Tag Archives: ITW

Time to Buy Shares of 3M Company and Illinois Tool Works?

The recent stock market volatilityis likely to be creating some entry points into high-quality companies for long-term investors. With this mind, I thought I’d take a look at industrials Illinois Tool Works and 3M Company. Both stocks have an enviable record of margin expansion and profit growth, and both have double-digit EPS growth in their sights for the next few years. Is it time to buy them? And if it is, which stock should you prefer?

MMM Chart

MMM data by YCharts.

Midterm aims

Both companies are very well run,the midterm plans of Illinois Tool Works and 3M Company. imply both companies can achieve double-digit earnings growth.Here’s a summation of their projections for the next few years.

Company

Period

Organic Growth Goal

EPS Growth Goal

Illinois Tool Works (NYSE:ITW)

2018-2022

3%-5%

8%-10%

3M Company (NYSE:MMM)

2016-2020

2%-5%

8%-11%

Data source: Company presentations.

There’s no doubt that both are good companies, but are they good investments on a risk/reward basis?

Valuations look historically stretched

One way to look at valuations is to compare forward valuation estimates — in this case, analyst consensus for one year ahead — with historical averages. As you can see below, both stocks are trading at forward price-to-earnings ratios of around 20.5, and outside of the periods following recessions, the stocks look expensive compared to historical P/E valuations.

MMM PE Ratio (Forward) Chart

MMM PE Ratio (Forward) data by YCharts.

Frankly, it looks like both companies are going to have to have a blemish-free 2018 in order to merely make their stocks close to fairly valued.

Earnings upside potential in 2018

In a nutshell, I think the odds of achieving analyst estimates for the next few years are pretty much 50-50. On the positive side, the industrial economy looks set to improve — that’s good news for both companies’ cyclical industries like welding, construction products, and polymers and fluids (Illinois Tool Works) and industrial abrasives/adhesives, safety equipment, and electronics (3M Company).

Moreover, both companies have a history of margin expansion on their side, with Illinois Tool Workscontinuing to expect margin expansion from its self-help enterprise initiatives.

Why earnings could be challenged

On the other hand, there’s downside potential as well. Outside of therisk of the economy slowing, I have three concerns for 3M Company and two for Illinois Tool Works.

First, both companies have significant automotive production exposure — 23% of Illinois Tool Works revenue in 2017, and 3M’s industrial segment (which has significant automotive exposure) generated 34% of 2017 revenue–and it’s a market that appears to have plateaued. Despite a jump in March, U.S. light vehicle sales are now only growing at a 17.5 million seasonally adjusted annual rate — as you can see below it’s a rate first breached in the middle of 2015.

US Light Vehicle Retail Sales Chart

US Light Vehicle Retail Sales data by YCharts.

Second, both companies have been expanding margin but are coming under pressure from rising material costs and haven’t been able to increase pricing as much as might have been hoped. In short, margins have been growing because volume growth has been strong, rather than any increase in pricing. As you can see below, 3M’s organic sales growth has largely come from volume increases.

Graph showing 3M's margin growth

Data source: 3M Company presentations.

Illinois Tool Works reports metrics in a slightly different way, but as you can see below, margin expansion has been coming from volume growth and enterprise initiatives rather than an improving price/cost dynamic.

Graph showing Illinois Tool Works margin expansion

Data source: Illinois Tool Works presentations. bp is basis points, where 100 bp equals 1%.

The problem with relying on volume growth for margin expansion is that if the economy slows and volumes contract, then margin could come under significant pressure.

Third, speaking at the recent Bank of Americaglobal industrials conference, 3M COO Mike Roman indicated that first-quarter 2018 organic sales growth would come in toward the low end of its full-year guidance for 3%-5% growth. He cited slow automotive markets as one of the main reasons (the other was consumer electronics). This is a sign that 3M’s full-year automotive sales growth target could come under threat.

Finger touching a screen showing a falling stock price graphic

Image source: Getty Images.

Stocks to buy?

Despite the recent pullback in the market, I think both stocks still aren’t quite buys yet. Their forward valuations don’t make them appear to be good values and I think the risks to their mid-term earnings guidance is a toss-upOf the two, Illinois Tool Works is probably better on a risk/reward basis, but for now, it’s hard to make a compelling case for buying either stock.

