James Marion

James Marion is a University of Houston student studying Business with a concentration in Finance. James has interned with several investment professionals and hopes to pursue a career as a professional stock analyst after graduation.

Second Sight Medical Products, Inc. (Nasdaq: EYES) Up on UK Gov’t Acceptance

Second Sight Medical Products Inc.; Nasdaq: EYES

The UK publicly-funded NHS system will fund blind patients with Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP) to receive treatment with the Argus® II Retinal Prosthesis System (Argus II) “bionic eye”. This news has sent shares of Second Sight Products, Inc. to $2.48 highs before settling back to a 13% gain at a price of $2.19. Second Sight Products, Inc. trades on the Nasdaq under the ticker EYES.

Will McGuire, President and CEO of Second Sight, said, “This is a major milestone for Second Sight because we are the only company able to demonstrate a favorable long-term benefit-to-risk statement up to five years after implantation for some RP patients. NHS England is known to be under significant financial pressure and also extremely selective in adopting innovative technologies – which must demonstrate sufficient value for money. We expect that this decision will be observed throughout the world by other healthcare agencies.”

Second Sight Medical Products, Inc., located in Sylmar, California, was founded in 1998 by Mr. Alfred Mann, Dr. Sam Williams and Gunnar Bjorg with the goal of creating a retinal prosthesis to provide sight to subjects blinded from outer retinal degenerations, such as retinitis pigmentosa. Second Sight currently employs over 85 employees and has a European office in Lausanne, Switzerland.

H.C. Wainwright initiated coverage of Second Sight Medical Products in June of 2015 and assigned EYES a rating of “Buy” with a price target of $21. Sales have increased year-on-year since 2012 when reported sales were $1.4 million. In 2015 reported sales were $9 million. EYES EPS have not performed as well however – Second Sight Medical Products has never posted a positive EPS and last year lost $0.56 EPS.

I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 96 hours. All information, or data, is provided with no guarantees of accuracy.

12/22/2016
Ticker Symbol EYES
Last Price a/o 1:10 PM EST  $               2.18
Average Volume 316,600
Market Cap $81.9 million
Sales $5.6 million
Shares Outstanding 42.23 million
Share Float 24.36 million
Shortable Yes
Optionable Yes
Inside Ownership 0.50%
Short Float 14.94%
Short Interest Ratio 11.5
Quarterly Return -42.09%
YTD Return -67.06%
Year Return -72.64%

 

Century Aluminum Company (Nasdaq: CENX) Rises Steadily in Daily Trading

Century Aluminum Company; Nasdaq: CENX

Shares of Century Aluminum Company closed at $8.48 yesterday, opened a few cents higher, and have been on a steady climb throughout the day. At the time of this writing (2:24 PM EST) CENX was trading around today’s high of $9.50.

Century Aluminum Company is a global producer of primary aluminum and operates aluminum reduction facilities in the United States and Iceland. Century Aluminum Company operates three U.S. aluminum smelters, in Hawesville, Kentucky (Hawesville), Robards, Kentucky (Sebree) and Mt. Holly, South Carolina (Mt. Holly), and one smelter in Grundartangi, Iceland (Grundartangi). The company is traded on the Nasdaq under the ticker CENX.

Four well known investments banks cover shares of CENX and all provide a price target ($7) below current trading levels. All also have a neutral rating of “Hold” on CENX. Further investigation into breaking news reports produced no information that might suggest a reason for the stock’s steady rise today.

Sales for Century Aluminum Company have risen from $1.36 Billion (2011) to $1.95 Billion in 2015. However investors should also note that last year CENX produced an EPS loss of $0.55. Also of note is the Century Aluminum’s CFO recently left the company.

I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 96 hours. All information, or data, is provided with no guarantees of accuracy.

Ticker Symbol CENX
Last Price a/o 2:41 EST  $               9.53
Average Volume 1.99 million
Market Cap $756 million
Sales $1.36 Billion
Shares Outstanding 89.1 million
Share Float 49.3 million
Shortable Yes
Optionable Yes
Inside Ownership 0.20%
Short Float 23.80%
Short Interest Ratio 5.88
Quarterly Return 40.33%
YTD Return 92.08%
Year Return 122.25%

Oclaro, Inc (Nasdaq: OCLR) Shares Propelled by Acquisition Rumors

Oclaro Inc., Nasdaq: OCLR

Shares of San Jose, CA-based Oclaro Inc. are higher on rumors of an acquisition by Finisar Corporation (Nasdaq: FNSR). Shares of Oclaro Inc. trade on the Nasdaq under ticker symbol OCLR.

Oclaro Inc. develops and provides products for fast optical networks and high-speed interconnects that are enabling the next wave of streaming video, cloud computing, voice over IP and other high-speed and bandwidth-intensive applications. Oclaro operates R&D and chip fabrication facilities in the U.S., U.K., Italy, and Japan; in-house and contract manufacturing sites in China, Malaysia, and Thailand; and design, sales, and service organizations in each of the major regions around the world.

Oclaro’s financials are impressive. From their November 1, 2016 press release:

Results for the First Quarter of Fiscal 2017

  • Revenues were $135.5 million for the first quarter of fiscal 2017, and compare with revenues of $125.2 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2016, which was a 14 week quarter, and revenues of $87.6 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2016.
  • GAAP gross margin was 34.2% for the first quarter of fiscal 2017, compared with GAAP gross margin of 32.1% in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2016, and a GAAP gross margin of 25.9% in the first quarter of fiscal 2016.
  • Adjusted EBITDA was $25.6 million for the first quarter of fiscal 2017, compared with Adjusted EBITDA of $19.2 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2016, and Adjusted EBITDA of $4.2 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2016.
  • Cash, cash equivalents, and restricted cash were $229.3 million at October 1, 2016.

