February 17, 2011
05:09 EDT ARG theflyonthewall.com: Jim Cramer's "Mad Money"
Jim Cramer recounted why he purchased shares of John Deere (DE) a few months ago for his charitable trust -- High grain prices mean farmers buy more tractors. That theory proved to be true Wednesday, when shares of Deere rallied over $2 on a blowout quarter. Stocks like Deere have pricing power, he said, and can overcome any obstacles - like a negative Wall Street Journal article -- in their way. Others with pricing power include mining equipment makers, like Joy Global (JOYG) and Bucyrus (BUCY), and oil rig suppliers such as National Oilwell Varco (NOV), Cramer said. EXECUTIVE DECISION: Cramer spoke with Peter McCausland, president and CEO of Airgas (ARG). With the Air Products (APD) takeover now dead, Airgas has instituted a $300M stock buyback program to help stabilize the stock and facilitate the exit of short term investors that were betting on the deal.>>>>>>> McCausland said with the takeover fears lifted, Airgas will be able to reach the consensus targets of $72-$76 a share. <<<<<<<<<<<Cramer, a long time champion of McCausland and of Airgas, said that company is a buy. Next, Cramer spoke with Sean Boyd, vice chairman and CEO of Agnico-Eagle Mines (AEM), a stock that's been under pressure as of late, as gold prices have been taking a breather from record runs. Cramer said with the long term trend of gold intact, he remains bullish on the company and the commodity. NO HUDDLE OFFENSE: Cramer commented on the surprise departure of Wells Fargo (WFC) CFO Howard Atkins, calling on the SEC to act and act now to get to the bottom of the departure. CLOSING COMMENTS: Cramer said that Joy Global, Williams (WMB) and Cliffs Natural Resources (CLF) are all going higher, and investors shouldn't sell any of them. LIGHTNING ROUND: (Bullish) DD; HCBK; USB; EPD; EMC; CVX; COP. (Bearish) TZOO; PWER. Reference Link :theflyonthewall.com
In the "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer spoke with Peter McCausland, president and CEO of Airgas (ARG_), a company that has been under siege by a hostile takeover bid from Air Products (APD_). After a year long fight, the Air Products bid was finally defeated today.
McCausland said Airgas has a long term business plan that creates value well in excess of the bid that was unanimously rejected by its board of directors. He said pre-recession, Airgas had sales of $4.5 billion, but this quarter the company is expected to beat its 2008 highs on $300 to $400 million less in sales, thanks to higher margins.
With the takeover now dead, McCausland also said the company has instituted a $300 million stock buyback program to help stabilize the stock and facilitate the exit of short term investors that were betting on the deal. He said with the takeover fears lifted, Airgas will be able to reach the consensus targets of $72 to $76 a share.
Cramer, a long time champion of McCausland and of Airgas, said that company is a buy, now that the takeover, which had been capping the stock's performance for months, has been lifted.
So just buy it. Don't fight it
10:19 EDT ARG theflyonthewall.com: Airgas upgraded to Buy from Hold at BB&T
Price target is $78.
06:22 EDT ARG theflyonthewall.com: Airgas upgraded to Buy from Hold at Jefferies
Jefferies recommends building positions in Airgas (ARG) on any near-term weakness related to the withdrawal of Air Products (APD) offer. Price target raised to $72 from $70.
08:05 EDT ARG RW Baird Shares remain Outperform rated with a $74 price target. :theflyonthewall.com
RealMoney - Commentary
By Jim Cramer
We're seeing comeback stories everywhere -- this is huge. More
Jim Cramer Blog
By Jim Cramer
2/2/2011 2:38 PM EST
Comeback stories in the semi space! We are seeing them every day.
It started with Nvidia (NVDA) , which was the single worst performer in the S&P 500 for the first six months of last year. We now have more than a double from the fall, all because of some very exciting graphics chips that people thought might never come to market. Instead you have Tudor Brown, CEO of Arm Holdings (ARMH) , talking about how Nvidia's chips are revolutionizing graphics.
Then you have Cirrus (CRUS) and Cypress (CY) , two companies that were hated because they were perceived to have commodity chips that weren't ready for the revolution in smartphones and iPads. Of course it turns out that Cypress pretty much makes the touch keyboard for all but Apple (AAPL) ... and Cirrus has all of Apple.
Then there was Micron (MU) , which is now riding the wave of a bottom in DRAMs and a move into Flash, again abetted by Apple.
Now there is MEMC Electronic Materials (WFR) , a stock that I said had bottomed but was not out of the water. Now it is, courtesy of a big solar business and a large backlog of business for SunEdison -- from 167 MW installs in calendar year 2010 to 1.4 GW now! Didn't matter that the company missed the numbers. It's the future, and it looks -- at last -- to be here.
Recoveries in the semis!
They are everywhere.
At the time of publication, Cramer was long Apple.
