Archive | March, 2012

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Andes Gold Corp.




Andes Gold Corporation is a US registered public company currently trading on Pink Sheets (AGCZ). Andes Gold, through its wholly owned subsidiary company Compania Minera P.L. In Eucador, South America) controls a gold mining and exploration concession called the Miranda Alto. 

Key Highlights:

• Andes Gold owns two producing mines and one fully operating mill. 
• The mill is currently processing 50 tonnes of ore per day 
• The capacity of the mill is increasing and is expected to be at 150 tonnes per day by the end of March 2012.
• The average head grade of ore being processed is 1.0 oz gold and 15 g of silver per tonne of ore.
• Andes Gold processes ore from other mines. This increases cash flow and profits. 
•On the Miranda vein, the company has 95,000 oz. of proven reserves. Inferred reserves from the 700 m level on Miranda, Azul, Estrella, Sul and Viscaya veins are 600,000 oz.
• Andes Gold continues to develop existing reserves as well as acquire new reserves.
• Andes has bugun reclamation programs on its projects.

Why Invest in Andes Gold Corp.? (Pink Sheets: AGCZ)

• 16,000,000 grams (500,000 oz) Au estimated resources
• Reserves being increased substantially through new concessions and a mining tunnel
• Low cost cash producer
• Superior exploration and development prospects
• Highly liquid gold vehicle
• Leverage to gold price
• High performing management and operations teams
• Delivering value to shareholders
• Company has its own mill to process its ore and is not dependent on other milling operations

Why Gold?

• Gold is fundamentally a currency and in periods of increasing demand for gold the upward price movements can be more rapid and larger than in other currency markets.
• Gold serves as a store of wealth.
• Gold has functional uses in jewelry and certain industrial applications which distinguishes it from other currencies. 
• There is a finite amount of gold available unlike paper currencies
• Gold is considered a safe haven during times of geopolitical uncertainty.

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Ford to invest $1.3 bln in Mexican Fusion plant

MEXICO CITY (MarketWatch) — Ford Motor Co. F +0.20% will invest $1.3 billion in its Mexico operations to build the new generation of one of its most-popular models, the mid-size Ford Fusion, company officials said Friday.

The investment will be made in Ford’s stamping-and-assembly plant in Hermosillo, Sonora, where the company has already built 1.1 million Fusion cars since 2005, said Mark Fields, head of the car maker’s operations in the Americas. The investment will create 1,000 new jobs in two years, he added.

The Hermosillo plant will also build the Lincoln MKZ, Fields said. The two cars will be the first ones to be built on Ford’s new global mid-size platform.

Fields said the two models will be the first offered with a choice of three engines: gasoline, hybrid, and plug-in hybrid, all made in Mexico.

The new investment, Fields added, is in addition to $3 billion spent in Mexico over the last decade to make the new Ford Fiesta, in a transmission factory and in other operations.


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Enphase Energy shares open up 25% post-IPO

Solar-energy-management device maker Enphase Energy Inc. ENPH +22.33% saw its shares jump 25% on their opening trade Friday, the company’s first day as a public stock.

The stock opened at $7.50 on the Nasdaq after pricing at $6 a share, which was the low end of its price talk and well below the range of $10 to $12 a share it previously expected to garner in the offering. Enphase sold nine million shares, more than the 7.3 million shares it was expected to sell.

Based in Petaluma, Calif., Enphase makes semiconductor-based microinverter systems that convert direct current, or DC, electricity to alternating current, or AC, electricity in solar modules. Its technology helps to increase energy production, simplify design and installation, improve system uptime and allow for energy management.

Traditionally, the solar industry has relied on a central inverter approach that Enphase claims has largely remained unchanged for the past two decades. The company said its microinverter technology has significant advantages over traditional central inverters.

Enphase began its first shipment of microinverters in mid-2008, and has seen them installed throughout the U.S. and Canada. More than 3,700 installers in North America have installed its product through March 1, and their numbers are increasing by approximately 100 new installers per month. In the fourth quarter, it began selling its microinverter systems in parts of Europe.

In 2011, net revenue more than doubled to $149 million compared to 2010. The company’s net loss worsened to $32 million from $22 million on higher operating and interest expense.

The company has never been profitable, and warned it may continue to incur net losses in the future.

Its success depends on continued growth in demand for solar energy. In 2011, the U.S. installed a record amount of generating capacity, more than twice the level seen in 2001, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association, a trade group. The industry expects installations by megawatts to increase 50% this year.

Enphase’s system requires users to incur a higher upfront capital investment than central-inverter products. Its business is also highly competitive; leading inverter vendors SMA Solar Technology AG (SMTGF, SMTGY), Power-One Inc. (PWER) and SunPower Corp. (SPWR) are expected to introduce microinverter products in 2012, and several new entrants to the microinverter market have recently disclosed plans to ship or have already shipped products, including some of Enphase’s customers and partners.

–Mia Lamar contributed to this article.


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Tibco Software Q1 net climbs 29%

Tibco Software Inc.’s TIBX +4.64% fiscal first-quarter profit rose 29% as new contracts continued to grow revenue in the company’s main services-and-maintenance business.

