Bank that offers financial services to consumers and businesses. Its deposit products include passbook savings, money market savings, and money market checking, as well as certificates of deposit. The company?s loan portfolio comprises nonresidential real estate loans, multi-family real estate loans, one-to four-family residential loans, construction loans, land and land development loans, non-real estate loans, and second mortgages. It also offers a range of financial services, including mutual funds; debt, equity, and government securities; retirement accounts; insurance products; and fixed and variable annuities. Franklin Financial Corporation operates eight full-service retail banking offices in the Greater Richmond area of central Virginia. The company was founded in 1933 and is headquartered in Glen Allen, Virginia.

Top 10 Quality Companies To Watch In Right Now: Harris & Harris Group Inc.(TINY)

Harris & Harris Group, Inc. is a venture capital and venture debt firm specializing in seed, start up, early stage, and mid venture investments. It primarily invests in tiny-technology-enabled companies with a focus on nanotechnology, microsystems, and microelectromechanical systems technology. Harris & Harris Group, Inc. was founded in 1981 and is based in New York, New York with additional offices in Palo Alto, California and Los Angeles, California.

Top Undervalued Companies To Buy Right Now: Threegold Resources Inc (THG.V)

Threegold Resources Inc. engages in the acquisition and exploration of mineral properties located primarily in the Abitibi and Gasp茅sie regions of Canada. It primarily explores for gold, copper, zinc, precious metals, rare earth mineralizations, lead, and silver. The company was incorporated in 2002 and is headquartered in Val-d�Or, Canada.

Top 10 Quality Companies To Watch In Right Now: CACI International Inc. (CACI)

CACI International Inc, through its subsidiaries, provides information solutions and services to the U.S. federal government and commercial markets in North America and internationally. The company offers enterprise information technology (IT) solutions and services for the design, development, integration, deployment, operations and management, sustainment, and security of clients� infrastructure; information solutions and services that automate the knowledge management lifecycle; and enterprise-level system solutions in the domain of procurement, financial, human capital, logistics, and supply chain management. It also offers intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance solutions; command and control solutions to support military, homeland security, law enforcement, border security, emergency response, and disaster relief missions; and develops and manages logistics information systems, and simulation and modeling toolsets, as well as provides logistics engineering se rvices. In addition, the company offers cyber security services that support preparing for, protecting against, detecting, reacting, and responding to the cyber threats; integrated security solutions and services for mitigating and countering the effects of natural, technological, and man-made hazards; geospatial solutions relating to defense, intelligence, homeland security, and commercial applications; and government investigation and litigation support solutions. Further, it provides healthcare IT solutions; identity management solutions; program management, and system engineering and technical assistance services to government program offices; mobility solutions and services; and planning, design, implementation, and management solutions that resolve technical or business needs for commercial and government clients in the telecommunications, education, financial services, healthcare services, and transportation sectors. The company was founded in 1962 and is headquartere d in Arlington, Virginia.

Top 10 Quality Companies To Watch In Right Now: Eratat Lifestyle Limited (FO8.SI)

Eratat Lifestyle Limited, an investment holding company, engages in the design, manufacture, and distribution of lifestyle fashion footwear; and design and distribution of lifestyle fashion apparel in the People�s Republic of China. The company offers its products under the ERATAT name. It also produces shoe materials, sports shoes, travel shoes, soles, and fabric bags, as well as manufactures various kinds of computer embroidery and dresses. Eratat Lifestyle Limited markets its products to specialty stores or shop-in-shops through its distributors and retailers. In addition, the company produces footwear products under the third party brands for sale to its export distributors. The company was formerly known as China Eratat Sports Fashion Limited and changed its name to Eratat Lifestyle Limited in July 2010. Eratat Lifestyle Limited was founded in 1983 and is based in Jinjiang City, the People�s Republic of China.

Top 10 Quality Companies To Watch In Right Now: Rhino Resource Partners LP(RNO)

Rhino Resource Partners LP produces, processes, and sells coal of various steam and metallurgical grades in the United States. The company holds interests in various surface and underground coal mines located in Central Appalachia, Northern Appalachia, the Illinois Basin, and the Western Bituminous region. As of December 31, 2010, it operated 10 mines, including 5 underground and 5 surface mines located in Kentucky, Ohio, and West Virginia. The company markets its steam coal primarily to electric utility companies as fuel for their steam-powered generators; and metallurgical coal for steel and coke producers. It also engages in mining limestone from reserves located at its Sands Hill mining complex and sells it as aggregate to various construction companies and road builders. The company was founded in 2003 and is based in Lexington, Kentucky.

Top 10 Quality Companies To Watch In Right Now: Flaherty & Crumrine/Claymore Preferred Securities Income Fd In (FFC)

Flaherty & Crumrine/Claymore Preferred Securities Income Fund Inc. is a closed-ended fixed income mutual fund launched and managed by Flaherty & Crumrine Incorporated. It invests in the fixed income markets of the United States. The fund employs quantitative analysis to create its portfolios. It benchmarks the performance of its portfolio against the Merrill Lynch 8% Capped DRD Preferred Stock Index, Merrill Lynch Hybrid Preferred Securities Index, and Merrill Lynch Adjustable Preferred Stock 7% Constrained Index. Flaherty & Crumrine/Claymore Preferred Securities Income Fund Inc. was formed on May 23, 2002 and is domiciled in the United States.

Top 10 Quality Companies To Watch In Right Now: Perficient Inc.(PRFT)

Perficient, Inc. provides information technology consulting services to various enterprise companies primarily in the United States. The company designs, builds, and delivers business-driven technology solutions using third party software products. Its solutions include business integration and service oriented architectures, enterprise portals and collaboration, custom applications, and technology platform implementations, as well as customer relationship management, enterprise performance management, enterprise content management, and business intelligence solutions. The company?s solutions enable its clients to operate a real-time enterprise that adapts business processes and the systems that support them to meet the changing demands of marketplace. Perficient, Inc. was founded in 1997 and is headquartered in Saint Louis, Missouri.

Top 10 Quality Companies To Watch In Right Now: Nevada Geothermal Power Inc. (NGP.V)

Nevada Geothermal Power Inc. operates as a renewable energy producer focusing on the development of CLEAN electrical power from high temperature geothermal resources. It holds leasehold interests in eight geothermal projects, including Blue Mountain, Pumpernickel, North Valley, and Edna Mountain in Nevada; New Truckhaven, East Brawley, and South Brawley in California; and Crump Geyser in Oregon. The company was formerly known as Continental Ridge Resources Inc. and changed its name to Nevada Geothermal Power Inc. in May 2003. Nevada Geothermal Power Inc. was founded in 1995 and is based in Vancouver, Canada.

