LONDON -- I'm a big fan of Diageo (LSE: DGE ) (NYSE: DEO ) . The world's largest producer of premium spirits is a core holding in my portfolio, though I've done a little profit-taking as the stock has powered ahead -- up a third over the past 12 months.
I'm less familiar with South African-based SABMiller (LSE: SAB ) (NASDAQOTH: SBMRY ) , though its market cap is slightly larger than Diageo after its shares are up 50% over the year. I think of it as expensive, but a quick check on my data provider shows the two shares equally rated with prospective price-to-earnings (P/E) ratios of 19.7 and yields of 2.3% for Diageo and 2.2% for SABMiller. So maybe it's time to do a little portfolio rebalancing.
First of all, what's so good about Diageo? It ticks a lot of boxes: defensive sector, strong brands, global footprint, and emerging market growth. I like stocks that are plays on emerging market consumers. While the West is suffering a hangover from a decade of overspending, millions of people in emerging markets are acquiring a disposable income for the first time.
Top Defense Companies To Invest In Right Now: Dow Treasuries(DV)
DeVry Inc., together with its subsidiaries, provides educational services worldwide. The company operates various institutions, including Advanced Academics, American University of the Caribbean, Becker Professional Education, Carrington College and Carrington College California, Chamberlain College of Nursing, DeVry Brasil, DeVry University, and Ross University. These institutions offer an array of programs in business, healthcare, and technology, as well as serve students in middle school through postsecondary education, and accounting and finance professionals. It offers career-oriented associate, bachelor?s, and master?s degree programs in technology, science, business, arts, and nursing; medical and veterinary medical education; and undergraduate and graduate programs focused in business management, nursing, law, and engineering, as well as online learning solutions for middle and high school education. The company also prepares students for careers in healthcare th rough certificate, associate, and bachelor?s degree programs; and candidates for the certified public accountant examination, chartered financial analyst professional certification examinations, and the project management professional certification examination, as well as provides continuing professional education programs and seminars in accounting and finance. DeVry Inc. was founded in 1931 and is headquartered in Downers Grove, Illinois.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Holly LaFon]
We initiated one new position in the third quarter, Aarons (AAN), and purchased shares in several existing investments, including small amounts in Apollo Group (APOL) and Devry (DV) and a larger increase in Arris Group (ARRS). We have written about the for-profit education companies in previous letters, so please refer to those letters should you want to familiarize yourself with APOL or DV.
Top 10 Defensive Stocks To Invest In 2014: Gem International Resources Inc (GI)Gem International Resources Inc. (Gem International) is a Canada-based junior natural resource company. The Company is primarily engaged in the acquisition, exploration and development of mineral properties with its principal focus on diamond, gold and other precious metals. The Company is in exploration-stage and has interest in mineral properties located in Canada and Tanzania. The Company owns more than 105 mining claims comprised of approximately 240,172 acres located in the Lac de Gras Property located approximately 260 kilometers northeast of Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. Its Kolandoto Diamond Property is located in the Shinyanga region of Tanzania. Kolandoto property consists of approximately10 primary mining licenses covering a total area of approximately 247 acres. The Shinyanga Property consists of more than 105 primary mining licenses covering a total area of approximately 2,743 acres. Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Victor Selva]
In January 2014, Forest acquired Toronto-based Aptalis, a privately held U.S.-based specialty Gastrointestinal (GI) and Cystic Fibrosis Company, for $2.9 billion in cash from its shareholders, including TPG, the global private investment firm. The deal looks attractive especially keeping in mind the fact that Namenda will be facing generic competition from 2015. The acquisition will also give Forest the opportunity to build its presence in Europe and strengthen its GI and CF portfolios.
