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Airlines surge as AAL boosts summer domestic flights

Forest Products IIII - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 20:54

Airline stocks are climbing on Thursday as American Airlines boosted its domestic flights for the summer. Yahoo Finance's Kristin Myers and Emily McCormick discuss.

The stock market is off the rails

Forest Products IIII - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 20:46

A soaring stock market amid economic devastation makes no sense. Here's why it's happening.

Elon Musk tweets: It’s 'time to break up Amazon'

Forest Products IIII - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 20:38

Tesla CEO Elon Musk took to Twitter on Thursday calling for the break up of Amazon. Yahoo Finance’s Kristin Myers and Emily McCormick discuss.

Royal Caribbean Makes Quick Return to Bond Market for More Cash

Forest Products IIII - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 20:07

(Bloomberg) -- Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. is seeking an additional $2 billion from investors to boost liquidity as the cruise liner’s ships remain at port to stop the spread of the coronavirus.The company is raising $1 billion in the bond market and another $1 billion through convertible notes, according to a news release. Pricing on the three-year bonds, which may be sold as soon as Thursday, is being discussed in the range of 9.125%, lower than earlier levels of 9.25% to 9.5% and initial talks around high-9% to 10%, according to people familiar with the matter.The unsecured notes are structured with a similar priority guarantee as the bonds Royal Caribbean sold in May, but are linked to a different pool of ships valued at about $7.7 billion.The three-year convertible bonds, which are also expected to price today, are being offered at a coupon of 5% to 5.5%, and with a 20% to 25% conversion premium, according to other people familiar with the matter, who asked not to be named discussing a private transaction.Proceeds from the offering will be used to add cash to the cruise company’s balance sheet, bringing the total to about $6.6 billion, according to deal documents seen by Bloomberg. Including the new sale, total debt will sit at about $18.9 billion, or $12.3 billion excluding the cash. Royal Caribbean is burning about $250 million to $275 million of cash per month, the company disclosed earlier.A representative for Royal Caribbean declined to comment. A representative for JPMorgan Chase & Co., which is leading both offerings, didn’t respond to request for comment.Shares of Royal Caribbean fluctuated and were at $58.23 at 1:35 p.m. in New York.The company sold $3.3 billion of secured bonds in May at steep yields of about 11.7% and 12.3% for the three-year and five-year notes, respectively. Strong demand allowed it to cut the interest rate slightly on the three-year notes at the time.Unique StructureThose bonds have rallied amid a broad recovery in credit markets, with the three-year and five-year notes yielding between 8.6% to 8.7%, according to Trace data. The company’s quick return to the bond market on Thursday comes as Wall Street banks are urging companies to tap the market while they can.The gradual reopening of businesses after months-long shutdowns and a pick up in manufacturing activity have given investors reason for optimism in recent weeks. But underwriters who cater to heavily indebted corporations are offering their clients a bleak preview of what may lie ahead.Royal Caribbean’s bonds issued in May used a unique structure that allowed the company to pledge assets to investors while getting around a secured debt limit from its investment-grade style covenants. Loan document restrictions mean the company still can’t exceed its secured debt cap of $1.66 billion because the company fell into junk ratings.Read more: Behind Royal Caribbean’s lifeline, a shrewd bond maneuverThe new $1 billion of bonds are guaranteed by a newly created subsidiary of the company that will own all the equity interests of seven ships valued at about $7.7 billion, according to the release. This makes bondholders first in line for those assets, even though they are unsecured, according to a person familiar with the matter.S&P Global Ratings graded the new guaranteed notes at BB and placed the company’s ratings on review for downgrade on expectations the new debt could hurt cash flows and pressure recovery plans. Moody’s Investors Service assigned the notes the same comparable rating as S&P and its outlook remains negative.The new convertible bonds are unsecured and do not have the same guarantee as the other bonds, according to the release.The company fell into junk in May after Moody’s downgraded the unsecured debt rating to Ba2, two steps below investment grade. S&P cut the company to high yield in April.Royal Caribbean’s offering is one of several deals from companies in the cruise sector. Viking Cruises Ltd. sold $675 million of secured bonds in May at a 13% coupon after adding investor protections. Carnival Corp. completed a $4 billion secured offering in April and Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. sold $675 million of secured notes in May.(Updates with pricing, structure, ratings and total debt throughout.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