Top 10 Quality Companies To Watch In Right Now: Indl Alliance Ins Com Npv(IAG.TO)

Industrial Alliance Insurance and Financial Services Inc., a life and health insurance company, engages in the provision of various insurance products, savings and retirement plans, and other financial products and services in the United States and Canada. The company offers various individual products and services, such as insurance products comprising life insurance, health insurance, disability insurance, and mortgage insurance products; and wealth management products, including registered retirement savings plans, non-registered retirement savings plans, registered education savings plans, tax free savings accounts, registered retirement income funds, life annuities, and fixed-term annuities, as well as segregated funds, mutual funds, and securities. It also provides various group insurance products consisting of employee plans, such as life and health insurance, accidental death and dismemberment, dental care insurance, short and long-term disability insurance, critic al illness insurance, home care insurance, and medical insurance; and creditor insurance products, such as life, disability, and critical illness insurance products to automobile and other motor vehicle dealers, and financial institutions. In addition, the company provides accidental death and dismemberment insurance, and other specialized insurance products to employers and associations, as well as travel and health insurance, and term life insurance to alumni associations and other affinity groups. Further, it offers mutual fund management, mutual fund brokerage, securities brokerage, trust services, investment management, and financial services brokerage. The company was formerly known as Industrial-Alliance Life Insurance Company and changed its name to Industrial Alliance Insurance and Financial Services Inc. in 2000. Industrial Alliance Insurance and Financial Services Inc. was founded in 1892 and is headquartered in Quebec City, Canada.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Top 5 Long Term Companies To Own In Right Now

The following video is from Tuesday's MarketFoolery podcast, in which host Chris Hill and analysts Jason Moser and Andy Cross discuss the top business and investing stories of the day.

Shares of Buffalo Wild Wings (NASDAQ: BWLD  ) slipped today after the restaurant chain reported an 11% decline in first-quarter earnings. Same-store sales fell 1.4% for company-owned locations compared to a 2.2% decline in franchised locations. Does the disparity suggest bigger problems ahead? Does Buffalo Wild Wings still have room to grow? In this installment of MarketFoolery, our analysts discuss the future of Buffalo Wings.

The best investing approach is to choose great companies and stick with them for the long term. The Motley Fool's free report "3 Stocks That Will Help You Retire Rich" names stocks that could help you build long-term wealth and retire well, along with some winning wealth-building strategies that every investor should be aware of.�Click here now�to keep reading.

Top 5 Long Term Companies To Own In Right Now: Thomson Reuters Corp (TRI.TO)

Thomson Reuters Corporation provides intelligent information for businesses and professionals worldwide. The company allows market participants to connect, access content, and trade in a secure environment through Thomson Reuters Eikon desktop, Thomson Reuters Elektron network, content integration and management technology, content feeds and databases, and transactions infrastructure solutions that support buy- and sell-side customers to trade in foreign exchange, fixed income and derivatives, equities, exchange-traded instruments, and commodities and energy markets. It also offers information, analytics, workflow, and technology solutions to buy-side and off-trading floor customers; access to liquidity in over-the-counter markets, trade execution, and connections for market participants and financial professionals� communities; and a suite of solutions offering informed outcomes to regulated industries and law firms. In addition, the company provides critical information , decision support tools, and software and services to legal, investigation, business, and government professionals; integrated tax compliance and accounting software and services for accounting and law firms, corporations, and government professionals; and intellectual property and scientific resources that enable its customers to discover, develop, and deliver innovations. Further, it offers coverage of global, regional, and national news in 20 languages covering politics, business, finance, entertainment, lifestyle, technology, health, science, and sports; provides governance, risk, and compliance e-learning programs; and engages in advertising-supported direct-to-consumer publishing activities of and its network of Websites, mobile applications, and electronic out-of-home displays. The company was formerly known as The Thomson Corporation and changed its name to Thomson Reuters Corporation in April 2008. The company is headquartered in New York, New York.

Top 5 Long Term Companies To Own In Right Now: Tribal Group(TRB.L)

Tribal Group plc, through its subsidiaries, provides technology, service delivery, and advisory solutions primarily to the educational sector in the United Kingdom, Australasia, and internationally. The company provides education services to the public sector, including software, managed services, school inspection services, consultancy, benchmarking, e-learning, publishing, and training services. Its technology solutions comprise student management products, asset management products, learning management products, program-based systems, platform-based systems, and bespoke solutions. The company?s service delivery solutions include training and development, school improvement, delivery of major education programs for the government, inspection of schools in the south of England, and management of the early years? professional status. Its advisory services comprise performance improvement, program and project management, strategy and innovation, curriculum support, subjec t excellence, school improvement, benchmarking and consultancy for further and higher education, and workforce development services. The company serves schools, colleges, universities, government agencies, and employers to manage their resources and deliver education services. Tribal Group plc was founded in 1999 and is based in London, the United Kingdom.

Top Undervalued Stocks To Own For 2014: Allied Motion Technologies Inc.(AMOT)

Allied Motion Technologies Inc. designs, manufactures, and sells motors, electronic motion controls, and gearing and optical encoder products. It offers brushless and brush direct current (DC) motors, drives, and control electronics comprising servo motors, frameless motors, torque motors, and high speed brushless DC motors for semiconductor manufacturing, industrial automation, medical equipment, military, and aerospace markets. The company also provides high resolution encoders, precision high resolution servo motors, and integrated motor/encoder assemblies to the aerospace and defense, telecommunications, semiconductor, and scanning equipment manufacturing markets. In addition, it offers fractional horsepower permanent magnet DC and brushless DC motors for original equipment applications in various markets, such as trucks, buses, boats, RV's, off-road vehicles, health, fitness, medical, and industrial equipment; and fractional and integral horsepower geared motion solut ions to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) in the commercial and industrial equipment, healthcare, recreation, and non-automotive transportation markets. Further, the company provides motion control technology comprising integrated power electronics, digital controls, and network communications for motor control and power conversion; reduction gearboxes for dialysis equipment, industrial ink jet printers, cash dispensers, bar code readers, laser scanning equipment, fuel injection systems, HVAC actuators, waste water treatment, dosing systems, textile manufacturing, document handling equipment, and studio television cameras; and drive electronics, software, and mechanical processes to OEM customers in industrial, commercial, and medical applications. It distributes its products through its sales force, independent sales representatives, agents, and distributors primarily in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Asia. The company was founded in 1962 and is headquartered in Englewood, Colorado.

Top 5 Long Term Companies To Own In Right Now: Inc.(BIDZ), Inc. operates as an online retailer of jewelry in the United States and internationally. The company operates a Web Site, for the purpose of selling merchandise utilizing an online sales auction platform; and a fixed price online store at It also operates for online retailing of designer products and consumer goods through a sale event concept. The company?s product inventory includes gold, platinum, and silver jewelry sets with diamonds, rubies, emeralds, sapphires, and other precious and semi-precious stones; and a selection of jewelry, including rings, necklaces, earrings, bracelets, jewelry sets, watches, accessories, and brand name merchandises. It also acts as an agent in the sale of certified merchant merchandise owned by third parties; and provides advertising services. The company was founded in 1998 and is headquartered in Culver City, California.

Top 5 Long Term Companies To Own In Right Now: Virgin Media Inc.(VMED)

Virgin Media Inc., through its subsidiaries, provides entertainment and communications services in the United Kingdom. The company offers cable broadband Internet, television, and fixed line telephone services under the Virgin Media brand to residential customers; mobile telephony services through Virgin Mobile, a mobile virtual network operator; broadband and telephone services to residential customers through third-party telecommunications networks; and video on demand services, including access to movies, television programs, music videos, and other on-demand content, as well as provides digital video recorders. It also offers voice, data, and Internet solutions to commercial customers comprising analog telephony and managed data networks and applications, as well as supplies communications services to health and emergency services providers. As of December 31, 2011, the company provided cable broadband services to approximately 4 million subscribers; cable television s ervices to approximately 3.76 million residential subscribers; cable telephony services to approximately 4.2 million residential subscribers; mobile telephony services to approximately 3 million customers; non-cable fixed line telephone services to approximately 163,300 subscribers; and voice, data, and Internet solutions to approximately 50,000 businesses and 250 public sector organizations. The company offers its products and services through telesales, customer care centers, and online, as well as through its sales force. It serves mobile and fixed-line service providers, systems integrators, and Internet service providers; and private and public sector organizations. The company was formerly known as NTL Incorporated and changed its name to Virgin Media Inc. in February 2007. The company was founded in 1993 and is based in New York, New York.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Don't Get Too Worked Up Over Quanta Services's Earnings

Although business headlines still tout earnings numbers, many investors have moved past net earnings as a measure of a company's economic output. That's because earnings are very often less trustworthy than cash flow, since earnings are more open to manipulation based on dubious judgment calls.

Earnings' unreliability is one of the reasons Foolish investors often flip straight past the income statement to check the cash flow statement. In general, by taking a close look at the cash moving in and out of the business, you can better understand whether the last batch of earnings brought money into the company, or merely disguised a cash gusher with a pretty headline.

Calling all cash flows
When you are trying to buy the market's best stocks, it's worth checking up on your companies' free cash flow once a quarter or so, to see whether it bears any relationship to the net income in the headlines. That's what we do with this series. Today, we're checking in on Quanta Services (NYSE: PWR  ) , whose recent revenue and earnings are plotted below.

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Data is current as of last fully reported fiscal quarter. Dollar values in millions. FCF = free cash flow. FY = fiscal year. TTM = trailing 12 months.

Over the past 12 months, Quanta Services burned $24.6 million cash while it booked net income of $333.0 million. That means it burned through all its revenue and more. That doesn't sound so great. FCF is less than net income. Ideally, we'd like to see the opposite.

All cash is not equal
Unfortunately, the cash flow statement isn't immune from nonsense, either. That's why it pays to take a close look at the components of cash flow from operations, to make sure that the cash flows are of high quality. What does that mean? To me, it means they need to be real and replicable in the upcoming quarters, rather than being offset by continual cash outflows that don't appear on the income statement (such as major capital expenditures).

For instance, cash flow based on cash net income and adjustments for non-cash income-statement expenses (like depreciation) is generally favorable. An increase in cash flow based on stiffing your suppliers (by increasing accounts payable for the short term) or shortchanging Uncle Sam on taxes will come back to bite investors later. The same goes for decreasing accounts receivable; this is good to see, but it's ordinary in recessionary times, and you can only increase collections so much. Finally, adding stock-based compensation expense back to cash flows is questionable when a company hands out a lot of equity to employees and uses cash in later periods to buy back those shares.

So how does the cash flow at Quanta Services look? Take a peek at the chart below, which flags questionable cash flow sources with a red bar.

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Data is current as of last fully reported fiscal quarter. Dollar values in millions. TTM = trailing 12 months.

When I say "questionable cash flow sources," I mean items such as changes in taxes payable, tax benefits from stock options, and asset sales, among others. That's not to say that companies booking these as sources of cash flow are weak, or are engaging in any sort of wrongdoing, or that everything that comes up questionable in my graph is automatically bad news. But whenever a company is getting more than, say, 10% of its cash from operations from these dubious sources, investors ought to make sure to refer to the filings and dig in.

Quanta Services's issue isn't questionable cash flow boosts, but items in that suspect group that reduced cash flow. Within the questionable cash flow figure -- here a negative-- plotted in the TTM period above, adjustments for gains owed to asset sales constituted the biggest reversal. Overall, the biggest drag on FCF came from changes in accounts receivable.

A Foolish final thought
Most investors don't keep tabs on their companies' cash flow. I think that's a mistake. If you take the time to read past the headlines and crack a filing now and then, you're in a much better position to spot potential trouble early. Better yet, you'll improve your odds of finding the underappreciated home-run stocks that provide the market's best returns.

If you're interested in companies like Quanta Services, you might want to check out the jaw-dropping technology that's about to put 100 million Chinese factory workers out on the street – and the 3 companies that control it. We'll tell you all about them in "The Future is Made in America." Click here for instant access to this free report.

We can help you keep tabs on your companies with My Watchlist, our free, personalized stock tracking service.

Add Quanta Services to My Watchlist.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Hot Canadian Companies To Own In Right Now

On Tuesday, the last day of April, the Department of Defense "made it rain" for multiple defense contractors. In all, the DoD awarded 19 contracts Tuesday, promising to pay out more than $2.8 billion in aggregate. Winners among publicly traded companies included:

British defense contractor�BAE Systems' (NASDAQOTH: BAESY  ) Norfolk Ship Repair unit was awarded a $49.4 million firm-fixed-price contract to perform work on the guided missile destroyer USS Porter while in drydock. This contract is expected to be complete by April 2014, but if optional extensions of the contract are exercised, this could extend the duration and increase this contract's value to $61.3 million. Comfort Systems USA (NYSE: FIX  ) subsidiary Target Construction of Henderson, Nev., was awarded a firm-fixed-price contract valued at up to $41.6 million to perform construction services in support of the Hurricane Protection System for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Canadian IT contractor Softchoice Corp.�won a $17.5 million delivery order against a single award blanket purchase agreement to procure Microsoft brand name "Software Assurance" software support for the U.S. Marine Corps.�Softchoice should complete its task by May 31, 2014. Boeing (NYSE: BA  ) received a $13.6 million firm-fixed-price, cost-plus-fixed-fee foreign military sales contract to install computerized fault reporting systems and aircraft maintenance debriefing systems for Royal Saudi Air Force F-15 C/D fighter jets.�This contract has a three-year base term, to be followed by two possible one-year extensions, which could extend the contract through May 4, 2018. United Technologies' (NYSE: UTX  ) Pratt & Whitney subsidiary won a maximum $7.9 million firm-fixed-price, sole-source contract to supply the U.S. Air Force with spare aircraft engine turbine disks. It should complete the contract by Jan. 29, 2016.�


Hot Canadian Companies To Own In Right Now: Prominex Resource Corp(PXR.V)

Prominex Resource Corp. engages in the acquisition and exploration of mineral properties in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. The company explores for base metals and gold. Its principal properties include the Tulks Hill Project and Reid Lot 50, Lake Bond project, located in central Newfoundland. The company was formerly known as Sino Pacific Development, Ltd. and changed its name to Prominex Resource Corp. in October 2005. Prominex Resource Corp. was founded in 1980 and is headquartered in Vancouver, Canada.

Hot Canadian Companies To Own In Right Now: Gemini Corporation (GKX.V)

Gemini Corporation, a professional services company, engages in designing, building, and maintaining energy and industrial facilities in western Canada and internationally. The company operates in two segments, Field Solutions and Engineered Solutions. The Field Solutions segment offers engineering, construction, fabrication, and maintenance services. The Engineered Solutions segment provides engineering, procurement, and construction management services. Gemini Corporation principally serves conventional/unconventional oil and gas, in-situ heavy oil, and heavy industrial facilities markets. The company was founded in 1982 and is headquartered in Calgary, Canada.

10 Best Energy Stocks To Buy Right Now: Fe Limited (FEL.AX)

Fe Limited engages in the exploration and development mineral properties in Western Australia. It holds interests in a portfolio of mineral resource projects prospective for iron, gold, and nickel ores. The company�s portfolio includes interests and rights in approximately 300 licenses covering approximately 6,900 square kilometers. It primarily focuses on the Mt Ida and Mt Elvire Iron Ore Projects in Western Australia. Fe Limited was headquartered in West Leederville, Australia.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Top Income Companies To Watch For 2014

Although business headlines still tout earnings numbers, many investors have moved past net earnings as a measure of a company's economic output. That's because earnings are very often less trustworthy than cash flow, since earnings are more open to manipulation based on dubious judgment calls.

Earnings' unreliability is one of the reasons Foolish investors often flip straight past the income statement to check the cash flow statement. In general, by taking a close look at the cash moving in and out of the business, you can better understand whether the last batch of earnings brought money into the company, or merely disguised a cash gusher with a pretty headline.

Calling all cash flows
When you are trying to buy the market's best stocks, it's worth checking up on your companies' free cash flow once a quarter or so, to see whether it bears any relationship to the net income in the headlines. That's what we do with this series. Today, we're checking in on Fair Isaac (NYSE: FICO  ) , whose recent revenue and earnings are plotted below.

Top Income Companies To Watch For 2014: Gaming Partners International Corporation(GPIC)

Gaming Partners International Corporation engages in the manufacture and supply of casino table game equipment worldwide. The company offers gaming chips, such as american-style casino chips comprising injection molded chips, thermo-compression molded chips, and sublimation chips; and European-style casino chips, including jetons and plaques. It also provides playing cards; table layouts; gaming furniture consisting of tables, bases, and pit podiums; and table game accessories, such as roulette reader boards, foot rails, chip trays, drop boxes, shoes, cut cards, dice sticks, lammers, markers, buttons, and air rail system ventilation devices, as well as dice. In addition, the company offers low and high frequency RFID readers and antennas, and other products used with casino table games, such as blackjack, poker, baccarat, craps, and roulette. Further, it provides themed products for customers to promote special events, including sporting events, conventions, holidays, casi no anniversaries, and premier entertainment events. The company sells its products directly to end-users, as well as through distributors under the Paulson, Bourgogne et Grasset, and Bud Jones brand names. Gaming Partners International Corporation was founded in 1963 and is headquartered in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Top Income Companies To Watch For 2014: PAR Technology Corporation(PAR)

PAR Technology Corporation provides technology solutions to organizations and businesses in the hospitality industry worldwide. The company operates in two segments, Hospitality and Government. The Hospitality segment provides integrated solutions, including hardware and software applications for restaurants, hotels, resorts, and spas to the hospitality industry. It also offers customer support, including field service, installation, 24 hour telephone support, and depot repair. The Government segment performs complex technical studies, analysis, and experiments; develops solutions, and provides on-site engineering in support of advanced defense, security, and aerospace systems. The company, through its subsidiary, PAR Springer-Miller Systems, Inc, provides guest-centric property management solutions to hotels, resorts, spas, casinos, and other hospitality properties. PAR Technology Corporation was founded in 1968 and is headquartered in New Hartford, New York.

Top 10 Valued Stocks To Own For 2014: VOC Energy Trust(VOC)

VOC Energy Trust owns a term net profits interest of the net proceeds from production of the interests in oil and natural gas properties in the states of Kansas and Texas. It owns an 80% term net profits interest of the net proceeds on the underlying properties. As of December 31, 2009, the underlying properties produced oil from approximately 892 gross (550.2 net) wells located in 193 fields; and had total proved reserves of 13.0 million barrels of oil equivalent. The company was founded in 2010 and is based in Austin, Texas.