Nine analysts have OCLR ranked as a “Strong Buy” and one has it rated as a “Buy”. Price target consensus for OCLR is $12 however rumors peg the takeover price at $13. Investors should be aware that all 2016 insider transactions were sales – no management acquired shares of OCLR in 2016.

I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 96 hours. All information, or data, is provided with no guarantees of accuracy.

Ticker Symbol OCLR
Last Price a/o 8:00 AM EST  $               9.40
Average Volume 5.19 million
Market Cap $1.43 Billion
Sales $456 million
Shares Outstanding 154.95 million
Share Float 154.95 million
Shortable Yes
Optionable Yes
Inside Ownership 2.90%
Short Float 8.38%
Short Interest Ratio 2.5
Quarterly Return 1.43%
YTD Return 165.23%
Year Return 166.76%

Interspace Diagnostics Group Inc. (Nasdaq: IDXG) – One to Keep Your Eye On?

Interspace Diagnostics Group – Nasdaq: IDXG 

For most of November, Interspace Diagnostics Group Inc. shares (Nasdaq: IDXG) traded below $0.20. That price action resulted in the Nasdaq notifying, on November 29, 2016, Interspace Diagnostics that it was in violation of maintaining the minimum required $2.5 million in shareholder equity. Failure to bring IDXG into compliance could result in the shares being delisted from the Nasdaq. Since then IDXG has traded just short of $2.00 and closed on Tuesday December 13, 2016 at $1.13. This price action has resulted in a monthly return of over 700%.  

About Interspace Diagnostics Group Inc.: 

Interpace Diagnostics is focused on developing and commercializing molecular diagnostic tests, leveraging the latest technology and personalized medicine for better patient diagnosis and management. The company currently has three commercialized molecular tests; PancraGen for the diagnosis and prognosis of pancreatic cancer from pancreatic cysts; ThyGenX, for the diagnosis of thyroid cancer from thyroid nodules utilizing a next generation sequencing assay and ThyraMIR, for the diagnosis of thyroid cancer from thyroid nodules utilizing a proprietary gene expression assay. Interpace Diagnostics mission is to provide personalized medicine through molecular diagnostics and innovation to advance patient care based on rigorous science. 

On December 13, 2016 Interspace Diagnostics Group announced that it has launched a multi-site study to provide further evidence of the Clinical Utility of the ThyGenX/ThyramiR tests in accurately identifying malignancy or benign status in indeterminate thyroid nodules.  The primary objective of the study is to demonstrate the real world clinical utility of the test, i.e. the degree to which the tests impact physician decision-making and positively affect patient outcomes.  To date, the Company has performed the combination assay on over 5,000 patients on behalf of over 200 physicians and hospitals nationwide. 

The company needs good news going forward. In 2011, Interspace Diagnostics reported a loss of $0.26 EPS on sales of $157.3 million. Last year, shares of IDXG lost $2.01 EPS on sales of just $9.4 million. At the time of this writing no analysts covered the stock but press reports put unattributed rumors of a $3.00 price target. Shares have recently seen highs on larger than average volumes and it is interesting to note that IDXG is not maligned by a large short-sale effort.  

Always perform your own due diligence before making any decisions regarding the buy or sale of any stock. The below data is provided without any guarantee of its accuracy.

Ticker Symbol IDXG
Last Price a/o 9:20 EST  $               1.07
Average Volume 3.7 million
Market Cap $13.15 million
Sales $12.5 million
Shares Outstanding 13.6 million
Share Float 11.3 million
Shortable Yes
Optionable No
Inside Ownership 1.10%
Short Float 3.40%
Short Interest Ratio 0.1
Quarterly Return 410.50%
YTD Return 106.40%
Year Return 70.20%
Houston American Energy Corporation (NYSEMKT:HUSA)

U.S. Energy Corp. (Nasdaq: USEG) – in play. But Why?

U.S. Energy Corporation – Nasdaq: USEG

Shares of U.S. Energy Corporation rocketed at the open from $1.45 to $2.74 in the early afternoon on heavy trading. The Nasdaq stock, traded under ticker USEG, has seen better days, and last traded above the $5.00 handle in mid-2015.

In 2015 USEG had a $14.39 EPS loss on sales of $10.3 million. Traders following USEG are unsure of what has motivated demand and published reports indicate that some are wary of a “pump and dump” at play. But it should also be noted that OPEC has recently announced production cuts which could be good news for the beleaguered company.

U.S. Energy Corp. is a diversified natural resource company with primary interests in oil & gas and molybdenum. U.S. Energy Corp.’s objective is to identify and strategically invest in oil and gas exploration and development opportunities with a primary focus on oil, that present above-average return-on-investment potential. The Denver-based company presently has operations in the Gulf Coast, Eagle Ford Basin (TX), and the Williston Basin (N Dakota).

Three firms follow U.S. Energy Corporation but have not adjusted their analysis or ratings this year. The last analyst activity (February of 2015) saw Global Hunter Securities downgrade USEG from “Accumulate” to “Neutral”. Given the unexpected volume in USEG, traders are paying close attention to see if this is a true play on earnings or a corporate action, or if this is a head fake.

Always perform your own due diligence before making any decisions regarding the buy or sale of any stock. The below data is provided without any guarantee of its accuracy.

Ticker Symbol USEG
Last Price a/o 3:00 EST  $               2.40
Average Volume 24,640
Market Cap $7.74 million
Sales $6.6 million
Shares Outstanding 5.5 million
Share Float 4.7 million
Shortable Yes
Optionable No
Inside Ownership 7.40%
Short Float 0.38%
Short Interest Ratio 0.73
Quarterly Return -25.40%
YTD Return 46.87%
Year Return 95.83%