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  • Kinder Morgan: Don't Be Fooled By The Nattering Nabobs Of Negativism [View article]
    It's always impossible to predict political situations like this. But Canada has a very resource dependent economy. With oil prices being low, they need to sell as much oil as possible to maintain GDP. Thus, I think Harper will do what he can to make sure it happens.
    Mar 6, 2015. 05:09 AM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What If Wells Fargo Paid Out Half Of Its Earnings? [View article]
    I'm long WFC and would love to see the dividend raised to 1.60. But I think 1.50 is more realistic. Even this lower number takes the payout ratio to 36% of current year earnings.
    Mar 4, 2015. 12:46 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Dividend Growth Slowing Down? [View instapost]
    David Chulak,

    After reading RAS's article I was going to comment that I thought one of the common themes with many DGI stocks is their overseas income. And of course, this would be reduced with a strong dollar. So lower dividend growth.

    Greg - long various stocks like KO, CL, EMR, DCI and JNJ that are saying currency headwinds are impacting their earnings.
    Mar 3, 2015. 09:29 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What Would A 50% Payout Ratio Mean For JPMorgan? [View article]
    Good analysis of a couple possibilities. One positive that is rarely mentioned when discussing the added regulatory burden on banks is the potential for far more stable earnings throughout the economic cycle. Of course, we will need a recession for this to be confirmed.

    But if banks do indeed have more stable earnings during a recession, the case can be made for a higher rather than lower payout ratio than existed before the financial crisis. Many times analysts have equated banks to utilities, but this is usually said in a disparaging context. Utilities have an upside as well. Very stable earnings and high payout ratios.

    Greg - long JPM as well as USB and WFC
    Mar 2, 2015. 10:05 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Natural Gas: The Biggest EIA Report Of The Year Is A Dud [View article]
    Andrew, I have to say I enjoyed this article. Very well reasoned. And loved the last paragraph. Humor and humility add greatly to the investing experience.

    Good luck,
    Mar 2, 2015. 12:44 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Donaldson: Short-Term Headwinds Continue, No Appeal Yet [View article]
    Thanks for the article. I've held DCI for a long time. A fabulously run company that always seems to trade at a premium.

    From my observations over the years, it seems that during slowdowns in growth the stock stays fairly high and simply waits for earnings to catch up. The market seems to buy into the cycles that DCI faces and the stock never seems to decline to a level one would expect from an industrial that is facing a temporary slowdown.

    I would be surprised to see a stock price of $30 without the overall market declining substantially or some piece of bad news for Donaldson. Considering the history of the stock and quality of the company, I would say the shares become very attractive at 34. But even dropping to that level might be a stretch as the 52 week low is 36.

    Greg - long DCI
    Mar 2, 2015. 11:10 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Keurig Unveils Details Of Keurig Kold [View article]
    Thanks for the well done article. The Hot system has many compelling reasons for most people. The Kold system is a very different equation. Some thoughts in no particular order.

    1) Even without a compelling economic reason, the inconvenience of lugging home soda from the grocery store is a factor for many people.

    2) With coffee, most people simply replaced their coffee maker with the Keurig. With Kold, they need to put another appliance in the kitchen. Some people don't want the clutter of an additional appliance.

    3) I would think that you could design a machine similar to the new multiflavor
    Coke machine. You could put three or four flavor pouches in it that would last for a while. Much more efficient and cost effective. More like a soda fountain than the single serve pod based approach which is not as appropriate for soda as it is for coffee.
    Mar 1, 2015. 08:29 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • ONEOK - What Happened To The Dividend Growth? [View article]
    While the distribution growth is certainly a disappointment, it is an understandable one. My big concern is longer term. They are reducing the backlog of caped projects drastically. This does not bode well for long term growth. And it is very different from some other midstream companies.
    Feb 24, 2015. 02:06 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Williams Companies: A Solid Dividend Growth General Partner, Now On Sale [View article]

    I don't disagree that WMB has some attractive growth ahead. But I disagree that KMI is "guiding for everything going right". KMI has projected excess dividend coverage of about $500M. And while this is dependent upon commodity prices, their dividend projection remained intact. Furthermore, they provided a grid outlining what the excess coverage would be at various price points for oil and gas. Even with oil and gas prices lower dropping further they won't need to change their dividend projection.

