Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Owens Corning is a Very Attractive Stock

Despite a stellar rise in its stock price this year, shares of Owens Corning (NYSE:OC) still offer investors a good value. While other areas of the stock market are starting to look expensive, Owens Corning's stock price rise has been backed by earnings guidance hikes and ongoing strategic improvements which are preparing the company for good long-term growth.
There are two key arguments that make it a good buy, which I'll go into in detail below:

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Monday, October 16, 2017

Rockwell Automation; A Stock o Buy?

Following a strong run in 2017, the stock price of Rockwell Automation (NYSE:ROK) corrected a bit following the third-quarter earnings report. In general, it's been a good year for the industrials sector, as U.S. industrial production growth has picked up, creating earnings tailwinds for companies such as Rockwell that have heavy exposure to cyclical capital spending.
That said, the industrials sector could face a tricky period in the second half of 2017. Does that mean it's time to sell stock in Rockwell Automation?
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Best Railroad Stocks to Buy

Railroads are always worth looking at for those seeking good dividend growth prospects. But since no two railroads will have exactly the same dividend or growth potential, let's consider which ones are best for income seekers.

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Saturday, October 14, 2017

2 Dividend Aristocrats to Buy?

Income-seeking investors love buying dividend aristocrats -- stocks that have increased their dividends for more than years -- so when their stock prices fall it's a good idea to look at buying them. As you can see below, automotive and industrial replacement parts distributor Genuine Parts Company (NYSE:GPC) and industrial supply company WW Grainger Inc (NYSE:GWW)have significantly underperformed the S & P 500 so far in 2017, with Amazon.com(NASDAQ:AMZN) playing a big role in both declines. Let's take a closer look at whether these stocks are worth buying right now.

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Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Key Takeaways From Deere & Co Earnings

The strong run-up in the stock price of Deere & Company (NYSE:DE) was rudely interrupted by the negative reaction to the recent third-quarter earnings report. Why did the market react like this when the company raised full-year net income guidance from $2 billion to $2.075 billion? To try answering this question, let's look at the five key takeaways from the earnings presentations

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Why Caterpillar Stock is Soaring

Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) investors have enjoyed watching their stock appreciate nearly 24% in 2017 and 38% in the past year, so perhaps now it's time to take a step backward and look at just what's happened to propel the price higher. The construction and mining equipment company has outperformed the S&P 500 by some 15% this year, so clearly there's something stock-specific going on. 

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Monday, October 9, 2017

Siemens Earnings and Fall Through for GE Investors

It's been a difficult year for General Electric Company (NYSE:GE) investors as they have watched their stock decline 22% year to date while the S&P 500 is up by more than 8%. The decline is largely due to the company lowering expectations to the bottom end of its guidance ranges, amid disappointing performance from its oil and gas and power segments. While the oil and gas issue looks to be a case of expectations being set too high, the power segment's issues could be more troubling in the long term. In order to get more color on what's going on in GE's power segment, let's take a look at what its key rival Siemens AG (NASDAQOTH:SIEGY) said in its recent results.

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Saturday, October 7, 2017

CSX Corp Earnings Analysis

Investors hoping that CSX Corp. CEO Hunter Harrison will bring about the operational improvements required to justify the optimism that's currently baked into its stock price may want to benchmark its performance against peers Union Pacific Corp. and Norfolk Southern Corp. The former is its closest peer in terms of valuation, and the latter is its most important direct competitor. In this line of thought, let's take a look at what Harrison needs to do at the freight railroad operator, and whether its most recent earnings report suggests he's starting to make a difference.

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Thursday, September 28, 2017

AgroFresh Earnings Analysis

It was a relatively uneventful quarter for AgroFresh Solutions, Inc. (NASDAQ:AGFS), and that's fine for investors. The company's earnings reports have caused a significant amount of stock price volatility in the past. However, this time around the results were pretty much as expected, and investors slept soundly after them. That said, what really matters for the company are the upcoming quarters (which contain the northern hemisphere fruit harvest). With this in mind, let's take a look at the results and commentary from the second-quarter earnings report.

