The 5 Best and Worst Stocks of 2015

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The 5 Best and Worst Stocks of 2015 A Mid-Year Check-In

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A Quick Note To be considered for this list, companies needed to have a market capitalization of at least $300 million. Biotechnology and drug companies were omitted from the list, as they would have been the almost all of the members of the best-performers list. These stocks make huge swings—up or down—based upon drug approval rulings from the FDA.

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Let’s start with the five worst performers of the year…

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5) Natural Resource Partners YTD Performance: (57%) Business: An MLP that owns and leases mineral properties in the United States. Cause: NRP accumulated a lot of debt over the years and had to cut its dividend by 75%. Source: Natural Resource Partners

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4) Caesars Entertainment YTD Performance: (59%) Business: Owner and operator of casino and casino-based properties. Cause: The company has yet to turn a profit since going public, has massive amounts of debt, and is investing in questionable properties in Atlantic City. Source: Caesars Entertainment

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3) Sonus Networks YTD Performance: (60%) Business: Provider of cloud communications hardware and services. Cause: The company had a number of large orders that were expected to close in the first quarter that it now doesn’t expect until next year. Source: Sonus

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2)Peabody Energy YTD Performance: (68%) Business: Worldwide coal miner. Cause: The coal market is very weak. Peabody is trying to stay afloat by issuing bonds, but that may not be enough. Source: Peabody

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1) Lumber Liquidators YTD Performance: (68%) Business: Seller of hardwood flooring. Cause: A 60 Minutes piece called into question the safety of the company’s China-sourced laminates. Many C-Level executives have since left. Source: Lumber Liquidators

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Now, let’s move on to the biggest winners of the year…thus far.

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5) Ambarella YTD Performance: 141% Business: Develops technology used in small video recording devices. Cause: Sales of the company’s technology have exploded thanks to GoPro’s popular cameras, as well as increased interest by security firms. Source: GoPro

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4) Isle of Capri YTD Performance: 142% Business: Casino owner/operator Cause: Besides reporting strong growth earlier in the year, the stock took a major jump after it was leaked that it may be bought out by Gaming and Leisure Properties. Source: Isle of Capri

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3) Tantech Holdings YTD Performance: 153% Business: Chinese company that makes bamboo-based charcoal products. Cause: This is a newly IPO’d company that very little is known about. Investors should tread carefully. Source: Tantech

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2) NeoPhotonics YTD Performance: 218% Business: Manufactures hybrid photonic integrated models used to process and send large amounts of data. Cause: The last two quarters, NeoPhotonics has crushed analyst expectations. Sales of the company’s 100G products have been very strong. Source: NeoPhotonics

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1) Natural Health Trends YTD Performance: 273% Business: Direct-seller of nutritional, beauty and lifestyle products, primarily in China. Cause: Buyer beware, this is essentially a Chinese MLM company. That said, revenue and earnings growth have been through the roof. Source: Natural Health Trends

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While finding out about the year’s winners and losers is fun, it doesn’t help YOU very much. These moves have already taken place. If you’d like to find out about a technology that could revolutionize how we pay for things, then check out…

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The $18 Million Fortune About To Be Ripped From Your Credit Card