PRECISION DRILLING TRUST, $5.84 (Toronto symbol PD.UN; Aggressive Growth Portfolio, Resources sector; Units outstanding: 241.2 million; Market cap: $1.4 billion; Price-to-sales ratio: 0.7; SI Rating: Extra Risk) provides contract-drilling services in Canada and the United States through a fleet of 380 rigs.
Precision is raising cash to pay down debt related to last December’s $2-billion purchase Grey Wolf Inc., which operates …read more »
SHAWCOR LTD. $21 (Toronto symbol SCL.A; Aggressive Growth Portfolio, Manufacturing & Industry sector; Shares outstanding: 71.3 million; Market cap: $1.5 billion; Price-to-sales ratio: 1.1; SI Rating: Average) will pay a special dividend of $0.26 on May 29, 2009. It has also increased its regular quarterly dividend by 7.7%, to $0.07 a share from $0.065. The new annual rate of $0.28 …read more »
TORSTAR CORP. $5.32 (Toronto symbol TS.B; Conservative Growth Portfolio, Consumer sector; Shares outstanding: 78.9 million; Market cap: $419.7 million; Price-to-sales ratio: 0.3; SI Rating: Above Average) reported a first-quarter loss of $21.4 million, or $0.27 a share. However, that was largely caused by a $0.23-a-share charge related to employee layoffs and a change in Torstar’s senior management. The company lost …read more »
TELUS INC. (Toronto symbols T $30 and T.A $29; Conservative Growth Portfolio, Utilities sector; Shares outstanding: 318 million; Market cap: $9.5 billion; Price-to-sales ratio: 1.0; SI Rating: Above Average) hopes to improve its sales by bundling its phone and Internet services with satellite TV.
Under a new deal with BCE INC. $24 (Toronto symbol BCE; Conservative Growth Portfolio, Utilities sector; …read more »
METRO INC. $37 (Toronto symbol MRU.A; Aggressive Growth Portfolio, Consumer sector; Shares outstanding: 111.4 million; Market cap: $4.1 billion; Price-to-sales ratio: 0.4; SI Rating: Average) operates roughly 660 grocery stores in Quebec and Ontario. Metro, Super C and Food Basics are some of its major banners. Metro also operates or supplies 270 drugstores, and owns about 23% of Quebec-based convenience-store …read more »
PENGROWTH ENERGY TRUST $8.64 (Toronto symbol PGF.UN) reported that its cash flow for the first quarter of 2009 fell 57.5%, to $0.37 a unit from $0.87 a year earlier. Higher interest expenses, performance bonuses and royalties were the main reasons for the drop. Still, its $1.20 distribution rate seems secure, and yields 13.9%. Buy.
IMPERIAL OIL LTD. $41 (Toronto symbol IMO) …read more »
Recently some readers have asked what we think of U.S. newsletters that predict a total collapse in stock prices. The short answer is that I disagree with these publishers. But the best answer has to include some industry background, and point out that I also disagree with their approach to the newsletter business.
We aim to publish balanced, realistic investment advice …read more »
We still think high-quality mutual funds with a long-term focus will beat stock-market indexes over time. If funds invest as we advise — sticking with well-established companies and spreading their assets across the five main economic sectors — they will likely lose a lot less than the indexes during a significant market downturn.
That’s because big market slides are particularly hard …read more »
RIOCAN REAL ESTATE INVESTMENT TRUST $13.51 (Toronto symbol REI.UN; Units outstanding: 222.1 million; Market cap: $3.0 billion; SI Rating: Average) is Canada’s largest real estate investment trust (REIT).
RioCan has issued $180 million worth of new bonds. The trust will use the proceeds to retire $55 million of bonds that are due this year. That will leave it with $125 million, …read more »
GUARDIAN MONTHLY HIGH INCOME II FUND $9.16 (CWA Rating: Income) (BMO Guardian Group of Funds, Commerce Court West, Suite 4100, P.O. Box 201, Toronto, Ontario M5L 1E8. 1-800-668-5613; Web site: www.bmoguardianfunds.com. Available from brokers) is a fund we rate as Income. It invests in royalty and income trusts and real estate investment trusts (REITs). With assets of $479.5 million, this …read more »