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HVAC Sector Stock Analysis

Following a strong rise in the past year, Ingersoll-Rand PLC's (NYSE:IR) stock has corrected in recent weeks alongside competitors in the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) space such as United Technologies Corporation (NYSE:UTX) and Lennox International Inc. (NYSE:LII). Clearly, something about the HVAC sector has spooked the market, so let's take a look at the underlying dynamics in all three companies' earnings, and specifically Ingersoll-Rand as an investment proposition. Is it a structural problem that's set to last or merely a temporary issue?

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Monday, September 18, 2017

How Caterpillar Makes Money?

Analyzing how Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) makes money is a useful exercise for investors because it sheds light on what investors need to know before buying the stock right now. In a nutshell, the stock's near-40% rise in the past year has been propelled by its positive earnings momentum, which is largely due to an improvement in its end markets. So in order to take a view on whether this can continue, it's useful to know how Caterpillar makes money

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Friday, September 15, 2017

3M Company Earnings Analysis

3M Company (NYSE:MMM) needs sales growth. Just like peer Illinois Tool Works (NYSE:ITW), its stock price is starting to look heady -- both companies are trading in excess of their pre-recession valuations -- and it needs growth now in order to justify its rating. Moreover, with 3M's CFO Nick Gangestad claiming dividend growth would "be very similar to what we anticipate for earnings-per-share growth," 3M needs sales and earnings growth in the future -- a near 2.2% dividend yield isn't particularly exciting. Can 3M Company increase its growth rate? 

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What General Electric Company Needs to Learn From Honeywell International

A quick look at the relative stock price performances of Honeywell International (NYSE:HON)and General Electric Company (NYSE:GE) in 2017 shows a nearly 40% outperformance by the former. How is this so? Both companies are diversified industrial conglomerates with many end markets in common, particularly aerospace, so their stock prices should be roughly correlated, right?

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Tuesday, August 29, 2017

United Technologies Earnings Analysis

On the whole, United Technologies Corporation's (NYSE:UTX) earnings were a net positive, but they still left investors with plenty of answered questions. Although management raised full-year sales and earnings guidance, the reasons behind it --strengthening end markets -- was largely anticipated following earlier results from companies such as Honeywell International(NYSE:HON). It's the company-specific commentary that may have left investors concerned.

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Jones Lang LaSalle Earnings Analysis

Commercial property services company Jones Lang LaSalle (NYSE:JLL) strategic growth plan remains on track, but you wouldn't think it from looking at its declining EBITDA in the first half of the year. No matter, it's all part of the company's acquisition-led expansion plans, which management hopes will generate strong earnings growth in the years to come. The second-quarter earnings saw the company aggressively growing its top line while generating what management called "underlying operating momentum."

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Emerson Electric Earnings Analysis

It's been a long time coming, but Emerson Electric Co. (NYSE:EMR) is finally growing again. For the first time since the second quarter of 2015, the company's underlying sales were in positive territory. Moreover, Emerson's results were pretty much in line with expectations, but improving trends encouraged management to raise full-year guidance as a consequence.
Let's look at the details behind a busy third quarter for the company

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Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Roper Technologies Earnings Analysis

Diversified industrial company Roper Technologies, Inc. (NYSE:ROP) reported a solid set of second-quarter results, which contained the usual hallmarks of a Roper earnings report. Revenue and core operating margin expanded in all four segments, and the company's asset-light business model helped to ensure strong ongoing free cash flow generation.
Meanwhile, Roper's acquisitions are settling in well, and the company's transition to more software-based revenue continues. Let's take a look at the report.

