Scott Levine

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  • The Largest Consumer of Oil and Energy is Switching to Solar

    By Scott Levine - July 17, 2013 | Tickers: SI, SCTY, SPWR

    In two previous articles, I’ve examined how financial institutions and big data companies like Apple and Google are working with solar power. This, the third article in the series, examines how the U.S. military, the largest consumer or oil and energy in the world, is incorporating solar power into their various operations.

    Following orders

    According to 10 USC § 2911, the Department of Defense is required to produce or more »

  • How Fans of All Ages Will Fit into Disney’s Farthest Galaxy

    By Scott Levine - July 17, 2013 | Tickers: EA, HAS, DIS

    Disney’s (NYSE: DIS) recent announcement that the Star Wars galaxy will be merging with its Club Penguin galaxy is yet another indicator of the power of the Star Wars franchise. For those unfamiliar with it, Club Penguin is a virtual world in which children can play and socialize, but also one in which children are exposed to educational concepts like problem solving, critical thinking, and math. 

    Although the announcement more »

  • How Companies Are Betting the Farm on Data Centers

    By Scott Levine - July 7, 2013 | Tickers: AAPL, FB, GOOG

    In a previous article, I discussed how financial institutions have recognized the potential value of making investments in solar power (as well as other renewable sources). In this article, I examine how companies, which require big data storage, are using renewable energy sources to power these facilities.

    Solar Orchard

    Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) recently announced that it would be developing a 137-acre solar farm, which would provide electricity to support its more »

  • 3 Financial Institutions That Are Banking Big on Solar

    By Scott Levine - July 2, 2013 | Tickers: GS, JPM, SCTY, SUNE, WFC

    I must confess my bias before I continue. A big proponent of renewable energy, I’m eagerly awaiting the installation of solar panels on my home in the coming weeks. A project, which will ease the burden of paying a large utility bill each month and will ease the anxiety I feel every time I notice the whirring electric meter attached to our house.

    Chase's first time in the more »

  • The Tesla Recall: Bears See a Cloud; Bulls See a Silver Lining

    By Scott Levine - July 2, 2013 | Tickers: GM, NSANY.PK, TSLA

    Politicians. Automakers. Auto owners. It’s fair to say that most people don’t like recalls. This one is different. Tesla’s (NASDAQ: TSLA) recent voluntary recall of its Model S sedans is yet another sign of how the company is distinguishing itself from other companies.

    Tesla announced the recall due to concerns that a rear-seat latch could malfunction in a crash. On Tesla’s blog, Elon Musk, Chairman and more »

  • 3 Alternative Perspectives for Investing in the Education Sector

    By Scott Levine - June 20, 2013 | Tickers: DDD, AMRC, RST, SSYS

    Often when people consider investing in the education sector, they primarily turn to for-profit education companies-- Apollo Group, DeVry, and Strayer Education, to name a few. However, investors would benefit from turning their attention to a less-obvious aspect of the sector-- the trends that are developing in the elementary and secondary schools. 

    One of the driving forces behind these trends is the U.S. Department of Education program, Race to more »

  • Siemens, Caterpillar and Westport: Will These Big Engines Stay on Track?

    By Scott Levine - May 23, 2013 | Tickers: BRK-A, CNI, CAT, CLNE, SI, WPRT

    When people think of revolutions in transportation, they probably don’t think of the railroads. But, that might be changing sooner rather than later.

    All Aboard!

    Last week Amtrak revealed a plan to replace 70 of its older locomotives with newer, more efficient models. Utilizing a braking system that converts 100% of the energy it uses back to the electric grid, the new engines, built by Siemens AG (NYSE: SImore »)

  • 4 Solar Companies Shining Brightly For Investors

    By Scott Levine - May 20, 2013 | Tickers: ENPH, FSLR, SCTY, SPWR

    Many investors are afraid of burning their portfolios by investing in solar. Although there are many valid arguments for avoiding this sector, one of the most popular concerns is that solar-affiliated companies are too reliant on government subsidies, and therefore, when the subsidies disappear so will the profits. This may be true for some companies, but not all of them. Be that as it may, in 2012, the U.S more »

  • Viacom, Disney, and J.J. Abrams: A Long Time Ago in the Final Frontier

    By Scott Levine - May 16, 2013 | Tickers: EA, VIA, DIS

    Reinventing a franchise is a tricky situation. On one hand, a director must stay true to the source material, but he also wants to incorporate his own vision—to distinguish his interpretation from the others. Most fans and investors believe that J.J. Abrams has the force to make two favorite franchises live long and prosper.

