Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Why Baidu Shares Boomed

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 Chinese Internet giant Baidu (NASDAQ: BIDU  ) soared 13% this morning after its quarterly results and outlook topped Wall Street expectations. 

So what: The stock has slumped in recent years on market share losses to rival Qihoo 360 Technology, but second-quarter revenue growth of 39%, coupled with upbeat guidance for the current quarter, suggests that the tide may be turning. While quarterly profit fell 4.5%, strong momentum in Baidu's mobile segment -- mobile revenue accounted for more than 10% of business for the first time -- indicates that management is at least starting to gain traction in that key space.

Now what: Management now expects third-quarter revenue of $1.42 billion-$1.46 billion this quarter, well ahead of Wall Street's view of $1.35 billion. "We are encouraged to see clear progress in key investment areas," said CFO Jennifer Li in a statement. "We will continue to invest aggressively and remain committed to building long-term value for our shareholders." With the stock still well off its two-year highs (even with today's surge) and trading at a 10-year low P/E, there should plenty of upside left to profit from that bullishness.

It's incredible to think just how much of our digital and technological lives are almost entirely shaped by just a handful of companies. Find out "Who Will Win the War Between the 5 Biggest Tech Stocks?" in The Motley Fool's latest free report, which details the knock-down, drag-out battle being waged by the five kings of tech. Click here to keep reading.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Is this Diabetes Drug Class Poised for Disruption?

The Motley Fool's health care show "Market Checkup" focuses this week on diabetes, one of America's growing health care concerns. There are 2 versions of this chonic disease -- the more prevalent being type 2 diabetes, which makes up about 95% of all cases. Because of that overwhelming patient population, type 2 diabetes receives the majority of attention from big pharma companies.

Diabetes is no small problem. In 2010, one in 10 adults has diabetes, and more troubling, more than one in four senior citizens, making it the seventh leading cause of death. There are 2 million new cases in America per year, leading analysts to project spending on diabetes to approach $60 billion in just five years. And this isn't just an American problem; 370 million suffer from diabetes around the world.

In this video, health care analysts David Williamson and Max Macaluso discuss one of the prominent diabetes drug classes, highlighting both the major players and whether a new drug from Eli Lilly  (NYSE: LLY  ) will disrupt the current standard of care.

Rising health care costs continue to be a hotly debated topic, and even legendary investor Warren Buffett called this trend "the tapeworm that's eating at American competitiveness." To learn more about what's happening to the health care system -- and how to potentially profit from this trend -- click here for free, immediate access.

Follow David on Twitter: @MotleyDavid.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Is Ultra HD TV Ready for Prime Time?

Ultra HD TV is a huge buzz phrase in the consumer electronics world these days. But because of sparse content and the size of screen required to even discern the extra resolution, some analysts say it's still too early for investors to be jumping in.

Then there's the cost: Sony (NYSE: SNE  ) is pricing an 84-inch set at more than $20,000. However, Sony, Samsung, and Panasonic are offering models in the 55- to 65-inch range for well less than $10,000 -- some even in the $5,000 range.

Our roving reporter Rex Moore attended the Ultra HD conference at CE Week in New York City. In this video, he chats with Shawn DuBravac, chief economist for the Consumer Electronics Association, about the timetable for Ultra HD's mass adoption.

Top 10 Oil Companies To Buy For 2014

Wild war 5
It's incredible to think just how much of our digital and technological lives are almost entirely shaped and molded by just a handful of companies. Find out "Who Will Win the War Between the 5 Biggest Tech Stocks?" in The Motley Fool's latest free report, which details the knock-down, drag-out battle being waged by the five kings of tech. Click here to keep reading.

The 2 Sectors Driving Growth in Financial Services

In the current issue of The Journal of Economic Perspectives, economists present data that shows traditional consumer banking and asset management were the forces behind outsized growth in the financial sector over the past 30 years. If this trend continues, which financial services companies are best poised to lead the way?

How much has finance grown, really?
The authors of the report, economists Robin Greenwood and David Scharfstein, first point to the U.S. economy's increasing reliance on financial services for growth. In 1950, financial services contributed 2.8% to GDP, compared to 4.9% in 1980 and 8.3% in 2006.

Source: "The Growth of Finance," The Journal of Economic Perspectives.

The primary driver was a dramatic increase in household debt, primarily mortgages, which increased from 48% of GDP in 1980 to 99% in 2007. The run-up before the real estate bubble aside, the more than doubling of household debt in just 27 years is remarkable.

Consumer banking
Wells Fargo (NYSE: WFC  ) stands apart among the big banks as the premier mortgage lender. Not only is Wells the largest mortgage lender in the country, it also has a proven track record of conservative underwriting through its strong performance through the financial crisis.

Wells continues to maintain market leading credit metrics, including a 4.9% delinquency rate and a 2.14% foreclosure rate as of yearend 2012, besting Citi (NYSE: C  ) , JPMorgan Chase (NYSE: JPM  ) , and Bank of America (NYSE: BAC  ) .


Wells Fargo



Bank of America

Delinquency Rate





Foreclosure Rate





Wells ended Q1 with a pipeline of $74 billion in mortgage loans, after originating $109 billion in the quarter -- its sixth consecutive quarter of $100-billion-plus originations.

Asset management
The increase in asset management, according to Greenwood and Scharfstein, is primarily driven by an increase in the value of equities already under management. This means that growth was not driven by new inflows of money into the asset management firms; instead, industry growth was driven by strong performance in the stock markets.

BlackRock (NYSE: BLK  ) is far and away the largest money manager with over $3.6 trillion in assets under management (AUM). The company saw quarterly earnings per share increase 16% year over year in Q1, as AUM increased nearly 9%. In line with the thesis laid out by Greenwood and Scharfstein, 98% of the company's increase in AUM, $279 billion, was driven by market gains.

BlackRock reported that 55% of its assets under management were tied to equity holdings, generating 56% of base fees. Based on the data from Greenwood and Scharfstein, we would expect BlackRock's fundamental performance to track with the broader equity markets. However, BlackRock's opportunistic acquisition of Barclays Global Investor (a subsidiary of Barclays) in 2009 added $1.9 trillion to assets under management in Q4 of 2009, skewing a 1 to 1 comparison with the S&P.

The end result is BlackRock appreciating 1,800% since 2000, versus 26% for the S&P.

BLK Chart

BLK data by YCharts.

The trend is your friend, until it bends at the end
Only time will tell if consumer appetites for household credit will return to pre-crisis levels. Investors should watch the trend in household savings and consumer debt levels to see whether consumer behavior returns to pre-crisis patterns. If they do, look to consumer lenders like Wells Fargo to lead growth in the financial services sector.

The opportunity is less clear with asset managers. Because assets under management and fees are so closely tied to equity market performance, a more direct play with a low-cost S&P index fund could be the better investment. However, with history as a guide, look to companies like BlackRock, who find growth through increasing market share to outperform the market and the sector. These companies could be the ticket to beating the S&P for the next 10 years.

Wells Fargo's dedication to solid, conservative banking helped it vastly outperform its peers during the financial meltdown. Today, Wells is the same great bank as ever, but with its stock trading at a premium to the rest of the industry, is there still room to buy, or is it time to cash in your gains? To help figure out whether Wells Fargo is a buy today, I invite you to download our premium research report from one of The Motley Fool's top banking analysts. Click here now for instant access to this in-depth take on Wells Fargo.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Las Vegas Sands Increases Sales but Misses Estimates on Earnings

Las Vegas Sands (NYSE: LVS  ) reported earnings on July 24. Here are the numbers you need to know.

The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended June 30 (Q2), Las Vegas Sands missed slightly on revenues and missed estimates on earnings per share.

Compared to the prior-year quarter, revenue expanded significantly. Non-GAAP earnings per share grew significantly. GAAP earnings per share increased significantly.

Gross margins contracted, operating margins grew, net margins grew.

Revenue details
Las Vegas Sands tallied revenue of $3.24 billion. The 22 analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ looked for revenue of $3.30 billion on the same basis. GAAP reported sales were 26% higher than the prior-year quarter's $2.58 billion.

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Dollar amounts in millions. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.

EPS details
EPS came in at $0.65. The 24 earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ predicted $0.68 per share. Non-GAAP EPS of $0.65 for Q2 were 48% higher than the prior-year quarter's $0.44 per share. GAAP EPS of $0.64 for Q2 were 121% higher than the prior-year quarter's $0.29 per share.

10 Best Tech Stocks For 2014

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.

Margin details
For the quarter, gross margin was 33.9%, much worse than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 24.2%, 490 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was 16.3%, 700 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. (Margins calculated in GAAP terms.)

Looking ahead
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $3.37 billion. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $0.72.

Next year's average estimate for revenue is $13.46 billion. The average EPS estimate is $2.88.

Investor sentiment
The stock has a three-star rating (out of five) at Motley Fool CAPS, with 1,830 members out of 2,141 rating the stock outperform, and 311 members rating it underperform. Among 470 CAPS All-Star picks (recommendations by the highest-ranked CAPS members), 426 give Las Vegas Sands a green thumbs-up, and 44 give it a red thumbs-down.

Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on Las Vegas Sands is outperform, with an average price target of $63.76.

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Add Las Vegas Sands to My Watchlist.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

5 Best Performing Stocks To Own Right Now

Formerly the biggest maker of solar panels in the world, with more than 10,000 employees, China-based Suntech Power Holdings (NYSE: STP  ) has witnessed a long fall from grace. The nail in the coffin came in March, when the company failed to pay a $513 million debt obligation. Shortly following its default, the company sailed into Chinese bankruptcy protection. Fast-forward to this week and the company is trading more than 30% higher on a largely speculative rumor that Warren Buffett is looking to buy it.

Rumor mill
Suntech Power has been licking its wounds since entering bankruptcy last month. Come Monday night, the company went from one of the worst-performing Chinese stocks to market darling after a Chinese news service�reported that Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK-A  ) (NYSE: BRK-B  ) subsidiary MidAmerican Energy will likely buy the solar panel manufacturer.