Best Tech Stocks For 2018

Citigroup’s Andrew Kaplowitz and Vladimir Bystricky visited General Electric’s (GE) gas turbine factory in South Carolina…and like what they see:

Weve only been covering GE for a couple of months, but weve been covering industrial companies for a long time and we do know a well-run facility when we see it. After visiting GEs Gas Turbine Facility in Greenville, we are more confident that GEs Power business (including the newly acquired Alstom) will be a meaningful driver of our estimated mid-teens EPS growth through 2018. We think a combination of a successful Alstom integration, the significant positive impact of GEs H Turbine ramp-up, and GEs enhanced digital capability should result in a significantly improved competitive position, enhanced ability to price, and a stronger tailwind to service for the company.

One important point to highlight before we get to the main takeaways of our meeting with GE Power management and that is service-related growth seems to be the common denominator across GEs new power portfolio…management does seem excited about the service opportunities provided by the GE-Alstom combination and the ramp-up and installation of a new generation of H Turbines. Given GEs acquisition of Alstom, GEs installed base has risen 50%, which GE can now pursue with greater service penetration. Arguably just as importantly, we get the sense that with GEs improved technology capability on the whole gas plant island, Power management feels like it can go after competitors installed base for service as well.

Best Tech Stocks For 2018: Illinois Tool Works Inc.(ITW)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By WWW.THESTREET.COM]

    There are lots of stories like that out there these days. People were perplexed about the Illinois Tool Works (ITW) and Cummins Engine (CMI) and Caterpillar (CAT) quarters, but they turned out to be classic buying opportunities after years of being sell opportunities if the stocks had run. I can’t explain to you how amazing that is. Here are three stocks that have spent months and months in purgatory when they have missed or guided down or slashed forecasts. Now they are up gigantically.

Best Tech Stocks For 2018: Interpublic Group of Companies, Inc. (The)(IPG)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Laurie Kulikowski]

    The debt-to-equity ratio is somewhat low, currently at 0.94, and is less than that of the industry average, implying that there has been a relatively successful effort in the management of debt levels. Although the company had a strong debt-to-equity ratio, its quick ratio of 0.96 is somewhat weak and could be cause for future problems.

     

  • [By Craig Jones]

    On CNBC's "Fast Money Halftime Report", Jon Najarian spoke about unusually high options activity in Arconic Inc (NYSE: ARNC) and Interpublic Group of Companies Inc (NYSE: IPG).

  • [By Laurie Kulikowski]

    Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 59.42% to $280.90 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, INTERPUBLIC GROUP OF COS has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of 8.14%.

     

  • [By Laurie Kulikowski]

    Interpublic is our income play in our media universe. While other stocks we cover offer a higher yield than IPG’s 2.1%, the company’s double digit EPS growth projections for 2016 (following an estimated 18% in 2015) will also likely be a driver of outperformance for the year. While results can be somewhat volatile for IPG, we would point to record new business win backlog this year, which improves our conviction that the better than average recent organic revenue growth trends will continue next year. At 18x our 2016 EPS estimate, we find IPG shares attractive at current levels for another projected year of healthy double digit total returns. 

Best Tech Stocks For 2018: Renesola Ltd.(SOL)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Monica Gerson]

    Wall Street expects ReneSola Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE: SOL) to report a quarterly loss at $0.04 per share on revenue of $256.05 million. ReneSola shares gained 2.50 percent to close at $1.23 on Friday.

  • [By Lisa Levin] Gainers
    Aimmune Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ: AIMT) shares jumped 35 percent to $34.64 in response to failed DBVT peanut allergy trial.
    Exactech, Inc. (NASDAQ: EXAC) shares surged 30.9 percent to $41.88 after the company agreed to be acquired by TPG Capital for $42 per share in cash.
    Dextera Surgical Inc (NASDAQ: DXTR) shares climbed 27.6 percent to $0.238 after surging 40.48 percent on Friday.
    Petmed Express Inc (NASDAQ: PETS) jumped 21.8 percent to $44.73 as the company reported better-than-expected Q2 results.
    SenesTech Inc (NASDAQ: SNES) shares surged 21.7 percent to $1.95 after the company disclosed that Univar will be marketing and selling ContraPest.
    Yulong Eco-Materials Ltd (NASDAQ: YECO) shares gained 18.3 percent to $0.560.
    One Horizon Group Inc (NASDAQ: OHGI) shares rose 18 percent to $1.18.
    Atossa Genetics Inc (NASDAQ: ATOS) shares climbed 18 percent to $0.566. Atossa Genetics is schedule to host a conference call to announce preliminary results from Phase 1 study of oral Endoxifen on October 25, 2017.
    ReneSola Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE: SOL) shares rose 15.3 percent to $2.72
    Renren Inc (NYSE: RENN) shares gained 11.9 percent to $10.71 after gaining 2.68 percent on Friday.
    Kalvista Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: KALV) shares rose 11.8 percent to $12.59. KalVista Pharma 13D filing from Longwood Fund showed registration for an 8.7 percent stake.
    Xunlei Ltd (NASDAQ: XNET) shares gained 9.4 percent to $7.20 after surging 25.33 percent on Friday.
    VF Corp (NYSE: VFC) shares surged 7.1 percent to $71.09 after the company reported upbeat earnings for its third quarter and raised its FY2017 guidance.
    CAI International Inc (NYSE: CAI) rose 6.6 percent to $39.70. Cowen & Co. upgraded CAI from Market Perform to Outperform.
    Agenus Inc (NASDAQ: AGEN) shares gained 5.7 percent to $4.58 as the company disclosed that GSK's shingle vaccine received FDA approval.
    Deltic Timber Corp (NYSE: DEL) shares climbed 5.6 percent to $94.11
  • [By Monica Gerson]

