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Alan R. Goozner During the 1994 Peso crisis, I started an e-mail newsletter. This followed from my comments to Mexican interest groups and list servers on the rapidly expanding Internet. The newsletter became a copyright publication : "The Mexican Commentary." This had a limited paid... More
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  • Hi-Yield Selling Climax

    Monday saw a second leg of a selling climax over increasing interest rate worry. The economic indicators continue weak. Inflation is very low. Oil prices - the last time we had an inflated price are much lower and continue to decline - gold and silver positions are being liquidated. The Federal Reserve would never increase interest rates in this type of environment. Consumer confidence is waning and employment statistics are not indicating the desired level of growth. To me this is a grand opportunity to buy hi-yield investments. During yesterday's decline, utilities, mortgage REITs and hi-yield bond funds increased. I added to my DHF position at $3.70 and expect it to rise into the $3.80's before the end of the month. My portfolio showed nothing close to the loss experienced in yesterdays stock averages. For several hours during the day I was showing a gain for all my portfolios and they closed with less than 1/10th of one percent. DHF is yielding 9.35% tax free in my IRA account.

    Disclosure: The author is long DHF.

    Tags: DHF, Hi Yield
    Oct 02 9:29 AM | Link | Comment!
  • Cross Matrix Screening For Gold (Value)

    Many investors who like to "find" their own stock to invest in use stock screens. Some are available on the internet financial sites. One of my favorites is on Yahoo. Another I have respect for are recommendation lists provided by Schwab brokerage.

    Not being a trader and being more conservative to approach, I have become very disappointed in the performance of my fixed income securities. To reinvest the proceeds from called preferred stocks and bond maturities into similar investments I can't match anywhere near the yields they have provided in the past. This has required me to change my approach to shift portfolio weighting more toward common stocks.

    Looking at index performance, the traditionally riskier stocks are the smaller capital companies. I looked at the Russell 2000 Index and saw how it has been performing compared to most other stock indices. I downloaded all 2000 stocks into a spreadsheet. That alone was a time consuming task but to then analyze each company to make an investment decision would be daunting.

    I used Yahoo to narrow down the list.

    http://screener.finance.yahoo.com/stocks.html

    The Yahoo screener has the S&P 600 as a criteria that overlaps almost all of the Russell 2000 and to my more conservative orientation I added a low beta range of .5 - 1.5 and that there must be a dividend. This screen was sorted against the Russell 2000 list and those not matching discarded. Finally I downloaded the Schwab recommendation list selecting only those that were rated A or B.

    To match against my Yahoo screen, I used a cross matrix of Schwab list symbols in the top line with the Yahoo screen symbols ad associated data for beta, P/E, dividend yield, and market cap. The matrix is comprised of "IF" statements with a "1" result for a match. I then coded the positive match codes with into the Schwab list with other data for my final list.

     

    Yahoo link

    Company

    Schwab

    Market Cap:

    P/E (NYSE:TTM):

    EPS :

    Div & Yield:

    COKE

    COKE

    Coca-Cola Bottling Co. Consolid

    A

    626.16M

    23.28

    2.91

    1.00 (1.50%

    FDEF

    FDEF

    First Defiance Financial Corp.

    A

    170.01M

    12.49

    1.4

    0.20 (1.10%)

    FIBK

    FIBK

    First Interstate BancSystem, In

    A

    664.85M

    14.02

    1.1

    0.48 (3.10%)

    SAFT

    SAFT

    Safety Insurance Group, Inc.

    B

    695.35M

    14.51

    3.13

    2.40 (5.20%)

    QUAD

    QUAD

    Quad Graphics, Inc Class A Comm

    B

    802.46M

    N/A

    -0.07

    1.00 (5.60%

    ELRC

    ELRC

    Electro Rent Corporation

    B

    431.43M

    16.8

    1.07

    0.80 (4.50%)

    UVSP

    UVSP

    Univest Corporation of Pennsylv

    B

    304.01M

    14.8

    1.23

    0.80 (4.50%)

    DEST

    DEST

    Destination Maternity Corporati

    B

    253.25M

    14.89

    1.27

    0.70 (3.70%)

    CTBI

    CTBI

    Community Trust Bancorp, Inc.

    B

    558.55M

    12.47

    2.9

    1.26 (3.50%)

    CWCO

    CWCO

    Consolidated Water Co. Ltd.

    B

    122.47M

    19.09

    0.44

    0.30 (3.60%)

    ECOL

    ECOL

    US Ecology, Inc.

    B

    379.82M

    17.79

    1.17

    0.72 (3.40%

    MHLD

    MHLD

    Maiden Holdings, Ltd.

    B

    651.79M

    9.6

    0.94

    0.32 (3.50%)

    RNST

    RNST

    Renasant Corporation

    B

    483.43M

    19.64

    0.98

    0.68 (3.60%)

    WASH

    WASH

    Washington Trust Bancorp, Inc.

    B

    438.36M

    13.53

    1.98

    0.96 (3.60%)

    CHFC

    CHFC

    Chemical Financial Corporation

    B

    669.00M

    13.67

    1.78

    0.84 (3.40%

    WSBC

    WSBC

    WesBanco, Inc.