Cognex Corporation Earnings Analysis

Machine vision company Cognex Corporation (NASDAQ:CGNX) reported record results in its second quarter and promptly guided investors toward a "monster" third quarter.
There are a lot of good things going on with the company in 2017, and the earnings call hinted at more long-term growth, even if the third quarter is likely to prove somewhat of an outlier. Let's take a look at another strong quarter for the company.
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Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Robert Half International Earnings Analysis

Leading staffing company Robert Half International Inc. (NYSE:RHI) delivered a solid set of results in its latest earnings report, and its numbers imply a relative improvement in the U.S. employment market. Moreover, management highlighted a leading indicator that suggests conditions will improve in the coming quarters.
Let's look at the results from one of the best bellwethers of the U.S. economy.

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BorgWarner Earnings Analysis

According to BorgWarner Inc. (NYSE:BWA) management, the outlook for the auto industry worsened in the past few months. But you wouldn't know it from the company's second-quarter results released on Thursday. BorgWarner is outperforming its end markets, and to such an extent that management felt compelled to raise full-year sales and earnings guidance.
Let's take a look at a strong quarter for the engine and drivetrain company.

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WESCO International Earnings Analysis

Not all industrial recoveries are equal. That's the message in the second-quarter earnings report from supply chain solutions provider WESCO International, Inc. (NYSE:WCC). Aside from construction, the company's end markets are improving, but the lackluster nature of the recovery has led to pressure, and management cut its full-year expectations for margin and earnings. Let's take a look at the mixed earnings report.

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Saturday, August 12, 2017

Dassault Systemes Earnings Analysis

It's not often that long-term considerations overshadow current trading matters on an earnings call, but that was the case with engineering design software company Dassault Systemes(NASDAQOTH:DASTY). In a nutshell, the company is on track with its objectives in 2017, but the announcement of Boeing's (NYSE:BA) decision to adopt Dassault's 3DExperience platform across its commercial aviation, space, and defense work grabbed the attention of investors. Let's take a look at the earnings report and the the Boeing announcement in more detail.

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Illinois Tool Works Earnings Analysis

Multi-industrial company Illinois Tool Works (NYSE:ITW) delivered another good quarter of earnings and raised full-year guidance across the board. It was a positive quarter for the company, driven by its automotive segment and recovery in some of its more cyclical segments (specifically welding, test and measurement, and electronics). That said, management served notice of a relative slowdown in the third quarter. Let's take a look at a busy second quarter for the company.

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Thursday, August 10, 2017

General Electric's Earnings Fail

A quick look at the headline guidance from General Electric Company (NYSE:GE) would conclude that everything is on track in 2017, as the guidance ranges were exactly the same as those given in the first-quarter earnings presentation. However, the devil is in the details, and the reality is that this was a disappointing set of earnings, as Jeff Immelt signed off his tenure as CEO by guiding investors toward the low end of expectations. Moreover, the tone and commentary suggested more difficulties to come, and it wouldn't be surprising if new CEO John Flannery begins his tenure by cutting guidance.
Let's take a closer look a difficult quarter for the company.

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Honeywell International Guidance Looks Conservative

Honeywell International's  second-quarter results created a sense of déjà vu, leaving some analysts feeling that management was being conservative with regard to its outlook. Earnings of $1.80 came in at the high-end of management's guidance, and organic sales growth of 3% was significantly above the guidance range of 0%-2%. However, management merely raised the bottom end of its full-year guidance to $7-$7.10 from a previous range of $6.90-$7.10. Is Honeywell's management being too cautious with guidance?

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Danaher Corp Earnings Analysis

Danaher Corporation's (NYSE:DHR) second-quarter results were almost an investing trivia question: Which company beat earnings expectations and raised full-year guidance, but still managed to disappoint investors? The answer: Danaher. Its earnings were good, but the company is tracking behind its full-year revenue guidance, and there are question marks on its dental segment. Is Danaher still worth investing in?

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Sunday, August 6, 2017

Caterpillar Investors Should be Prepared For This

Deciding whether to buy or sell stock in Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) raises one of the great investing conundrums: what to do with a stock that has strong earnings momentum, but whose current valuation is starting to look high on a historical basis. Let's take a look at the investment case for buying the stock and why the valuation should be giving investors cause for concern.