    To go boldly where some men have gone before. . .

    Abrams’s re-imagination of Gene more »

  • The Darker Side Of Storytelling Is Lighting Up Your TV

    By Scott Levine - May 2, 2013 | Tickers: CBS, TWX, DIS

    For the past few years, I’ve been carefully revealing a deep and dark secret to friends, family, and co-workers. . .

    My favorite TV show is about a vigilante serial killer. Now, I know I’m not alone. The genre has exploded in popularity recently, and it’s naïve to think that many of the people who I’m afraid to confide in are the same people who are tuning in more »

  • The Future of Wind is in Massachusetts

    By Scott Levine - April 22, 2013 | Tickers: BWEN, GE, SI

    In the epic story of Scotland’s fight for independence, Mel Gibson portrays William Wallace as a courageous and passionate leader who dies, without regret, for what he believes in: Scotland’s liberation from English tyranny.

    If there’s only one thing that someone will remember from the movie, it’s the last line. The line which Wallace shouts while he is being eviscerated,

    “Freedom!”

    Scots shouted this again several more »

  • Netflix’s Hand Is More Than Just a "House of Cards"

    By Scott Levine - April 5, 2013 | Tickers: AMZN, MSFT, NFLX

    I didn’t fill out a bracket for March Madness. I haven’t been to a casino in years, and I’d be lost if I found myself in any poker games.

    But, I still gamble.

    With so many outstanding television programs to choose from, I’m betting that the ones I choose to watch, to invest my time in, will pay off—that the shows will not be prematurely more »

  • How The Undead Can Breathe Life into Investors’ Portfolios

    By Scott Levine - April 2, 2013 | Tickers: ATVI, AMCX, VIA

    There’s no denying it any longer. Zombies are everywhere, and people couldn’t be happier . . . well, not all people. Some actually believe that they are in imminent danger--so many people, in fact, that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention actually released a formal statement in June 2012. In an e-mail to The Huffington Post, agency spokesman David Daigle wrote:

    “CDC does not know of a virus or condition more »

  • How SodaStream Could Increase the Flow of its Profit Stream

    By Scott Levine - March 25, 2013 | Tickers: GMCR, SODA, SBUX

    On a recent trip to replenish the CO2 for my SodaStream (NASDAQ: SODA), I found myself in line behind 2 people. The first was a woman, who had received a Cuisinart soda maker as a gift. She wasn’t happy with it, so she had brought it back to the store in order to return it. She wanted a SodaStream instead.

    Having overheard the woman, the gentleman in the line more »

  • Disney, Activision and a Galaxy Far, Far, Away

    By Scott Levine - March 21, 2013 | Tickers: ATVI, EA, DIS | Editor's Choice

    Star Wars fans weren’t the only ones over the moon when Disney (NYSE: DIS) acquired Lucasfilm in October, 2012. Investors, already well aware of Disney’s tremendous successes in previous acquisitions, such as Pixar and Marvel, were just as excited. (Yoda and Mickey probably weren’t too upset either.)

    So far, things are off to a good start. One galactic coup for Disney was when Kathleen Kennedy, president of more »

  • Shades of Green: Tesla Motors and Elon Musk

    By Scott Levine - March 11, 2013 | Tickers: CLNE, SCTY, TSLA | Editor's Choice

    The Growing Acceptance of Electric Vehicles

    One of my favorite pastimes recently is to see just how efficiently I can drive my car. Throughout the summer I get 10 miles to the gallon more than the 43/40 miles per gallon that the window sticker advertised. But, that’s in a gas-electric hybrid. I wonder what I’d be able to do in an electric vehicle.

    It took a few more »

  • Bob Dylan Knows That Google Has Toppled Apple

    By Scott Levine - March 6, 2013 | Tickers: AAPL, GOOG

    In January 2007, Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) made an announcement that fundamentally shifted people's conceptions of what a cell phone could be. Five months later the first iteration of the iPhone became available to the public.

    And although it may not have been a “jingle-jangle morning,” Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) did go following when they released the Android in October, 2008. 

    Inventing the tablet market, in January, 2010 Apple unveiled the more »

  • Why My Toddler Is My Stock Advisor

    By Scott Levine - February 15, 2013 | Tickers: DWA, NFLX

    Three years ago I led a pretty Spartan existence. Sure, I indulged in a new gadget every now and then, but, in my life, I’ve only purchased one thing on eBay —maybe two on Amazon. I don’t remember the last time I’ve been in a mall.

    That all changed in November 2010 when my son was born.

    Since my wife and I brought him home from the more »