Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Squadron Leader Succumbs

Captain George E. Ford,U.S. Navy Retired,who was awarded the Navy Cross in World War II,has died at 90 years old.Captain Ford was a dive bomber squadron leader in the Pacific theater.He received the Navy Cross for his extraordinary heroism in the battle of Leyte Gulf,the Philippine's.
After the war,Captain Ford was Commander,Naval Air Station Point Mugu,California.He retired from the Navy in 1971 and began a career in real estate,home building and marketing,becoming Vice President of Marketing at the Wills and Van Metre Company.
Captain Ford is survived by his wife Patricia,as well as three children,eight grandchildren and two great grandchildren.He will be interred at Arlington National Cemetery.

Grinding Our Way

Tobias Levkovich,Chief U.S. Equity Strategist at Citigroup,says the biggest discussion now is,the earnings are all cost-driven.We're also at a point where re-stocking must occur,driving increased production.We're gonna grind higher.We surveyed our clients,and cash positions have gone up from 12-16% by institutions,as of two weeks ago,despite the stock market run-up.CEOs will be very pedantic,cautious.When CEOs lack confidence,you should buy stocks.There's a great inverse relationship.
We're talking about de-stocking at a slower pace,as in cars,Mr.Levkovich noted.It will moderate,and probably eliminate,job losses.We think the industrial/commodity/energy complex will be leading,along with big financials and insurance,Mr.Levkovich revealed.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Navy Department Honors

Several Navy Department personnel have died serving in the Afghanistan war recently.On 20 June,a senior Navy non-commissioned officer,Command Master Chief Jeffrey Garber,died aboard the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower(CVN69) of noncombat causes.The Eisenhower,a Nimitz class aircraft carrier,was sailing in the Arabian Sea.Chief Garber,of Hemingford,Nebraska,was 43 years old.Lance Corporal Charles S. Sharp,U.S. Marine Corps,died in combat on 2 July in Helmand Province,Afghanistan.A member of the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Force,based at Camp Lejeune,North Carolina,he was 20 years old, and hailed from Adairsville,Georgia.An individual augmentee,Petty Officer 2nd Class Tony Michael Randolph,was killed in action on 6 July in northern Afghanistan.He was serving with the Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan.A son of Henryetta,Oklahoma,he was 22 years old.
At least 727 Defense Department personnel,including one civilian,have died serving in the Afghanistan war.

A Douglas Lane View

Sarat Sethi,Portfolio Manager at Douglas Lane and Associates,says he would stay with the necessities.Colgate Palmolive pays a good dividend,and 82% of its business is overseas.You're just in the second or third innings of stimulus.Companies are looking ahead.Over the next 2-3 years,there will be money made.Commodity prices are down,so companies have an opportunity to grow.Procter and Gamble is one of them.Look at the balance sheets and overseas exposure,Mr.Sethi advises.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Clearing Militants Not Enough

Helmand Province,Afghanistan is bordered by Pakistan to the south,a base for militant operations.Brigadier General Lawrence D. Nicholson,Assistant Division Commander,2d Marine Division,says speed is of the essence in Helmand.Soon after clearing Taliban militants from the villages,the Marines will have have to improve the villagers' lives.They will offer work such as cleaning the irrigation canals that water the Afghani farms.A U.S. program to provide seed and equipment to 125,000 farmers is also part of the plan.
General Nicholson had served in Anbar province,Iraq,which he regards as similar to Helmand.As in Iraq,there is a great need to involve as many locals as possible in the Helmand security effort.They know the lay of the land better,and the Afghan people are less likely to be offended by their own.So far,though,General Nicholson is having trouble finding enough Afghan troops to help him.He would like to have Afghans serving alongside Marines on every patrol,and at every checkpoint.It looks like another long slog in the desert for the general,a survivor of a rocket attack on his former base near Fallujah,Iraq.


Jefferies has upgraded SAP to a buy from hold.The International Monetary Fund has raised its 2010 global growth forecast to 2.5%.Credit Suisse has upgraded KB Home to outperform,citing valuation and solid order trends for Q3-4.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

British General KIA

Lieutenant General Rupert Thornlow,Commander of the Welsh Guards,was killed in Afghanistan when his vehicle struck an improvised explosive device in Helmand Province.He is the most senior British officer to die in combat in 27 years.The general was participating in operations being carried out by 4,000 U.S. Marines,650 Afghan troops and 9,000 British soldiers in the Helmand River valley.Helmand is the stronghold of the Taliban militants.The Marines and Afghans,supported by 50 aircraft,stormed villages south of the Helmand River,while the British covered the area north of the river.The Marines met sporadic but fierce resistance.
About 20,000 Marines are headed to Helmand,the largest province in Afghanistan and known for its many poppy fields.The British troops were supported by Danish tank fire in their heavily mined area.Fighting in high temperatures,there were British and Danish deaths and injuries.Several U.S. Marines were also killed and wounded.One Marine Brigadier General described it as a hell of a fight.

Farr Sees Much Risk

Michael Farr of Farr,Miller and Washington says he doesn't see how the financial sector leadership can continue.There's a lot of risk and red flags out there.The increasing unemployment and consolidating consumer are examples.I'm kind of bothered by this urgency toward optimism,he complained.The economic data don't show us that it's over.The economic decline hasn't stopped,but it's slowing.Mr.Farr likes Clorox,Procter and Gamble and Johnson and Johnson.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Freighter Turns Back

A North Korean freighter suspected of carrying illegal weapons,the Kang Nam,has turned back toward its home port.The freighter went as far as the coast of Vietnam before turning around.As of this morning,it was about 250 miles-or 402.32 kilometers-south of Taiwan,heading north.It was believed to have been headed for Myanmar,or Burma.It has been monitored by the Arleigh Burke class destroyer USS John S McCain(DDG56).The U.S. Navy intends to restart production of the Arleigh Burke class,after deciding that the new Zumwalt class of destroyers is too costly,and not as well-suited to today's challenges.Only three Zumwalt class destroyers will be built.

Steady Dividend Stocks

RBC Capital Markets likes these stocks for the sanctity of their dividends:Procter and Gamble,Conoco Phillips,PepsiCo,AT and T,Johnson and Johnson.They also like the limited partnership Kinder Morgan Energy Partners.