    ReneSola Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE: SOL) is estimated to report a quarterly loss at $0.04 per share on revenue of $256.05 million.

    America’s Car-Mart, Inc. (NASDAQ: CRMT) is projected to post its quarterly earnings at $0.58 per share on revenue of $149.13 million.

  • [By Monica Gerson]

    ReneSola Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE: SOL) shares rose 9.76 percent to $1.35 in pre-market trading. ReneSola reported Q1 earnings of $0.06 per share on revenue of $260.7 million.

Best Tech Stocks For 2018: Insperity, Inc.(NSP)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Lee Jackson]

    Insperity Inc. (NYSE: NSP) also had a large-scale seller on the desk, and it was another well-known hedge fund. Value Act, which also serves as a director at the company, sold a total of 226,000 shares of the stock at prices that ranged from $71.22 to $72.41. The total for the sale was set at $16 million.Insperity provides an array of human resources and business solutions to enhance business performance for small and medium-sized businesses in the United States. The shares closed the day on Friday at $71.85.

7 Dividend Growth Stocks Worth Owning

Do you invest in dividend growth stocks? If you don’t, you ought to consider doing so. These dividend stocks to buy could be your ticket to a better retirement.

Many dividend investors get caught up focusing on yield when the growth is what’s truly important. By utilizing the power of compound interest, investors can achieve higher returns by merely owning the stocks of companies who regularly hike their dividends.

A Canadian finance site, Hardbacon, provides an excellent example why investing in dividend growth stocks is a sound idea:

“If you invest in a stock which pays $1 in dividends a year and costs $25, it means it yields 4% at the time you buy it (dividend yield on cost),” wrote Sam Kovacs. “If the company increases its dividend 10 cents every year, in 10 years those same stocks which you bought for $25 will be paying out $2 in dividends, an outstanding 8% yield on cost.”

That’s the power of income-growth stocks. Here are seven dividend stocks to buy that are worth owning. If that’s not enough to get your mouth salivating, each has hiked its dividends in 2017 by 20% or more!

Dividend Stocks to Buy: Best Buy (BBY) Why Best Buy Co Inc BBY Stock Is a Great Buy Thanks to Apple Incinvestorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/bbymsn-300×165.jpg 300w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/bbymsn-73×40.jpg 73w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/bbymsn-55×30.jpg 55w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/bbymsn-250×137.jpg 250w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/bbymsn-200×110.jpg 200w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/bbymsn-162×88.jpg 162w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/bbymsn-160×88.jpg 160w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/bbymsn-65×36.jpg 65w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/bbymsn-100×55.jpg 100w,https://investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/bbymsn-91×50.jpg 91w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/bbymsn-78×43.jpg 78w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/bbymsn-170×93.jpg 170w” sizes=”(max-width: 728px) 100vw, 728px” />Source: Austin Kirk via Flickr

If I told you that I could sell you a dividend growth stock that’s increased its annual payout for 14 consecutive years, is yielding more than 2%, and raised its 2017 dividend by 21.4%, you’d want to know more.

But slap this description on Minneapolis-based Best Buy Co Inc (NYSE:BBY) and you’re likely to turn very skeptical. After all, Best Buy is supposed to be getting slaughtered in the electronics arena by Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN).

Not so fast.

Take a quick look at Best Buy’s stock chart and you’ll see that it’s currently trading within 3% of its all-time high of $69.39. In 2017, it gained 64% on the year and that’s after a 45% gain in 2016.

During the critical holiday shopping season, Best Buy held its own against Amazon according to industry analysis.

I’ve been a fan of CEO Hubert Joly all the way back to 2013 when the former hospitality executive implemented his turnaround plan for the electronics retailer.