American Air’s 74% Surge in Flying Signals Travel on the Mend

Forest Products IIII - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 19:57

(Bloomberg) -- American Airlines Group Inc. soared after the carrier said it would boost July flights 74% from this month, signaling that U.S. travelers freed from shelter-in-place orders are returning more quickly than expected.The busiest days next month will have about 4,000 flights, up from 2,300 in June, said Vasu Raja, American’s senior vice president of network strategy. The July figure is equivalent to 40% of capacity a year earlier, compared with 30% in June, the airline said Thursday. Capacity was even less in May, after a devastating collapse in flying spurred by the Covid-19 pandemic.“People are hungry, eager to get back into the economy,” Raja said in an interview. “We feel a real confidence to fly a much bigger July.”American’s expanded schedule builds on recent indications from rivals that customers are starting to make their way back onto planes after fleeing in April because of the coronavirus. While traffic is still weak by historical standards, the airline’s trends suggest that the worst has passed -- and that the rebound in demand has a chance of outpacing the dire expectations that the industry was outlining as recently as last month.The airline’s shares jumped 28% to $15.21 at 1:28 p.m. in New York after advancing as much as 30% for the biggest intraday gain since March 24. American’s surge was tops on the S&P 500 Index and sparked a broader industry rally, with the next two slots on the stock gauge claimed by United Airlines Holdings Inc. and Delta Air Lines Inc.American’s load factor, or the average share of seats filled per plane, climbed to 55% last week from 15% in April. Next month, the company will bring back some of the 450 jets it parked during the worst of the collapse in flying, although it hasn’t determined which aircraft will be put back in service.While revenue is still down 80% from a year ago, that’s an improvement from the 90% drop American experienced in the depths of the crisis as demand nearly disappeared, said Chief Executive Officer Doug Parker.He recently made a personal trip on Southwest Airlines Co. because American’s flights were booked to new capacity limits that have been set to promote social distancing onboard.“We have a long road ahead,” Parker said in an interview with CNBC. “But it’s coming back.”Optimism’s LimitsAmerican acknowledged the limits to the improving outlook. The rebound is still weak on lucrative routes to overseas destinations, with the company planning to fly less than 20% of last year’s international schedule compared with 55% of domestic capacity. Also, American delayed the planned resumption of additional foreign routes by at least a month.Even with the encouraging signs at home, the domestic recovery is “tenuous,” Raja said. The Fort Worth, Texas-based company is still retiring more than 100 aircraft, including three separate fleet types. And Wall Street expects a full recovery to take years for the airline industry.“Air passenger demand will remain severely depressed in 2021,” Moody’s Investors Service said in a report. Flying “will not see a substantial recovery before 2023.”And for all of American’s bullishness on July, real-time passenger data has yet to show a dramatic up-tick. An average of 314,000 people went through U.S. airport security checkpoints in the past week, according to the Transportation Security Administration. That’s 13% of the equivalent week a year ago and only slightly above the 12% recorded the prior week.‘Inching North’But based on current trends as encompassed by American’s plans for July, the nadir may in the rear-view mirror.The number of daily passengers has grown to 110,330 from 32,154 in the first three weeks of May and “is inching north all the time,” Raja said. By comparison, the airline carried about 600,000 passengers daily pre-Covid 19.The recent gains range from business to leisure trips, Raja said. Corporations are relaxing travel restrictions in states such as Texas and Florida that have eased quarantine requirements. Vacationers are booking flights to amusement parks in Florida, beaches along the Gulf Coast and mountain destinations in Montana, Utah and Colorado.American resumed service to six international cities Wednesday, but will delay until August or later other flights from the U.S. to Europe and Latin America. The airline’s full July schedule will be available for purchase starting June 7.United and Delta also are resuming some overseas flights, but lucrative international business traffic is expected to be the slowest area to rebound. Confusion over which countries have lifted travel restrictions and whether tourist attractions, hotels or other industries are open has contributed to the slower global recovery, Raja said.American also will begin reopening its loyalty club lounges in phases starting June 22, after making improvements to encourage social distancing and reduce the possible spread of Covid-19. The measures include shields at desks and foot-operated door openers.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