Top 10 Defensive Stocks To Invest In 2014: Owens Corning Inc(OC)
Owens Corning engages in the provision of composite and building materials systems worldwide. It operates in two segments, Composites and Building Materials. The Composites segment manufactures, fabricates, and sells glass reinforcements in the form of fiber; and manufactures and sells glass fiber products in the form of fabrics, mat, veil, and other specialized products. Its products are used in pipe, roofing shingles, sporting goods, computers, telecommunications cables, boats, aircraft, defense, automotive, industrial containers, and wind-energy applications in the power and energy, housing, water distribution, industrial, transportation, consumer, and aerospace/military markets. This segment sells its products directly to parts molders and fabricators; and glass fiber and/or glass mat directly to shingle manufacturers. The Building Materials segment manufactures and sells fiberglass insulation into residential, commercial, industrial, and other markets for thermal and acoustical applications. It also offers glass fiber pipe insulation, and energy flexible duct media and foam insulation products, such as thermal and acoustical batts, loose fill insulation, foam sheathing, and accessories for use in home construction and remodeling; and manufactures residential roofing shingles and oxidized asphalt materials used in residential and commercial construction and specialty applications. This segment sells its insulation products, and shingles and roofing accessories to insulation installers, home centers, lumberyards, retailers, distributors, and contractors; and asphalt to roofing contractors and distributors for built-up roofing asphalt systems, as well as to manufacturers in the automotive, chemical, rubber, and construction industries. Owens Corning was founded in 1938 and is headquartered in Toledo, Ohio.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Maria Armental var popups = dojo.query(".socialByline .popC"); popups.forEach]
Owens Corning (OC) lowered its earnings outlook for the year Friday as its roofing business continues to see weaker volumes. Shares slid 7% to $38.40 in premarket trading as the company said weakness in roofing volumes seen in the first quarter continued in April and May, dragging down its full-year�expectations.
- [By Lee Samaha]
It's been a volatile year for the roofing industry, and over the last three months, investors have seen more downside. Roofing materials distributor Beacon Roofing Supply (NASDAQ: BECN ) is down 11.5% in the last three months, and building products manufacturer Owens Corning (NYSE: OC ) fell 5.5% in the same period -- all in a year when many commentators thought this sector would outperform.�
Top 10 Defensive Stocks To Invest In 2014: Methanex Corporation (MEOH)
Methanex Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the production, marketing, and sale of methanol. The company also purchases and re-sells methanol produced by others. Its methanol is a clear liquid commodity chemical that is used to produce traditional chemical derivatives, including formaldehyde, acetic acid, and various other chemicals. The company�s methanol is also used in energy-related applications; for blending into gasoline, as a feedstock in the production of dimethyl ether, which can be blended with liquefied petroleum gas for use in household cooking and heating, and in the production of biodiesel; and used to produce methyl tertiary-butyl ether, a gasoline component, as well as used into olefins applications. The company supplies its methanol to petrochemical producers and distributors in North America, the Asia Pacific, Europe, and Latin America. Methanex Corporation was founded in 1968 and is headquartered in Vancouver, Canada.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Victor Selva]
The firm is currently Zacks Rank # 3��old, and it also has a longer-term recommendation of ��eutral�� A Hold rating indicates that the stock, over the next 1 to 3 months, will perform at an annualized rate of 10.56%, very similar to the S&P 500. For investors looking for a Zacks Rank # 1��trong Buy, Methanex Corporation (MEOH) could be the option.
Top 10 Defensive Stocks To Invest In 2014: Pinnacle Foods Inc (PF)
Pinnacle Foods Inc., incorporated on July 28, 2003, is a manufacturer, marketer and distributor of branded food products in North America. The Company operates in three segments: the Birds Eye Frozen Division, the Duncan Hines Grocery Division and the Specialty Foods Division. The Birds Eye Frozen Division and the Duncan Hines Grocery Division, which collectively represent its North America Retail operations, include the brands. Its brand portfolio enjoys household penetration in the United States, where its products can be found in approximately 85% of U.S. households. Its products are sold through supermarkets, grocery wholesalers and distributors, mass merchandisers, super centers, convenience stores, dollar stores, drug stores and warehouse clubs in the United States and Canada, as well as in military channels and foodservice locations. On June 24, 2011, the Company completed the sale of its Watsonville, California facility which had been recorded as an asset held for sale.
Birds Eye Frozen Division
The Company�� Birds Eye Frozen Division includes its steamed and non-steamed product offerings, with a 27.0% market share, making Birds Eye the recognized frozen vegetables brand in the United States. Birds Eye was the Company to capture a nationwide market share with a product that enables consumers to conveniently steam vegetables in microwaveable packaging.