5 Best Performing Stocks To Own Right Now: Insulet Corporation(PODD)

Insulet Corporation, a medical device company, engages in the development, manufacture, and marketing of insulin infusion systems for people with insulin-dependent diabetes in the United States. The company offers OmniPod Insulin Management System (OmniPod System), which consists of the OmniPod disposable insulin infusion device and the handheld wireless personal diabetes manager to provide diabetes management solution for people with insulin-dependent diabetes. It is also involved in the distribution of durable medical equipment, including blood glucose testing supplies, insulin pumps, pump supplies, pharmaceuticals, and other products for the management and treatment of diabetes. The company sells its OmniPod System directly to patients through referrals from healthcare professionals and through patient leads, as well as through third-party distributors; and delivers durable medical equipment to endocrinologists, insurers, and clients. Insulet Corporation was founded in 2000 and is headquartered in Bedford, Massachusetts.

5 Best Performing Stocks To Own Right Now: Sierra Wireless Inc(SW.TO)

Sierra Wireless, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, provides wireless solutions for the machine-to-machine (M2M) and mobile computing markets. It develops and markets various wireless products, including mobile broadband devices that comprise USB modems and mobile Wi-Fi hotspots that provide a way to connect notebooks, tablets, and other electronic devices to the Internet, over 3G and 4G mobile broadband networks; and wireless embedded modules to provide embedded 3G connectivity in the latest generation of the Lenovo ThinkPad professional-grade laptop computers. The company also offers intelligent gateways and routers for public safety, transportation, field service, energy, industrial, and financial organizations; and a cloud-based services platform, which delivers Web-based solutions and services that enable application providers, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), and mobile network operators to develop, deploy, and operate complete M2M solutions for managing r emote equipment and assets. In addition, it provides professional services to OEM customers during their product development and launch process in built-in wireless connectivity for mobile computing devices and M2M solutions. The company offers its products to automotive, networking equipment, energy, security, sales and payment, industrial control and monitoring, fleet management, field service, healthcare, and consumer electronics industries, as well as businesses and consumers. It sells its products and solutions primarily through various indirect channels, such as wireless operators, distributors, and value-added resellers, as well as directly to OEMs and enterprises. Sierra Wireless, Inc. was founded in 1993 and is headquartered in Richmond, Canada.

5 Best Stocks To Watch Right Now: Saferoads Holdings Ltd (SRH.AX)

Saferoads Holdings Limited manufactures, imports, and distributes road safety products and solutions for motorists, road construction workers, and pedestrians primarily in Australia and New Zealand. The company provides civil and road safety products and barriers, including box beam rail guards, guard rails, motorcycle rub rails, and omnistop end terminals; and guardrail installations, wire rope installations, crash cushion installations, traffic calming installation, minor bridge works, bridge rails, noise walls, technical support, ongoing location inspections, traffic management, emergency repairs of guardrail and wire rope safety barriers, programmed guardrail, and wire rope safety barrier maintenance services for civil projects. It also offers guide posts that includes 1M tapered bollards, dig in rubber guide posts, econo dig in and econo guide posts, edge marker posts, short term bollards, snaploc bridge mounts and guide posts, supa drive post sockets and rubber guide posts, and T-top bollards; crash cushions, including non deforming bollards, omni stop bollards, and rubber crash cushion; and electronic traffic equipment, such as variable message boards. In addition, the company provides traffic calming products, including grass infills for roundabouts, roll out speed humps, rubber kerbing, rubber lane markers, rubber roundabouts, rubber speed cushions, rubber speed humps, rumble bars, safecycle, and wheel stops; traffic signals, push buttons, and lanterns; and public lighting, flag poles, and street sign posts, such as banners and flag poles, vic roads slips, safe poles, and street sign poles. Further, the company offers safety barriers for road users, pedestrians, cyclists, and motorcycles, including blockout pedestrian barriers, ironman barrier TL4, ironman median gate, and T-Lok barrier. It serves state government departments, local councils, and road construction companies. The company was founded in 1992 and is headquartered in Dro uin, Australia.

5 Best Performing Stocks To Own Right Now: Chindex International Inc.(CHDX)

Chindex International, Inc. engages in the provision of healthcare services; and sale of medical equipment, instrumentation, and products. The company operates in two segments, Healthcare Services and Medical Products. The Healthcare Services segment owns and operates the United Family Healthcare network of private hospitals and clinics in the Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou markets. This segment also operates a managed clinic in the city of Wuxi, south of Shanghai. It offers a range of family healthcare services, including 24/7 emergency rooms, intensive care units, and neonatal intensive care units, operating rooms, clinical laboratory, radiology, and blood banking services for men, women, and children. The Medical Products segment markets, distributes, and sells medical capital equipment, instrumentation, and other medical products for use in hospitals in China and Hong Kong. It offers diagnostic color ultrasound imaging devices, robotic surgical systems and instrument ation, mammography and breast biopsy devices, and lasers for cosmetic surgery. This segment sells its products through its direct sales force. The company was founded in 1981 and is based in Bethesda, Maryland.

5 Best Performing Stocks To Own Right Now: Aegerion Pharmaceuticals Inc.(AEGR)

Aegerion Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a development stage biopharmaceutical company, engages in the development and commercialization of novel therapeutics to treat debilitating and fatal rare diseases. The company focuses on therapeutics to treat severe inherited lipid disorders. Lipids are naturally occurring molecules, such as cholesterol and triglycerides that are transported in the blood. Its lead product, lomitapide has completed pivotal Phase III clinical trial to treat patients with a rare inherited lipid disorder called homozygous familial hypercholesterolemia, or HoFH. The company also plans to develop lomitapide for the treatment of adult patients with a severe genetic form of hypertriglyceridemia called familial chylomicronemia. Aegerion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. was founded in 2005 and is headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Top Canadian Companies To Watch In Right Now

Solar power shop Canadian Solar (NASDAQ: CSIQ  ) has landed the biggest engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) contract in its history, for a 130-megawatt utility-scale solar power plant being built�in conjunction with�Grand Renewable Solar, a project�developed by�Samsung Renewable Energy, the company announced today.

Canadian Solar said the�EPC agreement is expected to generate approximately $301.1 million in revenues for it as construction of the�solar power plant in Ontario will begin in the third quarter of 2013. The plant, which will produce approximately 165,000 megawatt hours of electricity per year and power approximately 13,750 homes -- at the same time displacing approximately 162,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions over a 20-year period --�is�expected to be fully operational by 2015.

Top Canadian Companies To Watch In Right Now: CNH Global N.V. (CNH)

CNH Global N.V. manufactures, markets, and distributes a line of agricultural and construction equipment and parts worldwide. It operates in three segments: Agricultural Equipment, Construction Equipment, and Financial Services. The Agricultural Equipment segment provides tractors, combine harvesters, hay and forage equipment, seeding and planting equipment, tillage equipment, and sprayers, as well as cotton picker packagers, and sugar cane and grape harvesters primarily under the Case IH and New Holland brands. The Construction Equipment segment offers heavy construction equipment, such as crawler and wheeled excavators, wheel loaders, graders, dozers, and articulated haul trucks; and light construction equipment, including backhoe loaders, skid steer and tracked loaders, mini and midi excavators, compact wheel loaders, and telehandlers primarily under the Case and New Holland Construction brands. This segment serves construction companies, municipalities, local governmen ts, rental fleet owners, quarrying and aggregate mining companies, waste management companies, forestry-related concerns, contractors, residential builders, utilities, road construction companies, landscapers, logistics companies, and farmers. The Financial Services segment provides financial products and services, including retail financing for the purchase or lease of the company�s and other manufacturers� new and used products; and facilitates the sale of insurance products and other financing programs to retail customers. This segment also offers wholesale financing to its dealers and rental equipment operators, as well as financing options to dealers to finance working capital, real estate, and other fixed assets and maintenance equipment. CNH Global N.V. sells and distributes its products through dealers and distributors in approximately 170 countries. The company was founded in 1991 and is based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. CNH Global N.V. is a subsidiary of Fiat Netherlands Holding N.V.

Top Canadian Companies To Watch In Right Now: STMicroelectronics N.V.(STM)

STMicroelectronics N.V., an independent semiconductor company, engages in the design, development, manufacture, and marketing of a range of semiconductor integrated circuits and discrete devices. Its products include discrete and standard commodity components, application-specific integrated circuits, custom devices and semi-custom devices, and application-specific standard products for analog, digital, and mixed-signal applications. The company also offers subsystems and modules for the telecommunications, automotive, and industrial markets comprising mobile phone accessories, battery chargers, ISDN power supplies, and in-vehicle equipment for electronic toll payment, as well as provides Smartcard products. Its products are used in various microelectronic applications consisting of automotive products, computer peripherals, telecommunications systems, consumer products, industrial automation, and control systems. The company sells its products through distributors and ret ailers. STMicroelectronics N.V. was founded in 1987 and is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland.

5 Best Stocks To Own Right Now: Royal Bank Of Canada(RY)

Royal Bank of Canada provides personal and commercial banking, wealth management services, insurance, corporate and investment banking, and transaction processing services under the RBC name worldwide. Its Canadian Banking segment offers personal financial services, business financial services, and cards and payment solutions. The company?s Wealth Management segment provides wealth and asset management, and estate and trust services to affluent and high net worth clients through distributors, as well as directly to institutional and individual clients in Canada, the United States, Europe, Asia, and Latin America. Its Insurance segment provides various life and health insurance, including universal life, accidental death and critical illness protection, disability, long-term care insurance, and group benefits; and property and casualty insurance comprising home, auto, and travel insurance, as well as wealth accumulation solutions; and reinsurance products through retail ins urance branches, call centers, independent insurance advisors and travel agencies, financial institutions, and career sales force. The company?s International Banking segment offers various financial products and services to individuals, business clients, and public institutions in the U.S. and Caribbean. This segment also provides global custody, fund and pension administration, securities lending, shareholder services, analytics, and other related services to institutional investors. Royal Bank of Canada?s Capital Markets segment engages in the trading and distribution of fixed income, foreign exchange, equities, commodities, and derivative products for institutional, public sector, and corporate clients; and involves in investment banking, debt and equity origination, advisory services, corporate lending, private equity, and client securitization businesses. The company was founded in 1864 and is headquartered in Toronto, Canada.

