There's no foolproof way to know the future for Altisource Portfolio Solutions (Nasdaq: ASPS ) or any other company. However, certain clues may help you see potential stumbles before they happen -- and before your stock craters as a result.
A cloudy crystal ball
In this series, we use accounts receivable and days sales outstanding to judge a company's current health and future prospects. It's an important step in separating the pretenders from the market's best stocks. Alone, AR -- the amount of money owed the company -- and DSO -- the number of days' worth of sales owed to the company -- don't tell you much. However, by considering the trends in AR and DSO, you can sometimes get a window onto the future.
Sometimes, problems with AR or DSO simply indicate a change in the business (like an acquisition), or lax collections. However, AR that grows more quickly than revenue, or ballooning DSO, can, at times, suggest a desperate company that's trying to boost sales by giving its customers overly generous payment terms. Alternately, it can indicate that the company sprinted to book a load of sales at the end of the quarter, like used-car dealers on the 29th of the month. (Sometimes, companies do both.)
10 Best Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Curlew Lake Resources Inc. (CWQ.V)
Curlew Lake Resources Inc. engages in the acquisition, exploration, and development of mineral properties, as well as in the production of oil and gas in Canada and the United States. The company explores for gold and silver. It holds a 100% interest in the Typhoon mineral claims that include 117 mineral claims in the Clear Creek District of the Yukon. The company also has interests in oil and gas properties primarily in Alberta. Curlew Lake Resources Inc. was incorporated in 1987 and is based in Langley, Canada.
10 Best Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Hardy Underwriting Group(HDU.L)
Hardy Underwriting Bermuda Limited, through its subsidiaries, engages in underwriting insurance and reinsurance products worldwide. It underwrites aviation, marine, and a range of non-marine risks on reinsurance and direct basis. The company underwrites airlines, space, and general aviation risks; marine risks specializing in fishing vessels, harbor craft, and loss of hire; and cargo and specie risks covering the transportation and storage of various products and commodities. It also insures jewellers block and fine art, as well as writes for small motor account specializing in classic cars and other niche areas. In addition, the company underwrites the reinsurance of property risks on a proportional and non-proportional basis; and non-marine property risks. Further, it underwrites a range of accounts comprising financial institutions, terrorism, political risks, conveyancing, and accident and health, as well as traditional medical products, kidnap and ransom, and PA catas trophe treaty. The company was founded in 1975 and is based in Hamilton, Bermuda.
5 Best Bank Stocks To Watch Right Now: Cogent Holdings Limited (KJ9.SI)
Cogent Holdings Limited, an investment holding company, provides full-service logistics management services to corporations in Singapore. It offers transportation management services, including trucking services for laden and empty containers between the ports and its warehouses or other designated destinations; transportation services for oil and gas equipment, such as equipment used for the construction of oil rigs; the transportation of petroleum and chemical products from Jurong Island; and freight coordination services, such as trade and inbound customs documentation, as well as dry hubbing services. The company also provides warehousing management services comprising storage space for electronic components, non-perishable items, and other general products, as well as chemicals and hazardous materials; and packing, palletisation, forklift handling, and chemical drumming services for petrochemical-related customers. In addition, it offers container depot management ser vices, including depot premises operation, as well as cleaning, maintenance, and repair works for containers. Further, the company provides automotive logistics management services comprising processing, transportation, and storage of motor vehicles, as well as assisting customers in port and customs clearance, vehicular transportation, warehousing, and delivery activities; de-registration and export of second-hand motor vehicles; repossession of cars; and removal and towing of accident vehicles. It operates a fleet of approximately 100 prime movers, trucks, and lorries, as well as 400 trailers; and manages and leases approximately 3.5 million square feet of warehousing space and premises. The company was incorporated in 2007 and is based in Singapore.
10 Best Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Louisiana-Pacific Corp (LPX)
Louisiana-Pacific Corporation, incorporated on July 20, 1972, is a manufacturer of building products. The Company operates in four segments: North America Oriented Strand Board (OSB); Siding; Engineered Wood Products (EWP), and South America. As of December 31, 2012, the Company owned 21 modern located facilities in the United States and Canada, two facilities in Chile and one facility in Brazil. The Company also operates three facilities through joint ventures, for which it is the provider of product distribution for North America and participate in a joint venture operation that produces cellulose insulation in multiple facilities. The Company�� products are used primarily in new home construction, repair and remodeling, and manufactured housing. In May 2013, Canfor Corp announced that it has completed the sale of its 50% interest in the Peace Valley Oriented Strand Board (OSB) joint venture in Fort St. John, B.C., to Louisiana-Pacific Corp (LP).
