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Monday, November 21, 2011

Hot stocks to watch this week !

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<>Winds of change may be blowing in Occidental Petroleum's favor. The Los Angeles company, which operates in such international hotspots as Libya, Iraq and Bolivia, is cautiously optimistic about a political breakthrough in its home state that could speed the pace of oil and gas development there.TOP-RATED STOCKS
NAMELASTCHNG% CHNG
#OXY92.81-1.51-1.60
OXY
#AUY14.92-0.50-3.24
AUY
#AXP45.87-1.01-2.15
AXP
#MRO25.63-0.50-1.91
MRO
#CVX95.34-2.54-2.60
CVX

<>Winds of change may be blowing in Occidental Petroleum's favor. The Los Angeles company, which operates in such international hotspots as Libya, Iraq and Bolivia, is cautiously optimistic about a political breakthrough in its home state that could speed the pace of oil and gas development there. California Gov. Jerry Brown fired the state's top two oil and gas production officials Nov 3. The regulators had sparred with the oil industry over delays in the permitting process for new drilling projects. Analysts reacted favorably to Brown's move. "We believe a more pro-business policy will be adopted by the regulator in an attempt to help lower unemployment rates in the state," Paul Sankey of Deutsche Bank Securities wrote in a Nov. 6 note to clients. "Oil jobs and tax revenues will win the day." Occidental Petroleum (OXY -1.60%, news) holds rights to develop as much as 10 billion barrels of oil equivalent in California, where it is the largest producer of natural gas and the second-biggest oil producer. The company appears on a daily list created using StockScouter, an MSN Money tool that identifies NEWS FOR YOUR RECENT QUOTES
In 2009, Occidental announced a major hydrocarbon discovery in California's San Joaquin Valley near Bakersfield. About one-third of the find contains oil; the rest is natural gas, which the company plans to extract using the controversial technology known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, which involves underground injection of steam, water and chemicals to bring gas to the surface. Environmentalists have opposed the technique, citing the need to protect drinking water supplies. Despite the regulatory issues in its home state, the company said its domestic production of oil and gas hit a record in the third quarter. Output increased from fields in California, Texas and the Rocky Mountains.

Bakken could hold more oil than thought

"The third quarter 2011 domestic production was 436,000 (barrels of oil equivalent) per day," Occidental President and CEO Stephen I. Chazen said in reporting the company's quarterly financial results. "The highest in Occidental's history." Third-quarter profit jumped nearly 50%, aided by higher oil prices. Because Occidental is primarily an exploration and production company, it is susceptible to oil-price swings. Its share price plunged nearly 40% from late July to early October as oil prices tanked. The stock has since recovered much of that ground as oil prices rebounded. Analysts cited the sell-off in upgrading the stock on valuation. Optimism about Occidental's return to Libya has also bolstered the stock. The company withdrew personnel from the country in February as civil war broke out. At the time, petroleum from Libya represented about 4% of Occidental's daily output. Of the 16 analysts who cover the company, 11 rate the stock a "strong buy," one rates the stock a "moderate buy" and four have a "hold" rating. Occidental Petroleum has a StockScouter rating of 10, meaning the stock is expected to significantly outperform the market over the next six months with average risk.
MRO
#CVX95.34-2.54-2.60
CVX
StockScouter top 10 for Nov. 18
CompanySectorDividend yieldForward P/EScouter score
Yamana Gold (AUY -3.24%, news)Mining1.3%12.210
American Express (AXP -2.15%, news)Credit and travel services1.5%11.210
Marathon Oil (MRO -1.91%, news)Exploration and production2.3%7.310
Occidental Petroleum (OXY -1.60%, news)Oil and natural gas2.0%11.410
Chevron (CVX -2.60%, news)Oil and natural gas3.2%7.510
CenterPoint Energy (CNP -1.24%, news)Diversified utilities4.1%16.09
Annaly Capital Management (NLY -0.74%, news)Real estate investments14.7%7.09
Barrick Gold (ABX -2.29%, news)Mining1.2%8.59
Caterpillar (CAT -3.07%, news)Earth-moving equipment2.0%10.49
Dow Chemical (DOW -2.25%, news)Chemicals3.8%9.09

StockScouter beats the market

At MSN Money, we think the StockScouter rating system is about as good as it gets when you're trying to decide where to invest. StockScouter looks for stocks whose business fundamentals, price behavior, valuation and stock-ownership characteristics appear to predict a rising price in the future, based on how those factors have influenced stock prices in the past.
The system assigns each stock an expected six-month return and balances that return against the stock's expected volatility. Scouter rates stocks on a scale of 1 to 10. Scouter ratings can change daily. Ratings and data in the chart above were current as of this article's publication date.


In addition to the daily top 10 list described above, StockScouter is used by investment research firm Gradient Analytics to generate a monthly benchmark portfolio of stocks that, refreshed monthly, has outperformed the market since its inception in August 2001.
An investor who began that month by buying all 50 of the stocks in the portfolio, then selling them at the end of the month and buying the updated 50-stock portfolio to start the following month, repeating the process each month, would have a total gain of 346% through Oct. 31, 2011, according to Gradient.
An investor who bought and sold only the top 10 stocks each month would be up 693% overall, before trading fees are taken into account.
Performance through Oct. 31
Full 50 position portfolio
Index1 month3 month6 month12 monthFrom inceptionAverage annual return
Portfolio10.7%-1.5%-4.7%7.9%346%16.5%
Nasdaq11.1%-2.6%-6.5%7.0%32.4%5.1%
S&P 50010.7%-3.0%-8.1%5.9%3.5%1.7%
DJIA9.5%-1.6%-6.7%7.5%13.6%2.5%
Top 10 portfolio
Index1 month3 month6 month12 monthFrom inceptionAverage annual return
Portfolio7.7%-0.1%-4.7%12.9%693%22.2%
Nasdaq11.1%-2.6%-6.5%7.0%32.4%5.1%
S&P 50010.7%-3.0%-8.1%5.9%3.5%1.7%
DJIA9.5%-1.6%-6.7%7.5%13.6%2.5%
Portfolio inception: August 2001
SYMBOLNAMERATING
OXYOccidental Petroleum Corp10
AXPAmerican Express Co10
CVXChevron Corp10
CNPCenterpoint Energy Inc9
NLYAnnaly Capital Management Inc9
ABXBarrick Gold Corp9
AUYYamana Gold Inc9
DOWDow Chemical Co9
KEYKeycorp9
COPConocoPhillips9
<>California Gov. Jerry Brown fired the state's top two oil and gas production officials Nov 3. The regulators had sparred with the oil industry over delays in the permitting process for new drilling projects. Analysts reacted favorably to Brown's move. "We believe a more pro-business policy will be adopted by the regulator in an attempt to help lower unemployment rates in the state," Paul Sankey of Deutsche Bank Securities wrote in a Nov. 6 note to clients. "Oil jobs and tax revenues will win the day." Occidental Petroleum (OXY -1.60%, news) holds rights to develop as by MSNmoney.com
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