    I think it was KMI that was guiding conservatively in November while Williams was guiding as if everything was going right.

    Having said that, I do think WMB is a better buy at current prices (but only because KMI has held up almost unscathed with commodities dropping).

    Feb 21, 2015. 12:01 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is An Energy Sector Dividend Cut Imminent? [View article]
    I completely disagree with this statement:

    "Some companies - like BP and Chevron (NYSE:CVX), for example - are already curtailing spending by billions of dollars, which is more than enough to cover dividends in the short term."

    If you are going to write an article about the risk to oil company dividends, I would think you would investigate the actual dividends in comparison to earnings or free cash flow rather than just talking about generalities surrounding the price of oil.

    And if you are going to talk about a company like Chevron in the context of dividends, perhaps you should point out that earnings this year will likely be less than their dividend payout. They pay out $4.28 per year in dividends while they are projected to earn only $3.88. This completely negates your contention that curtailed spending "is more than enough to cover dividends in the short term."

    Feb 20, 2015. 08:09 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Williams Companies: A Solid Dividend Growth General Partner, Now On Sale [View article]
    Green Tube,

    I absolutely agree that no one could have predicted that oil and gas would fall like they have. However, it is clear that WMB a is impacted far more by this drop than KMI. And this shows in the stocks prices as well as dividend projections.

    Williams is definitely a good investment at current pricing, but I definitely don't think it will be the next KMI.

    Feb 20, 2015. 06:59 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Williams Companies: A Solid Dividend Growth General Partner, Now On Sale [View article]
    While I am long WMB, I will also state that it is far from having the steadfastness of KMI (which I also own). KMI didn't back away from their dividend projections the way that WMB a has. WMB's just released outlook provides for a 2015 Q4 dividend which is only 7% greater than the 2014 Q4 dividend. This is half the growth that they promised with their November outlook for 2015.

    KMI on the other hand has stayed with their earlier projections in spite of having an oil segment as part of their operations. Furthermore, Spectra Energy recently confirmed their dividend rates and provided a bigger increase than expected.

    So while I'm certainly understanding of the difficulties in the current environment, I think Williams over promised . In my book the management at KMI and SE is far better.

    Greg - long WMB, KMI, SE
    Feb 19, 2015. 10:30 PM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • U.S. will not become energy independent, Total CEO says [View news story]
    While the U.S. will remain an oil importer, Total's CEO neglected to point out the major difference American oil HAS made. Namely, USA fracking and horizontal drilling technology has lowered worldwide oil prices. In a matter of a few years, we went from talking about peak oil to an oil glut. All because of disruptive US technologies.

    So while we will continue to import, we have further reduced OPEC's ability to dictate oil prices. And that certainly has been a U.S. accomplishment. And is probably much more important than how much oil we actually import. When we look at how many dollars of oil the U.S. imports, it is a major change from 6 years ago. We are now the "swing producer".
    Feb 15, 2015. 08:21 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Coca-Cola Vs. PepsiCo: The Dividend Growth Challenge [View article]

    A good common sense analysis. I agree with the basic conclusion. Both companies are pretty fairly valued and offer just fair prospects going forward. Most people would consider them a hold at current prices.

    Also, in both cases I think better management is possible. But great companies can get by with mediocre management for a long time.

    Greg - long KO
    Feb 12, 2015. 03:50 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Colgate-Palmolive: More Underperformance Ahead [View article]

    I think your use of the word "bubble" is a bit extreme. Even by your own calculations CL is about 12-15% overvalued. Most people wouldn't call that level of overvaluation a bubble.

    But as I and others have pointed out, CL has some very substantial advantages which have historically garnered it a premium price. You could argue that it almost always trades at a premium. So if you want to participate in the benefits of CL ownership, the best thing to do is buy at a discount to the historical premium pricing rather than waiting for it to get to a level where more "average" stocks trade.

    Greg - who guesses there is not a single other company in the world that has raised it's dividend for over 50 years and holds a 45% worldwide market share in a product category.
    Feb 12, 2015. 01:05 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment