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Buzz Bits: Dow Inches Higher, Nasdaq Dips Lower

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Your daily Buzz & Banter highlights...

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Editor's Note: This is a small sample of the content available on the Buzz and Banter.



Randoms - Fil Zucchi - 1:45 PM

  • Northern Trust (NTRS) is up $2 as it rides the coattails of the State Street (STT) / Investors Financial (IFIN) merger. I tend to be skeptical of the "me too" moves and my guess is that if I sold NTRS I'd probably be higher to pick it back up lower.

  • My and my best friend's family had a Wii war over the weekend. I am not a big fan of video games, but that "wand" thing is very cool. Nintendo (7974 JP) is now on the closely watched buy list.

  • The "Daily Spot" has been less than "daily" recently, but Castle (CAS) and Decker (DECK) would be prime candidates for the long side.

  • It is now a foregone conclusion that bear markets have been abolished. The only timid question Boo has, is whether corrections have been banned as well. For us poor lost souls still looking for one it's worthwhile noting that the percentage difference between the S&P 500 (SPX) and its 200 DMA is now approaching the 80th percentiles of all observations since March 30, 1995...whatever that means...which is probably nothing.


Positions in NTRS, SPX



BPZ Energy Update - Adam Michael - 1:21 PM

A few weeks back, I mentioned an energy name I like called BPZ Energy (BZP). The stock is up on good volume today on what I have to believe is anticipation of a natural gas well test in Peru. The company was at NAPE (North American Prospect Expo) which was held in Houston last week and seemed to be very excited about testing its Corvina well.

A natural gas well in the Corvina field tested at over 16MMcf/d back in the early 1980's, but the well was plugged and abandoned as there was no market for the gas (they were looking for oil at the time). The well about to be tested now is right next to the old well (literally a couple of feet away on the same platform). The old well only tested gas from about 70 feet of pay (gas zone) where the new well will test from several hundred feet of pay…so the potential for a MUCH bigger test exists.

I would also note that BPZ Energy raised $20 mln with an equity issuance the International Finance Corporation (IFC) in December 2006 which now makes the IFC the largest shareholder. In addition, the IFC is leading another $100 mln in senior debt financing to construct a gas to power plant just onshore that will take gas from the Corvina field. It is my understanding that the IFC has done a large amount of due diligence on BPZ Energy.

Additional upside includes several other offshore assets that also tested positive for natural gas and oil in the 1970's and 1980's, but that were plugged and abandoned. I would expect BPZ Energy to look to partner with a (much) larger company on at least one of these assets, but not until the Corvina field is tested. Since these assets are all in the same offshore block, their value should increase with a positive test of the Corvina field so it would make sense for the company to wait a bit.

As far as risks go: the BPZ Energy's assets are in a foreign county so there is risk there. Presidential elections were held last summer, and the leftist candidate was defeated. The company only sports about a $250 Million market cap, so the normal small cap risks apply here. Should the company report a positive Corvina well, I imagine a significant reserve addition (and stock price appreciation) will be made. Ultimately, there could be several Trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of gas here.

Position in BZP


Have a Super Monday! - Kevin Depew - 11:12 AM

  • Billy mentioned the Semis in the green outta the gate, take a look at Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), which has DeMark TD-Sequential buy signals registering on both the daily and weekly charts.
  • Note the Utilities HOLDRs (UTH) nearing an all-time high here.
  • And did you see the Retail HOLDRs (RTH) make a new high earlier this morning?
  • Prince's Purple Rain performed at halftime of a Bears Super Bowl game, David Lee.
  • Roth and Van Halen about to go on tour and the Police performing at the Grammys.
  • What is this, 1985?
  • Things looking surprisingly grim for Toddo with more than 51% of Minyans voting "Someone's lost his/her mind. Super Bowl Monday? Give me a break" in the "Is Super Bowl Monday a good idea?" poll.



My brother Pete will join Jeff, Dylan and the boys on Fast Money this week! - Jon Doctor J Najarian - 8:33 AM

Triad Hospitals (TRI) Sold for $6.4 Billion –
Two private equity firms, CCMP Capital Advisors and Goldman Sachs Capital Partners are taking TRI private at $50.25 per share. Triad closed at $43.27 last Friday.

Hyundai Motors Chairman Sentenced to Three Years – Shares of Korea's top carmaker fell by more than 3% on the news that Chung Mong-koo was sentenced to three years in jail for embezzling funds.

Goldman Upgrades BP To Buy – The broker said the energy giant's shares are "attractive" and that "BP can put the majority of its recent troubles behind it." There is an update due from BP tomorrow (Feb 6th).

Pitney Bowes (PBI) Profits Nearly Doubled – The integrated mail and document management company posted $159.3 million ($0.71 per share) in profits, up from $88.6 ($0.38) as revenue expanded 8.3% to $1.55 billion. That matches earnings, but beats on revenue.

No positions in stocks mentioned.

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