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Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Check Point Software Earnings Review

After an uncertain outlook for the industry at the start of the year, it's turned out to be a pretty good year for network cybersecurity companies, and the latest results from Israeli company Check Point Software Technologies Ltd. (NASDAQ:CHKP) this week confirmed an industry in good shape. That said, there were a couple of points that might have left investors concerned. Let's take a look at them in the context of a broadly positive set of second-quarter earnings.

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A Few Things You Didn't Know About FedEx Corporation


It's easy to quickly conclude that FedEx Corporation (NYSE:FDX) is just a smaller version of United Parcel Service (NYSE:UPS) and that the two companies are essentially interchangeable, except for FedEx's greater emphasis on express deliveries. However, a closer look at the facts reveals some key differences. Here's a look at some things that might make you think differently about FedEx.

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GE Earnings Review

The upcoming second-quarter earnings report from General Electric Company (NYSE:GE) will have investors eagerly looking for clues of any changes in strategic direction. However, the first thing management needs to do is reassure investors it's on track with its medium-term objectives. Keeping with that line of thought, let's look at three things investors need to hear from GE's management.

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Sunday, July 30, 2017

Why GE stock can turnaround

General Electric Company's  stock is down 16.6% year to date as I write. However, declines in good stocks can create buying opportunities for enterprising investors. So let's look at nine reasons stockholders can expect the market to look more favorably on this stock in the future.

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Honeywell Earnings Preview

Honeywell International's (NYSE:HON) second quarter is shaping up to be a very interesting one for investors. In short, the company faces a mix of earnings headwinds and tailwinds, and it's hard to predict whether the net result will be a raising of the company's full-year guidance. Let's take a look at three key things to look out for when CEO Darius Adamczyk discusses current trading and outlook.

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United Technologies at the Paris Air Show

Diversified industrial United Technologies Corporation (NYSE:UTX) held a meeting for analysts and portfolio managers at the Paris Air Show, in which management outlined progress and expectations for its aerospace businesses in 2017. The next few years are transitional ones for the company, and what it does now is critical for its long-term future

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FedEx Earnings Takeaways

The fourth-quarter results from FedEx Corp. (NYSE:FDX) contained many guideposts for the company's future performance. Both FedEx and key rival United Parcel Service (NYSE:UPS)have a lot happening in the next few years that investors should be aware of: Here are five key takeaways from the recent report.

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Tuesday, July 25, 2017

FedEx Corporation Investors Biggest Fear

It's well known that package delivery giants FedEx Corporation  and United Parcel Service  have a long-term growth opportunity from burgeoning e-commerce deliveries, but what's less understood is the increasing demand on the networks. It's creating the necessity for increased capital expenditures, and that's likely to negatively impact free cash flow generation in the future. Let's take a closer look.

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Rockwell Automation is a Buy

Sometimes it's difficult to change the way you think about a stock. In the case of Rockwell Automation (NYSE:ROK) the company has always been seen as an all-purpose way to play trends in the industrial sector. However, given the importance of the company's sensors, controls, software architecture, and automation solutions to the Industrial Internet of Things (IIOT), it's time to start thinking about the company as a long-term way to play the growth of IIOT -- something that might encourage a positive rerating in the stock. Let's take a closer look.

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Will GE Lower Earnings Expectations?

The departure of long-serving CEO Jeff Immelt leaves General Electric Company (NYSE:GE)investors wondering what's next for the company. In reality, it's too much to expect any major changes in the strategic direction of GE, but new CEO John Flannery will begin his tenure facing concerns that the company's stated earnings targets -- specifically, $2 in operating earnings by 2018 -- will have to be taken down. Let's take a closer look at what lies ahead for Flannery.