    B

    560.21M

    12.26

    1.71

    0.72 (3.40%)

    OCFC

    OCFC

    OceanFirst Financial Corp.

    B

    262.95M

    12.35

    1.19

    0.48 (3.30%)

    NKSH

    NKSH

    National Bankshares, Inc.

    B

    248.55M

    13.72

    2.61

    1.06 (3.10%)

    SRCE

    SRCE

    1st Source Corporation

    B

    543.78M

    11.73

    1.91

    0.68 (3.00%

    CVBF

    CVBF

    CVB Financial Corporation

    B

    1.26B

    14.03

    0.86

    0.34 (2.80%

    FCBC

    FCBC

    First Community Bancshares, Inc

    B

    311.32M

    16.17

    0.96

    0.44 (2.80%)

    BANF

    BANF

    BancFirst Corporation

    B

    659.66M

    13.47

    3.23

    1.16 (2.70%)

    EPIQ

    EPIQ

    EPIQ Systems, Inc.

    B

    478.18M

    36.77

    0.36

    0.36 (2.70%)

    PCBK

    PCBK

    Pacific Continental Corporation

    B

    162.15M

    21.98

    0.41

    0.24 (2.70%

    STSA

    STSA

    Sterling Financial Corporation

    B

    1.39B

    3.88

    5.77

    0.60 (2.70%)

    ALTE

    ALTE

    Alterra Capital Holdings Limite

    B

    2.34B

    10.76

    2.26

    0.64 (2.60%)

    EBTC

    EBTC

    Enterprise Bancorp Inc

    B

    161.77M

    13.58

    1.24

    0.44 (2.60%

    UBSH

    UBSH

    Union First Market Bankshares C

    B

    404.85M

    12.59

    1.24

    0.40 (2.60%)

    WBCO

    WBCO

    Washington Banking Company

    B

    223.83M

    14.39

    1.01

    0.36 (2.50%

    ESIO

    ESIO

    Electro Scientific Industries,

    B

    363.46M

    N/A

    -0.07

    0.32 (2.50%

    BKYF

    BKYF

    The Bank of Kentucky Financial

    B

    201.56M

    11.49

    2.35

    0.64 (2.40%

    CBRL

    CBRL

    Cracker Barrel Old Country Stor

    B

    1.57B

    15.18

    4.4

    2.00 (3.00%

    DAKT

    DAKT

    Daktronics, Inc.

    B

    399.26M

    33.93

    0.28

    0.23 (2.40%)

    ATNI

    ATNI

    Atlantic Tele-Network, Inc.

    B

    669.67M

    18.98

    2.27

    1.00 (2.30%)

    CRDN

    CRDN

    Ceradyne, Inc.

    B

    593.38M

    11.56

    2.12

    0.60 (2.40%)

    GSBC

    GSBC

    Great Southern Bancorp, Inc.

    B

    419.89M

    9.3

    3.33

    0.72 (2.30%)

    MTSC

    MTSC

    MTS Systems Corporation

    B

    845.75M

    16.37

    3.21

    1.20 (2.30%)

    NRCI

    NRCI

    National Research Corporation

    B

    344.91M

    25.84

    1.96

    1.04 (2.10%)

    BSRR

    BSRR

    Sierra Bancorp

    B

    175.58M

    20.58

    0.61

    0.24 (1.90%)

    RELL

    RELL

    Richardson Electronics, Ltd.

    B

    189.67M

    28.49

    0.43

    0.24 (2.00%)

    CECE

    CECE

    CECO Environmental Corp.

    B

    139.91M

    16.53

    0.58

    0.18 (1.80%)

    COLB

    COLB

    Columbia Banking System, Inc.

    B

    705.51M

    12.94

    1.37

    0.36 (1.90%)

    PEBO

    PEBO

    Peoples Bancorp Inc.

    B

    248.91M

    13.02

    1.79

    0.44 (1.90%)

    STEI

    STEI

    Stewart Enterprises, Inc.

    B

    704.41M

    20.68

    0.4

    0.16 (1.90%)

    BMRC

    BMRC

    Bank of Marin Bancorp

    B

    225.93M

    13.1

    3.23

    0.72 (1.70%)

    EIHI

    EIHI

    Eastern Insurance Holdings, Inc

    B

    125.83M

    16.3

    1.03

    0.28 (1.70%)

    RCII

    RCII

    Rent-A-Center Inc.

    B

    2.09B

    11.97

    2.95

    0.64 (1.80%)

    EFSC

    EFSC

    Enterprise Financial Services C

    B

    242.73M

    9.71

    1.4

    0.21 (1.50%)

    HTLF

    HTLF

    Heartland Financial USA, Inc.

    B

    465.21M

    14.08

    2

    0.40 (1.40%

    SCHL

    SCHL

    Scholastic Corporation

    B

    1.02B

    10.65

    3.03

    0.50 (1.50%

    SKYW

    SKYW

    SkyWest, Inc.