Top Income Companies To Watch For 2014: Cornerstone Therapeutics Inc.(CRTX)

Cornerstone Therapeutics Inc., a specialty pharmaceutical company, engages in the acquisition, development, and commercialization of prescription pharmaceutical drugs for the hospital, niche respiratory, and related specialty markets. The company offers CUROSURF, a natural lung surfactant used for the treatment of respiratory distress syndrome in premature infants; and ZYFLO CR and ZYFLO, which are leukotriene synthesis inhibitor drugs used for the prevention and chronic treatment of asthma in adults and children. It also provides anti-infective products, such as FACTIVE, a fluoroquinolone antibiotic used for the treatment of acute bacterial exacerbation of chronic bronchitis (ABECB) and community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) of mild to moderate severity; and SPECTRACEF, a antibiotic used for the treatment of respiratory tract infections, pharyngitis and tonsillitis, uncomplicated skin and skin-structure infections, ABECB, and CAP. In addition, the company?s pipeline products include CRTX 080, a vasopressin receptor 2 antagonist lixivaptan used for the treatment of hyponatremia; CRTX 073, an anti-asthma product candidate used for the treatment of asthma; and CRTX 067, a cough/cold product candidate for the treatment of cough and cold. It serves drug wholesalers, retail drug stores, mass merchandisers, and grocery store pharmacies in the United States. The company was formerly known as Critical Therapeutics, Inc. and changed its name to Cornerstone Therapeutics Inc. as a result of its merger with Cornerstone BioPharma Holdings, Inc. in October 2008. Cornerstone Therapeutics Inc. was founded in 2000 and is headquartered in Cary, North Carolina.

Top Income Companies To Watch For 2014: Aruma Resources Limited(AAJ.AX)

Aruma Resources Limited engages in the exploration of mineral properties in Australia. It primarily explores for gold. The company has eight prospective project areas that include tenements under application covering an area of approximately 1000km2 in the Eastern Goldfields region of Western Australia. Its principal project includes the Glandore project covering 41km2 of contiguous ground located to the east of Kalgoorlie Boulder in Western Australia. The company was incorporated in 2010 and is based in Nedlands, Australia. Aruma Resources Limited is a subsidiary of Hemisphere Resources Limited.

Top Income Companies To Watch For 2014: Paragon Group(PAG.L)

The Paragon Group of Companies PLC, through its subsidiaries, engages in first mortgage and consumer finance businesses in the United Kingdom. The company?s services include buy-to-let and owner-occupied mortgage assets; asset investment and administration; vehicle fleet management; unsecured lending; property services; mortgage brokering; loan and vehicle finance; and surveyors and property consulting. It also offers a range of services to its landlord customers, including tenant assessments, insurance products, and energy performance certificates. In addition, the company provides consumer finance and specialist loan servicing for non-performing assets, litigation, and surveying services for third party clients comprising the management of portfolios and the provision of arrears management. Its clients include building societies, investment banks, specialist lenders, hedge funds, private equity houses, commercial banks, and other financial services companies. The Parago n Group of Companies PLC was founded in 1985 and is headquartered in Solihull, the United Kingdom.

Top 5 Medical Stocks To Watch Right Now

Willie Nelson, who turned 80 on April 30, once sang a song about an alarm clock that rang two hours late, a garbage man who spilled all the trash on the sidewalk, hinges that were falling off the gate, spilling his coffee, and having his wife leave him -- all on the same day. Some health-care stocks might need their own country songs after the past few days. Here are three of the most horrendous health-care stocks over the last week.

The way isn't greener
Lowering guidance doesn't tend to help a stock very much. Greenway Medical Technologies (NYSE: GWAY  ) found that out this week, with shares plunging more than 23%.

Greenway doesn't report its quarterly results until next week, but the electronic health record systems vendor decided to let the cat out of the bag early. The company projects revenue for the fiscal year ending June 30 of $132 million to $134 million. That range is lower than the $145 million to $150 million Greenway expected less than three months ago.

Top 5 Medical Stocks To Watch Right Now: Curis Inc.(CRIS)

Curis, Inc., a drug discovery and development company, focuses on the research and development of cancer therapeutics. The company, under collaboration with Genentech, Inc., is conducting a pivotal Phase II clinical trial on its lead molecule, GDC-0449 in advanced basal cell carcinoma patients, as well as various Phase II clinical trials in first-line metastatic colorectal cancer and advanced ovarian cancer patients. It is also evaluating CUDC-101, a small molecule that is in a Phase I clinical testing and is designed to target histone deacetylase, epidermal growth factor receptor, and epidermal growth factor receptor 2. In addition, Curis has a development candidate, Debio 0932, which is a Heat Shock Protein 90 or Hsp90 inhibitor. The company holds a license agreement with Debiopharm related to its Hsp90 technologies. Further, it involves in preclinical testing for the development of candidates from its targeted cancer programs. The company was founded in 2000 and is base d in Lexington, Massachusetts.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Michael Shulman]

    Curis (NASDAQ: CRIS) has developed a series of cancer treatments based on a technology that disrupts intercellular signaling in the Hedgehog pathway. Disrupting communication disrupts cell duplication, the foundation of tumor growth.

    Curis has more than 20 trials under way with Genentech/Roche and the National Cancer Institute. This year, Genentech will likely report results of a basal cell carcinoma trial for skin cancer, and it has said it will go from this mid-phase trial directly to an application for approval if the results are strong enough.

    One success means a volcanic eruption in the stock, as it will prove the core technology is a viable platform for cancer treatments. A failure could put the entire program — and the company — in jeopardy. I believe the technology will be a success, which means this $2 stock could be worth $40-plus. If I’m wrong, you will probably be looking at a 50-cent stock. I’d say it’s worth the risk.

Top 5 Medical Stocks To Watch Right Now: CEL-SCI Corp (CVM)

CEL-SCI Corporation (CEL-SCI), incorporated on March 22, 1983, is engaged in the business of Multikine cancer therapy; New cold fill manufacturing service to the pharmaceutical industry, and ligand epitope antigen presentation System (LEAPS) technology, with two products, hemagglutinin type 1 and neuraminidase type 1 (H1N1) swine flu treatment for H1N1 hospitalized patients and CEL-2000, a rheumatoid arthritis treatment vaccine.


CEL-SCI's Multikine, is being developed for the treatment of cancer. It is a cancer immunotherapy drugs called Combination Immunotherapy because it combines active and passive immunity in one product. It is the only cancer immunotherapy that both kills cancer cells and activates the general immune system to destroy the cancer. Multikine target the tumor micro-metastases for treatment failure. Multikine is also applicable in many other solid tumors.

New Manufacturing Facility

CEL-SCI's facility manufactures Multikine for CEL-SCI's Phase III clinical trial. CEL-SCI offers the use of the facility as a service to pharmaceutical companies and others, particularly those that need to fill and finish their drugs in a cold environment. Fill and finish is the process of filling injectable drugs in a sterile manner.


CEL-SCI's patented T-cell Modulation Process uses heteroconjugates to direct the body to choose a specific immune response. The heteroconjugate technology, referred to as LEAPS, is intended to stimulate the human immune system to fight bacterial, viral and parasitic infections, as well as autoimmune, allergies, transplantation rejection and cancer. Administered like vaccines, LEAPS combines T-cell binding ligands with small, disease associated and peptide antigens.