Don’t be fooled by the company’s so-called weak Q3 2017 results. Same-store sales grew 4.4% and it earned 78 cents a share despite lowering prices to match Amazon, etc.

Best Buy could easily hit $100 in 2018.

Dividend Stocks to Buy: Vail Resorts (MTN) investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/mtnmsn-300×165.jpg 300w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/mtnmsn-55×30.jpg 55w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/mtnmsn-200×110.jpg 200w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/mtnmsn-162×88.jpg 162w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/mtnmsn-400×220.jpg 400w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/mtnmsn-116×64.jpg 116w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/mtnmsn-100×55.jpg 100w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/mtnmsn-91×50.jpg 91w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/mtnmsn-78×43.jpg 78w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/mtnmsn-170×93.jpg 170w” sizes=”(max-width: 728px) 100vw, 728px” />Source: Shutterstock

The U.S. economy is unbelievably healthy right now and nobody benefits more from this than Vail Resorts, Inc. (NYSE:MTN), North America’s largest operator of ski resorts.

Its stock hasn’t had a down year since 2011 and although it’s down in early 2018 trading, all the signs point to another stellar year on the slopes.

“We have continued to drive significant growth in our destination markets which represent approximately 60% of our increase in pass units,” CEO Rob Katz said recently. “We continue to see strength across all geographies, with particularly strong performance in Northern California, the Pacific Northwest and the Northeast and continued solid growth in Colorado and British Columbia.“

The sale of season passes as of the beginning of December were up 14% in units and 20% in dollars over last year; they’re not headed downhill anytime soon.

Acquisitions drive Vail Resort’s growth — Whistler Blackcomb being its most significant to date — and it’s not about to stop looking for resorts to buy that cater to both the affluent destination visitor as well as the local season-pass skier.

We might be aging but not quickly enough to slow Vail Resorts over the next decade. MTN might be the best dividend growth stock of the bunch.

Dividend Stocks to Buy: Oneok (ONE) investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/naturalgasmsn-1-300×165.jpg 300w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/naturalgasmsn-1-55×30.jpg 55w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/naturalgasmsn-1-200×110.jpg 200w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/naturalgasmsn-1-162×88.jpg 162w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/naturalgasmsn-1-65×36.jpg 65w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/naturalgasmsn-1-100×55.jpg 100w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/naturalgasmsn-1-91×50.jpg 91w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/naturalgasmsn-1-78×43.jpg 78w,https://investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/naturalgasmsn-1-170×93.jpg 170w” sizes=”(max-width: 728px) 100vw, 728px” />Source: Andy Arthur via Flickr

Higher energy prices to a limited extent drive stocks like Oneok, Inc. (NYSE:OKE), one of the biggest midstream service providers in the U.S.

As most of the Northeast fight a brutal winter storm early in 2018, natural gas prices have spiked to unprecedented levels; a problem made worse by the fact there’s a shortage of pipelines shipping natural gas to cities like New York and Boston.

Oneok can’t help with the Northeast as its pipelines and processing facilities are primarily west of the Mississippi River. However, it can help with the processing and shipping of natural gas and natural gas liquids (NGLs) in the regions it serves.

On January 4 it announced that it’s building $1.4 billion pipeline to transport NGLs from the Rocky Mountains to its Mid-Continent NGL facilities providing the middle part of the country with a more significant energy supply.

In 2017, OKE stock was relatively flat, down 2% on the year, significantly lower than the S&P 500, which was up 22%.

That’s the bad news.

The good news is that Oneok upped its annual dividend this past year by 21.1% to $2.98, providing a juicy 5.3% yield — double the 10-year U.S. Treasury.

As energy stocks go, Oneok’s a keeper.

Dividend Stocks to Buy: Federal Agricultural Mortgage (AGM) investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/indoorfarmingmsn-300×165.jpg 300w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/indoorfarmingmsn-55×30.jpg 55w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/indoorfarmingmsn-200×110.jpg 200w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/indoorfarmingmsn-162×88.jpg 162w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/indoorfarmingmsn-400×220.jpg 400w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/indoorfarmingmsn-116×64.jpg 116w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/indoorfarmingmsn-100×55.jpg 100w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/indoorfarmingmsn-91×50.jpg 91w,https://investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/indoorfarmingmsn-78×43.jpg 78w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/indoorfarmingmsn-170×93.jpg 170w” sizes=”(max-width: 728px) 100vw, 728px” />Source: Shutterstock

This mostly unheralded stock is currently trading within 5% of its all-time high of $80.47. In 2017, it was up 39%, which followed an 85% gain in 2016. Over the past decade, it’s achieved an annualized total return of 12%, 300 basis points better than the S&P 500.