Top Canadian Companies To Watch In Right Now: Imperial Oil Limited(IMO)

Imperial Oil Limited engages in the exploration, production, and sale of crude oil and natural gas in Canada. The company operates through three segments: Upstream, Downstream, and Chemical. The Upstream segment engages in the exploration and production of conventional crude oil, natural gas, synthetic oil, and bitumen primarily in the Western Provinces, the Canada Lands, and the Atlantic Offshore. Its primary conventional oil producing asset includes the Norman Wells oil field in the Northwest Territories. The Downstream segment engages in the transportation and refining of crude oil, as well as blending, distribution, and marketing of refined products. It owns and operates crude oil, and natural gas liquids and products pipelines in Alberta, Manitoba, and Ontario. The Chemical segment engages in the manufacture and marketing of various petrochemicals, including ethylene, benzene, aromatic and aliphatic solvents, plasticizer intermediates, and polyethylene resin. As of De cember 31, 2010, Imperial Oil Limited had 1,204 million oil-equivalent barrels of proved undeveloped reserves; maintained a nation-wide distribution system, including 24 primary terminals, to handle bulk and packaged petroleum products moving from refineries to market by pipeline, tanker, rail, and road transport; and sold petroleum products through 1,850 Esso retail service stations, of which approximately 510 were company owned or leased. The company was founded in 1880 and is headquartered in Calgary, Canada. Imperial Oil Limited operates as a subsidiary of Exxon Mobil Corporation.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Why Textura Shares Popped

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 Textura (NYSE: TXTR  ) have popped today after a slew of analysts initiated bullish coverage on the company.

So what: Textura went public in early June with an early pop, and four Street analysts have started the company off with outperform ratings. That includes William Blair, Oppenheimer, Credit Suisse, and Barrington Research, all of which are optimistic about Textura's prospects.

Now what: Oppenheimer and Barrington Research each assign a $35 price target, while Credit Suisse believes shares are heading to $33. Shares traded as high as $29.99 today on the investor optimism. The company offers an online collaboration platform for the construction industry and more than doubled revenue last fiscal year to $21.7 million, according to its prospectus.

Interested in more info on Textura? Add it to your Watchlist by clicking here.

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Sunday, July 21, 2013

Best Blue Chip Companies To Watch For 2014

With the first quarter's earnings season essentially in the books, the bull run we've seen from� the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI  ) over the past weeks ran out of fuel as the blue chips finished down slightly by 0.1%, or 19 points.

On a day with no major earnings releases or significant economic reports, acquisitions stole the headlines, specifically Yahoo!'s (NASDAQ: YHOO  ) purchase of the blogging site Tumblr for $1.1 billion. The deal represents CEO Marissa Mayer's first major acquisition since taking the helm last year, and the blogging service brings Yahoo! 300 million unique visitors a month, about half of which access the site through mobile devices. Elsewhere, drugmaker Actavis said it would purchase Warner Chilcott in an all-stock transaction for $5 billion, and Internet security specialist Websense jumped 29% after agreeing to be taken private by Vista Equity Group for $907 million. The deals helped pump some lifeblood into equities as the Dow was up as much 0.25% at midday, but the rally faded in the afternoon.

Best Blue Chip Companies To Watch For 2014: Visa Inc.(V)

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

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Robert Holmes]

    Company Profile: Visa is the global credit card company.

    Share Price: $95.69 (Dec. 6)

    2011 Return: 36%

    Investment Thesis: "Visa is well-positioned to continue to capitalize on the electronic payments secular growth trend," William Blair analysts write of Visa, noting that secular growth of electronic payments is expected to average 10% to 12% globally over the next several years.

    The analysts also say that Visa also enjoys very high incremental margins, which contributes to the company's attractive margin profile (59% in fiscal 2011) and strong free cash flow.

    "Visa has a strong balance sheet and generates strong cash flow," the analysts write. "Visa had about $4.1 billion of cash and investments, $2.9 billion of litigation reserves, and no debt on its balance sheet as of Sept. 30, 2011. Guidance calls for more than $4 billion of free cash flow in fiscal 2012."

  • [By Charles Sizemore]

    One of the “big picture” economic themes that I expect to play out over 2011 and beyond is the secular shift to a global cashless society.?Though the process is well on its way in the U.S. and Europe, roughly 40% of all transactions are still made with cash and paper checks according to Barron’s.

    This means that even in “boring” developed markets, there is ample room for growth in electronic payments. And there is no better company to benefit from this trend than credit card giant Visa (NYSE: V).

  • [By Rebecca Lipman]

     Operates retail electronic payments network worldwide. Market cap of $82.48B. EPS growth (5-year CAGR) at 15%. According to Morgan Stanley: "Global penetration of electronic payments remains low with 85% of the world's transactions still cash-based, leaving ample runway to support healthy growth prospects through (at least) 2015."

  • [By Ed Carson]

    The holiday season was hit or miss for many retailers, but indicators are that consumers were using plastic. Visa shares have risen steadily for the past seven months, with a strong 6% gain so far in 2013. Even in America, consumers continue to shift more from cash and checks to credit and debit cards. Overseas, consumers are adopting plastic, while some are bypassing cards and going straight to mobile payments. Visa wants to make sure it's part of that mobile solution.

    Visa earnings growth has decelerated for the past two quarters from 30% to 24% to 21%. Revenue growth in the latest quarter picked up to 15%, matching the best gains of the past two years.

Best Blue Chip Companies To Watch For 2014: Philip Morris International Inc(PM)

Philip Morris International Inc., through its subsidiaries, engages in the manufacture and sale of cigarettes and other tobacco products in markets outside of the United States. Its international product brand line comprises Marlboro, Merit, Parliament, Virginia Slims, L&M, Chesterfield, Bond Street, Lark, Muratti, Next, Philip Morris, and Red & White. The company also offers its products under the A Mild, Dji Sam Soe, and A Hijau in Indonesia; Diana in Italy; Optima and Apollo-Soyuz in the Russian Federation; Morven Gold in Pakistan; Boston in Colombia; Belmont, Canadian Classics, and Number 7 in Canada; Best and Classic in Serbia; f6 in Germany; Delicados in Mexico; Assos in Greece; and Petra in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. It operates primarily in the European Union, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia, Canada, and Latin America. The company is based in New York, New York.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Stephen]

    Philip Morris (PM, $75.92). Cigarette maker has strong free cash flow, pricing power, a yield of roughly 4% plus dividend growth. Share bu ybacks a plus.

  • [By Louis Navellier]

    Philip Morris International (NYSE:PM) is involved with the manufacture and sale of cigarettes and other tobacco products in over 180 countries across the globe. Year to date, PM stock is up 16%, compared to a loss of nearly 2% for the Dow Jones.

10 Best Stocks To Own For 2014: Apple Inc.(AAPL)

Apple Inc., together with subsidiaries, designs, manufactures, and markets personal computers, mobile communication and media devices, and portable digital music players, as well as sells related software, services, peripherals, networking solutions, and third-party digital content and applications worldwide. The company sells its products worldwide through its online stores, retail stores, direct sales force, third-party wholesalers, resellers, and value-added resellers. In addition, it sells third-party Mac, iPhone, iPad, and iPod compatible products, including application software, printers, storage devices, speakers, headphones, and other accessories and peripherals through its online and retail stores; and digital content and applications through the iTunes Store. The company sells its products to consumer, small and mid-sized business, education, enterprise, government, and creative markets. As of September 25, 2010, it had 317 retail stores, including 233 stores in the United States and 84 stores internationally. The company, formerly known as Apple Computer, Inc., was founded in 1976 and is headquartered in Cupertino, California.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Roberto Pedone]

    Finally, we're revisiting Apple (AAPL) this week. Last week, Apple was just starting to break out above it's the downtrending resistance line that's held shares lower for months. And sure enough, in the sessions that have followed, Apple has quietly made a move to test its last swing high at $466.

    That price is the nearest important resistance level for the stock; traders should treat a move through $466 as a buy signal. If Apple's downtrend is truly broken, we'll want to see the stock make a series of higher lows and higher highs. Now, the $436 billion firm is finally in a position where it can start to do that. This week's price action could get interesting for Apple bulls.

    I'm still recommending buyers keep a protective stop on the other side of the 50-day moving average; it should start looking like a decent proxy for support when a move through $466 happens.

  • [By Michael Fowlkes]

    Tech-giant Apple (AAPL) has seen its shares take a serious beating in recent months, but we believe the selloff has just about reached its end. The underlying fundamentals remain strong and we expect to see several new products next year. The concerns that have led to the recent sell off are real, but at the same time not as material as some would like you to believe. A big concern is theslowing of its earnings growth. Last year it had 100% earnings growth, but that has dropped to 23% this year.

    You need to ask yourself, considering Apple’s size, is a 23% jump in earnings growth really a bad thing? Apple has become a victim of its own success, and is having a hard time keeping up with its past successes. This does not mean the company is in trouble, it just means that investors need to have a more realistic view of the company’s business. Once the current panic subsides, we believe investors will come back to the stock, and realize that it is a great value with its current P/E of just 12.

  • [By Kevin M. O'Brien]

    Apple Inc. (AAPL) will reach $500.00/share at some point in 2012. I view Apple as trading at an extreme discount right now. I am expecting to see a run-up in price ahead of the company's next earnings call on January 17, 2012. I am also expecting that this earnings release is going to be absolutely fantastic. It would be a wise choice to block out all the negative rumors and sentiment surrounding Apple right now. This is a stock that is so attractively priced right now that it will not stay at this level for very long. Check back with me after January 17th next year.

Best Blue Chip Companies To Watch For 2014: International Business Machines Corporation(IBM)

International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) provides information technology (IT) products and services worldwide. Its Global Technology Services segment provides IT infrastructure and business process services, including strategic outsourcing, process, integrated technology, and maintenance services, as well as technology-based support services. The company?s Global Business Services segment offers consulting and systems integration, and application management services. Its Software segment offers middleware and operating systems software, such as WebSphere software to integrate and manage business processes; information management software for database and enterprise content management, information integration, data warehousing, business analytics and intelligence, performance management, and predictive analytics; Tivoli software for identity management, data security, storage management, and datacenter automation; Lotus software for collaboration, messaging, and so cial networking; rational software to support software development for IT and embedded systems; business intelligence software, which provides querying and forecasting tools; SPSS predictive analytics software to predict outcomes and act on that insight; and operating systems software. Its Systems and Technology segment provides computing and storage solutions, including servers, disk and tape storage systems and software, point-of-sale retail systems, and microelectronics. The company?s Global Financing segment provides lease and loan financing to end users and internal clients; commercial financing to dealers and remarketers of IT products; and remanufacturing and remarketing services. It serves financial services, public, industrial, distribution, communications, and general business sectors. The company was formerly known as Computing-Tabulating-Recording Co. and changed its name to International Business Machines Corporation in 1924. IBM was founded in 1910 and is based in Armonk, New York.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Louis Navellier]

    IBM (NYSE:IBM) is an international IT company made famous by its line of personal computers and various IT services. A year-to-date gain of 18% shows IBM stock has a lot to offer.

  • [By Paul]

    IBM. Emerging markets are a big growth driver for this computer systems and software provider. Not only that, Resendes says, IBM has "a bullet-proof balance sheet that will allow it to weather the current storm and position it for superior growth and profitability in the long term." He thinks the stock, which recently traded at $93, is worth $120 a share: ''There are some obvious companies that offer much bigger discounts, but you have to incorporate the safety factor. You're getting a premium company here that's a good spot to be in within the tech space."

  • [By Peter Hughes]

    International Business Machines (IBM) -- our aggressive pick for the year -- is one of the world's most dominant technology companies, with annual revenues of $105 billion and net income of $16 billion.

  • [By Jim Cramer]

    When this company talked about lofty EPS for 2015, initially the street was skeptical especially after IBM reported a blah quarter soon after the expectations were laid out. I now think the company has $20 earnings per share capabilities out three years and that $13 is doable for 2011. You keep the multiple the same and you get a $169 stock. I think it does just that. This one's cheap, way too cheap and it will be cheap next year, too, but on a bigger earnings base which is how it can get to my price target.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Hot Undervalued Stocks To Buy Right Now

We firmly believe that our broadly diversified portfolios of undervalued stocks will appreciate in the intermediate- and long-term, given reasonable valuations, historically low interest rates, lack of significant investor enthusiasm and healthy corporate profits and balance sheets.

Here's a look at two new featured stocks, both in the real estate sector: Anworth Mortgage (ANH), a mortgage real estate investment trust, and MDC Holdings (MDC), a builder and seller of homes and an originator of mortgage loans for home buyers.

Anworth focuses primarily on U.S. mortgage-backed securities issued or guaranteed by an agency of the U.S. (Ginnie Mae) or a U.S. government-sponsored entity (Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac).

Hot Undervalued Stocks To Buy Right Now: Yahoo! Inc.(YHOO)

Yahoo! Inc., together with its subsidiaries, operates as a digital media company that delivers personalized digital content and experiences through various devices worldwide. It offers online properties and services to users; and a range of marketing services to businesses. The company?s communications and communities offerings include Yahoo! Mail, Yahoo! Messenger, Yahoo! Groups, Yahoo! Answers, Flickr, and Connected TV, which provide a range of communication and social services to users and small businesses enabling users to organize into groups and share knowledge, common interests, and photos. Its search products comprise Yahoo! Search and Yahoo! Local, available free to users to navigate the Internet and discover content. The company?s marketplaces offerings and services include Yahoo! Shopping, Yahoo! Travel, Yahoo! Real Estate, Yahoo! Autos, and Yahoo! Small Business, which allow users to research specific topics, products, services, or areas of interest by review ing and exchanging information, obtaining contact details, or considering offers from providers of goods, services, or parties with similar interests. Its media offerings comprise Yahoo! Homepage, Yahoo! News, Yahoo! Sports, Yahoo! Finance, My Yahoo!, Yahoo! Toolbar, Yahoo! Entertainment & Lifestyles, Yahoo! Contributor Network, and Yahoo! Pulse, which are designed to engage users with online content and services on the Web. The company also offers marketing services, such as display and search advertising, listing-based services, and commerce-based transactions to advertisers. In addition, it provides software and platform offerings for third-party developers, advertisers, and publishers, such as Yahoo! Developer Network, Yahoo! Open Strategy, Yahoo! Application Platform, Yahoo! Updates, Yahoo! Query Language, and Yahoo! Search BOSS. The company has strategic alliances with Nokia and ABC News, Inc. Yahoo! Inc. was founded in 1994 and is headquartered in Sunnyvale, Californi a.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Jon C. Ogg]

    Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ: YHOO) had a full shareholder recovery under new CEO Marissa Mayer, but now the company has to begin to execute on its strategy. Mayer probably has another three months before Wall St. will demand to see increasingly better results. We only say this because the shares rose by more than one-third from the summer lows to the peak above $20. Mayer has delivered on her promise to monetize the stake in Alibaba in China, and there is hope that more monetization from that may be seen, or from the Yahoo! Japan stake. Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT) may represent the biggest opportunity, but it also may represent the largest challenge. Yahoo! looks as though it will be a content destination rather than stepping backwards to become a search and aggregation destination.

    Yahoo! trades at $19.40, but it has lost some momentum after closing at $20.08 and peaking at $20.32 for its 52-week high on the first trading day of 2013. The company has a $23 billion market cap, and we would caution that analysts have a consensus price target of only $19.66 after a fresh downgrade by Bernstein on valuation. Yahoo! trades at about 17-times current and forward earnings expectations.

    As you might have expected, there is an ETF for that! The First Trust Dow Jones Internet Index (NYSEMKT: FDN) ETF trades at $40.60, but note that it hit a 52-week high, and that the 52-week is now $40.67. We would also note that the volume of almost 2.4 million shares seen this past Monday was basically twice as active as the three busiest trading days of 2012 in this ETF.

Hot Undervalued Stocks To Buy Right Now: BNC Bancorp(BNCN)

BNC Bancorp operates as the holding company for Bank of North Carolina, which provides a range of commercial banking products and services to individuals, and small to medium size businesses in North Carolina. The company offers various deposit products, including checking and savings accounts, negotiable order of withdrawal accounts, money market demand accounts, noninterest-bearing accounts, and fixed interest rate certificates with varying maturities. Its loan portfolio comprises business loans secured by real estate, personal property, and accounts receivable; unsecured business loans; consumer loans that are secured by consumer products, such as automobiles and boats; unsecured consumer loans; commercial real estate loans; and commercial, installment, and personal loans. The company also offers safe deposit boxes and other associated services. As of December 31, 2009, it operated a main office in Thomasville, 15 other branch offices, and 1 limited services office. The company was founded in 1991 and is headquartered in High Point, North Carolina.

Best Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Jacksonville Bancorp Inc. (JXSB)

Jacksonville Bancorp, Inc. operates as the holding company for Jacksonville Savings Bank that provides various banking products and services in Illinois. Its deposit products include interest-bearing and non interest-bearing checking accounts, savings accounts, money market accounts, term certificate accounts, individual retirement accounts, and certificates of deposit. The company?s loan portfolio comprises one-to four-family mortgage loans; commercial and agricultural real estate, and multi-family residential real estate loans; commercial and agricultural business loans; and consumer loans, such as home equity loans and lines of credit, and automobile loans. It operates through its main office, as well as through six branches located in Jacksonville, Virden, Litchfield, Chapin, and Concord, Illinois. The company was founded in 1916 and is based in Jacksonville, Illinois. Jacksonville Bancorp, Inc. is a subsidiary of Jacksonville Bancorp, MHC.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Netflix Earnings Should Soar, but Will They Grow Enough?

Netflix (NASDAQ: NFLX  ) will release its quarterly report next Monday, and investors are firmly back in the bullish camp in expecting amazing growth from the streaming giant. But even as the stock approaches levels not seen since before the Qwikster debacle in 2011, its lofty valuation raises the question of whether Netflix earnings can grow fast enough to justify the stock's performance.

Netflix has emerged from its strategic shift stronger than ever, with its now-separate DVD and streaming options both bringing in subscriber revenue. As the company looks to expand, though, it's facing the same pressure to generate valuable, desirable content that the rest of the industry is experiencing. Let's take an early look at what's been happening with Netflix over the past quarter, and what we're likely to see in its quarterly report.

Stats on Netflix

Analyst EPS Estimate


Change From Year-Ago EPS


Revenue Estimate

$1.07 billion

Change From Year-Ago Revenue


Earnings Beats in Past 4 Quarters


Source: Yahoo! Finance.

How much can Netflix earnings grow this quarter?
Analysts have gotten quite a bit more excited about Netflix earnings in recent months, as they've boosted their June-quarter estimates by $0.11 per share, and their full-year calls for next year by twice that figure. The stock has continued soaring higher, rising more than 50% since mid-April.

A big portion of Netflix's gains came from its first-quarter earnings report, as the company continued its positive momentum with an 18% growth in revenue, and better-than-expected future guidance. With 3 million new subscribers, Netflix maintained its leadership of the space, even in the face of growing competition.

Netflix isn't without challenges, though. The biggest is coming up with content that viewers will pay to watch, and the content-deal tide has gone both ways for the company lately. A June deal with DreamWorks Animation (NASDAQ: DWA  ) will give Netflix access to 300 hours of new programming, boosting its relationship, which already includes a series for kids based on the DreamWorks movie release Turbo, earlier this week. Yet, Netflix missed out on renewing a deal with Viacom, as scooped up exclusive rights to popular kids' shows like Dora the Explorer.

Netflix has also ramped up its non-kids content, bringing back Arrested Development, and coming up with new series like House of Cards and Orange Is the New Black. But whether it creates its own content or buys it from elsewhere, those moves are getting quite costly, as streaming-content liabilities rose 17% last year and appear poised to accelerate in the future, as media companies get savvier about charging full value for their valuable offerings. Moreover, Amazon has a large war chest, and has proven itself willing to invest in competing content of its own in trying to build up its own service's appeal.

Most recently, Netflix shares soared on news that competitor Hulu changed its original plans to sell itself. Instead, Disney and its partners in Hulu will make new investments to boost its prospects. But for Netflix, a Hulu sale would potentially have changed the status quo much more dramatically, and so investors appear to have concluded that even a Hulu with somewhat more financial resources represents less than a threat than a Hulu under new ownership.

In the Netflix earnings report, watch closely for news about how well the company is doing drawing subscribers both domestically and internationally. Growth in foreign markets is the real key to keeping Netflix's growth rate high enough to justify what has now become a premium valuation; but with the right efforts and attention, Netflix could well pull it off over the long run.

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!

Click here to add Netflix to My Watchlist, which can find all of our Foolish analysis on it and all your other stocks.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Big Ben Bernanke Tolls, Gold Reacts

In prepared remarks before the House Financial Services committee, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke gave a typically noncommittal outlook for the Fed's action for the rest of the year. While the Chairman said the central bank planned to begin tapering the rate of quantitative easing later this year, he was quick to add that policy would remain accommodative and subject to change based on economic conditions. Gold, which had traded up mildly ahead of the news, fell sharply on the comments, but quickly recovered. The question now becomes, where does gold trade from here based on the expected Fed action?

Bernanke speaks Bernanke speak
When Bernanke gave his semiannual report to Congress, his remarks were expectedly, we'll do this, unless we don't and do that. In terms of the Fed's stance on monetary expansion, he said, "We anticipated that it would be appropriate to begin to moderate the monthly pace of purchases later this year." The last time Bernanke signaled that the Fed would slow the rate of bond buying, the market reacted poorly.

While the Chairman attempted to draw a distinction between tapering and accommodative policy, he qualified his position significantly: "With unemployment still high and declining only gradually, and with inflation running below the Committee's longer-run objective, a highly accommodative monetary policy will remain appropriate for the foreseeable future." Bernanke referred to the market's expectations on future rates as one of the key tools for keeping Fed policy accommodative, but emphasized that there is no predetermined path that is expected.

Gold reacts
Gold, as represented by the SPDR Gold Trust (NYSEMKT: GLD  ) , fell quickly on the remarks, but bounced back to unchanged in short order. The gold miners -- including Barrick (NYSE: ABX  ) , Goldcorp (NYSE: GG  ) , and Newmont Mining (NYSE: NEM  ) had similar reactions (see chart). Looking ahead, the Fed is expecting U.S. GDP growth of 2.3% to 2.6% in 2013, accelerating to 3% to 3.5% in 2014. This growth is expected to come against a backdrop of falling unemployment, and an inflation rate in line with the targeted 2% rate set by the Fed.

Looking forward, if the U.S. economy is able to sustain the rates and growth expected by the central bank, the net effect is bearish for gold. As dollar-denominated assets become stronger and more attractive, the U.S. dollar will likely strengthen, as well. Gold is often seen as an alternative to dollar-denominated assets in times of weakness, so capital's ability to flow back to these assets may hurt gold.

GLD Chart

GLD data by YCharts

The miners face a slightly different picture. While Barrick is still facing delays at Pascua-Lama, Goldcorp and Newmont have each seen solid production figures. The falling price of gold is the primary driver of these stocks, but economic stability could help the operational issues faced by the miners, as companies. Over the past several quarters, the miners have significantly underperformed the commodity; this trend could potentially begin to reverse.

Alternatively, there is a large contingent of investors -- of which I am one -- who believe that the equity markets have been over-supported by the Fed. At some point, when support is withdrawn, there will necessarily be a significant correction and, at that point, gold will look attractive. As Fools do not look to time the market, and as it will be very difficult to predict when such a correction is likely, you are likely better off waiting. Maintaining an allocation to gold is appropriate, but it is too soon to pile in, expecting prices to spike back to new highs.

Even with the Fed news, you should remember that Gold has outshined the stock market with strong returns since 2000, but more recently has given way to big declines. The Motley Fool's new free report, "The Best Way to Play Gold Right Now," dissects the recent volatility and provides a guide for gold investing. Click here to read the full report today!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

10 Best Energy Stocks To Buy Right Now

Less than a month after "retiring" as CEO of Chesapeake Energy (NYSE: CHK  ) , Aubrey McClendon decided it was time to get back to work. In going back to what he knows best, McClendon has come to the point in the process where his new venture, American Energy Partners, is lacking one important ingredient: money. That's why it's not at all surprising that Aubrey McClendon is searching high and low for that one critical component.

According to reports, McClendon is targeting a billion dollars in capital from private equity groups and sovereign wealth funds. McClendon would use this capital to fund his plans to build American Energy Partners into a best in class exploration and production company. It's not yet known how much capital he has been able to secure, if any.

As an investor, this is an interesting story to watch as there are many lessons to be learned from studying the past. Many Chesapeake investors loathe McClendon because his lavish pay packages and aggressive approach burned them. However, he did build the company into the second-largest natural gas producer in the country trailing only ExxonMobil (NYSE: XOM  ) . In the process, he amassed vast tracks of land and data that are just waiting to be unlocked. If gas prices hadn't plunged then McClendon might be known as an energy visionary, instead his imaged has been forever tarnished.

10 Best Energy Stocks To Buy Right Now: Marathon Petroleum Corp (MPC)

Marathon Petroleum Corporation (MPC), incorporated on November 9, 2009, is a petroleum product refiners, transporters and marketers in the United States. The Company operates in three segments: Refining & Marketing, Speedway and Pipeline Transportation. Marathon Petroleum�� refining, marketing and transportation operations are concentrated in the Midwest, Gulf Coast and Southeast regions of the United States. MPC has two retail brands: Speedway and Marathon. Effective as of June 30, 2011, MPC was separated from Marathon Oil Corporation (Marathon Oil) and became an independent company in a spin-off transaction.

Refining & Marketing

The Company owned and operated six refineries in the Gulf Coast and Midwest regions of the United States with an aggregate crude oil refining capacity of approximately 1.2 million barrels per calendar day as of December 31, 2011. During 2011, its refineries processed 1,177 million barrels per day of crude oil and 181 mbpd of other charge and blend stocks. Its refineries include crude oil atmospheric and vacuum distillation, fluid catalytic cracking, catalytic reforming, desulfurization and sulfur recovery units. The refineries process a range of crude oils and produce numerous refined products, ranging from transportation fuels, such as reformulated gasolines, blend-grade gasolines intended for blending with fuel ethanol and ultra-low-sulfur diesel fuel, to heavy fuel oil and asphalt. Additionally, MPC manufacture aromatics, propane, propylene, cumene and sulfur.

The Company�� Garyville, Louisiana refinery is located along the Mississippi River in southeastern Louisiana between New Orleans and Baton Rouge. The Garyville refinery is configured to process heavy sour crude oil into products, such as gasoline, distillates, asphalt, polymer grade propylene, propane, isobutane, sulfur and fuel-grade coke. The Catlettsburg, Kentucky refinery is located in northeastern Kentucky on the western bank of the Big Sandy River, near the confluence! with the Ohio River. The Catlettsburg refinery processes sweet and sour crude oils into products such as gasoline, distillates, asphalt, cumene, petrochemicals, propane and propylene. The Robinson, Illinois refinery is located in southeastern Illinois. The Robinson refinery processes sweet and sour crude oils into products, such as multiple grades of gasoline, distillates, anode-grade coke, propane, butane and propylene.

MPC�� Detroit, Michigan refinery is located near Interstate 75 in southwest Detroit. It is the petroleum refinery operating in Michigan. The Detroit refinery processes light sweet and heavy sour crude oils, including Canadian crude oils, into products, such as gasoline, distillates, asphalt, slurry, propane, and propylene. Its Canton, Ohio refinery is located approximately 60 miles southeast of Cleveland, Ohio. The Canton refinery processes sweet and sour crude oils into products such as gasoline, distillates, asphalt, propane, slurry and roofing flux. Its Texas City, Texas refinery is located on the Texas Gulf Coast approximately 30 miles south of Houston, Texas. The refinery processes sweet crude oil into products such as gasoline, chemical grade propylene, propane, slurry and aromatics.

As of December 31, 2011, the Company owned and operated 62 light product and 21 asphalt terminals. In addition, it distributes through approximately 52 third-party light product and 12 third-party asphalt terminals in its market area. During 2011, marine transportation operations included 15 towboats, as well as 167 owned and 14 leased barges that transport refined products on the Ohio, Mississippi and Illinois rivers and their tributaries, as well as the Intercoastal Waterway. As of December 31, 2011, the Company leased or owned approximately 1,950 railcars of various sizes and capacities for movement and storage of refined products. In addition, it own 124 transport trucks for the movement of refined products.

The Company produces propane at all six of its! refineri! es. Propane is primarily used for home heating and cooking, as a feedstock within the petrochemical industry, for grain drying and as a fuel for trucks and other vehicles. The Company is also a producer and marketer of feedstocks and specialty products. Product availability varies by refinery and includes propylene, cumene, dilute naphthalene oil, molten sulfur, toluene, benzene and xylene. Propane is primarily used for home heating and cooking, as a feedstock within the petrochemical industry, for grain drying and as a fuel for trucks and other vehicles.


The Company sells transportation fuels and convenience products in the retail market in the Midwest, primarily through Speedway convenience stores. The Speedway segment sells gasoline and merchandise through convenience stores that the Companu owns and operates, primarily under the Speedway brand. Speedway-branded convenience stores offer a range of merchandise, such as prepared foods, beverages and non-food items, including a number of private-label items. As of December 31, 2011, Speedway had 1,371 convenience stores in seven states.

Pipeline Transportation

The Company transports crude oil and other feedstocks to our refineries and other locations, delivers refined products to wholesale and retail market areas and includes, among other transportation-related assets, a majority interest in LOOP LLC, which is the owner and operator of the United States deepwater oil port. It owns common carrier pipeline systems through Marathon Pipe Line LLC (MPL) and Ohio River Pipe Line LLC (ORPL), both of which are wholly owned subsidiaries. These pipeline systems transport crude oil and refined products, primarily in the Midwest and Gulf Coast regions, to its refineries, its terminals and other pipeline systems. The Company�� MPL and ORPL wholly owned carrier systems consist of 1,707 miles of crude oil lines and 1,825 miles of refined product lines comprising 31 systems located in 11 states, as of Decem! ber 31, 2! 011. In addition, MPL leases and operates 217 miles of common carrier refined product pipelines.

The common carrier refined product pipelines include the owned and operated Cardinal Products Pipeline and the Wabash Pipeline. The Cardinal Products Pipeline delivers refined products from Kenova, West Virginia, to Columbus, Ohio. The Wabash Pipeline system delivers refined products from Robinson, Illinois, to various terminals in the area of Chicago, Illinois. Other refined product pipelines owned and operated by MPL extend from: Robinson, Illinois to Louisville, Kentucky; Robinson, Illinois to Lima, Ohio; Wood River, Illinois to Indianapolis, Indiana; Garyville, Louisiana to Zachary, Louisiana, and Texas City, Texas to Pasadena, Texas.