U.S. to revise Chinese passenger airline ban after Beijing move

Forest Products IIII - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 19:50

The U.S. Transportation Department plans to issue a revised order in the coming days that is likely to allow some Chinese passenger airline flights to continue, government and airline officials said. On Thursday, China said it would ease coronavirus restrictions to allow in more foreign carriers, shortly after Washington said it planned to bar Chinese passenger airlines from flying to the United States by June 16 due to Beijing's curbs on U.S. carriers. The change should allow U.S. carriers to resume once-a-week flights into a city of their choice starting on June 8, but that would be still significantly fewer than what the U.S. government says its aviation agreement with China allows.

CDC Plans Dual Flu-Covid Test; Latin America Surge: Virus Update

Forest Products IIII - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 19:49

(Bloomberg) -- The U.S. is developing a test that can simultaneously check for seasonal influenza and Covid-19, a tool that could help health authorities more efficiently determine whether there is a second wave of coronavirus later this year.AstraZeneca signed a deal to support Oxford University’s coronavirus vaccine. Iran reported its highest number of daily cases, while Mexico and Brazil each had a record increase in deaths.The European Central Bank steppped up its response to the coronavirus recession with a bigger-than-anticipated increase to its emergency bond-buying program, and data showed Americans are still filing for unemployment benefits even as businesses reopen.China will ease its ban on foreign airlines starting Monday and lessen quarantine requirements for official and business travelers, while Japan debated scaling back next year’s Summer Olympics.Key Developments:Virus Tracker: Cases pass 6.5 million; deaths exceed 387,000Swedish faith in country’s Covid-19 strategy sinksCDC chief says U.S. remains underprepared for pandemicsRoche gets emergency approval for test for severe casesU.K. minister’s virus test sets Up tracing challenge for JohnsonTexas capital braces for deficit after virus scraps festivalsMerkel stimulus seals German shift from frugality to largessSubscribe to a daily update on the virus from Bloomberg’s Prognosis team here. Click VRUS on the terminal for news and data on the coronavirus. For a look back at this week’s top stories from QuickTake, click here.U.S. Acts to Clean Up Jumbled Data (1:30 p.m. NY)The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services introduced new guidance to provide a better picture of Covid-19 testing efforts, particularly in terms of race, gender and ZIP code.The quality of government data has been faulted for months, particularly as evidence emerges that minority communities have been affected the most by the virus. The new guidance standardizes reporting of test data to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, including on fields such as gender and type of test performed. Laboratories must comply by Aug. 1.Brett Giroir, a top HHS official who oversees testing efforts, said that “most of these fields are not reported at all by hospital labs and rarely by large commercial labs,” which have performed the bulk of thet U.S. testing.CDC Says Face Coverings Remain Key (12:50 p.m. NY)Masks and face coverings remain an important tool to stop spread of the coronavirus, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention told Congress, adding that he’s worried that some Americans appear to be ignoring the advice.“We continue to see this as a critical public health tool,” CDC Director Robert Redfield said in Washington Thursday. Responding to questions about large public gathers of unmasked people, he said that, “obviously we’re very concerned that our public health message isn’t resonating.”Redfield said the agency would continue to try and push the message that people should wear marks: “We’re going to continue to try to figure out how to get more and more people to embrace it.”Italy Has Fewest Cases Since February (12:47 p.m. NY)Italy registered 177 new Covid-19 cases, down from 321 on Wednesday and the fewest since Feb. 26. Total cases climbed to 234,013. Deaths were 88 up from 71 on Wednesday for a total of 33,689.Nine regions reported no daily cases, while Lombardy added 84 infections.N.Y. Expands Test Criteria After Protests (11:45 a.m. NY)New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, noting people demonstrating over the death of George Floyd may have become infected, said the state’s testing criteria has been expanded to cover the protesters.