Currently yielding 1.9% after all of these gains, Federal Agricultural Mortgage Corp. (NYSE:AGM), better known as Farmer Mac, continues to be the agricultural industry’s best friend providing credit to agricultural lenders and businesses across the U.S.

With the need for food production likely to remain high indefinitely combined with a rigorous underwriting process, an investment in Farmer Mac is as reliable as they come.

In 2017, Farmer Mac upped the annual dividend by 38.5% to $1.44 a share. That’s money in the bank. Five years ago, AGM stock paid an annual dividend of just $0.48. In 2016, the company initiated a 30% payout target of core earnings which should keep the dividend growing at double digits on an annual basis.

If you like a little capital appreciation with your dividend growth stocks, AGM is for you.

Dividend Stocks to Buy: UnitedHealth (UNH) UnitedHealth UNH stockinvestorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/unitedhealth-group-inc-unh-stock-ipsize-300×150.jpg 300w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/unitedhealth-group-inc-unh-stock-ipsize-768×384.jpg 768w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/unitedhealth-group-inc-unh-stock-ipsize-60×30.jpg 60w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/unitedhealth-group-inc-unh-stock-ipsize-200×100.jpg 200w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/unitedhealth-group-inc-unh-stock-ipsize-400×200.jpg 400w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/unitedhealth-group-inc-unh-stock-ipsize-116×58.jpg 116w,https://investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/unitedhealth-group-inc-unh-stock-ipsize-100×50.jpg 100w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/unitedhealth-group-inc-unh-stock-ipsize-78×39.jpg 78w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/unitedhealth-group-inc-unh-stock-ipsize-800×400.jpg 800w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/unitedhealth-group-inc-unh-stock-ipsize-170×85.jpg 170w” sizes=”(max-width: 950px) 100vw, 950px” />Source: Shutterstock

Can you guess the last time UnitedHealth Group Inc (NYSE:UNH) stock lost money on an annual basis? Try the Reagan era. I’m just kidding. It was 2008. Since then it’s rattled off nine consecutive years of gains.

UNH operates two business segments: Health Benefits, which provides healthcare insurance to millions of Americans and Optum, its provider of healthcare services. Together, they play a big part in the wellness of America.

In December, UNH announced that it was buying the Davita Medical Group for $4.9 billion from Davita Inc (NYSE:DVA). Davita wants to focus on its dialysis business, so Optum was a natural home for the company’s nearly 300 clinics and six outpatient surgical centers.

When you’ve got a market cap of nearly $220 billion like UnitedHealth, a $4.9 billion acquisition is coffee money — but it provides additional growth for Optum, so it’s a win/win.

Bottom line: UNH stock isn’t a big yielder at 1.3%, but it’s track record of growing its stock price should be enough for most investors.

Dividend Stocks to Buy: Illinois Tool Works (ITW) investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/itwmsn-300×165.jpg 300w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/itwmsn-55×30.jpg 55w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/itwmsn-200×110.jpg 200w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/itwmsn-162×88.jpg 162w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/itwmsn-400×220.jpg 400w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/itwmsn-116×64.jpg 116w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/itwmsn-100×55.jpg 100w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/itwmsn-91×50.jpg 91w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/itwmsn-78×43.jpg 78w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/itwmsn-170×93.jpg 170w” sizes=”(max-width: 728px) 100vw, 728px” />Source: Shutterstock

Of all 31 stocks on my list, Illinois Tool Works Inc. (NYSE:ITW) has the fifth-longest streak for the consecutive number of years raising its annual dividend at 43. In 2017, it raised its dividend by 20.0% to $3.12 per share. Since 2012, it’s grown its annual dividend by 15% on a compounded basis with the last two years seeing increases above that average.

Yes, it only yields 1.9%, but the dividend yield isn’t nearly as important as the dividend growth because a growing dividend typically is the result of growing earnings.

Usually, I’m not a fan of share repurchases, but ITW does a good job keeping track of how it’s doing on its buybacks. Over the past five years it’s repurchased $11.4 billion of its shares reducing the share count by 28%, but more importantly, earning a 24% internal rate of return on those purchases.

Even better, over half the $11.4 billion was used to buy shares in 2013 and 2014 at prices of $85 or less — it currently trades at $166.

Over the past five years, the industrial conglomerate’s been on a transformation to building a business that’s growing its margins and organic revenues while responsibly allocating capital.

Frankly, Illinois Tool Works is what General Electric Company (NYSE:GE) ought to aspire to.

