Author Archive

Home »

Playing Catch Up

As we think about how to invest in the Industrials and Materials sector in 2014 we are proponents of the idea that the laggards will play catch-up.  We first wrote about this in November and have seen some success with

Read More

The Great Ethylene Debate

Basic chemical stocks have had a very good 2013; LYB has risen 37%, WLK 45%, and DOW (which is a more diverse portfolio) has managed 36%.  Earnings are very strong in North America for many based on the advantage derived

Read More

Dow – Setting Up For A Spin

Dow Chemical’s announcement today sends a very clear message that the company does not expect to be able to sell the chlorine related assets it has talked about divesting for the last 6 months, and that some sort of spin

Read More

DuPont – An Unusual Stake In the Ground

Yesterday DuPont’s Chair and CEO Ellen Kuhlman wrote a letter to shareholders.  In that letter she discussed the transformation of DuPont over the last decade and put the recent Performance Chemicals spin news into context as part of that transformation.

Read More

Real Q4 Pessimism – From Those That Should Know Best

There is a growing expectation that Q4 2013 industrial production in the US has stagnated completely, in part because of the government shutdown, but also in part because of the business uncertainty caused by the political jockeying in Washington and

Read More

DuPont – Now the Real Story Can Unfold

Last night DD took the logical, what we had referred to as default, route to separate the company in two.  Shareholders will see a stock split sometime in the next 18 months and will hold shares in the new Performance

Read More

CAT-astrophic? Not In Our View

When we wrote about CAT in June of this year, we were clear that we were making a bottom of the cycle valuation call, and we also highlighted the risk that negative revisions might not be over.  To be fair,

Read More

Grangemouth –A Taste Of What Is To Come for European Chemicals

Today, INEOS announced that it would close the Grangemouth petrochemical complex in Scotland with the loss of around 800 jobs.  This comes at the end of a lengthy dispute with unions around pay, flexible working agreements and a change in

Read More

Aluminum – Demand is Not the Issue

On the face of it Alcoa might be an interesting stock given the extremely attractive valuation, an economic recovery (although muted) from the trough and thus the potential of the usual cyclical recovery.  But it has not played out that

Read More

HUN/ROC Consolidation in Part In Response to China – The First of Many?

We have written recently about the need for developed market producers of many different commodity products to take pro-active steps to address the significant build up of capacity in China.  Today we see such a move from Huntsman and Rockwood,

Read More
test