The software provider also authorized up to $300 million in new stock buybacks, replacing an existing repurchase program that had about $38 million remaining.

Tibco, which makes real-time infrastructure software for Internet and enterprise networks, has continued to book strong earnings growth over the past year as the growing popularity of cloud-computing services boosts its top line.

For the quarter ended March 4, Tibco posted a profit of $20.6 million, or 12 cents a share, up from $16 million, or 9 cents a share, a year earlier. Excluding stock-based compensation, acquisition-related expenses and other effects, earnings grew rose to 20 cents from 16 cents as revenue climbed 22% to $225.7 million.

The company’s December guidance called for earnings of 18 cents to 19 cents a share with revenue between $220 million and $225 million.

Operating margin widened to 10.7% from 10.2% on the revenue jump.

License revenue increased 18% to as revenue from the larger services-and-maintenance segment grew 24%. Tibco closed 20 deals over $1 million in the latest quarter.

Shares were recently off 1.4% at $31.99 after hours. Tibco’s earnings often top Wall Street estimates by wide margins, and the stock had climbed 36% this year through Thursday’s close.


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Mizuho Group to merge retail, corp. units: report

Mizuho Financial Group Inc. plans to merge its group banks Mizuho Bank and Mizuho Corporate Bank on July 1 next year, Mizuho officials said Thursday, Kyodo News reported.

Mizuho, which has so far said the merger date would be in the first half of fiscal 2013 starting in April next year, will officially decide on the date at a board meeting Friday, the officials said.

Mizuho is also planning to merge its group brokerages Mizuho Securities Co. and Mizuho Investors Securities Co. in January next year, they said. The merger had been planned for the latter half of fiscal 2012 through March next year.

The merger of the banks is set three months later than April 1, the starting day of the business year, as it will take time for the banks to confirm their computer systems have no interface problems, they said.


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Synnex profit rises; sees downbeat Q2

Synnex Corp.’s SNX -0.57% fiscal first-quarter earnings rose 28% as the distribution services company saw stronger margins, but its revenue slid for the first time in 10 quarters on weakness in its distribution business.

Shares sank 7.2% after hours to $40.50 as the company forecast downbeat second-quarter results and missed its revenue projections for the latest period. The stock as of Tuesday’s close was up 45% over the past three months after previous quarters of consistent growth.

The company expects second-quarter earnings of 87 cents to 91 cents a share on revenue of $2.45 billion to $2.55 billion. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters most recently expected 95 cents and $2.6 billion, respectively.

Synnex distributes computers, servers and software from major technology manufacturers. It had posted improved revenue for several quarters running, though the growth had slowed in recent periods. But earnings have grown year-over-year by more than 25% for the past two years running, thanks in part to improved margins.

For the quarter ended Feb. 29, Synnex reported a profit of $38.2 million, or $1.02 a share, up from $29.7 million, or 80 cents a share, a year earlier. Revenue sank 1.6% to $2.46 billion.

Synnex in January forecast per-share earnings of 89 cents to 93 cents on revenue of $2.48 billion to $2.58 billion.

Gross margin improved to 6.9% from 5.7%, as expenses dropped by 2.8%.

Distribution revenue shrank 1.8% to $2.42 billion, while global business services revenue rose 15% to $45.1 million.


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Sealy swings to Q1 profit

Sealy Corp. ZZ -1.05% posted a surprise fiscal first-quarter profit on strong international sales and higher pricing, which improved the mattress maker’s margins.

Shares jumped 9% to $2.05 after hours on the stronger-than-expected results. The stock had fallen 29% over the past year through Tuesday’s close.

Sealy has reported mixed results over the past year as the company struggles to adapt to higher raw materials costs. Its performance topped expectations earlier last year as aggressive advertising helped boost sales of the next-generation Posturepedic line, though the company acknowledged in January that revenue had fallen short of its own goals.

Sealy’s latest profit benefited from stronger margins, which had been declining in recent quarters. The company touted a shift in the mix of product sales to its next-generation Stearns & Foster products, which fetched higher prices and boosted the top line.

Recent results have still attracted criticism from H Partners Management LLC, Sealy’s second-largest shareholder, which has accused private-equity backer KKR & Co. KKR +1.10% of having too much control over the public company. The mattress maker has scolded H Partners in response, saying the fund is unwilling to cooperate with its management’s efforts to discuss specific problems.

For the quarter ended Feb. 26, Sealy posted a profit of $1.2 million, or a penny a share, compared with a year-earlier loss of $902,000, also about a penny a share. Earnings from continuing operations were essentially breakeven a year ago. Revenue climbed 2.2% to $312.3 million.

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected a 2-cent per-share loss with $302 million in revenue.

Gross margin widened to 39.2% from 38.8% on stronger pricing and advances in manufacturing processes, which offset higher commodity prices.

Wholesale unit volume declined 4%, while the wholesale average unit selling price rose 4.3%.

