Thursday, December 30, 2010

Pride International (NYSE:PDE) Good Choice for Energy Investors

Duncan Williams likes Pride International (NYSE:PDE), and initiated coverage on them with a "Buy" rating.

Duncan said, "Pride is a leading provider of offshore drilling services both domestically and internationally. The company presently operates twenty five rigs with three rigs under construction. Pride has transformed itself over the last six years from a menagerie of businesses in the oilfield service sector to a focused deepwater driller. The company completed this transformation in the third quarter of 2009 with the tax free spin off of Seahawk (NASDAQ:HAWK)(not rated) to its shareholders."

Pride International closed at $33.25, gaining $0.56, or 1.71 percent. Duncan has a price target of $36 on them.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Goldman (NYSE:GS) Initiates Coverage on Century Aluminum (NASDAQ:CENX)

Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) has launched coverage on Century Aluminum (NASDAQ:CENX), starting them off with a "Sell" rating and a price target of $14 a share.

Reasons for the "Sell" rating were the strong leverage Century has in aluminum, and the loss of the power contract refund they were able to implement in 2010.

The ongoing weakness in supply and demand fundamentals was also a key reason, and aluminum prices in 2011 aren't expected to do much at all to help those heavily exposed to the metal.

Century Aluminum closed Friday at $16.11, down $0.02, or 0.12 percent.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) to Expand Equities Position

With bonds under pressure lately, Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) has put themselves into a position of being ready to migrate into equities in a bigger way.

FBR said, "We continue to view Franklin as one of the better-positioned asset managers in an uncertain environment given its strong balance sheet, international distribution, and solid fixed-income platform. Strong organic client asset growth should continue, primarily driven by international equity and fixed-income products, and the company's robust cash position provides management with flexibility to pursue accretive M&A transactions, buybacks, and/or dividends."

FBR Capital reiterates an 'Outperform' on Franklin Resources, which was trading at $116.39, down $2.53, or 2.12 percent, as of 12:20 PM EST. FBR has a price target of $130 on the company.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Tractor Supply (NASDAQ:TSCO) Has Price Target Raised by FBR

FBR Capital raised their price target on Tractor Supply Company (NASDAQ:TSCO) while maintaining an "Underperform" rating on them.

FBR said, "We adjust our 2010E EPS estimate for TSCO to $2.18 from $2.16, and this compares with updated management guidance of $2.16–$2.19. We adjust our 2011E EPS estimate to $2.45 from $2.33, and this compares with the Street consensus estimate of $2.41 (we expect that the Street mean will go up for 2011E as well). We set our 2012E EPS estimate at $2.70 versus the Street estimate of $2.69."

Tractor Supply is trading at $44.96, gaining $1.17, or 2.67 percent as of 12:00 PM EST. FBR has a price target of $35 on them, raising it from $31.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Exxon (NYSE:XOM) CEO Gets Salary, Bonus Boost for 2011

Exxon Mobil Corp (NYSE:XOM) chief executive officer Rex Tillerson has reportedly received a salary increase of 8 percent for 2011, along with an increase in his bonus of 40 percent.

Tillerson was awarded a bonus of $3.36 million in 2010, up significantly from the $2.4 million he received in 2009. That was according to a required regulatory filing with the U.S Securities and Exchange Commission.

The filing noted that 50 percent of the bonus will be paid out in cash at the end of 2010, while the rest of it will be based on the performance of EPS on a quarterly basis.

Salary for Tillerson was bumped up from $2.2 million in 2010 to $2.39 million in 2011.

Also awarded by the board of directors to the CEO was 225,000 shares of restricted stock, 50 percent of which can't be cashed in for 5 years. The other 50 percent must be held for 10 years before being allowed to sell it.

Exxon was trading at $71.48, gaining $1.92, or 2.76 percent at 2:47 PM EST.