“If you went to a protest, get a test,” Cuomo said. “Act as if you may have been exposed.”Cuomo said the state had 52 new deaths in the past day, up slightly from Wednesday, but the said the overall decline “is still in a positive direction.” Cases rose 0.3% in the past 24 hours, below the 0.4% seven-day average.Florida Cases Jump Most Since May 21 (11:40 a.m. NY)Florida reported 60,183 Covid-19 cases, up 2.4% from a day earlier, compared with an average increase of 1.6% in the previous seven days. It was the biggest increase since the May 21 report and the second straight day with an increase above 2%. Deaths reached 2,607, an increase of 1.4%,Governor Ron DeSantis has blamed “data dumps” for momentary upticks in the numbers. Indeed, the data showed 38,220 test results received Wednesday, the third-highest level in the past two weeks, in which the daily range is 11,303 to 41,561. Among those results, the positivity rate was 5.3%, in line with the 4%-8% range in the past two weeks.The state started its phased reopening on May 4.NYC Targets July for Outdoor Dining (11:30 a.m. NY)New York Mayor Bill de Blasio is targeting a July reopening of outdoor dining. The mayor, preparing for the June 8 start of the first phase of reopening, said he anticipates reaching the second phase in July. Restaurants are a key part of the city’s economy, de Blasio said at a press briefing.AstraZeneca Signs Vaccine Deals (11:15 a.m. NY)AstraZeneca agreed on a $750 million deal with the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations and Gavi the Vaccine Alliance to support making and distributing 300 million doses of a Covid-19 vaccine, with delivery starting by the end of the year.The drugmaker also announced a licensing agreement with the Serum Institute of India to supply 1 billion doses for low- and middle-income countries, with 400 million before the end of 2020.Astra said it has now global supply capacity to exceed 2 billion doses of Oxford University’s Covid-19 vaccine.CDC Developing Dual Flu-Coronavirus Test (10:27 a.m. NY)The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is developing a test that can check for seasonal influenza and Covid-19 infections at the same time, the agency’s director said in testimony to Congress.Symptoms of the two illnesses are similar, and when seasonal influenza season arrives later this year it will be important for public-health authorities and health workers to be able to differentiate between the two viruses. Such a test would help determine whether Covid-19 infections are experiencing a second wave, or if patients are showing up with normal seasonal flu.CDC Director Robert Redfield announced the plan in prepared testimony to Congress ahead of a hearing on the agency’s budget later Thursday in Washington.Top German Banking Regulator Warns on Defaults (9:37 a.m. NY)Banks need to brace for a second wave of loan defaults next year, Germany’s top financial regulator said on Thursday, adding that the continent’s lenders will see the bulk of the challenges posed by Covid in the next two quarters. The longer-term effects of the crisis will be drawn out and could lead to another peak in 2021, Bafin President Felix Hufeld said at a virtual event hosted by Bloomberg.EBay Raises Outlook as Business Moves Online (9:26 a.m. NY)EBay Inc. raised its forecast for revenue and earnings in the current quarter as people flock to the digital marketplace amid the pandemic.Moderna Names New CFO at Pivotal Moment (8:50 a.m. NY)Moderna Inc. named a new chief financial officer as its coronavirus vaccine moved ahead in wider testing. David Meline takes over the top finance role as the company leads the race to develop a shot. Moderna has also come under scrutiny as executives have sold millions of dollars worth of the firm’s highly valued shares.U.S. Jobless Claims Persist (8:40 a.m. NY)As business reopenings picked up nationwide, Americans filed nearly 2 million applications for unemployment benefits last week, reflecting a slowing -- though far from a halt -- in job losses.Initial jobless claims for regular state programs totaled 1.88 million in the week ended May 30, Labor Department figures showed Thursday, down from 2.13 million the prior week. It was the first reading below 2 million since the coronavirus-related layoffs began en masse in mid-March.‘Social Bubbles’ Can Limit Spread: Oxford Study (8:37 a.m. NY)The best way to reduce the spread of the coronavirus post-lockdown is for people to limit their interactions to a few repeated contacts, or so-called social bubbles, research from the University of Oxford showed. Strategically reducing contacts can lower infection rates and flatten the curve considerably more than simple social distancing can, according to the study published in the journal Nature Human Behavior.ECB Unveils Bigger-Than-Expected Boost to Bond Buying (7:46 a.m. NY)The European Central Bank intensified its response to the coronavirus recession with a bigger-than-anticipated increase to its emergency bond-buying program.At a virtual meeting on Thursday, President Christine Lagarde and colleagues decided to expand the amount of purchases by 600 billion euros ($675 billion) and extended their duration until at least the end of June 2021. The vast majority of economists surveyed by Bloomberg last week expected policy makers to boost buying by 500 billion euros.Iran Records Highest Number of Daily Cases (6:16 a.m. NY)Iran reported the largest number of daily cases as it entered a second wave of the pandemic. The 3,574 positive tests exceeded the previous record, in March, by almost 400. The country now has a total of 164,270 infections and 8,071 deaths.(An earlier version corrected the spelling of Danske Bank and the scope of increase in Iran cases.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