Dividend Stocks to Buy: Cheesecake Factory (CAKE) investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/cakemsn-300×165.jpg 300w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/cakemsn-55×30.jpg 55w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/cakemsn-200×110.jpg 200w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/cakemsn-162×88.jpg 162w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/cakemsn-400×220.jpg 400w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/cakemsn-116×64.jpg 116w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/cakemsn-100×55.jpg 100w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/cakemsn-91×50.jpg 91w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/cakemsn-78×43.jpg 78w,https://investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/cakemsn-170×93.jpg 170w” sizes=”(max-width: 728px) 100vw, 728px” />Source: Shutterstock

Who doesn’t love the Cheesecake Factory Inc (NASDAQ:CAKE)?

Seriously, anyone who doesn’t enjoy a meal at the restaurant chain best known for its variety of cheesecake desserts every now and again, really has a hard time letting loose.

Sure, it’s not gourmet, but when you’ve managed to increase your dividend by 20.8% in a single year and your stock is currently yielding 2.3%, the cheesecake isn’t the only thing worth trying at the California company.

The Cheesecake Factory might be old news in the U.S., but here in Canada where I live, the first location just opened this past November in Toronto at Yorkdale Mall, Canada’s most productive mall regarding sales per square foot.

Lineups were snaking through the mall of people trying to get their fill. Canada could easily use another 19 or 20. It will do very well here despite the fact Canadians have a hard time getting excited about cookie-cutter restaurant chains.

Cheesecake Factory’s financials might not be as strong as past years but its growth drivers — Canada, getting its cheesecake and other desserts into the grocery stores and investments in North Italia and Flower Child restaurants — suggest it’s got plenty to push the stock higher in the coming years.

As of this writing, Will Ashworth did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.

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Best Warren Buffett Stocks To Buy For 2018

Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.A) had an impressive Monday as the company’s stock briefly topped the $300,000 mark before sliding back down a bit.

The stock’s recent surge could be at least partially related to the fact that the GOP tax plan looms on the horizon and such a large tax reform in the U.S. could reshape the face of certain major companies such as Warren Buffett’s hedge fund.

Best Warren Buffett Stocks To Buy For 2018: Illinois Tool Works Inc.(ITW)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By WWW.THESTREET.COM]

    There are lots of stories like that out there these days. People were perplexed about the Illinois Tool Works (ITW) and Cummins Engine (CMI) and Caterpillar (CAT) quarters, but they turned out to be classic buying opportunities after years of being sell opportunities if the stocks had run. I can’t explain to you how amazing that is. Here are three stocks that have spent months and months in purgatory when they have missed or guided down or slashed forecasts. Now they are up gigantically.

Best Warren Buffett Stocks To Buy For 2018: Daimler AG (DDAIF)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By SEEKINGALPHA.COM]

    Other manufacturers are also planning to produce and sell all-electric trucks by the end of the current decade – Reuters reports that Navistar International Corp. (NYSE:NAV) and Volkswagen AG’s (OTCPK:VLKAF) Truck and Bus are working together to launch an electric medium duty truck by late 2019, while rival Daimler AG (OTCPK:DDAIF) has delivered the first of a smaller range of electric trucks to customers in New York. These are designed for shorter ranges than the Tesla semi but will likely see expanded ranges as battery technology advances.

  • [By SEEKINGALPHA.COM]

    Daimler-Mercedes (OTCPK:DDAIF)

    The Wall Street Journal reported that, “Daimler plans to unveil an electric concept car at (next month’s) Paris Auto show. Leaks suggest this will be accompanied by bullish plans to release at least six electric cars”. Of course, Daimler is already quite advanced in EVs with its partnership in China with BYD. As I write this, the Paris Auto show has begun, where “Daimler Mercedes-Benz unveiled a battery-powered sport-utility vehicle, a direct competitor to Tesla’s Model X, which will have a range of 310 miles on a single charge and is slated to launch in 2020. The vehicle will be part of a new sub-brand of Mercedes called EQ”.

  • [By SEEKINGALPHA.COM]

    Apart from the locals, the global competitors have also made some quick moves to make their presence felt in China. According to Reuters, Volkswagen (OTCPK:VLKAY) has recently signed a preliminary deal to set up a joint venture with China-based Anhui Jianghuai Automobile (JAC) for making electric vehicles. However, the deal has enough hurdles in its path. Also, Daimler (OTCPK:DDAIY) (OTCPK:DDAIF) is also readying some electric cars for China under the Mercedes-Benz brand.