02-Feb-11 08:53 ET WFR MEMC Elec upgraded to Buy at Ardour Capital; tgt raised to $16 .....Ardour Capital upgrades WFR to Buy from Hold and raises their tgt to $16 from $11 on strong top line outlook and expectations of improving profitability. Firm says mgmt's restructuring efforts throughout 2010 continue to bear fruit and they see further upside in 2011. In the semi segment, the Company gained market share and is positioning for healthy growth in 2011. They expect profitability improvements to come from declining solar wafering costs as WFR's internal capacity ramps in Asia, and believe WFR will approach Chinese wafer costs by early 2012.
While the stock's multiple has expanded some since our profile, it remains relatively low for a small-cap tech name. In August, the two analysts that cover QTM expected earnings to grow 8% year-over-year to EPS of $0.27 in FY11. At the time, QTM was trading at 10.6x FY11 earnings. QTM is now covered by seven firms on the Street. Estimates for FY11 have risen to $0.29 (+12%), which places QTM currently at 13.3x this year's (FY11) earnings. Looking forward, however, consensus calls for QTM to earn $0.37 in FY12 (+32% year-over-year). Given this estimate, the stock trades at 10x next year's earnings with a PEG ratio of 0.27.
Well I have to admit I was quoting Briefing .com on that
29-Dec-10 12:19 ET Full Article
For some background, Quantum (QTM) provides data backup, recovery, and archive services to businesses. The company was a pioneer in disk-based storage, which has been the incumbent technology used for data storage. It now offers a range of disk, tape, and software storage for business information technology departments to protect, retain, and access their digital assets. Quantum's products include tape automation systems, such as autoloaders and entry-level, and mid-range and enterprise libraries; disk-based backup appliances, and virtual tape library for mid-range enterprises; and data management software designed for open system computing environments. Tape-based storage accounts for the largest portion of QTM's product revenue.
The rise of a new technology in the business storage space and mounting debt has pressured QTM shares over the past three years. Although adoption is still in its early stages, virtualized disk libraries have emerged as an attractive storage option for businesses and hold a competitive advantage over traditional data storage by offering better consolidation and fast data restore processes. This virtualized technology, leveraging increasingly popular cloud-based applications, is widely-viewed as the future of storage space.
QTM's debt has also been a growing burden for the company. This became more pronounced as demand for its products slowed amid the downturn in the market in 2008. The stock fell to as low as $0.09 in late 2008 (from '07 highs of $4.24) on bankruptcy fears. The company's indebtedness stems from its acquisition of storage competitor Advanced Digital Information Corporation (ADIC) in August 2006. The company's long-term debt to capital swelled to well over 100% last year and currently stands at 137%.
To address these issues, management reorganized the company's focus. Quantum diversified its offerings to a suite of storage products and refinanced at a lower rate to lower its interest expense. Essentially, QTM is looking to transition from a primarily tape-based backup company to a disk-based backup company with an increased emphasis on virtualization service offerings. The ADIC acquisition provided QTM with a foot hole in the disk-based storage backup space. Yet, the turnaround process has been a tumultuous one for shareholders.
From April highs near $3 to August lows following two consecutive disappointing quarterly reports, the stock has lost over 50% of its value. At those depressed August levels insiders stepped into buy shares. Specifically, the company's CEO and a Director bought 132,250 shares at prices ranging from $1.13 to $1.66 on 8/2 and 8/12, worth $163K.
Recent acquisitions in the storage space -- particularly 3Par (PAR), Isilon (ISLN), Netezza (NZ), and Compellent (CML) -- has also had a hand in the run up in QTM shares. The activity may have helped increase exposure to QTM on the Street as well with several firms initiating coverage on the stock over the past four months. There has even been chatter on the Street that EMC (EMC) might be interested in acquiring Quantum This rumor is not unfounded given that EMC, which competes with QTM in storage backup, provided QTM with $100 million in financing in March 2009 to essentially keep the company afloat.
There has been chatter on the Street that EMC (EMC) might be interested in acquiring Quantum This rumor is not unfounded given that EMC, which competes with QTM in storage backup, provided QTM with $100 million in financing in March 2009 to essentially keep the company afloat.
Why would they have done that? sources have said that EMC still wants to aquire someone.
Who would be a better fit?
Good Economic News Sparks a Rotation
By Rev Shark
1/5/2011 10:35 AM EST
Click here for more stories by Rev Shark
Despite the very strong ADP numbers, we gapped down a bit at the open, and the dip-buyers were happy to take advantage. We pushed higher into the December ISM services numbers, which are a bit ahead of expectations, and now the troops are pushing hard to gain further traction.
The biggest negative we have right now is that the good economic news is causing a strong dollar, which is hurting gold, silver, oil and commodity plays. The money coming out those groups needs to rotate into financials or technology so that we have some decent leadership. Banks are exhibiting some relative strength this morning, but the action is skittish.