Using the LEAPS technology, CEL-SCI has created a peptide treatment for H1N1 (swine flu) hospitalized patients. This LEAPS flu treatment is designed to focus on the conserved, non-changing epitopes of the di! fferent strains of Type A Influenza viruses, including swine, avian or bird, and Spanish Influenza. CEL-SCI's LEAPS flu treatment contains epitopes.

Top 10 Diversified Bank Companies To Own In Right Now: Organovo Holdings Inc (ONVO)

Organovo Holdings, Inc. (Organovo), formerly Real Estate Restoration & Rental, Inc., incorporated in 2007, is a development-stage company. The Company has developed and is commercializing a platform technology for the generation of three-dimensional (3D) human tissues that can be employed in drug discovery and development, biological research, and as therapeutic implants for the treatment of damaged or degenerating tissues and organs. On December 28, 2011, Real Estate Restoration and Rental, Inc.�� (RERR) entered into an Agreement and Plan of Merger, pursuant to which RERR merged with its, wholly owned subsidiary, Organovo (Merger Sub). On February 8, 2012, the Company merged with and into Organovo Acquisition Corp. (Acquisition Corp.), a wholly owned subsidiary of Organovo, with the Company surviving the merger as a wholly owned subsidiary of Organovo Holdings (the Merger). As a result of the Merger, Organovo acquired the business of Organovo, Inc.

The Company has collaborative research agreements with Pfizer, Inc. (Pfizer) and United Therapeutic Corporation (Unither). As of March 31, 2012, it has five federal grants, including Small Business Innovation Research grants and developed the NovoGen MMX Bioprinter (its first-generation 3D bioprinter). The Company is engaged in the development of specific 3D human tissues to aid Pfizer in discovery of therapies in two areas of interest. In addition, in October 2011, it entered into a research agreement with Unither to establish and conduct a research program to discover treatments for pulmonary hypertension using its NovoGen MMX Bioprinter technology. Additionally, under the research agreement with Unither, the Company granted Unither an option to acquire from the Company a worldwide, royalty-bearing license in certain intellectual property created under the research agreement solely for use in the treatment or prevention of pulmonary hypertension and all other lung diseases.

The Company�� NovoGen MMX Bioprinter is an automate! d device that enables the fabrication of three-dimensional (3D) living tissues comprised of mammalian cells. A custom graphic user interface (GUI) facilitates the 3D design and execution of scripts that direct precision movement of the dispensing heads to deposit cellular building blocks (bio-ink) or supporting hydrogel. The Company is using a third party manufacturer, Invetech Pty., of Melbourne, Australia, to manufacture its NovoGen MMX Bioprinter. Its bioprinting technology and surrounding intellectual property and commercial rights serve as a platform for product generation across multiple markets that employ cell- and tissue-based products and services.

The Company competes with Organogenesis, Advanced BioHealing, Tengion, Genzyme, HumaCyte and Cytograft Tissue Engineering.

Top 5 Medical Stocks To Watch Right Now: Scancell Holdings PLC (SCLP)

Scancell Holdings PLC is a United Kingdom-based company. The Company�� principal activity of the consists of the discovery and development of monoclonal antibodies and vaccines for the treatment of cancer. In April 2012, the Company completed recruitment to the Phase 1 clinical trial of SCIBI. In May 2012, the Company commenced recruitment and treatment of the first patient in the second part of it Phase 1/2 clinical trial of SCIBI. The Phase 2 part of the trial is conducted in five United Kingdom centers in Nottingham, Manchester, Newcastle, Leeds, and Southampton. On August 15, 2012, the Company announced the development of a platform technology, Moditope.

Top 5 Medical Stocks To Watch Right Now: Cell Therapeutics Inc (CTIC)

Cell Therapeutics, Inc. (CTI), incorporated in 1991, develops, acquires and commercializes treatments for cancer. The Company�� research, development, acquisition and in-licensing activities concentrate on identifying and developing new ways to treat cancer. As of December 31, 2011, CTI focused its efforts on Pixuvri (pixantrone dimaleate) (Pixuvri), OPAXIO (paclitaxel poliglumex) (OPAXIO), tosedostat, brostallicin and bisplatinates. As of December 31, 2011, it developed Pixuvri, an anthracycline derivative for the treatment of hematologic malignancies and solid tumors. Another late-stage drug candidate of the Company, OPAXIO, is being studied as a potential maintenance therapy for women with advanced stage ovarian cancer, who achieve a complete remission following first-line therapy with paclitaxel and carboplatin. As of December 31, 2011, it also developed tosedostat in collaboration with Chroma Therapeutics, Ltd. (Chroma). On May 31, 2012, CTI completed its acquisition gaining worldwide rights to S*BIO Pte Ltd.'s (S*BIO) pacritinib.


As of December 31, 2011, the Company developed Pixuvri, an aza-anthracenedione derivative, for the treatment of non-Hodgkin�� lymphoma (NHL), and various other hematologic malignancies, and solid tumors. Pixuvri was studied in the Company�� EXTEND, or PIX301, clinical trial, which was a phase III single-agent trial of Pixuvri for patients with relapsed, refractory aggressive NHL who received two or more prior therapies and who were sensitive to treatment with anthracyclines. On September 28, 2011, CTI announced that a second independent radiology assessment of response and progression endpoint data from its PIX301 clinical trial of Pixuvri was achieved with statistical significance. The results of the EXTEND trial met its primary endpoint and showed that patients randomized to treatment with Pixuvri achieved a significantly higher rate of confirmed and unconfirmed complete response compared to patients treated with standard chem! otherapy had a significantly increased overall response rate and experienced a statistically significant improvement in median progression free survival. Pixuvri had predictable and manageable toxicities when administered at the proposed dose and schedule in the EXTEND clinical trial in heavily pre-treated patients. In March 2011, the Company initiated the PIX-R trial to study Pixuvri in combination with rituximab in patients with relapsed/refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). Pixuvri has also been studied in patients with HER2-negative metastatic breast cancer who have tumor progression after at least two, but not more than three, prior chemotherapy regimens. In the second quarter of 2010, the NCCTG opened this phase II study for enrollment. The study is closed to accrual and results are expected to be reported by the NCCTG later in 2012.


