around the traps ... with the ferret

  1. 4,756 Posts.
    Around the Traps ... with THE FERRET
    07:27, Monday, 31 January 2005

    Sydney - Monday - January 31: (RWE Australian Business News) -
    *****************************

    As they say, comment is free.

    Last Monday we ran a piece on how one of the weekend papers had
    lined up five asset managers to select five stocks, and that only one
    stock was picked twice - PATRICK CORP (PRK).

    The other selections were Macquarie Bank, James Hardie, Corporate
    Express, Primary Health Care, Macquarie Airport, Newcrest,
    Paperlinx, SP Telecom, Medical Development, Bluescope, Caltex, Metcash,
    Prime Infrastrucure, Vision Systems, Adsteam, Amcor, ConnectEast,
    Ridley, AGL, Redflex, News Corp, NAB and Telstra.

    This weekend another paper asked five brokers and tipsters for
    tips and came up 34 selections, four of the stocks being picked twice.

    Three of the stocks doubled up with three from the previous week
    - they were Bluescope, Newcrest and Vision Systems - and one, Patrick,
    made it a treble.

    Patrick, therefore, is colour of the month, except the stock is
    not travelling well.

    It's fallen from $6.70 two weeks ago to as low as $5.95 on
    Friday after announcing its $1.1 billion bid for VIRGIN BLUE (VBA).

    It rallied to close the day at $6.15, up 1c.

    What it means is that ask any 10 tipsters for 59 selections and
    you'll get 50 different answers.

    In the latest 34 selections BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto, Brambles,
    and Ten Network scored two ticks each.

    The others were Woodside, Pacific Brands, ANZ, Centennial,
    Challenger, Coates, Credit Corp, Jubilee Mines, Lion Nathan, PBL, Repco,
    Transfield, Westpac, Oil Search, Lihir Gold, Gallery Gold, Pacific Hydro,
    Hunter Hall, Village Roadshow, Bluestone Tin, Austereo, Austin Group,
    Lafayette, Independence Group and IT&e.

    It's interesting to note that out the Top 10 companies by value
    CBA, Westfield and Woolworths missed out.

    *****

    KORVEST (KOV) has often caught the eye in the market with a
    sudden price move, such as the 25c jump to $4.58 out of the blue the
    other day.

    A year ago it was $2.70.

    On Friday it rose 9c to a record $4.59 after reporting a 25 per
    cent rise in December half profit, a 22 per cent rise in EPS to 19.4c
    and a hike in interim dividend from 8c to 10c.

    Chairman David Simmons said this continued the recent trend of
    stronger results, particularly in the company's Ezy-Strut building
    industry product.

    With the company heading for EPS of 40c for the year it's on a
    future p/e of 11-plus.

    *****

    JERVOIS MINING (JRV) never stops trying.

    In its December quarter report it has laid out the hot stats
    about its nickel/cobalt laterite project in Young, NSW, for shareholders
    one more time.

    For a start total expenditure to date on the project of $1.335
    million is only "$0.00035 per pound of nickel equivalent".

    Although market capitalisation of its 760 million shares is $23
    million the market capitalisation per pound of nickel is $0.0061 (the
    company helpfully points out that this is equivalent to 0.61c) ...
    whereas the present-day LME price of nickel is $8.40 a pound.

    But the best part is this ... the in situ metal value at current
    prices is nickel $25 billion, cobalt $7.3 billion and iron $3.7 billion.

    That's a total $36 billion for a company worth a total $23
    million, or $1,570 a Jervois share.

    Despite that the shares couldn't even improve on the previous
    day's 2.8c.

    *****

    STARPHARMA (SPL) is being noticed.

    The company says the Forbes/Wolfe Nanotech Report, an investor
    newsletter analysing advancements in the nanotechnology industry, has
    added Starpharma's American Depositary Receipts (ADRs) to its
    "Nanosphere" list of leading nanotechnology stocks.

    The Nanotech Report describes the Nanosphere as comprising
    "early leaders in nanotechnology, and as such, should interest investors
    seeking to orient their portfolios toward this revolutionary technology".

    In the January edition Starpharma is featured in an article
    entitled "Top Nanotech Buys for 2005".

    Others in the list include Hewlett-Packard, IBM and leading
    material science company Symyx, which puts Starpharma, "a world leader
    in the development of pharmaceuticals based upon a novel class of
    nanotechnology chemicals called dendrimers", in exalted company.

    Starpharma managed a 1c rise to 88c.

    *****

    LEMARNE CORP (LMC) directors said they "now" expected December
    half-year profit to exceed $2.5 million but we could not find what it
    expected "then".

    Also, companies usually leave out the previous comparative
    figure when they're making profit warnings.

    Anyway, in the first half last year Lemarne netted $905,000 and
    in the full year $3.475 million.

    At the latest rate Lemarne is heading for EPS this year of about
    35c.

    The shares rose 8c to $2.55 after the report but p/e is less
    than 8 times at that level.

    There's certainly a lot of scope for a big rise from last year's
    dividend rate of 12.5c.

    The interim results will be released in mid-February.

    *****

    MACQUARIE COUNTRYWIDE TRUST (MCW) is further evidence that the
    run in property trusts is far from over.

    On December 23, when it went ex a 7.4c distribution, it fell from
    a record $2.19 to $2.08 and then to $2.05 two days later.

    But the market being what it is, that is, strong as a bull, the
    units started climbing again.

    On Friday the units recovered the record $2.19 before closing at
    $2.15, up 2c.

    Turnover for the day was almost 16 million units, most of it in
    two big parcels, easily the biggest for more than 12 months.

    Coincidentally, ING revealed during the day that it had ceased
    to be a substantial shareholder on January 21.

    (Comments and complaints to [email protected] - no requests
    for advice please.)

    ENDS

    Copyright © 2005 RWE Australian Business News. All rights reserved.
 
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