The Company�� OSB segment manufactures and distributes OSB structural panel products. OSB is a smart product made from wood strands arranged in layers and bonded with resin. OSB serves many of the same uses as plywood, including roof decking, sidewall sheathing and floor underlayment. During the year ended December 31, 2012, OSB accounted for approximately 58% of the structural panel consumption in North America.
The Company�� siding offerings are of two categories: SmartSide siding products and related accessories; and CanExel siding and accessory products. Its SmartSide products consist of a line of wood-based sidings, trim, soffit and fascia. Its CanExel siding and accessory product offerings include a number of pre-finished lap and trim products in a variety of patterns and textures. Additionally, minor amounts of commodity OSB are produced and sold in this segment.
Engineered Wood Products
The Company�� Engineered Wood Products (EWP) segment manufactures! and distributes laminated veneer lumber (LVL), I-Joists, laminated strand lumber (LSL) and other related products. This segment also includes the sale of I-Joist produced by its joint venture with Resolute Forest Products (formerly AbitibiBowater) and LVL sold under a contract manufacturing arrangement.
The Company�� South American segment manufactures and distributes OSB and siding products in South America and certain export markets. This segment also distributes and sells related products to augment the transition to wood frame construction.
The Company�� other products category includes its decorative moulding and its joint venture that produces cellulose insulation. Additionally, it other products category includes its remaining timber and timberlands, and other minor products, services and closed operations.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Dan Caplinger]
In Weyerhaeuser's report, watch for the company to discuss any plans for potential buyout activity. With tight supplies, smaller rivals Louisiana-Pacific (NYSE: LPX ) or Potlatch (NASDAQ: PCH ) might make good targets for the larger Weyerhaeuser or Plum Creek to look at for expansion. Even though those companies have seen their shares rise dramatically as well, it might be worth paying up in order to secure long-term assets that could produce strong growth for Weyerhaeuser.
10 Best Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Canberra Investment Corporation Ltd(CNB.AX)
CIC Australia Limited engages in the acquisition, subdivision, development, construction, and sale of real estate properties, primarily residential projects in Australia. It undertakes projects in Canberra, South Australia, the Northern Territory, Western Australia, and on the New South Wales south coast. The company was formerly known as Canberra Investment Corporation Limited and changed its name to CIC Australia Limited in February 2010. CIC Australia Limited was founded in 1986 and is headquartered in Canberra, Australia.
10 Best Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Savanna Energy Ser Com Npv (SVY.TO)
Savanna Energy Services Corp. provides various oil and natural gas services in the United States, Canada, and Australia. The company provides contract drilling services through conventional drilling rigs, hybrid drilling rigs, single drilling rigs, and coring and delineation rigs. It also engages in well servicing activities for oil and gas explorers; and providing oilfield services, such as oilfield equipment rental for oil and gas customers. The company operates a fleet of approximately 100 drilling rigs and 100 well service rigs. Savanna Energy Services Corp. was founded in 2001 and is headquartered in Calgary, Canada.
10 Best Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Gobimin Inc. (GMN.V)
GobiMin Inc., together with its subsidiaries, engages in the exploration, development, and exploitation of mineral properties primarily in Xinjiang, the People�s Republic of China. It principally explores for gold, copper, and nickel. The company holds a 70% equity interest in the Sawayaerdun gold project covering an area of approximately 1.7094 square kilometers in Xinjiang; and an 8% equity interest in the Yanxi copper property covering an area of approximately 21.67 square kilometers in Xinjiang. The company is based in Toronto, Canada.
10 Best Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Lightbridge Corporation(LTBR)
Lightbridge Corporation develops nuclear fuel technology; and provides nuclear power consulting and strategic advisory services worldwide. The company operates in two segments, Nuclear Fuel Technology Business and Consulting Business. The Nuclear Fuel Technology Business segment is involved in the design and development of nuclear fuels. This segment focuses on developing fuel product lines, such as all-uranium seed and blanket fuel for existing plants; all-metal fuel for new build reactors; and thorium-based seed and blanket fuel for existing and new build reactors. The Consulting Business segment provides consulting and strategic advisory services to companies and governments planning to create or expand electricity generation capabilities using nuclear power plants. This segment provides integrated strategic advice services across a range of areas, including regulatory development, nuclear reactor site selection, procurement and deployment, reactor and fuel technology, international relations, and regulatory affairs. The company was formerly known as Thorium Power, Ltd. and changed its name to Lightbridge Corporation in September 2009. Lightbridge Corporation was founded in 1992 and is based in Tysons Corner, Virginia.