OPAXIO is the Company�� biologically-enhanced chemotherapeutic agent that links paclitaxel to a biodegradable polyglutamate polymer, resulting in a new chemical entity. As of December 31, 2011, the Company focused its development of OPAXIO on ovarian, brain, esophageal, head and neck cancer. OPAXIO was designed to improve the delivery of paclitaxel to tumor tissue while protecting normal tissue from toxic side effects. In November 2010, results were presented by the Brown University Oncology Group from a phase II trial of OPAXIO combined with temozolomide (TMZ), and radiotherapy in patients with newly-diagnosed, high-grade gliomas, a type of brain cancer. The trial demonstrated a high rate of complete and partial responses and a high rate of six month progression free survival (PFS). Based on these results, the Brown University Oncology Group has initiated a randomized, multicenter, phase II study of OPAXIO and standard radiotherapy versus TMZ and radiotherapy for newly diagnosed patients with glioblastoma with an active gene termed MGMT that reduces responsiveness to TMZ. A phase I/II study of OPAXIO combined with radi! otherapy ! and cisplatin was initiated by SUNY Upstate Medical University, in patients with locally advanced head and neck cancer.


In March 2011, the Company entered into a co-development and license agreement with Chroma Therapeutics, Ltd. (Chroma), providing the Company with marketing and co-development rights to Chroma�� drug candidate, tosedostat, in North, Central and South America. Tosedostat is an oral, aminopeptidase inhibitor that has demonstrated anti-tumor responses in blood related cancers and solid tumors in phase I-II clinical trials. Interim results from the phase II OPAL study of tosedostat in elderly patients with relapsed or refractory acute myeloid leukemia (AML) showed that once-daily, oral doses of tosedostat had predictable and manageable toxicities and results demonstrated response rates, including a high-response rate among patients who received prior hypomethylating agents, which are used to treat myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), a precursor of AML.


As of December 31, 2011, the Company developed brostallicin through its wholly owned subsidiary, Systems Medicine LLC, which holds rights to use, develop, import and export brostallicin. Brostallicin is a synthetic deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) minor groove binding agent that has demonstrated anti-tumor activity and a favorable safety profile in clinical trials, in which more than 230 patients have been treated as of December 31, 2011. The Company uses a genomic-based platform to guide the development of brostallicin. A phase II study of brostallicin in relapsed, refractory soft tissue sarcoma met its predefined activity and safety hurdles and resulted in a first-line phase II clinical trial study that was conducted by the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC).

The Company competes with Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, Sanofi-Aventis, Pfizer, Roche Group, Genentech, Inc., Astellas Pharma, Eli Lilly and Company, Celgene, Telik, I! nc., TEVA! Pharmaceuticals Industries Ltd. and PharmaMar.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Hot Supermarket Stocks To Invest In Right Now

Rite Aid (RAD), the 3rd largest drugstore chain in the U.S., has grown through several major acquisitions over the years. In 2007, the firm purchased the Brooks and Eckerd chains, making it the largest drugstore chain on the East Coast.�

Unfortunately, the company took on the debt and integration issues from this major acquisition just as the country was headed into recession, and it has struggled to regain its footing ever since.

Under the leadership of CEO John Standley, Rite Aid has done the basic blocking and tackling needed to return to profitability. Standley, who had been an executive at Rite Aid in the early 2000��, returned to the company in 2008 after a stint leading the turnaround of Pathmark supermarkets. �

Hot Supermarket Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Sarepta Therapeutics Inc (SRPT)

Sarepta Therapeutics Inc., formerly AVI BioPharma, Inc., incorporated on July 22, 1980, biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of ribonucleic acid (RNA)-based therapeutics for the treatment of rare and infectious diseases. The Company�� product candidates include Eteplirsen, AVI-6002, AVI-6003, and AVI-7100. As of December 31, 2011, the Company primarily focused on advancing the development of its Duchenne muscular dystrophy drug candidates, including its lead product candidate, eteplirsen, which is in a Phase IIb trial. The Company is also focused on developing therapeutics for the treatment of infectious diseases, including its lead infectious disease programs aimed at the development of drug candidates for the Ebola and Marburg hemorrhagic fever viruses. The Company's program focuses on the development of disease-modifying therapeutic candidates for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). The Company initiated a Phase IIb trial for eteplirsen in August 2011 with an objective of initiating a pivotal trial subsequent to 2011.

The Company is also leveraging the capabilities of its RNA-based technology platforms to develop therapeutics for the treatment of infectious diseases. The Company's RNA-based drug programs are clinically evaluated for the treatment of DMD and have also demonstrated anti-viral activity in infectious diseases such as Ebola, Marburg and H1N1 influenza in certain animal models. The Company's lead product candidates are at various stages of development.

Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy Program

The Company's lead program is designed to address specific gene mutations that result in DMD by forcing the genetic machinery to skip over an adjacent contiguous piece of RNA and, thus, restore the ability of the cell to express a new, truncated but functional, dystrophin protein.

Eteplirsen is an antisense PMO-based therapeutic in clinical development for the treatment of individuals with DMD who have an error in the gene codi! ng for dystrophin that can be treated by skipping exon 51. Eteplirsen targets the frequent series of mutations that cause DMD. Eteplirsen has been granted orphan drug designation in the United States and European Union. In addition to the Company's lead product candidate, eteplirsen, the Company is actively pursues development of a product candidate that skips exon 45 through an IND-enabling collaboration.

Anti-Viral Programs

The Company is implementing its RNA-based technology platforms in its anti-viral programs for the development of therapeutics to treat viruses, such as Ebola, Marburg and influenza. The Company's arrangement with DoD supporting the development of the Company's Ebola and Marburg virus drug candidates provides funding for all clinical and licensure activities necessary to obtain approval of a New Drug Application (NDA), by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), if DoD exercises all of its options under the arrangement. During the year ended December 31, 2011, the Company paused its clinical development efforts on AVI-7100 and is exploring funding opportunities or partnerships with DHHS and industry collaborators to advance its development.

The Company's anti-viral therapeutic programs use the Company's translation suppression technology and applies its PMOplus chemistry backbone, an advanced generation of its base PMO chemistry backbone that selectively introduces positive backbone charges to improve selective interaction between the drug and its target. The Company's translation suppressing technology is based on Translation Suppressing Oligomers (TSOs), which are PMO-based compounds that stop or suppress the translation of a specific protein by binding to their specific target sequence in mRNA.

The Company is pursuing development and regulatory approval of its Ebola and Marburg hemorrhagic fever virus product candidates under the FDA's Animal Rule. The Company's lead product candidate against the Ebola virus infec! tion is A! VI-6002. For Marburg virus infection, the Company's lead product candidate has been AVI-6003. In February 2012, the Company announced that the Company received approval from the FDA to remove one of the two oligomers composing AVI-6003 and proceed with a single oligomer approach, AVI-7288, given that efficacy in non-human primates has been demonstrated to be attributable to this single oligomer. The Company is exploring the feasibility of alternate routes of administration of its Ebola and Marburg drug candidates, and at DoD's invitation, the Company is developing a proposal to be submitted for a study to demonstrates feasibility of the intramuscular route.