PPP extension puts small business in position to launch our economy out of recession

Forest Products IIII - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 19:24

More than a ray of light, the PPP extension represents economic dawn over the horizon.

£10m to boost tree planting in second auction of Woodland Carbon Guarantee

International Forest Industries - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 19:23

£10m available from the Woodland Carbon Guarantee’s £50m pot for farmers and land managers to create new woodlands to help tackle the effects of climate change.

Applicants must apply by 5 June to qualify for the next auction starting on 8 June. Given the current situation, the deadline to apply will be kept under review.

Scheme gives land managers the option to sell Woodland Carbon Units to the government at a guaranteed price which is protected against inflation.

The Forestry Commission announced (Tuesday 14 April) that £10m will be available in the second auction of the Woodland Carbon Guarantee. Land managers across England are encouraged to sign up to the scheme by 5 June, ahead of the next auction which will take place online from 8 to 19 June.

Launched in November 2019, the Woodland Carbon Guarantee is a £50 million scheme that aims to help accelerate woodland planting rates and permanently remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

Successful participants will be offered the option to sell Woodland Carbon Units to the government over 35 years at a guaranteed price set by auction, providing new income for land managers who help businesses compensate for their carbon emissions.

This announcement follows the success of the first auction which closed in February 2020 and saw 18 contracts offered by the Forestry Commission to help stimulate the creation of 182 hectares of new woodland, specifically to help combat climate change.

Sir William Worsley, Chair of the Forestry Commission, said:
“The Woodland Carbon Guarantee is the first scheme of its kind to provide land managers with long-term certainty of a guaranteed payment rate for carbon, which their trees lock up and store.

“I’m excited to announce that the first auction has successfully encouraged projects in parts of the country where new planting has been lower in recent years, and across a good range of woodland types.

“There is no reason to delay applying and to plant trees now – I strongly encourage all land managers thinking about planting to sign up ahead of the second auction in June.”

The outcome of the first exploratory auction in February paves the way for larger scale projects to secure funding in forthcoming auctions. A series of auctions will take place every six months for up to five years.