  • [By John Rosevear]

    So without further ado, let’s take a closer look at the three: General Motors (NYSE:GM), Daimler AG (NASDAQOTH:DDAIF), and Delphi Automotive (NYSE:DLPH).

Best Warren Buffett Stocks To Buy For 2018: Insys Therapeutics, Inc.(INSY)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Ashley Moore]

    We’ve compiled a list of the most heavily shorted stocks to show you which stocks have the most negative sentiment on the market…

    Company Name (Ticker)Short FloatShare PriceHanwha Q Cells Co. Ltd. (Nasdaq ADR: HQCL)98.52%$ 8.88Renren Inc. (NYSE: RENN)91.59%$ 8.53Weight Watchers International Inc. (NYSE: WTW)67.92%$12.57INSYS Therapeutics Inc. (Nasdaq: INSY)66.71%$10.74Twilio Inc. (NYSE: TWLO)66.34%$33.17Nutanix Inc. (Nasdaq: NTNX)65.65%$31.96Fitbit Inc. (NYSE: FIT)55.15%$ 6.06Weibo Corp. (Nasdaq ADR: WB)53.83%$55.26RPC Inc. (NYSE: RES)53.62%$21.19Straight Path Communications Inc. (NYSEMKT: STRP)49.27%$34.79Momo Inc. (Nasdaq ADR: MOMO)48.63%$26.80Seritage Growth Properties (NYSE: SRG)46.91%$44.87Lannett Company Inc. (NYSE: LCI)45.46%$23.00Gogo Inc. (Nasdaq: GOGO)43.98%$ 9.10Altisource Portfolio Solutions SA (Nasdaq: ASPS)42.78%$22.73Cheetah Mobile Inc. (NYSE ADR: CMCM)40.86%$10.00

    Some investors think the only way to profit from the stock market is to buy stocks and wait for the price to rise. However, these investors are missing out on the massive profit opportunity that comes from shorting stocks.

  • [By Keith Speights]

    Insys Therapeutics (NASDAQ:INSY) already won U.S. regulatory approval fordronabinol solution Syndros in treatingchemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting (CINV) and anorexia in patients with AIDS. The company is preparing to launch Syndros soon.

  • [By Peter Graham]

    Small cap Insys Therapeutics (NASDAQ: INSY) is the seventh most shorted stock on the Nasdaq with short interest of 43.97% according to Highshortinterest.com. Insys Therapeutics is a small cap specialty pharmaceutical company that develops and commercializes innovative drugs and novel drug delivery systems of therapeutic molecules that improve patients quality of life. Using proprietary spray technology and capabilities to develop pharmaceutical cannabinoids,the Companyis developing a pipeline of products intending to address unmet medical needs and the clinical shortcomings of existing commercial products. INSYS currently markets SUBSYS庐 (fentanyl sublingual spray), CII, and SYNDROS庐 (dronabinol) oral solution, CII, a proprietary, orally administered liquid formulation of dronabinol.The Company aims to developmedications for potentially treating addiction to opioids, opioid overdose, epilepsy and other disease areas with a significant unmet need.

  • [By Keith Speights]

    There are plenty of reasons for investors to like three marijuana stocks in particular — GW Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:GWPH), Insys Therapeutics (NASDAQ:INSY), and Aphria (NASDAQOTH:APHQF). In fact, there are at least 661 million reasons. That’s the amount of cash in U.S. dollars that the three companies have combined. Here’s why the cash stockpiles held by GW, Insys, and Apria are important.

Best Warren Buffett Stocks To Buy For 2018: Carrizo Oil & Gas, Inc.(CRZO)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Matthew DiLallo]

    In addition, it sold several non-core acreage packages. Its largest transaction was the sale of some non-core Eagle Ford shale assets to Carrizo Oil & Gas (NASDAQ:CRZO) for $181 million. These deals boosted the company’s cash position up to $525 million, which along with another $300 million in available credit, provided Sanchez with a war chest to use in pursuit of an accretive acquisition.

  • [By Lisa Levin]

    In trading on Monday, energy shares fell 1.03 percent. Meanwhile, top losers in the sector included PrimeEnergy Corporation (NASDAQ: PNRG), down 4 percent, and Carrizo Oil & Gas Inc (NASDAQ: CRZO) down 7 percent.