AVI-6002, which is a combination of AVI-7537 and AVI-7539, is designed for post-exposure prophylaxis after documented or suspected exposure to the Ebola virus. The Company is evaluating the feasibility of developing AVI-7537 as a single agent for the post-exposure prophylaxis after documented or suspected exposure to Ebola virus. AVI-6003, which is a combination of AVI-7287 and AVI-7288, is designed for post-exposure prophylaxis after documented or suspected exposure to Marburg virus. In February 2012, the Company announced that the Company received approval from the FDA to proceed with AVI-7288 as a single agent against Marburg virus infection. The Company intends to proceed with dosing AVI-7288 in the Phase I multiple ascending dose studies and in non-human primate studies.

Influenza Program

The Company's anti-viral therapeutic programs are also focused on the development of the Company's product candidates designed to treat pandemic influenza viruses. AVI-7100 is the Company's lead product candidate for the treatment of influenza and employs its PMOplus technology. In June 2011, the Company initiated dosing of AVI-7100 through intravenous infusion in single-ascending doses in up to 48 healthy adult volunteers. As of December 31, 2011, the Company paused its clinical development efforts on AVI-7100 and are exp! loring fu! nding opportunities or partnerships to advance its development.

The Company has developed three new phosphorodiamidate-linked morpholino oligomers (PMO)-based chemistry platforms in addition to its original PMO-based technology. The Company's PMO-based molecules are designed to sterically block the access of cellular machinery to pre-mRNA and mRNA without degrading the RNA. Through this selective targeting, two distinct biologic mechanisms of action can be initiated: modulation of pre-mRNA splicing and inhibition of mRNA translation.

The Company competes with GlaxoSmithKline plc, Toyama Chemical, Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Tekmira Pharmaceuticals Corp., Isis Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Prosensa, and Santaris Pharma A/S.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By TheStreet Staff]

     Sarepta Therapeutics (SRPT) will have another big year, with an accelerated approval filing mid-year for the Duchenne muscular dystrophy drug eteplirsen in the U.S. and a significant and lucrative ex-U.S. partnership for the company's exon-skipping drug technology platform.

Hot Supermarket Stocks To Invest In Right Now: PIMCO Municipal Income Fund(PMF)

PIMCO Municipal Income Fund is a closed ended fixed income mutual fund launched and managed by Allianz Global Investors Fund Management LLC. It is co managed by Pacific Investment Management Company LLC. The fund invests in the fixed income markets of the United States. It primarily invests in investment grade municipal bonds. The fund employs fundamental analysis with a top down stock picking approach to create its portfolio. It conducts in house research using proprietary models. PIMCO Municipal Income Fund was formed on June 29, 2001 and is domiciled in the United States.

Top Financial Companies To Invest In 2014: Cobar Consolidated Resources Ltd(CCU.AX)

Cobar Consolidated Resources Limited engages in the exploration and development of base and precious metals in Australia. It has 1,371 square kilometers of tenement interests on the western margin of the Cobar basin in western New South Wales. The company primarily focuses on developing the Wonawinta silver project in the Cobar basin in western New South Wales. It also has exploration projects, including the Gundaroo project, the Winduck Super project, the McKinnons gold deposit, and the Goldwing project. The company is based in Melbourne, Australia.

Hot Supermarket Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Medallion Resources Ltd. (MDL.V)

Medallion Resources Ltd., a junior resource company, engages in the acquisition, exploration, and evaluation of mineral properties. It evaluates the potential of rare earths, primarily mineral sand-based monazite deposits in the Indian Ocean basin. The company holds interests in the Red Wine heavy-rare-earth elements project, which consists of 7 mineral licenses in 4 groups covering an area of 46.5 square kilometers in southern Labrador, Canada. Medallion Resources Ltd. is based in Vancouver, Canada.

Hot Supermarket Stocks To Invest In Right Now: QUALCOMM Incorporated(QCOM)

QUALCOMM Incorporated engages in the development, design, manufacture, and marketing of digital wireless telecommunications products and services. The company operates in four segments: Qualcomm CDMA Technologies (QCT), Qualcomm Technology Licensing (QTL), Qualcomm Wireless and Internet (QWI), and Qualcomm Strategic Initiatives (QSI). The QCT segment develops and supplies code division multiple access (CDMA)-based integrated circuits and system software for wireless voice and data communications, multimedia functions and global positioning system products. The QTL segment grants licenses to use portions of its intellectual property portfolio comprising patent rights useful in the manufacture and sale of wireless products, such as products implementing cdmaOne, CDMA2000, WCDMA, CDMA TDD, GSM/GPRS/EDGE, and/or OFDMA standards and their derivatives The QWI segment consists of Qualcomm Internet Services that provides content enablement services for the wireless industry and pu sh-to-talk and other products and services for wireless network operators; Qualcomm Government Technologies, which offers development, hardware, and analytical services to the United States government agencies involving wireless communications technologies; Qualcomm Enterprise Services that provides satellite and terrestrial-based two-way data messaging, position reporting, wireless application services, and managed data services to transportation and logistics companies and other enterprise companies; and Firethorn, which builds and manages software applications that enable mobile commerce services. The QSI segment makes strategic investments to support the worldwide adoption of CDMA- and OFDMA-based technologies and services. QUALCOMM Incorporated primarily operates in China, South Korea, Taiwan, Japan, and the United States. The company was founded in 1985 and is based in San Diego, California.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By James K. Glassman]

    When anyone buys a smart phone, chances are the coffers at Qualcomm (symbol: QCOM) go ka-ching. That's because the San Diego firm created the 3G technology used in many of those devices. Qualcomm is also a leader in 4G technologies. It makes money selling the chips that drive many high-speed wireless phones and tablets. It also collects royalties from device makers that use its technology. The stock sells for 15 times estimated profits for the current fiscal year -- not expensive for a company that analysts think can generate 14% annual earnings growth over the next few years.

Hot Supermarket Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Sparton Resources Inc (SRI.V)

Sparton Resources Inc. engages in the exploration and development of mineral properties. The company holds interest in the Chebucto SDL, a natural gas field located in the Sable Island area of offshore Nova Scotia, Canada; and the ARCN Project, a secondary uranium recovery program located in the in Yunnan Province, China. It also holds interest in the SBD Gold Project located in the Lander County, Nevada; and the Huajun 306 Germanium Coal Mine located in the Yunnan Province, China. The company is headquartered in Toronto, Canada.