Speaking of the benefits of the Guarantee, Forestry Minister Lord Goldsmith said: “Trees are a precious natural asset and, as a natural carbon sink, are a vital part of the fight against climate change.

“In addition to providing long-term income support to land managers for creating new woodland, it is our hope that this Guarantee will play an important role in developing the domestic carbon market.”

Greg Beeton, Divisional Partner & Agricultural Business Consultant from project developer Brown & Co, said: “We have a long standing involvement in woodland creation so it was great that we were able to help identify landowner clients of ours which could benefit from the Woodland Carbon Guarantee.

“We were excited to see that a number of our clients were successful in the first auction and will now be able to capitalise on the support that the scheme provides, by planting woodland to replace areas of unproductive farming land for example.

“I would certainly encourage landowners to consider the many benefits of the Guarantee. The support provided by the Forestry Commission was fantastic and the scheme could potentially provide new longer term income streams for landowners that can complement more traditional farming incomes.”

The government manifesto commits to increase planting across the UK to 30,000 hectares per year by 2025. This spring, a new English Tree Strategy will be consulted on, looking at policies to expand, support and increase public engagement with woodlands.

While the Woodland Carbon Guarantee is only available in England there are opportunities to secure Woodland Carbon income for projects in Scotland and Wales as well. One of our carbon project developers can help you through the registration process and may also be able to group your project with other landowners to save money on validation and verification costs. Get in touch using the form below or call:
England: Simon Marrington 07825193278
Scotland: Calum Murray 07887630600
Wales: Iwan Parry 07774255595

The post £10m to boost tree planting in second auction of Woodland Carbon Guarantee appeared first on International Forest Industries.

ZoomInfo CEO breaks down future plans as company soars in public debut

Forest Products IIII - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 19:12

ZoomInfo shares soar in its public debut. ZoomInfo CEO Henry Schuck joins Yahoo Finance's On the Move to weigh in on the company’s future plans.

Should You Be Tempted To ‘Sell’ Discover Financial Services (DFS) Stock

Forest Products IIII - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 19:11

Diamond Hill Capital recently released its Q1 2020 Investor Letter, a copy of which you can download below. The Diamond Hill Small Cap Fund posted a return of -36.17% for the quarter, underperforming its benchmark, the Russell 2000 Index which returned -30.61% in the same quarter. You should check out Diamond Hill Capital's top 5 […]

Buy Citigroup (C) If You’re Worried About a Recession

Forest Products IIII - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 18:53

Diamond Hill Capital recently released its Q1 2020 Investor Letter, a copy of which you can download below. The Diamond Hill Small Cap Fund posted a return of -36.17% for the quarter, underperforming its benchmark, the Russell 2000 Index which returned -30.61% in the same quarter. You should check out Diamond Hill Capital's top 5 […]

Nikola is like Amazon and could be worth a $100 billion someday: founder

Forest Products IIII - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 18:52

Yahoo Finance speaks with Nikola founder Trevor Milton as the electric- and hydrogen-powered truck maker debuts on the Nasdaq.

American Airlines soars on news it will boost U.S. flights in July

Forest Products IIII - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 18:30

American Airlines Group Inc shares jumped by 25% after it said Thursday it will significantly boost its U.S. flight schedule next month after dramatic reductions caused by the coronavirus pandemic, flying more than 55% of its July 2019 domestic capacity. American shares, up 24.6% to $14.77 on the bullish announcement, are still down more than 50% since mid-February. The airline, the largest U.S. carrier, will also boost its international flights schedule next month, flying nearly 20% of its July 2019 schedule.

Canfor completes purchase of Elliott Sawmilling Company Inc.

International Forest Industries - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 18:23

Canfor Corporation, further to its announcement on November 9, 2018, completed the purchase of Elliott Sawmilling Company Inc. on May 31, 2020. Elliott adds over 210 million board feet of production capacity.