As of December 31, 2011, the Company had partial ownership interests in the pipeline companies that have approximately 110 miles of crude oil pipelines and 3,600 miles of refined products pipelines, including about 970 miles operated by MPL, which include Centennial Pipeline LLC (Centennial), Explorer Pipeline Company (Explorer), LOCAP LLC (LOCAP), LOOP LLC (LOOP), Muskegon Pipeline LLC (Muskegon) and Wolverine Pipe Line Company (Wolverine).

The Company holds a 50% interest in Centennial, which owns a refined products pipeline system connecting the Gulf Coast region with the Midwest market. The Company holds a 17% interest in Explorer, a refined products pipeline system extending from the Gulf Coast to the Midwest. It holds a 51% interest in LOOP, the owner and operator of the Louisiana Offshore Oil Port, which is a deepwater oil port capable of receiving crude oil from large crude carriers, located 18 miles off the coast of Louisiana, and a crude oil pipeline connecting the port facility to storage caverns and tanks at Clovelly, Louisiana. The Company holds a 60% interest in Muskegon, which owns a refined products pipeline extending from Griffith, Indiana to North Muskegon, Michigan. It hold a 6% interest in Wolverine, a refined prod! ucts pipe! line system extending from Chicago, Illinois to Toledo, Ohio.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Jim Jubak]

     A river of oil from the oil-shale boom in North Dakota and Texas is gradually making its way to the country's Gulf Coast refineries as pipelines and other infrastructure are built out. The arrival of oil from resources like the Eagle Ford and Bakken shales will mean rising margins at Gulf Coast refineries as they begin their work with cheaper oil.

    Marathon Petroleum (MPC) will get a big hunk of that refining business -- and those higher refining margins -- and it seems determined to gather in even more with its purchase in October of BP's (BP) Texas City refinery. Texas City gives Marathon a refinery close to growing crude production from Eagle Ford and the Permian Basin. What I like about this deal -- and Marathon Petroleum's positioning -- is that as the infrastructure buildout continues, the company will be able to grow margins and earnings by simply substituting cheaper mid-continent oil for more expensive imported oil.

10 Best Energy Stocks To Buy Right Now: Canadian Solar Inc.(CSIQ)

Canadian Solar Inc. engages in the design, development, manufacture, and sale of solar power products in Canada and internationally. The company offers solar cell and solar module products that convert sunlight into electricity for various uses. Its products include a range of standard solar modules for use in a range of residential, commercial, and industrial solar power generation systems. The company also designs and produces specialty solar modules and products consisting of customized modules that its customers incorporate into their products, such as solar-powered bus stop lighting; and specialty products, such as portable solar home systems and solar-powered car battery chargers. In addition, it sells solar system kits, a package consisting of solar modules produced by it and third party supplied components, such as inverters, racking system, and other accessories, as well as implements solar power development projects. The company sells its products under the Canad ian Solar brand name. Canadian Solar Inc. offers its standard solar modules through a direct sales force and sales agents primarily to distributors, system integrators, and original equipment manufacturer customers, as well as to solar projects; and specialty solar modules and products to the automotive, telecommunications, and light-emitting diode lighting sectors. The company was founded in 2001 and is based in Kitchener, Canada.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Glenn]

    Canadian Solar, Inc.(NASDAQ: CSIQ) closing price in the stock market Tuesday, Jan. 3, was $2.80. CSIQ is trading 7.52% above its 50 day moving average and -50.19% below its 200 day moving average. CSIQ is -83.32% below its 52-week high of $16.79 and 35.27% above its 52-week low of $2.07. CSIQ‘s PE ratio is N/A and its market cap is $120.83M .

    Canadian Solar, Inc. engages in the design, development, manufacture, and sale of solar power products in Canada and internationally. The company offers solar cell and solar module products that convert sunlight into electricity for various uses. Its products include a range of standard solar modules for use in a range of residential, commercial, and industrial solar power generation systems.

Top Stocks To Own Right Now: Magnum Hunter Resources Corp (MHR)

Magnum Hunter Resources Corporation (Magnum Hunter), incorporated in June 1997, is an independent oil and gas company engaged in the exploration for and the exploitation, acquisition, development and production of crude oil, natural gas and natural gas liquids, primarily in the states of West Virginia, Ohio, Texas, Kentucky and North Dakota and in Saskatchewan, Canada. The Company is also engaged in midstream operations, including the gathering of natural gas through its ownership and operation of a gas gathering system in West Virginia and Ohio, named as its Eureka Hunter Pipeline System. The Company�� portfolio includes Marcellus/Utica Shales in West Virginia and Ohio, the Eagle Ford Shale in south Texas, and the Williston Basin/Bakken Shale in North Dakota and Saskatchewan, Canada. As of December 31, 2011, its proved reserves were 44.9 million barrels of oil equivalent and were approximately 48% oil. In August 2012, the Company closed on the acquisition of 1,885 net mineral acres located in Atascosa County, Texas. With this acquisition, the Company has approximately 7,278 gross acres and 5,212 net acres located in Atascosa County, Texas.

On May 3, 2011, it acquired NuLoch Resources Inc. In April 2011, Triad Hunter, its wholly owned subsidiary, acquired certain Marcellus Shale oil and gas properties located in Wetzel County, West Virginia. On April 13, 2011, it acquired NGAS Resources, Inc. In February 2012, Triad Hunter acquired leasehold mineral interests located primarily in Noble County, Ohio.

Eagle Ford Shale Properties

Eagle Ford Shale is located in Gonzales, Lavaca, Atascosa and Fayette Counties, Texas. The Eagle Ford Shale properties are held primarily by its wholly owned subsidiary, Eagle Ford Hunter, Inc. As of February 27, 2012, the Company�� Eagle Ford Shale properties included approximately 54,000 gross (24,000 net) acres primarily targeting the Eagle Ford Shale oil window, principally in Gonzales and Lavaca Counties, Texas. As of December 31! , 2011, proved reserves attributable to the Eagle Ford Shale properties were 5.4 million barrels of oil equivalent, of which 94% were oil and 24% were classified as proved developed producing, and 5.4 million barrels of oil equivalent. As of February 27, 2012, its Eagle Ford Shale properties included 18 gross (10 net) productive wells, of which it operated 14.

Williston Basin Properties

The Williston Basin is spread across North Dakota, Montana and parts of southern Canada. The basin produces oil and natural gas from a range of producing horizons, including the Madison, Bakken, Three Forks/Sanish and Red River formations. As of February 27, 2012, the Company�� Williston Basin properties included approximately 413,003 gross (122,561 net) acres. As of December 31, 2011, proved reserves attributable to the Williston Basin properties were 8.9 million barrels of oil equivalent, of which 94% were oil and 42% were classified as proved developed producing, and 8.8 million barrels of oil equivalent. As of February 27, 2012, the Williston Basin properties included approximately 288 gross (98.9 net) productive wells.

The Williston Hunter United States property acreage is located in Divide and Burke Counties, North Dakota, with its primary production from the Bakken Shale and Three Forks/Sanish formations. As of February 27, 2012, its Williston Hunter United States properties included approximately 36,355 net acres in the Williston Basin in North Dakota. As of February 27, 2012, the Williston Hunter United States properties included approximately 105 gross (9.5 net) productive wells. The Company�� Williston Hunter Canada property is located primarily in Enchant, near Vauxhall, Alberta, Canada, at Balsam near Grande Prairie, Alberta, Canada and at Tableland, near Estevan, Saskatchewan, Canada. As of February 27 2012, the Williston Hunter Canada properties included approximately 107,270 gross acres (79,693 net acres). At December 31, 2011, the Williston Hunter Canada prope! rties inc! luded approximately 65 gross productive wells. As of December 31, 2011, Williston Hunter Canada had 41,797 gross (32,944 net) acres of land that is prospective for Bakken and Three Forks/Sanish oil in the Tableland field. The Enchant property consists of 10,720 acres. As of December 31, 2011, 48 wells (44.1 net) were producing on this acreage. As of December 31, 2011, the Company owned approximately 43% average interest in 15 fields located in the Williston Basin in North Dakota consisting of 151 wells, and approximately 15,000 gross (6,450 net) acres.

Appalachian Basin Properties

The properties acquired in the NGAS acquisition are held by its wholly owned subsidiary, Magnum Hunter Production, Inc. As of February 27, 2012, its Appalachian Basin properties included a total of approximately 484,412 gross (412,323 net) acres, located primarily in the Marcellus Shale, Utica Shale and southern Appalachian Basin. At December 31, 2011, proved reserves attributable to its Appalachian Basin properties were 29.9 million barrels of oil equivalent, of which 27% were oil and 59% were classified as proved developed producing, and 30.2 million barrels of oil equivalent. As of February 27, 2012, the Appalachian Basin properties included approximately 3,112 gross (2,257 net) productive wells, of which we operated approximately 88%.

As of February 27, 2012, it had approximately 58,426 net acres in the Marcellus Shale area of West Virginia and Ohio. The Company�� Marcellus Shale property is located principally in Tyler, Pleasants, Doddridge, Wetzel and Lewis Counties, West Virginia and in Washington, Monroe and Noble Counties, Ohio. As of February 27, 2012, the Company operated 33 vertical Marcellus Shale wells and 16 horizontal Marcellus Shale wells. As of February 27, 2012, approximately 63% of its leases in the Marcellus Shale area were held by production.

Other Properties

The Company�� East Chalkley field is located in Cameron Parish, Louisiana.! The fiel! d consists of approximately 714 gross acres (443 net acres). This developmental project is an exploitation of bypassed oil reserves remaining in a natural gas field located at depths between 9,300 and 9,400 feet. As of February 27, 2012, the Company operated the East Chalkley field and owned an approximately 62% working interest and an approximately 42.7% net revenue interest in the field. Other properties of the Company are located in Nacogdoches, Colorado, Lavaca, Bee, Fayette and Wharton Counties, Texas and Desoto Parish, Louisiana. As of February 27, 2012, these properties consisted of an aggregate of approximately 7,050 gross (1,188 net) acres.