  • [By Paul Ausick]

    Carrizo Oil & Gas Inc. (NASDAQ: CRZO) is rated a Buy with a lowered price target of $48. The EPS estimate for 2017 has been lowered from $1.65 to $1.41, and the 2018 estimate was raised from $3.90 to $4.02. Shares closed Friday at $31.18, in a 52-week range of $24.18 to $43.96, and the consensus 12-month estimate is $46.52.

world stock markets

ULTA Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrance Inc. (NASDAQ: ULTA) reported third-quarter 2016 results after markets closed on Thursday. The beauty products maker and salon operator posted diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $1.40 on $1.13 billion in sales. In the same period a year ago, the company reported EPS of $1.11 on sales of $910.7 million. Third-quarter results compare to the consensus estimates for EPS of $1.37 and $1.11 billion in revenue.

Consolidated same-store sales rose 16.7% in the third quarter compared with an increase of 12.8% in the same period a year. ULTA attributed the big increase this year to more traffic (11.1%) and a higher average ticket (5.6%).

For the fourth quarter of its fiscal year ULTA forecasts a same-store sales increase in the range of 12% to 14% and diluted EPS of $2.08 to $2.13. Analysts are looking for EPS of $2.05 and revenues of $1.51 billion. Last year the company posted EPS of $1.69 in the fourth quarter on revenues of 1.27 billion.

world stock markets: Birks Group Inc.(BGI)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Lisa Levin]

    Birks Group Inc (NYSE: BGI) was down, falling around 23 percent to $1.90 after the company reported financial results for the twenty-six week period ended September 23, 2017.

  • [By Lisa Levin]

    Birks Group Inc (NYSE: BGI) was down, falling around 23 percent to $1.89 after the company reported financial results for the twenty-six week period ended September 23, 2017.

world stock markets: Dow Treasuries(DV)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Peter Graham]

    A long term performance chart of Apollo Education Group along with peersITT Educational Services, Inc (NYSE: ESI) and DeVry Education Group Inc (NYSE: DV) reflect the headwinds from the Obama administration:

world stock markets: Identiv, Inc.(INVE)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Lisa Levin]

    The industries that are driving the market today are:

    Cement: This industry gained 3.4 percent by 2:30 pm. The top stock within the industry was Cemex SAB de CV (ADR) (NYSE: CX), which gained 4.7 percent. Cemex’s PEG ratio is 0.16.
    Computer Peripherals: This industry rose 2.6 percent by 2:30 pm ET. The top performer in this industry was Identiv Inc (NASDAQ: INVE), which gained 13.5 percent. Identiv shares have climbed 44.83 percent over the past 52 weeks, while the S&P 500 index has increased 8.61 percent in the same period.
    Internet Service Providers: The industry gained 2 percent by 2:30 pm. The top performer in this industry was TrueCar Inc (NASDAQ: TRUE) which gained 3.4 percent. TrueCar shares have jumped 60.90 percent over the past 52 weeks, while the S&P 500 index has increased 8.61 percent in the same period.
    Regional – Southwest Banks: This industry moved up 1.9 percent by 2:30 pm. The top performer in this industry was Veritex Holdings Inc (NASDAQ: VBTX), which rose 6.6 percent

world stock markets: Illinois Tool Works Inc.(ITW)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By WWW.THESTREET.COM]

    There are lots of stories like that out there these days. People were perplexed about the Illinois Tool Works (ITW) and Cummins Engine (CMI) and Caterpillar (CAT) quarters, but they turned out to be classic buying opportunities after years of being sell opportunities if the stocks had run. I can’t explain to you how amazing that is. Here are three stocks that have spent months and months in purgatory when they have missed or guided down or slashed forecasts. Now they are up gigantically.

world stock markets: Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc(MTU)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Jim Jubak, Senior Markets Editor, MoneyShow.com]

    The one currency that is running against the weak dollar tide is the Japanese yen. The yen initially climbed on the Fed’s no taper decision—rising to 97.75 on the news—but then fell all the way back to 99 yen to the dollar and finished yesterday at 99.42. (Remember that since the yen is quoted in yen to the dollar, a higher number is a sign of a weak yen and a smaller number means the yen is getting stronger.) The thinking seems to be that the recent Japanese trade deficit will push the Bank of Japan to further weaken the yen, in order to boost Japanese exports. I continue to think that the yen will finish 2013 at weaker levels than current trading, and that leads me to continue to hold positions in Japanese stocks such as Toyota Motor (TM) and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MTU). Both stocks are members of my Jubaks Picks portfolio.

world stock markets: City Holding Company(CHCO)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Monica Gerson]

    City Holding Company (NASDAQ: CHCO) is expected to report its quarterly earnings at $0.74 per share on revenue of $42.04 million.

    Compass Minerals International, Inc. (NYSE: CMP) is projected to post its quarterly earnings at $1.33 per share on revenue of $347.03 million.