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Saturday, July 22, 2017

FedEx Earnings Review

The fourth-quarter results from FedEx Corporation (NYSE:FDX) were broadly positive, but the best word to describe them is "noisy." The headline numbers were impacted by a combination of issues including the integration of TNT Express, pricing actions taken to improve yield, and network expansion costs. There is a lot going on in the earnings report; here are the key points

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3 Stocks Up Big in 2017

Machine-vision company Cognex Corporation (NASDAQ:CGNX), roofing and insulation company Owens Corning (NYSE:OC), and industrial tools company Stanley Black & Decker (NYSE:SWK) have all seen sharp increases in their stock prices in 2017. So is now the time to cash in some gains? Let's look at what's happened with all three and consider why there may be more to come from them in 2017.

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Dover Corp Plans to Grow Earnings

Oil and gas-focused industrial stocks like Dover Corp (NYSE:DOV) have seen an uptick in prospects in 2017 with the recovery in energy capital spending, and Dover has raised organic revenue guidance in its three other operating segments. The company is having a strong 2017, and its three-year outlook to 2019 -- provided at a recent investor meeting -- suggests that the stock could have further upside potential. Let's take a look at what investors can expect.

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Thursday, July 13, 2017

Why Ingersoll-Rand PLC Stock is a Buy

Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) company Ingersoll-Rand PLC (NYSE:IR) is the most compelling stock in the electrical equipment sector, offering investors an attractive mix of long-term growth, margin expansion, and free cash flow generation. Let's take a closer look at why Ingersoll-Rand might be a useful addition to your portfolio.

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Electrical Equipment Stocks With Good Dividends

So you want to invest in the electrical equipment sector and you also want a healthy dividend to go with it. In that case, here's a rundown of the leading players in the industry and which ones are of particular relevance to income-seeking investors.

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Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Agricultural Equipment Stocks to Buy

It's been a difficult five years for the agricultural-equipment sector as record harvests have led to falling crop prices and a lack of willingness among farmers to buy new machinery. However, the uptick in key crop prices such as corn, wheat, and soybeans in 2017 is encouraging investors to believe a turnaround in fortunes is about to take place. In this line of thought, let's look at the three best stocks in the sector, namely Deere & Company (NYSE:DE)AGCO Corporation (NYSE:AGCO) and CNH Industrial NV (NYSE:CNHI).

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Rockwell Automation Stock Carries a Premium

On both an absolute and relative basis, Rockwell Automation (NYSE:ROK) stock looks expensive. As you can see below, its current P/E ratio of around 27 times earnings means it commands a premium to the electrical equipment sector.
Time to hit the sell button? Not so fast -- here are five reasons Rockwell Automation's premium rating is deserved, and why the stock might even be a good value option.

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Thursday, June 29, 2017

3M Co Stock Analysis

The first-quarter proved to be a good one for the industrial sector, and particularly so for multi-industry companies like 3M Co (NYSE:MMM) and Illinois Tool Works (NYSE:ITW). Both companies reported strong first quarters and raised their full-year revenue and earnings guidance. That said, they both currently trade on valuations that look expensive compared to previous years. . Let's take a look at the investment case for and against buying stock in 3M Co.

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Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Key Takeaways From General Electric Company Presentations

It hasn't been a great year for shareholders of General Electric (NYSE:GE), who have watched as the stock hassignificantly underperformed the S&P 500. Now, CEO Jeff Immelt is under pressure to reassure the investment community that the company is back on track toward its earnings and operational goals, and he sought to do just that with his presentation at the Electrical Products Group conference last week. Let's take a closer look at the key takeaways from the presentation.

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Where is UPS Going in 2017?

It's no secret that United Parcel Service, Inc (NYSE:UPS) and FedEx Corporation (NYSE:FDX) are key beneficiaries of the e-commerce revolution. While that's good news from a revenue growth perspective, it's not necessarily a good thing from a margin and cash flow perspective. Both companies are facing margin pressure from growing e-commerce deliveries, and UPS in particular is having to ramp up capital expenditures and costs in order to support future growth.
In this context, let's take a look at what's going on at UPS and how it affects the investment proposition. 

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