Duncan Hines Grocery Division
Duncan Hines is the division�� brand and includes cake mixes, ready-to-serve frostings, brownie mixes, muffin mixes, and cookie mixes. During the fiscal year ended September 23, 2012, the Company added two additional items to the line. In February 2012, the Company introduced a line of frosting products, Duncan Hines Frosting Creations, which uses a patent pending frosting system to allow consumers to customize their frosting into one of 12 different flavors. The Company also offers a complete line of shelf-stable pickle products that we market and distribute n! ationally, primarily under the Vlasic brand, and regionally under the Milwaukee�� and Wiejske Wyroby brands. In 2012, the Company introduced Vlasic Farmers Garden, artisan-quality pickle line.
Specialty Foods Division
The Company�� snack products primarily consist of Tim�� Cascade, Snyder of Berlin and Husman��. These direct store delivery brands have local awareness and hold market share positions in their regional markets. The Company also manufactures and distributes certain products, mainly in the frozen breakfast, canned meat, and pie and pastry fruit filling categories, through food service channels. The Company also manufactures and distributes certain private label products in the canned meat, shelf-stable pickles and frozen seafood. As part of its ongoing strategic focus over the last several years, the Company has deemphasized the food service and private label businesses for the benefit of its higher margin branded food products.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Sue Chang and Ben Eisen]
Hillshire Brands (HSH) �jumped more than 8.9% as potential buyers courted the food-maker. Pilgrim�� Pride Corp. (PPC) �said Tuesday it would boost its bid to $55 a share in cash, raising the stakes after Tyson Foods Inc. (TSN) �offered $50 a share last week. Pilgrim�� bid values the company at $7.7 billion, which is $1.3 billion more than its previous bid. Hillshire said it will hold talks with both bidders, but that it would not back away from its own plan to buy Pinnacle Foods Inc. (PF) .
- [By CNNMoney Staff]
Pinnacle Foods (PF), which said Tuesday that it agreed to be bought by Hillshire Brands (HSH, Fortune 500), will also report quarterly earnings before the bell.
Top 10 Defensive Stocks To Invest In 2014: Sears Holdings Corporation(SHLD)
Sears Holdings Corporation operates as a specialty retailer in the United States and Canada. The company?s Kmart segment operates stores that sell merchandise under Jaclyn Smith and Joe Boxer labels; and Sears brand products, such as Kenmore, Craftsman, and DieHard. This segment?s stores provide consumer electronics, seasonal merchandise, outdoor living, toys, lawn and garden equipment, food and consumables, and apparel, as well as operate in-store pharmacies. Its Sears Domestic segment operates stores that sell merchandise under the Kenmore, Craftsman, DieHard, Lands? End, Covington, Apostrophe, and Canyon River Blues brand names. This segment?s stores provide appliances, consumer electronics, tools, sporting goods, outdoor living, lawn and garden equipment, home fashion products, automotive products, apparel, footwear, jewelry, accessories, health and beauty products, pantry goods, household products, and toys. The Sears Domestic segment also provides clothing, acces sories, footwear, and soft luggage; appliances and services to commercial customers in single-family residential construction/remodel, property management, multi-family new construction, and government/military sectors; premium appliance and plumbing fixtures to architects, designers, and new construction or remodeling customers; parts and repair services for appliances, lawn and garden equipment, consumer electronics, floor care products, and heating and cooling systems; and home improvement services. The company?s Sears Canada segment engages in the retail of apparel and other softlines. Sears Holdings Corporation operates approximately 2,172 full-line stores and 1,338 specialty retail stores in the United States; 500 full-line and specialty retail stores in Canada, as well as operates 17 floor covering stores, 1,734 catalog pick-up locations, and 108 travel offices; and kmart.com and sears.ca Websites. The company was founded in 1899 and is based in Hoffman Estates, Illi nois.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Sally Jones]
Lowe�� Companies Inc. (LOW) is up 52% over 12 months. Sears Holdings Corporation (SHLD) is down 10% over 12 months.
With the Orchard Supply situation behind him, Edward Lampert�� reductions in the second and third quarters have focused on systematically reducing his long-time AutoNation Inc. (AN) holding. Since the beginning of the third quarter, Lampert has reduced his AN position five times. In his latest trade, as of Oct. 30, 2013, Edward Lampert slightly reduced his position by 0.02%, selling shares in the average price range of $48.00 per share. The current share price is $48.12, with a change from average at 0%. See GuruFocus Real Time Picks for more trade details.
