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Stock Opinions by James Rife

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Markets. Macro has always been difficult, and in this environment it is the hardest it has ever been. Not only is it hard to predict what events are going to happen, but the market’s reaction to those events can be totally different than expected. One thing he thinks we have learned from BREXIT is that the world is laser focused on Central Banks and focused on long-term interest rates being lower for longer. His firm’s mission is to modernize equity research, which is done by building equity research tools for his buy side and sell side clients, institutional portfolio managers, and analysts. He builds out fully working financial models for all companies in Canada over $30 million in market cap.

Unknown
COMMENT

This used to be a really exciting growth stock. Builds hydro-vac units used for excavation which were used a lot in the energy industry. It was a great growth stock when energy services was working. Now the outlook is less clear. Their equipment is fairly mobile and they have done a great job in moving into the US. They now do utility work for more than half their portfolio. The medium and short term outlook is less clear because we are not sure of the strategic direction of the new CEO.

oil / gas
COMMENT

Building a diamond mine in the Yukon. They have been working on the mine for almost 10 years, but are now just about ready to turn on operations. You make good returns in mining stocks when they go from a development company to a producer, because you get a premium as a producer.

precious metals
COMMENT

This just had a very good quarter. Showed good organic growth. This is not that exposed to commodities and materials because it really is global.

Business Services
COMMENT

White Cap Resources (WCP-T) or Freehold Royalties (FRU-T)? When thinking between 2 light oil producers like this, there is really a big business model difference. This one is an operator. It owns lands and produces wells and does everything itself. Freehold is a royalty company, where other players produce on their land and they get a fee for that. Freehold is a little less risky, but this has a little more upside if oil prices go up.

Oil and Gas (Integrated Oils)
COMMENT

Whitecap Resources (WCP-T) or Freehold Royalties (FRU-T)? When you are thinking between 2 light oil producers like this, there is really a big business model difference. Whitecap is an operator. It owns lands and produces wells and does everything itself. This one is a royalty company, where other players produce on their land and they get a fee for that. It is a little less risky, but Whitecap has a little more upside if oil prices go up.

oil / gas
COMMENT

Just published some fairly disappointing results. Stock continues to move down and analysts have downgraded it. You really want to see this stabilize. They just did a major acquisition which, strategically, was the right thing, because it diversified them away from areas that were in trouble. If you have a one-year view, you might want to wait and see, but if you are putting it away for 5 years, it might be attractive here.

consulting
COMMENT

This is a call on oil. You need to be quite optimistic on oil prices for this company to make money. It is considered a high beta stock, because it has more debt than most of the others. It also has some higher cost heavy oil properties in Alberta that are not making very much money right now, but could do well if oil goes back to $100.

oil / gas
COMMENT

A camp accommodation provider for oil companies. Apart from their problems in Fort McMurray, the company is actually doing the right things to get away from the sensitivity of the oil sands accommodations, so they have a new box modular division for building accommodations for non-energy companies. A well-run company, and not too expensive. Pays a pretty good dividend.

Transportation
COMMENT

A natural gas producer, and one of the fastest-growing ones. They have gone from producing 5,000-10,000 barrels a day, to almost 40,000 by the end of this year. Have had huge growth and have used some leverage to achieve that, but gas prices are really, really strong this summer. The natural gas market needed that demand in order to have a storage reset, and it looks like we are getting one. Because of that, this company’s leverage metrics look a lot better, and can actually keep growing from 40,000 barrels a day onwards.

oil / gas
COMMENT

This is a really good mix of defence and offense. It has a really good balance sheet and low decline rates. Every year they don’t have to grow many wells to keep production flat. Operating costs are little bit higher, at about $20 a barrel, so they don’t make a ton of money with oil at $40 a barrel, but they don’t really need to. If you have a 5-year view on oil that it gets back to $50-$60, then the risk/reward is very good here.

oil / gas
PAST TOP PICK

(A Top Pick April 25/16. Up 16.15%.) A small investment management firm. Historically they have done very well in investing in both public and private oil companies, and buying and selling assets. They delivered a special $2 dividend to shareholders in June. He is a little less bullish on this now. Trading at a slight discount to Book, but not as much as before. Feels there are more interesting alternatives now.

Transportation
PAST TOP PICK

(A Top Pick April 25/16. Down 6.87%.) Operates 3 casino properties in Alberta. One of its main properties was in Fort McMurray. Since he recommended this, they trimmed their dividend, a correct move because of the uncertainty. They have now reopened the properties. When a stock doesn’t go down that much with a whole bunch of negative news, the market is looking past the shorter term events.

merchandising / lodging
PAST TOP PICK

(A Top Pick April 25/16. Up 14.93%.) Owns a land registry in Saskatchewan, so any transaction for housing or corporate or personal goes through them. Investors are looking for businesses that have a long duration, or really long life assets. Because it is stable and pays a dividend of almost 5%, investors are willing to pay a higher price for it. There is still probably another leg up from here.

0
COMMENT

Has been a bit of a turnaround story. The industry was really competitive for a lot of years. They have put up a number of good quarters in a row, and has a pretty high dividend. This is more likely than not, to continue.

Consumer Products
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