10 Best Energy Stocks To Buy Right Now: Exxon Mobil Corporation(XOM)

Exxon Mobil Corporation engages in the exploration and production of crude oil and natural gas, and manufacture of petroleum products, as well as transportation and sale of crude oil, natural gas, and petroleum products. The company manufactures and markets commodity petrochemicals, including olefins, aromatics, polyethylene and polypropylene plastics, and other specialty products. As of December 31, 2010, it operated 35,691 gross and 30,494 net operated wells. The company has operations in the United States, Canada/South America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australia/Oceania. Exxon Mobil Corporation was founded in 1870 and is based in Irving, Texas.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Stephen Faulkner]

    What keeps running around the headlines? What do you see when you fill up your tank 1, 2, 3 times a week? That would be rising fuel prices. As fuel prices go up, typically the companies which are in the business of selling that fuel, go up. Exxon Mobil is huge, running a $406.9 billion market cap. Solid earnings and low debt relative to income add to the attractive qualities of this stock. The days of "cheap gas" are behind us, and Exxon Mobil stands to appreciate as demand outstrips supply.

    Exxon Mobil has been trading around $85 for most of 2012 and currently sits at $86.33. As gas prices increase I expect share price to appreciate and head towards $100 per share, representing a 16% upside. Dividend payment is currently $0.47 per share, paid quarterly.

  • [By John Reese]

    Again, another company that will win either way.  This is the largest company by market cap on the US stock market.  That makes them a safe haven asset when the economy is going south.  But in addition to their defensive qualities, they also have great long term prospects for growth.  They are always finding new reserves of oil.  But they are also investing in other energy sources as well like natural gas.  I think they will be a huge player in the natural gas power generation business in years to come.  I’m bullish here because I think gas will become a major player in the power generation industry in the US.  It burns cleaner than coal and safer than nuclear.

  • [By Hawkinvest]

    Exxon (XOM) is a must-own stock for many oil investors. This company has a strong balance sheet and a very significant reserve base, which grows in value with the price of oil. Exxon recently reported solid results with earnings for the fourth quarter of 2011 coming in at $1.97 per share. The company also reported that it bought back about $5 billion worth of shares. Weaker margins in the refinery business did impact results, but overall, the report shows that the company is poised for a solid year ahead. Exxon has a very strong balance sheet and it can afford to continue buying back shares which will help to boost future earnings. This stock was trading for about $80 per share in December, but has been trending higher. Exxon shares have recently been finding support around $83 per share, so buying on dips at that level are particularly attractive.< /span>

    Here are some key points for XOM:

    Current share price: $86.57

    The 52 week range is $67.03 to $88.23

    Earnings estimates for 2011: $8.25 per share

    Earnings estimates for 2012: $8.99 per share

    Annual dividend: about $1.88 per share which yields about 2.2%

10 Best Energy Stocks To Buy Right Now: Magellan Midstream Partners L.P.(MMP)

Magellan Midstream Partners, L.P., together with its subsidiaries, engages in the transportation, storage, and distribution of refined petroleum products and crude oil in the United States. Its pipeline system transports petroleum products and liquefied petroleum gases from the Gulf Coast refining region of Texas through the Midwest to Colorado, North Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Illinois. The company owns and operates marine terminals, which store and distribute refined petroleum products, blendstocks, crude oils, heavy oils, and feedstocks, as well as inland terminals that consist of storage tanks connected to third-party interstate pipeline systems to deliver refined petroleum products. Its ammonia pipeline system transports ammonia from production facilities in Texas and Oklahoma to terminals in the Midwest. The company also stores, blends, and distributes biofuels, such as ethanol and biodiesel. As of March 31, 2011, it operated approximately 9, 600 miles of petr oleum products pipeline system and 51 terminals; 6 marine petroleum terminals located along the United States Gulf and East Coasts; a crude oil storage in Cushing, Oklahoma; 27 petroleum products inland terminals located principally in the southeastern United States; and a 1,100-mile ammonia pipeline system and 6 associated terminals. The company also provides ancillary services, such as heating, blending, and mixing of stored petroleum products and additive injection services. Its customers comprise independent and integrated oil companies, wholesalers, retailers, railroads, airlines, and regional farm co-operatives. The company serves various markets, including retail gasoline stations, truck stops, farm co-operatives, railroad fueling depots, and military and commercial jet fuel users. Magellan GP, LLC serves as the general partner of the company. The company was founded in 2000 and is based in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Louis Navellier]

    Magellan Midstream Partners (NYSE:MMP) is involved with the transportation, storage and distribution of refined petroleum products. MMP is another oil stock that has gained nearly 20% since January.

10 Best Energy Stocks To Buy Right Now: Markwest Energy Partners LP (MWE)

MarkWest Energy Partners, L.P. (MarkWest Energy) is a master limited partnership engaged in the gathering, processing and transportation of natural gas; the transportation, fractionation, storage and marketing of natural gas liquids (NGLs), and the gathering and transportation of crude oil. It provides services in the midstream sector of the natural gas industry. The Company also provides processing and fractionation services to crude oil refineries in the Corpus Christi, Texas area through its Javelina gas processing and fractionation facility. As of December 31, 2011, the Company operated in four segments: Southwest, Northeast, Liberty and Gulf Coast. Effective December 31, 2011, the Company acquired the remaining 49% interest in MarkWest Liberty Midstream. On February 1, 2011, the Company acquired Langley processing plant.

Southwest Segment

The Company owns a system in East Texas that consists of natural gas gathering pipelines, centralized compressor stations, a natural gas processing facility and an NGL pipeline. The East Texas system is located in Panola, Harrison and Rusk Counties and services the Carthage Field. Producing formations in Panola County consist of the Cotton Valley, Pettit, Travis Peak and Haynesville formations. During the year ended December 31, 2011, approximately 77% of its natural gas volumes in the East Texas System result from contracts with six producers. The Company sells substantially all of the purchased and retained NGLs produced at its East Texas processing facility to Targa Resources Partners, L.P. (Targa) under a long-term contract. Such sales represent approximately 19.4% of its consolidated revenue in 2011.

The Company owns a natural gas gathering system in the Woodford Shale play in the Arkoma Basin of southeast Oklahoma. The liquids-rich natural gas gathered in the Woodford system is processed through Centrahoma Processing LLC (Centrahoma), its equity investment, or other third-party processors. In addition, it owns the Foss Lake! natural gas gathering system and the Western Oklahoma natural gas processing complex, all located in Roger Mills, Beckham, Custer and Ellis Counties of western Oklahoma. The gathering portion consists of a pipeline system that is connected to natural gas wells and associated compression facilities. The Company also owns a gathering system in the Granite Wash formation in Wheeler County in the Texas panhandle that is connected to its Western Oklahoma processing complex. The Company completed the expansion of the Western Oklahoma natural gas processing plant in October 2011.

Approximately 70% of its Oklahoma volumes result from contracts with three producers in 2011. The Company sells substantially all of the NGLs produced in the Western Oklahoma processing complex to ONEOK Hydrocarbon L.P. (ONEOK) under a long-term contract. Such sales represent approximately 13.2% of its consolidated revenue in 2011. The Company owns a number of natural gas gathering systems located in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi and New Mexico, including the Appleby gathering system in Nacogdoches County, Texas. It gathers a portion of the gas produced from fields adjacent to its gathering systems, including from wells targeting the Haynesville Shale. In addition, it owns four lateral pipelines in Texas and New Mexico.

Northeast Segment

The Company�� Northeast segment assets include the Kenova, Boldman, Cobb, Kermit and Langley natural gas processing plants, an NGL pipeline and the Siloam NGL fractionation plant. In addition, it has two caverns for storing propane at its Siloam facility and additional propane storage capacity under a long-term firm-capacity agreement with a third party. The Northeast segment operations include fractionation and marketing services on behalf of the Liberty segment. The Company owns and operates a crude oil pipeline in Michigan (Michigan Crude Pipeline) providing transportation service for three shippers.

Liberty Segment

The Company pr! ovides na! tural gas midstream services in southwestern Pennsylvania and northern West Virginia through MarkWest Liberty Midstream. It is a processor of natural gas in the Marcellus Shale, with gathering, processing, fractionation, storage and marketing operations.

Utica Segment

Effective January 1, 2012, the Company and The Energy and Minerals Group (EMG) formed MarkWest Utica EMG, a joint venture focused on the development of natural gas processing and NGL fractionation, transportation and marketing infrastructure to serve producers' drilling programs in the Utica shale in eastern Ohio. During 2011, the Utica Segment did not have any operations.

Gulf Coast Segment

The Company owns and operates the Javelina processing facility, a natural gas processing facility in Corpus Christi, Texas that treats and processes off-gas from six local refineries operated by three different refinery customers. As of December 31, 2011, the Company owned a 40% interest in Centrahoma Processing LLC (Centrahoma), a joint venture with Cardinal Midstream, LLC (Cardinal). Centrahoma owns certain processing plants in the Arkoma Basin and Cardinal operates an additional processing plant that is not owned by Centrahoma but is located adjacent to and operates in conjunction with the Centrahoma plants.

10 Best Energy Stocks To Buy Right Now: Midstates Petroleum Company Inc (MPO)

Midstates Petroleum Company, Inc. is an independent exploration and production company. The Company�� areas of operation include Pine Prairie, South Bearhead Creek/Oretta, West Gordon and North Cowards Gully. Its Upper Gulf Coast Tertiary trend extends from south Texas to Mississippi across its operating areas in central Louisiana. As of December 31, 2011, it had accumulated approximately 77,100 net acres in the trend. As of December 31, 2011, its development operations are focused in the Wilcox interval of the trend. The Company�� business is conducted through Midstates Petroleum Company LLC, as a direct, wholly owned subsidiary. In September 2012, the Company and its subsidiary acquired all of Eagle Energy Production, LLC�� producing properties as well as their developed and undeveloped acreage primarily in the Mississippian Lime oil play in Oklahoma and Kansas.

As of December 31, 2011, it drilled 57 gross wells in the trend, approximately 93% of. During the year ended December 31, 2011, its average daily production were 7,499 barrels of oil equivalent per day. As of December 31, 2011, it had a total of 974 gross vertical drilling locations, including 115 related to acreage under option, in the trend. As of December 31, 2011, the Company�� properties included approximately 92 gross active producing wells, 95% of, which it operate, and in which it held an average working interest of approximately 99% across its 77,100 net acre leasehold. During March 31, 2012, the Company continued its drilling program, spudding 14 wells, of which nine are producing, three are being drilled and two are waiting to be completed. As of December 331, 2011, it averaged daily production is approximately 9,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day.