10 Best Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Hercules Offshore Inc.(HERO)
Hercules Offshore, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, provides shallow-water drilling and marine services to the oil and natural gas exploration and production industry in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico and internationally. Its services comprise oil and gas exploration and development drilling, well services, platform inspection, and maintenance and decommissioning services in various water provinces. As of May 10, 2011, the company owned and operated a fleet of 50 jackup rigs, 17 barge rigs, 65 liftboats, 3 submersible rigs, and 1 platform rig. It serves national oil and gas companies, integrated energy companies, and independent oil and natural gas operators. The company was founded in 2004 and is headquartered in Houston, Texas.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Brian Pacampara]
Based on the aggregated intelligence of 180,000-plus investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS, the Fool's free investing community, shallow-water oil and gas driller Hercules Offshore (NASDAQ: HERO ) has earned a respected four-star ranking.
- [By Matt DiLallo]
A Herculean disaster averted in the Gulf
Just this past week, a blowout occurred on a Hercules (NASDAQ: HERO ) -owned rig operating in the shallow waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Natural gas leaking from a well off the coast of Louisiana caught fire and spread to the Hercules rig. Fortunately, all 48 personnel in the rig were safely evacuated. However, the incident underscores the risks of drilling offshore. It could have been a lot worse, as no one was hurt, and this is a natural gas well so the environmental threats are far less than if it were an oil well. While the well is not yet under control, Hercules investors appear to have caught a break, which is why stock was down only about 4% on the week.�
- [By Travis Hoium]
Hercules Offshore (NASDAQ: HERO ) is one of only a few companies left that focuses on shallow water drilling. But even now it's moving away from onshore shallow water by selling rigs that have little use to the company. This is a good move right now but does it make Hercules a top drilling stock? Fool.com contributor Travis Hoium took a look at Hercules' recent $45 million asset sale and discovered that there are still better drilling buys out there.�
- [By Taylor Muckerman and Joel South]
On an island by itself
Within the offshore market, Hercules Offshore (NASDAQ: HERO ) has isolated itself as a jack-up rig specialist. Even more specialized is the fact that 29 of its 38 rigs are currently drilling for fossil fuels in the Gulf Coast region. While many companies left the area after the Macondo incident, Hero decided to stick around and many expect this diligence to payoff. Tomorrow's release will certainly go a long way toward proving this optimistic group right or wrong.
10 Best Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Mobile TeleSystems (MBT)
Mobile TeleSystems OJSC, together with its subsidiaries, provides telecommunications services primarily in the Russian Federation, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Armenia, and Belarus. The company provides a range of mobile and fixed line voice and data telecommunications services, including transmission, broadband, pay-TV, and various value-added services; and sells equipment and accessories. It also offers network access services, including mobile cellular voice and data communication services; automatic roaming services; GPRS and Internet access services; and 3G technology. In addition, the company�s services include the design, construction, and installation of local voice and data networks capable of interconnecting with fixed line operators; installation and maintenance of cellular payphones; lease of digital communication channels; and provision of access to open computer databases and data networks, including the Internet, as well as video conferencing, and fixed, local, and long-distance telecommunications services. Its value-added services comprise call divert/forwarding, caller ID and anti-caller ID display, conference calling, WiFi, GPRS, intelligent call assistant, APN remote access point, fixed mobile convergence, enhanced data rates for GSM Evolution, call barring, SMS, mobile office, voicemail, mobile banking, wireless application protocol, MTS-Connect, SIM-browser, point-to-point transfer, unstructured supplementary services data, downlink packet access, mobile TV, call waiting, MMS, ring tones, missed call alert, itemization of monthly bills, information and directory, international access, WEB and WAP portal, customer care system, ring back tone, collect call, and location-based services. As of December 31, 2011, the company had a mobile subscriber base of approximately 101.14 million. It has a strategic partnership with Vodafone. The company was founded in 1993 and is headquartered in Moscow, the Russian Federation.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Dan Radovsky]
VimpleCom, a joint venture of Norwegian telecom Telnor and the Russian Alfa Group, operates under the BeeLine brand in Russia. BeeLine has joined the two other ex-iPhone carrying Russian heavyweight mobile carriers, Megafon and Mobile TeleSystems (NYSE: MBT ) , and not renewed its iPhone contract with Apple.
- [By Rich Smith]
Over in Russia, market-leading cell phone provider Mobile TeleSystems (NYSE: MBT ) has just confirmed that, as of 2012, it no longer sells Apple's (NASDAQ: AAPL ) new iPhone models to its customers directly. The company does still stock, and sell, some older iPhone models. But for iPhone5 and on up, MTS now answers phone calls from Apple with a Spasibo, ne nada. ("Thanks, but no thanks.")