I continue to aggressive trade the rare-earth mineral stocks like Avalon Rare Metals (AVL - commentary - Trade Now), Qiao Xing Universal Resources (XING - commentary - Trade Now) and China Shen Zhou Mining and Resources (SHZ - commentary - Trade Now), but they are becoming increasingly choppy lately.
Another theme I like for 2011 is solid-state drives. The two main plays I'm focused on there are STEC (STEC - commentary - Trade Now) and OCZ Technology Group (OCZ - commentary - Trade Now). Others to watch are NetApp (NTAP - commentary - Trade Now), Quantum Group (QTM - commentary - Trade Now) and Xyratex (XRTX - commentary - Trade Now). I added a little STEC this morning and have the group on my radar.
"The margins for the chemical business for HAL is an unbelievable!…there is a small co called FTK growing 40% to 50% per quarter that are selling their chemicals to HAL and the service providers. As far as the the chemical sellers…You are seeing the growth in their #’s!"
Geeeeez, some people have lives! Some people are rplaced by much better candidates. From speaking to IR i got the feeling that Mark Murphy was a much better fit for the co.
Such is life!
Absolutely this is wonderful news.
"In 2006, Memc had more than one Billion dollars in cash and no debt.
Now 2010, Memc shows 600 million in cash and 612 million in debt.
This means that one Billion dollars has evaporated.
Today Memc sells its solar products to them self and somehow this is perceived as a good thing. The same folks believe because Memc can borrow more that this is a great thing and the stock should go up."
It is Cramer. He doesn't wnat to be wrong. he blames everyone else. I spoke with IR yesterday.
They are very excited about this!
21-Dec-10 08:01 ET WFR MEMC Elec unit SunEdison Secures $50 Million in Revolver Financing From Rabobank International for the Construction of Solar Deployments in the U.S. (11.17 ) Co has secured a three-year, $50 million construction revolver with Rabobank International for the deployment of solar photovoltaic power plants in the U.S. SunEdison will utilize the revolver to finance construction of photovoltaic power plants at client (host) locations. Upon completion, the solar hosts will buy the energy produced at prices at or below retail rates while avoiding upfront costs typically associated with solar deployments. Currently
sized at $50 million for U.S. projects,
>>>>>> the construction revolver is expected to expand significantly over the life of the deal with the addition of more lenders.<<<<<<
Projects will range in size from small commercial to utility scale.
21-Dec-10 09:08 ET S Sprint Nextel files for mixed securities shelf offering
Chesapeake Is Nice Here -- But Just for a Trade
12:07 PM EST
The energy landscape needs to shift before this one's... More
Chesapeake Is Nice Here -- But Just for a Trade
By Jim Cramer
12/20/2010 12:07 PM EST
Click here for more stories by Jim Cramer
Carl Icahn wants Chesapeake (CHK - commentary - Trade Now) to raise its share price -- does it? That mandate plus his increase in holdings to 5.0% are echoing through the markets today, sending CHK -- one of my favorites in the nat gas patch -- dramatically higher on a drab, dull day.
To which I say, does anyone think that Aubrey McClendon, Chesapeake's CEO, doesn't want the share price higher? The man has sold a huge amount of properties -- $3.58 billion this year alone, according to Bloomberg -- and has done his very best to rapidly switch from being a gas play to be an oil and gas play. He's been the leader in attracting international players to the shale holdings in America. He's been the most aggressive purchaser of acres. He's been the best spokesperson for trying to contain the misperceptions of the industry and the hazards it might be breeding, particularly to drinking water (hazards I think that are vastly overblown).
Put simply, he's doing the best he can, and I can't for a moment think what Carl Icahn can possibly want more of, other than for Aubrey McClendon to put the whole company up for sale -- something I would regard as extremely unlikely, but it's certainly the reason behind the move in the stock today.
Here's what has to happen to really get this stock moving. First, natural gas must be adopted -- somehow, some way -- by the U.S. government as a bridge fuel. That's not been the case at all. Ethanol is a more powerful fuel for cars. Batteries, which often need rare minerals from China to work right, involve plugging into a coal-based system. We clearly have enough nat gas here, or else Chesapeake wouldn't be one of the biggest backers of exporting the stuff. But Congress failed to enact incentives for nat gas trucks, and while the tax bill has some goodies for nat gas, the enchilada's not happening.
Second, we need to see natural gas move to $5 and change. If oil can be moved so easily from the $60s, where it was not that long ago, to the $90s, without much pause for supply overhang -- and there is plenty of supply overhang -- you would think that natural gas with its limited storage capacity in this country would be able to have some sort of spike/rally on this rash of cold weather.
Finally, we need some long-term contracts. First, some big utilities must abandon coal altogether and ask for long-term contracts from nat gas companies like Chesapeake. Second, the industrial uses -- so lackluster, as pointed out by Glenn Williams in a fabulous piece last week -- have actually shown not such growth. That has to change.
It would be terrific if Carl Icahn could wave a wand and get these big changes to occur.
But without them, I think that CHK is just a trade, one that should be taken given the circumstances.