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Eric Linser, CFA

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  • Just One Stock: Earnings Growth, Yield, and Leadership in Lithium Production [View article]
    SQM has done what I expected as far as fundamentals - excellent fertilizer growth, and good iodine and lithium sales on the back of strong commodity prices. SQM will most likely best my projections for 2011 -- $2 billion in sales (now closer to $2.2 billion) and $2.10+ in EPS .I'd say the lack of stock performance in 2011 has more to do with the 'risk off' trade that has dominated the world's volatile stock markets, particularly over the summer months. The valuation was a bit stretched last December but it is more reasonable now. SQM is one of my macro thematic plays on agriculture and feeding the world's populace of 7 billion. The 3 major nutrients are nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium/potash. I'd suggest looking for companies that can offer you exposure to each respective area. Good luck in your picks!
    Dec 5 12:13 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Plenty of Opportunity for Investors Despite Regional Conflicts [View article]
    Sanguine? That hardly to represents me, far from it. If one knew what securities are held in my clients' portfolios or what has been traded over the past couple of months (or past few weeks), then I think they would have a very different take on my strategies. I have looked to reduce exposure to companies and industries that could see their revenues and earnings pressured by different types of inflation (agricultural, energy, or elsewhere). One of the few places we aren’t seeing inflation is in US wages, generally speaking. Should you panic over oil? I don't think so, yet. If oil prices stay obstinately high, say over a few months, then I’d say we should question the duration of the economic recovery and resultant pressure on investment securities, be it stocks or bonds. Until then, no one knows the full extent of the headwinds. I suppose if someone is truly pessimistic then they would have missed the stock market rally over the past 2 years (anniversary of the market bottom is this week – March 2009). Is the US economy in recovery? Yes. Is it barn-burner speed? No, but it has been picking up steam and it's probably growing at a higher rate than most Americans believe (4% GDP growth in 2011?). The US is still one of the most innovative, open economies in the world. Are the actions of politicians and the Fed ‘kicking the can down the road’? Probably, so it bears watching - in the long run. I’m cautiously optimistic as there are always opportunities if one knows where to look, and I always try my best to enact the best strategies for each of my clients.
    Mar 7 02:48 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Just One Stock: Earnings Growth, Yield, and Leadership in Lithium Production [View article]
    There are many things in play for SQM right now driving the stock higher. Commodities in general have been on a tear, especially towards the end of 2010. While there is much discussion on lithium, that is only about 17% of the company's overall sales, but growing nicely. Potash, other fertilizers, specialty chemicals, and iodine have all seen their end use demand surge. The company is pretty well balanced in their 4 key business segments and sales around the world. We are still in the early stages of seeing lithium-ion battery technology ramp up, and with that new sources for mining will come on line in a few years time. I am sure other technological advances will come to fruition to not only help prolong the use of lithium but other battery technologies. Potash demand will remain strong, but occasionally lumpy. The company as of 2010 follows international accounting standards which should instill higher confidence in their stated results. Chile, Peru and Columbia stock exchanges all had wonderful 2010 performance results but Brazil was a laggard in the region. There are some really interesting stock ideas in Latin America. In Green Valley's global "Owl" Portfolio, we own 50 stocks from around the world. Some are US based, some are from developed countries and others are from developing and/or frontier markets. Some companies could be described as momentum stocks, some as value, some as growth and income and some as growth stocks. Combine that together with global small and large companies alike, and you get a well-balanced investment approach. SQM is just one of the 50 stocks I hold in the portfolio, but one that I have strong conviction in.
    Jan 3 05:44 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
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