- [By Ben Levisohn]
Its strong day has also helped boost other retailers.�Kohl���(KSS), for instance, has gained 1.4% to $55.51, while�Macy���(M) has risen 1.1% to $45.40. Sears Holdings�(SHLD), however, has dropped 1% to $55.34.
Top 10 Defensive Stocks To Invest In 2014: Mueller Water Products Inc (MWA)
Mueller Water Products, Inc., incorporated on September 22, 2005, is a manufacturer and marketer of products and services used in the transmission, distribution and measurement of water. The Company�� product portfolio includes engineered valves, fire hydrants, pipe fittings, water meters, leak detection and pipe condition assessment which are used by municipalities, as well as the residential and non-residential construction industries. The Company operates in two segments: Mueller Co. and Anvil. Mueller Co. The Company�� valve or fire hydrant products are specified for use in the 100 metropolitan areas in the United States.
Mueller Co. manufactures valves for water and gas systems, including iron gate, butterfly, tapping, check, plug and ball valves, as well as dry-barrel and wet-barrel fire hydrants and a of pipe repair products, such as clamps and couplings used to repair leaks. The Company offers residential and commercial metering products and systems and leak detection and pipe condition assessment products and services. Mueller Co. products are sold through waterworks distributors.
The Company�� fire hydrants consist of an upper barrel and nozzle section and a lower barrel and valve section that connects to a water main. In dry-barrel hydrants, the valve connecting the barrel of the hydrant to the water main is located below ground at or below the frost line, which keeps the hydrant upper barrel dry. It sells dry-barrel fire hydrants with the Mueller and U.S. Pipe Valve and Hydrant brand names in the United States and the Mueller and Canada Valve brand names in Canada. The Company also makes wet-barrel hydrants, where the valves are located in the hydrant nozzles and the barrel contains water at all times. It also makes wet-barrel hydrants, where the valves are located in the hydrant nozzles and the barrel contains water at all times.
Mueller Co. manufactures a variety of intelligent water technology products under the Mue! ller Systems and Hersey Meters brand names that are designed to help water providers accurately measure water usage. These products include water meters, advanced metering infrastructure systems and automated meter reading products, have the capability to measure water usage ranging from small residential flows to large commercial and industrial applications.
Mueller Co. offers leak detection and pipe condition assessment products and services under the Echologics brand name. Other products include pipe repair products, such as clamps and couplings used to repair leaks and municipal castings, such as manhole covers and street drain grates. It sells these products under the Mueller and Jones brand names.
The Company competes with McWane, Inc., American Cast Iron Pipe Company, The Ford Meter Box Company, Inc., A.Y. McDonald Mfg, Sensus, Neptune Technology Group, Inc., Badger Meter, Inc., Aclara LLC and Itron, Inc.
Anvil manufactures and sources a range of products, includes fittings, couplings, hangers, valves and related products for use in many non-residential constructions for HVAC, fire protection, energy and oil and gas applications. Anvil's products are sold through distributors who then sell the products to a variety of end users. These distributors are serviced primarily through Anvil's distribution centers.
Fittings and Couplings manufactures threaded and grooved pipe fittings and couplings. Pipe fittings and couplings join two pieces of pipe together. The five categories of pipe fittings and couplings are cast iron fittings, malleable iron fittings and unions, grooved fittings, couplings and valves, threaded steel pipe coupling and nipples. Hangers, manufacture an array of pipe hangers and supports. Standard pipe hangers and supports are used in fire protection sprinkler systems and HVAC applications where the objective is to provide rigid support from the building structure.
The Company competes with Ward Man! ufacturin! g L.L.C., malleable iron fittings, Victaulic Company, Tyco International Ltd., ERICO International Corporation, Cooper Industries plc and Carpenter & Paterson, Inc.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Travis Hoium]
What: Shares of Mueller Water Products (NYSE: MWA ) jumped as much as 17% today after the company released earnings.
So what: Fiscal-second-quarter revenue jumped 12.6% to $283.1 million and net income was $6.2 million, or $0.05 per share. Analysts only expected revenue to be $270.8 million and earnings of $0.02 per share so this was well ahead of estimates. �