What Is Going On With Oil And The Stock Market?

What Is Going On With Oil And The Stock Market?

"Sometimes the best plans fall victim to circumstance" - Anonymous

The month of December has been a humbling month for the IWC Stock Portfolio. The results will be shown early 2015 with the 4th QTR wrap-up but if things don't turn around we could be seeing a negative return for 2014. The first full calendar year for the IWC Stock Fund has been a learning experience with a few twists and turns but the current landscape does provide some opportunities potentially. I wanted to share a few quick thoughts I've had over the past few days looking at the IWC Stock Portfolio and the overall stock market performance.

Stock Market Weakness

Currently the stock market has taken a turn for the negative with oil companies being the major focus. There are lots of news items and discussions on what Saudi Arabia is doing with OPEC........

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Thoughts On Earnings: How Do NOV, BIDU, and CTSH Look After Earnings?

Thoughts On Earnings: How Do NOV, BIDU, and CTSH Look After Earnings?

Companies that are in the oil industry have been rocked due to oil prices shrinking so much. Whether that is political, supply and demand, market share driven, the key issue with investing in oil companies is no one knows when oil prices will increase again. $60/barrel oil may be a phenomenon for months or prices we see for years. National Oilwell Varco has no been immune to this news but this should be looked at as a buying opportunity potentially and management feels the same way. Authorizing $3 Billion in share buybacks will help return value to shareholders. Revenue increased 17% compared to same quarter in 2013, net income increased almost 13% to $1.9B. The balance sheet is very strong with over $4B in cash reserves which could help whether the recent weakness in oil prices. 

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Thoughts On Earnings: How Do QCOM, QIHU, and BRK-B Look After Earnings?

Thoughts On Earnings: How Do QCOM, QIHU, and BRK-B Look After Earnings?

Qualcomm continues to be a cash generating machine with a net income of almost $8B in the 2014 fiscal year. Comparing 2014 and 2013, revenue has increased 6.5%, profit has increased 16.3% and dividends per share has increased 28.3%. These are strong robust numbers which combined with a balance sheet that is clean of long-term debt, low liabilities and a growing cash hoard makes Qualcomm a solid position moving forward. There are some concerns though with Qualcomm. Weakness in China with some licensing issues and an investigation has put a cloud over the company. Though the QCT (chipsets) segment increased by 12% in 2014, the QTL (licensing) segment has remained relatively flat. This could be attributed to not collecting all the licensing fees from China or key patents retiring. This development needs to be closely monitored but Qualcomm looks so strong that it remains a staple of the IWC Stock Portfolio.

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Taking The Plunge Into Gold Miners: New IWC Stock Positions Triggered

Taking The Plunge Into Gold Miners: New IWC Stock Positions Triggered

For some reason, gold miners have taken an especially hard tumble down in value over the past few months which really caught my interest because the equity to price ratio dipped below one which is rare for companies. These levels were not tough to understand due to the current climate on gold but still a deal is a deal especially when some of the miners are turning profits and reorganizing assets. Therefore, cash was allocated to secure some gold miner exposure and the IWC Stock Portfolio waited patiently until the bleeding subsided. Here is a graph provided from StockCharts.com showing the performance of three gold miners, Barrick Gold (ABX), Yamana Gold (AUY), and Goldcorp (GG).

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A Look At Gold Miners And Postulate Whether A Turnaround Is Near

A Look At Gold Miners And Postulate Whether A Turnaround Is Near

If you want to really want to get an investor going, just ask them their opinion on gold prices. Gold has really been the proverbial line in the sand for many people. Such wildly different views on what gold is, why it is intrinsically valuable and what role it has in the world economy have been hot topics for decades. I became interested in gold during the meteoric rise in gold prices from around 2005 until the peak. Another SeekingAlpha article looking at gold but also an investment thesis on investing gold miners.

Check it out: Be Greedy When Others Are Fearful: Gold Miners Primed For Strong Returns

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Thoughts On Earnings: How Do AAPL, YNDX, and BA Look After Earnings?

Thoughts On Earnings: How Do AAPL, YNDX, and BA Look After Earnings?

"Q3 was another strong quarter notable for an acceleration in growth of our owned and operated properties and excellent cost control. We launched a number of new products designed to make people's lives easier and better and continued to provide market-leading advertising technologies to our customers." Arkady Volozh, Chief Executive Officer of Yandex. .

“Continued strong operating performance across our production and services businesses drove significant growth in earnings-per-share, and enabled us to continue to capture new business, pushing our order backlog to a record $490 billion. We added net new orders for 501 commercial airplanes, launched the high-capacity 737 MAX 200, captured a NASA contract for the Commercial Crew program, and returned $1.5 billion to shareholders through dividends and share repurchases.” Boeing Chairman and CEO Jim McNerney.

“Our fiscal 2014 was one for the record books, including the biggest iPhone launch ever with iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. With amazing innovations in our new iPhones, iPads and Macs, as well as iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite, we are heading into the holidays with Apple’s strongest product lineup ever. We are also incredibly excited about Apple Watch and other great products and services in the pipeline for 2015.” Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO.

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If The Stock Market Played In The NBA, It Would Be.....Kobe

If The Stock Market Played In The NBA, It Would Be.....Kobe

Besides investing, following the NBA is one of my favorite hobbies. I'm an avid follower of the NBA with the Raptors being the team I root for the most. Growing up my favorite players went from Jordan to Iverson to Vinsanity but one player I admired and tried to emulate on the court most was Kobe Bryant. Maybe it was because I started playing basketball when he was a rookie and as I grew more and more interested in the NBA, the LA Lakers became more and more dominant with the Shaq years followed by the Gasol years with Kobe being the one constant. He is fiery, angry, intense, fundamental, relentless and many other adjectives to describe his accomplishments. He is so popular that in LA that you can split LA between Lakers fans and Kobe fans.

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