    B

    540.72M

    N/A

    -0.33

    0.16 (2.20%

    USPH

    USPH

    U.S. Physical Therapy, Inc. Com

    B

    332.05M

    15.45

    1.82

    0.36 (1.30%)

    HBOS

    HBOS

    Heritage Financial Group

    B

    108.96M

    20.27

    0.67

    0.16 (1.20%

    CFNL

    CFNL

    Cardinal Financial Corporation

    B

    418.62M

    12.34

    1.16

    0.16 (1.10%)

    COBZ

    COBZ

    CoBiz Financial Inc.

    B

    274.65M

    8.26

    0.85

    0.08 (1.10%)

    JJSF

    JJSF

    J & J Snack Foods Corp.

    B

    1.08B

    21.39

    2.68

    0.52 (0.90%

    ENSG

    ENSG

    The Ensign Group, Inc.

    B

    643.40M

    13.75

    2.18

    0.24 (0.80%)

    FRME

    FRME

    First Merchants Corporation

    B

    436.05M

    20.11

    0.76

    0.12 (0.80%)

    ISCA

    ISCA

    International Speedway Corporat

    B

    1.32B

    19.98

    1.43

    0.20 (0.70%)

    ALCO

    ALCO

    Alico, Inc.

    B

    231.69M

    13.3

    2.37

    0.16 (0.50%)

    ALOG

    ALOG

    Analogic Corporation

    B

    963.51M

    23.08

    3.42

    0.40 (0.50%)

    BFIN

    BFIN

    BankFinancial Corporation

    B

    178.14M

    N/A

    -2.31

    0.04 (0.40%)

    CSFL

    CSFL

    CenterState Banks, Inc.

    B

    264.62M

    15.74

    0.56

    0.04 (0.50%)

    SYNT

    SYNT

    Syntel, Inc.

    B

    2.59B

    16.79

    3.69

    0.24 (0.40%

    FICO

    FICO

    Fair, Isaac, Incorporated Commo

    B

    1.51B

    17.21

    2.59

    0.08 (0.20%

    Thus far I have made pilot purchases of the following: CRDN, MHLD (I chose to buy their preferred) and FIBK. I was pleased to see that CRDN is to be bought out by MMM this not known when I made the purchase. Could there be other undervalued companies in this list can be a buyout target?

     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

    Disclosure: I am long CRDN, FIBK. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it. I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

    Oct 02 11:13 AM | Link | 1 Comment
  • Duke Energy DUK Annual Meeting

    DUK Annual Meeting was a very well run and calm affair.

    This is the first annual meeting that I have ever attended for a major corporation. Besides being a stockholder, I decided to attend for it being close. I am now a resident of Charlotte, NC.

    The participants were not as many as I expected - stockholders seemed to be in the minority. The meeting was assisted by a private company where the helpers had "host" tags on their lapels. Security was not as stringent as I expected and I was allowed entry without any special scrutiny that I could see.

    I was not asked for any identification - only asked to fill out a simple form with basic information and how many shares I owned. Parking was nearby with the parking garage full of police vehicles and uniformed officers lounging around on chairs "protecting" the premises.

    News Reports in the Charlotte Observer had it that this along with the Bank of America annual meeting to be held Saturday (May 5) was a test for protecting participants from demonstrators during the Democratic National Convention to be held this year in Charlotte. And yes, there were some demonstrators sitting on the sidewalk after I left the meeting. The demonstrators were fewer than the stockholders at the meeting and offered no obstruction nor did I feel threatened by them in any way. The news reports of being prepared for confrontation with demonstrators may have kept some stockholders away from the meeting.

    The actual meeting followed a tight agenda and it ran on time start to finish. A Continental breakfast was available. Duke employees greeted us warmly with table displays showing the latest power plants being constructed and a sustainability report that emphasized alternative power projects. I made a contact with the Manager of Shareholder Communications - we exchanged cards.

    As I entered the meeting hall, most of the seats were not being filled. I thought I'd be sitting alone even after the CEO Jim Rogers came over to me to introduce himself. That warm touch just floored me! Then another holder sat next me introducing himself - a retired employee of Duke.

    After the usual meeting business the bulk of time was devoted to Q & A from shareholders. All of the questioners seemed to be minority holders except for one union representative. Most of the time was spent allowing these people to gripe about environmental and health issues where they wanted to point the blame on Duke for respiratory disease, cancer, water pollution and global warming.

    I was very impressed with the way Jim Rogers responded to these "questions." He was highly personable in speaking to these very difficult people. His emphasis in response to the environmental problems was that it was his responsibility to "get the balance right."

    Overall, I was left with the impression that Duke was in the business of providing the electric power that we need at the lowest possible cost within the constraint of existing environmental regulation. It would not be responsible to go beyond what is needed to provide power in what is now considered a safe and responsible manner. They are in compliance with all environmental regulations. If these protestors feel that environmental regulations need improvement, they need to lobby the EPA to increase them.

    Disclosure: I am long DUK.

    Tags: DUK
    May 03 3:30 PM | Link | Comment!
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