Paula Wendland

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  • Why Methanol May Be the Next Big Chemical Story

    By Paula Wendland - February 26, 2013 | Tickers: CE, EMN, MEOH

    Due to changes in the global supply/demand balance and the increasing popularity of this versatile chemical in Asia, industry insiders expect a positive pricing environment for methanol into 2015 and beyond.  Approximately two-thirds of the world’s methanol production is converted to formaldehyde used in building materials, such as plywood, foams and paints.  The remaining third of the supply has a role in home heating and cooking, as a fuel additive, and as a feedstock for plastic production.  While the revival of the homebuilding sector across the US should drive demand for methanol over the remainder of the business cycle, the greatest pricing pressure should come from Chinese buyers hoping to cushion the blow of high crude oil costs and to feed the nation’s many newly-constructed methanol-to-olefins (MTO) plants.

  • The Investor's Best Brew: A Bean for Every Means

    By Paula Wendland - January 13, 2013 | Tickers: DNKN, SBUX, THI

    Coffee is an exquisite product to consume and to sell.  Millions are mildly addicted to it but can easily afford their daily fix, and unlike many other pleasures of life, moderate caffeine indulgence comes without the buzz-kill of guilt.  According to medical guru Dr. Oz, coffee is actually good for you, offering protection from Alzheimer’s disease, improving short- and long-term memory, and reducing your risk of depression, diabetes and more »

  • PetSmart Capitalizes on Natural Advantages

    By Paula Wendland - November 26, 2012 | Tickers: PETM, TGT, WMT

    Besides being one of the most successful investors in history, Peter Lynch was famous for his grassroots analysis and qualitative work on stocks.  Lynch believed potential investors should visit retail stores and try out products before committing money to a stock.  He even advocated touring factories, watching for trends and technologies in your workplace and asking people for their opinions of new products and services.  In other words, Mr. Lynch didn’t believe in armchair investing.  He believed in taking your head out of the income statement and taking your inquiry out into the street.

  • Why the Numbers Matter Less - For Now

    By Paula Wendland - November 19, 2012 | Tickers: AA, AMZN, HAL, CRM

    Most veteran investors will agree that mispricing of securities commonly occurs in choppy or down-trending markets.  Lately, however, a disproportionate number of stocks seem scorned or adored beyond all reason.  The macro picture – namely, the crisis in the Europe, slowing growth in China and the so-called fiscal cliff here at home – may be partly to blame for irrational pricing, but many stocks have languished on improving forecasts while others soar on weak or questionable guidance.  And with the exception of love for the housing group and disdain for commodities, it’s difficult to find patterns worth betting on.

  • Why Lumber Is Now the Better Play

    By Paula Wendland - November 8, 2012 | Tickers: HD, SHW, TOL, WFT, WY

    Right now, something is happening across the US.  Some welcome it, others dismiss it, many question it, and no one can stop it.  The housing recovery is upon us, evidenced by a surge in new home sales, building permits, housing starts and homebuilder confidence.  Markets, too, have shown faith in this investment theme, judging by the meteoric rise in the housing cohort.  Builder stocks and related securities – from sellers of appliances to paint – have become a decidedly crowded trade.

  • A Smoother Ride on This Canadian Railroad

    By Paula Wendland - November 2, 2012 | Tickers: CNI, CPG, CSX, ENB, XOM, NSC, STO, TRP

    Although the DOW transports (NYSE: IYT) have underperformed year-to-date, some of the index’s components have held up surprisingly well through a period of anemic economic growth.  As an industry with near-insurmountable barriers to entry, the railroads have shown resilience in a range of economic climes, as well as a capacity to respond to secular trends.  Environmental concerns and the advent of fracking and horizontal drilling have proven disruptive for the rails, which stand to lose traditional revenue streams as new sources emerge.  The Canadian National Railway (NYSE: CNI) – the only Class 1 system that spans the continent north-south and east-west – appears poised to profit from a prolonged US recovery and from changing attitudes toward energy sourcing and transport.

  • A Household Name in Gated Communities

    By Paula Wendland - October 26, 2012 | Tickers: COH, GPS, GES, JOSB, LULU

    Whenever a stock like Lululemon Athletica (NASDAQ: LULU) begins to make headlines and draw the attention of pundits on CNBC, the same two camps advance the same two arguments that we’ve been hearing about growth stocks for years. 

    The bulls claim that the company is in the early stages of growth, that its niche market can afford the company’s products, and that the value of the brand and more »