Canfor is a leading integrated forest products company based in Vancouver, British Columbia (“BC”) with interests in BC, Alberta, North and South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi and Arkansas, as well as in Sweden with its majority acquisition of Vida Group. Canfor produces primarily softwood lumber and also owns a 54.8% interest in Canfor Pulp Products Inc., which is one of the largest global producers of market Northern Bleached Softwood Kraft Pulp and a leading producer of high performance kraft paper. Canfor shares are traded on The Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol CFP. For more information

The post Canfor completes purchase of Elliott Sawmilling Company Inc. appeared first on International Forest Industries.

Microsoft (MSFT) Is a Bargain Stock You Can Buy Today

Forest Products IIII - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 17:58

Diamond Hill Capital recently released its Q1 2020 Investor Letter, a copy of which you can download below. The Diamond Hill Small Cap Fund posted a return of -36.17% for the quarter, underperforming its benchmark, the Russell 2000 Index which returned -30.61% in the same quarter. You should check out Diamond Hill Capital's top 5 […]

Corporate Insiders Are Snapping Up These 3 Stocks

Forest Products IIII - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 17:49

The clear upward trend in the stock markets has investors in a buying mood. The reasons are varied, and sometimes hard to pin down; while we’re still stuck in the coronavirus inspired economic doldrum, at the state and local levels economies are starting to reopen. The civil unrest of the past week is worrisome, and the destruction in urban centers is serious, but the economic blow was softened by the shutdowns. The riots would have stopped ‘normal’ activity – but that was already slowed or halted, and had been for two months. The shutdowns were already baked into market sentiment.The upshot is, there is real hope of a turnaround in 2H20. And that makes the corporate insiders a most interesting group to follow. These company officers and board members are the ones at the helm of corporate America. They’re watching the news, steering their companies, and are responsible to shareholders for corporate performance. So, when they start buying, investors should pay attention.TipRanks has a tool for that. The Insiders’ Hot Stocks shows which stocks top insiders are most active on, for both purchases and sales. You can sort insider trades by a variety of filters, including trading strategy. We’ve done some of the legwork for you, and pulled up three stocks with recent informative buy-side transactions. Here are the results.Douglas Emmett (DEI)We’ll start with a real estate investment trust. REIT’s are popular in these pages; they hold a secure niche in the financial sector, and are well-liked by income-minded investors seeking a steady dividend stream. Douglas Emmett, which owns office and apartment properties in California and Hawaii, is typical of the species. The stock was hit hard by the market drop in February and is still underperforming, standing 26% below its February peak price. That said, DEI shows several strong attractors for investors. First, of course, is the insider signal. Yesterday, Director Christopher Anderson paid $1.3 million for a bloc of 42,800 shares. This informative purchase swung the insider sentiment on DEI into positive territory.In another point of interest to investors, DEI declared its regular quarterly dividend of 28 cents per share. This payment, which annualized to $1.12, gives a yield of 3.65%. The yield is low by the standards of REITs, but is significantly higher than the 2.16% found in the financial sector generally – and it is reliable, as the company has maintained and grown the payments for the last 11 years.Covering the stock for Piper Sandler, analyst Alexander Goldfarb notes an important point that is easy to miss in the REIT landscape. He writes, “What densification? DEI's small tenant focus (~200 sf pp) has meant its users never joined the open floor plan trend many large corporates did and thus management doesn't see the same reconfiguration need as larger CBD tenants.”Goldfarb rates DEI a Buy, and sets a $35 price target that to imply 8% growth in the coming year. (To watch Goldfarb’s track record, click here)Douglas Emmett’s analyst reviews are split 5-4 between Buys and Holds, making the analyst consensus view a Moderate Buy. Shares are priced at $32.54, so the average price target of $35.56 suggests an 8% upside in the next 12 months. (See DEI stock analysis on TipRanks)Liquidity Services (LQDT)Next up is Liquidity Services, and