U.S. sales grew 0.7%, while international sales were up 7.7% on stronger revenue from Canada, Mexico and Argentina.


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Honda reportedly plans new plant in Thailand

BANGKOK (Nikkei) — Honda Motor Co. HMC +0.37% has decided to build another automobile factory in Thailand, likely in the southeastern part of the country where the risk of flooding is lower than where its existing plant is located, company sources said Monday, The Nikkei reported.

Having just reopened its plant in Ayutthaya Province on Monday, roughly six months after the facility in central Thailand was damaged by floods, the carmaker is moving to boost output capacity while diversifying risk. Honda wants to bring the new plant, which is expected to have an annual production capacity of 120,000 vehicles, online as early as 2015.

Honda is expected to acquire a plot as early as next month. The existing plant in Ayutthaya, which has an output capacity of 240,000 units, is to continue operations. It builds such passenger cars as the City compact sedan and the Brio model for emerging markets. The new plant might churn out such models as large minivans, for which demand is projected to grow in Thailand.

Honda also plans to build an Indonesian factory that would triple its output capacity in that nation to 180,000 units annually. However, despite concerns of flooding, Thailand remains an outstanding manufacturing site because of the concentration of materials and parts suppliers and its strong infrastructure. Other Japanese carmakers, including Toyota Motor Corp. and Isuzu Motors Ltd., are also moving to boost output in Thailand.

Honda’s production in Thailand fell by about 120,000 vehicles due to the floods. Because the Thai plant also served as an export base for parts, its suspension impacted production in such regions as Japan and North America, pushing down global output by 260,000 units. The flooding is seen eroding Honda’s consolidated operating profit by about Y110 billion in the current fiscal year ending Saturday.


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Agco CEO’s 2011 compensation rose 28% from 2010

Agco Corp. AGCO +0.97% Chairman and Chief Executive Martin Richenhagen’s compensation rose 28% in 2011 on larger awards of stock and stock options, according to a regulatory filing Monday.

Richenhagen’s salary, performance pay, executive perquisites and stock and options awards totaled $8.78 million last year, compared with $6.78 million in 2010. His base salary rose by 5%, to $1.48 million, while his nonequity incentive pay tied to the performance of the company was nearly flat, at $2.12 million.

Richenhagen, 59 years old, received restricted stock awards worth $4.37 million on the day the shares were granted, a 62% increase in the value of his stock awards in 2010. The shares vest over several years, with the cash payments linked to the performance of the farm equipment manufacturer. If all the performance goals are reached, Richenhagen could receive a maximum payout of $9.55 million. He also received stock options worth $960,925, a 19% increase from 2010. The options vest over four years.

Richenhagen received executive perks totaling $93,037 last year, a 59% increase from 2010. Included in this amount was $14,088 in airfare expenses for Richenhagen’s wife to attend Agco corporate events with him. He also received $7,980 for club memberships and $34,813 for car lease payments and costs for vehicle maintenance and fuel.

Richenhagen collected $2.7 million last year from exercising previously awarded restricted stock shares and stock options. This amount was not included in his total compensation for 2011. The value of his pension and other deferred compensation rose slightly last year, to $1.38 million. This amount also was excluded from his total compensation figure.

Agco is the world’s third-largest manufacturer of farm equipment by sales, behind Deere & Co. DE +2.40% and CNH Global NV CNH +2.16% . Agco’s profit in 2011 more than doubled from 2010, to $583 million, or $5.95 a share, as surging prices for farm commodities caused farmers to buy more new tractors and combines. Agco’s sales rose 27%, to $8.77 billion.

Agco, which is based in Georgia, bought grain-storage bin manufacturer GSI Holdings Corp. last autumn in a bid to boost Agco’s revenue and expand its penetration in the North American market, the company’s weakest geographic market. Agco said it anticipates GSI’s sales this year to exceed $750 million, up from about $700 million in 2011.

Agco’s stock was recently trading up 0.7%, at $48.93 a share.


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Peabody sees Q1 EPS at low end of prior view

Peabody Energy BTU -1.18% warned its first-quarter earnings will likely come in at the low end of its prior downbeat projection due to storms and flooding in Australia, which have halted port and rail movements.

“Australia is the world’s largest coal exporting nation, and disruptions such as these point to the tight supply-demand balance that exists for seaborne metallurgical and thermal coal,” said Chief Executive Gregory H. Boyce.

The coal company said earnings for the current quarter would be at the low end of the range of 50 cents to 75 cents a share it projected in January, a view that was well below Street estimates at the time.

Storms in Queensland have stymied port and rail movement, curtailed production at surface mines and restricted underground access, the company said, estimating the impact at around $50 million for the first quarter.

Peabody, the largest U.S. coal producer by output, reported earnings rose 5.9% in the fourth quarter, benefiting from U.S. mining revenue. The company recently completed its roughly $5.05 billion acquisition of the Australia-based coal-mining company Macarthur Coal Ltd. (MCC.AU), increasing its exposure to the growing Asian market.

Shares were recently up 7 cents at $30.62 but have fallen 11% over the past three months.


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