Growth vs. Value: The Story of the Market

There are many ways to slice and dice the market to gain insights into its recent performance, but perhaps the simplest and sometimes the most effective way is to look at growth vs. value. Continue reading

Posted in Market Commentary | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Market Update–April 30, 2017

The major equity averages closed out the month of April with respectable gains ranging from 1.1%-1.4%, with the exception of the Nasdaq Composite, which rallied 2.9%. Year-to-date, the major indexes are up 6.0%-6.5%, which translates into an annualized gain of 19%. If sustained, that would be the strongest performance since 2013. Continue reading

Posted in Market Commentary | Tagged , | Leave a comment

PSEG Dances to Stay Fit

Public Service Enterprise Group (PSEG) is a public utility holding company whose principal direct operating subsidiaries include Public Service Electric & Gas (PSE&G), which serves 2.2 million electric customers and 1.8 million gas customers along a northeast to southwest swath of the state of New Jersey. PSEG Power LLC (Power) is merchant power producer and wholesale marketer of electricity and natural gas. Continue reading

Posted in PEG, Utilities | Tagged | Leave a comment

An Update on Arch Coal (ARCH)

Arch Coal emerged from bankruptcy on October 5, 2016 and recently filed its 2016 10-K which included its fourth quarter performance (Oct. 2 to Dec. 31) as a reorganized (i.e. successor) company. With its quick emergence from Chapter 11, substantial reduction in debt and strong liquidity position, the company is upbeat about its ability to both weather any further market weakness and seize upon future opportunities. Continue reading

Posted in ARCH, Materials, Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Market Update: A Temporary Head Fake?

Since my last update (Feb. 26), the stock market has had its ups and downs, reflecting the push and pull of stronger economic data against higher interest rates and the ongoing political wrangling in Washington. Continue reading

Posted in Market Commentary | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Market Update: Risk-Off Stocks Back in the Lead

The stock market has advanced steadily through most of February. Many market commentators are calling it a melt-up because average daily price moves have been less than 1%. (In fact, the S&P 500 has not moved more than one percent in daily trading since December 7.) This latest rally, which began on February 9, has taken the S&P up 3.2%. Continue reading

Posted in Market Commentary, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

UPS Investor Day: Invest. Grow. Deliver.

UPS held an investor day in New York City on February 22, three weeks after reporting disappointing fourth quarter results.  Its stock fell sharply on the earnings news, giving back all of its Trump rally gains.  So far this year, UPS is down 7.4%, much worse than the gains of 5.7% on the S&P 500 and 4.2% on the Dow Jones Transports, of which it is a member.  Following management’s comprehensive strategy review and outlook, this is a good time to assess the company’s recent performance and consider the investment potential in its stock. Continue reading

Posted in Companies, Industrials, UPS | Leave a comment

2016 Mass Investor Conference (Part 3): the MWRA

The Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA) was created by the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority Act, Chapter 372 of the Acts of 1984 of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.  Its operating territory covers 61 communities (i.e. cities, towns and special purpose entities) in eastern and central Massachusetts.  Within that territory, it serves 5,500 industrial businesses and 2.5 million people, more than 40% of total population of Massachusetts.  51 communities receive the Authority’s water service; while 43 communities connect their local sewer systems to the Authority’s regional sewer collectors and treatment facilities.  The MWRA supplies 215 million gallons of water and treats 315 million gallons of sewage per day. Continue reading

Posted in Municipal Bonds | Tagged , | Leave a comment

2016 Mass Investor Conference (Part 2): the MBTA

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA or the Authority) is a body politic and corporate and a political subdivision of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.  It is also a component of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation.  Created in 1964, it is the oldest and fifth largest transit system in the country.  Its authority is derived from Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 161A (as restated by Section 151 of Chapter 127 of the Acts of 1999 and amended by the Control Board Act, Chapter 46 of the Acts of 2015) and also Section 35T of Chapter 10, which together are known as the “Enabling Act.”  The Enabling Act does not provide for the Authority to be a debtor under the federal bankruptcy code. Continue reading

Posted in Municipal Bonds | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Peabody Puts Its Bankruptcy Plan to a Vote (Part 3)

Other Thoughts on the Plan.  In a bankruptcy, a debtor-in-possession serves as a fiduciary for the creditors and interests.  The court oversees the case to ensure that the debtor fulfills its obligations.  Yet, both the debtor and the court cannot ignore the practical aspects of achieving a consensus and moving expeditiously to address the company’s financial problems in order to facilitate its exit from bankruptcy. Continue reading

Posted in BTU, Materials | Tagged , , | Leave a comment