e-commerce company. Liquidity operates a network of online auction marketplaces under seven different brand names. The company is based in Bethesda, Maryland, in the suburbs of Washington, DC, giving it quick access to one of the world’s major cities.Like many high-tech companies, LQDT has been operating at a net loss over a long term – so investors were not phased by the 10-cent EPS loss reported in Q1. That number came in better than the 12-cent loss expected. Of greater concern, the $49.5 million in top-line revenue missed the forecast by more than 8%, and slipped 8.4% year-over-year. Clearly, the economic slowdowns of the quarter impacted sales.On major insider, CEO William Angrick has made four informative purchases in the past four weeks, totaling 196,932 shares for which he disclosed over $1 million in payment. Barrington’s Gary Prestopino, rated 5-stars by TipRanks, sees LQDT as a Buy proposition. His $10 price target suggests the stock has room for 71% growth this year. (To watch Prestopino’s track record, click here)Prestopino notes, “Prior to the pandemic-related slowdown, LSI experienced strong volume in the RSCG segment from existing sellers and from the launch of new programs with both midsized and large retailers, augmented by strong buyer demand for retail goods in the Liquidation.com marketplace.”Overall, with 1 Buy and 1 Hold rating set recently, LQDT shares get a Moderate Buy from the analyst consensus. The $8 average price target suggests a healthy one-year upside potential of 37%. (See Liquidity stock analysis on TipRanks)Wrap Technologies (WRTC)The last stock on our list is particularly interesting, especially in light of recent events. Wrap Technologies inhabits the police and security niche, where it specializes in less-than-lethal restraint devices for police use. The company’s showcase product, the BolaWrap 100, is designed to halt and restrain individual subjects – without lethal force – at a range of 10 to 25 feet.The implications of such a product are obvious today. But it’s important to note that the company’s CTO, Elwood Norris, just bought $500,000 worth of stock. This netted him 100,000 shares. Norris, who is also listed as a >10% owner of the company, has a total holding valued at $56.8 million.Also of note for investors, WRTC beat the forecast on Q1 earnings. The company showed an EPS loss of 8 cents, 20% better than the 10-cent loss which had been predicted. That was reported at the end of April, and the barely budged the share performance. In the past week, however, WRTC shares have spiked sharply, jumping 61% in since May 28. Once again, the connection to current events is clear, and investors believe that less-than-lethal policing tools will see a surge in demand in the near future.Jon Hickman, of Ladenburg Thalmann, writes of Wrap Technologies, “Though the worldwide exposure to COVID-19 has caused a temporary slowdown in in-person sales-related meetings, the company's momentum from late 2019 and early in Q1 is resulting in orders and reorders from smaller agencies in the U.S… The Los Angeles PD's 90-day field trial is underway and the feedback to date has been positive.”Hickman puts a $9.75 price target on the stock, supporting his Buy rating and suggesting that WRTC has room for 16% growth this year. (To watch Hickman’s track record, click here)Like LQDT above, WRTC has just two recent analyst reviews – but both are Buys. The stock is priced at $8.44 after its recent surge in value. That share appreciation has pushed the stock price right up to the $8.38 average price target. Expect reviewers to adjust the price target higher in the near future, should police demand for non-lethal force alternatives increase due to social pressures. (See WRTC stock analysis at TipRanks)To find good ideas for stocks trading at attractive valuations, visit TipRanks’ Best Stocks to Buy, a newly launched tool that unites all of TipRanks’ equity insights.

You're not the only one skeptical of the stock market rally

Forest Products IIII - Thu, 04/06/2020 - 17:36

While many analysts say they don’t expect stocks to fall all the way back to their lows set in March, much of Wall Street says the recent surge of nearly 40% for stocks may be setting investors up for disappointment, with rougher times likely to come. “There’s no question that it’s going to be a choppy recovery,” said Rich Weiss, chief investment officer of multi-asset strategies for American Century Investments. A little more than two thirds of fund managers say this is nothing more than a bear market rally, according to the latest monthly survey by Bank of America conducted in May.


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by Dr. Radut