Pine Prairie

The Company�� properties in the Pine Prairie area represented 46% of its total proved reserves as of December 31, 2011. During 2011, the Company�� average production from these properties was 3,793 net barrels of oil equ! ivalent per day, consisting of 2,143 barrels of oil, 565 barrels of natural gas liquidations (NGLs) and 6,508 million cubic feet of natural gas per day. As of December 31, 2011, it held an average working interest and average net revenue interest of 92.2% and 68.9%, respectively, on its acreage in Pine Prairie area. The Company has an additional 194 identified drilling locations in this area based primarily on 10-acre spacing.

South Bearhead Creek/Oretta

The Company�� properties in the South Bearhead Creek/Oretta area represented 20.3% of its total proved reserves as of December 31, 2011. During 2011, the Company�� average production from these properties was 4,367 net barrels of oil equivalent per day, consisting of 2,196 barrels of oil, 438 barrels of NGLs and 10,396 million cubic feet of natural gas per day. During 2011, these wells produced at an average daily rate of 2,413 net barrels of oil equivalent per day. As of December 31, 2011, it held an average working interest and average net revenue interest of 100% and 78.5%, respectively, on its acreage in South Bearhead Creek/Oretta area. The Company has an additional 43 identified drilling locations in this area based primarily on 40-acre spacing.

West Gordon

The Company�� properties in the West Gordon area represented 21% of its total proved reserves as of December 31, 2011. During 2011, the Company�� average production from these properties was 1,002 net barrels of oil equivalent per day, consisting of 617 barrels of oil, 68 barrels of NGLs and 1,901 million cubic feet of natural gas per day. As of December 31, 2011, it held an average working interest and average net revenue interest of 95.9% and 71.2%, respectively, on its acreage in West Gordon area. The Company has an additional 74 identified drilling locations in this area based primarily on 40-acre spacing.

North Cowards Gully

The Company�� properties in the North Cowards Gully area represented 11.5% of ! its total! proved reserves as of December 31, 2011. During 2011, the Company�� average production from these properties was 149 net barrels of oil equivalent per day consisting of 103 barrels of oil, 11 barrels of NGLs, and 211 million cubic feet of natural gas per day. As of December 31, 2011, it held an average working interest and average net revenue interest of 94.3% and 71.2%, respectively, on its acreage in North Cowards Gully area. The Company has an additional 95 identified drilling locations in this area based primarily on 40-acre spacing.

10 Best Energy Stocks To Buy Right Now: Transocean Inc.(RIG)

Transocean Ltd. provides offshore contract drilling services for oil and gas wells worldwide. It offers deepwater and harsh environment drilling, oil and gas drilling management, and drilling engineering and drilling project management services. The company also offers well and logistics services. In addition, it engages in oil and gas exploration, development, and production activities primarily in the United States offshore Louisiana and Texas, and in the United Kingdom sector of the North Sea. As of February 10, 2011, the company owned, had partial ownership interests in, and operated 138 mobile offshore drilling units, including 47 high-specification floaters, 25 midwater floaters, 9 high-specification jackups, 54 standard jackups, and 3 other rigs, as well as 1 ultra-deepwater floater and 3 high-specification jackups under construction. Transocean Ltd. was founded in 1953 and is based in Zug, Switzerland.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Daniel Dicker]

    Transocean(RIG). RIG dominates deepwater drilling floaters, but the company is on the verge of drifting into junk bond territory, and it has court cases pending that will define its financial responsibility for the Macondo disaster of last year.

    Still, in 2008 RIG shares traded for $160. Back then oil prices were not much higher than they are today and daily rig rates weren't much different. RIG trades for about $42 a share today.

  • [By Brian Stoffel]

    Finally, a list of energy stocks wouldn't be complete without a pure-play rig maker. Though the company took some hits for its role in the Deepwater Horizon disaster in 2010, that didn't stop Jim Mueller and Michael Olsen from adding Transocean to their portfolios.

    Jim picked the stock back in November 2010 because he thought the market's expectations for the stock were simply messed up. Using a discounted cash flow model, Jim said the stock's price "implies the company can grow [free cash flow] by just 0.7% for each of the next five years, then by 0.4% for the following five years, followed by no more growth forever."

    A quick look at history showed him what a silly assumption this was: "Over the past five years, Transocean has grown free cash flow by an average of 41.7% per year."

    Shares are 19% cheaper than they were when Jim made his original recommendation, which means expectations must be downright outrageous by now.

  • [By John Paulson]

    Transocean LTD., formerly Transocean Inc., is an international provider of offshore contract drilling services for oil and gas wells. Transocean Ltd. has a market cap of $24.06 billion; its shares were traded at around $75.41 with a P/E ratio of 13.11 and P/S ratio of 2.51. Transocean Ltd. had an annual average earnings growth of 12.7% over the past 10 years. GuruFocus rated Transocean Ltd. the business predictability rank of 2.5-star.

    Transocean stock has not quite recovered from the market crash of 2008, when it plunged from a $160 range to the low $40 range. As of April 25, 2011, it is selling at $73.40, with a 52-week high of $90.53. Year to date, it is up 5.6%.

    Paulson initiated his stake in the company in the fourth quarter of 2010. He bought 7.2 million shares at an average price of $67.17. The stock has gained 12.3% since then.

    Transocean owned the right that exploded in the Gulf of Mexico oil spill in April, 2010. From 2006-2009, the company earned net income of $1 billion to over $5 billion. In 2010, the year of the oil spill, it took a dramatic hit, earning $961 million in net income. In the fourth quarter of 2010, it lost $799 million in net income. Transocean had a gross profit margin of 46.5% in 2010.

    In April, Transocean’s ultra-deepwater drillship set the record for deepest water drill in history: 10,194 feet off the coast of India. The company will also pay the first installment of a proposed dividend of approximately $1 billion in June.

10 Best Energy Stocks To Buy Right Now: (NFYEF)

New Flyer Industries, Inc. a Canadian Income Fund, operates as an unincorporated open-ended trust in Canada. The fund engages in the manufacture and sale of heavy duty transit buses in the United States and Canada. It uses various propulsion systems, including diesel electric or gasoline electric hybrid systems, compressed natural gas or liquid natural gas systems, and zero emission electric trolleys in heavy duty transit buses. The fund also provides aftermarket parts and services, including parts distribution, field services, support documentation, and training, as well as bus parts. It supplies heavy duty transit buses primarily to municipal and local transit authorities. New Flyer was founded in 1930 and is headquartered in Winnipeg, Canada.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Paul Goodwin]

    Second, New Flyer Industries (NFYEF.PK/NFI.TO) stock has been accelerating since January 19th.  The unusual action prompted regulators to ask New Flyer to disclose that New Flyer has been in discussions "regarding a potential commercial and strategic relationship."  But company CEO Paul Soubry says there are no deals closing, and several analysts agree.

    The stock has been incredibly under-priced since last summer.  North American transit bus orders have been slow for the past two years, and New Flyer has been reducing its backlog as a result.  But the flip side of the slow bus market has been a rapidly aging bus fleet and increasing pressure on transit operators to replace aging buses. 

10 Best Energy Stocks To Buy Right Now: First Solar Inc.(FSLR)

First Solar, Inc. manufactures and sells solar modules using a thin-film semiconductor technology. It also designs, constructs, and sells photovoltaic solar power systems. The company?s solar modules employ a thin layer of semiconductor material to convert sunlight into electricity. Its integrated solar power systems activities include the project development; engineering, procurement, and construction services; operating and maintenance services; and project finance. The company sells solar modules to project developers, system integrators, and operators of renewable energy projects; and solar power systems to investor owned utilities, independent power developers and producers, and commercial and industrial companies, as well as other system owners. It operates in the United States, Germany, France, Canada, and internationally. The company was formerly known as First Solar Holdings, Inc. and changed its name to First Solar, Inc. in 2006. First Solar was founded in 1999 a nd is headquartered in Tempe, Arizona.

Advisors' Opinion:
  • [By Hawkinvest]

    First Solar (FSLR) is a U.S.-based solar company that was once the darling of Wall Street. A couple of years ago, this stock traded for over $250 per share, but due to challenging business conditions and a change in investor psychology, the stock now trades below book value, which is $46.61 per share. There is still plenty to like with this company. It has a technological edge over other companies, a strong balance sheet, and it is one of the few solar firms that have been able to remain solidly profitable during an extremely difficult period for the industry.

    First Solar expects revenues to range from $3.7 to $4.0 billion, and earnings to come in somewhere between $3.75 to $4.25 per share for 2012. The company is expected to report fourth quarter earnings on February 28, 2012, so it could make sense to wait for a financial update before making a large investment. However, the stock is trading below book value, and for less than 10 times earnings. Investors who like buying low should consider this industry leader, while the stock is still trading at depressed levels.

  • [By Cutler]

    First Solar (FSLR) is a leading manufacturer of solar power modules, boasting great growth of both revenues and earnings … and profit margins of 27% in the latest quarter, very impressive for a manufacturer. The stock was a big winner for Cabot Market Letter in 2006 (we sold in March 2007) and like most stocks in the industry it’s spent the time since then cooling off. I think it’s cool enough now. First Solar was on the list three years ago, too.

  • [By Dave Friedman]

    On 3/31/11 Maverick Capital reported holding 0,000 shares with a market value of $0. This comprised 0.00% of the total portfolio. On 6/30/11, Maverick Capital held 2,460,547 shares with a market value of $325,456,562. This comprised 3.18% of the total portfolio. The net change in shares for this position over the two quarters is 2,460,547. About the company: First Solar, Inc. designs and manufactures solar modules. The Company uses a thin film semiconductor technology to manufacture electricity-producing solar modules.

  • [By Nelson]

    First Solar, Inc.(NASDAQ: FSLR) closing price in the stock market Tuesday, Jan. 3, was $35.79. FSLR is trading -11.87% below its 50 day moving average and -54.60% below its 200 day moving average. FSLR is -79.60% below its 52-week high of $175.45 and 19.82% above its 52-week low of $29.87. FSLR‘s PE ratio is 5.80 and its market cap is $3.09B.

    First Solar, Inc. manufactures and sells solar modules using a thin-film semiconductor technology. It also designs, constructs, and sells photovoltaic solar power systems. FSLR’s solar modules employ a thin layer of semiconductor material to convert sunlight into electricity. FSLR was recently headlined when Billionaire Investor Warren Buffett became a largely vested shareholder in them.