Advertisements



Saturday links: efficiency and capacity

On Saturdays we catch up with the non-finance related items that we didn’t get to earlier in the week. You can check... AutosNissan is investing big to make the switch to EVs. (bloomberg.com)How magnetic roads could be used to charge EVs in transit. (nytimes.com)EnvironmentThe U.S. is the world's biggest contributor to plastic waste. (washingtonpost.com)Why Arctic precipitation will switch from snow to rain over time. (newscientist.com)State transportation departments are slowly coming to terms with the effects of climate change on infrastructure. (washingtonpost.com)Wildfire policy doesn't work any more in the U.S. (slate.com)The Bradford pear tree is just awful. (nytimes.com)ScienceResearchers are planning to drill into Antarctic ice to obtain a record of Earth's climate stretching back 1.5 million years. (bbc.com)Paleontologists have found a 'dog-sized dinosaur species that had a unique slashing tail weapon.' (apnews.com)What barnacles know about whales. (hakaimagazine.com)ArchaeologyResearchers have found a piece of jewelry from 41,500 years ago. (nature.com)A 13-year-old in England just found a bronze age axe. (nytimes.com)BehaviorBrett and Kate McKay, "Challenging cognitive distortions is a skill that takes practice to develop." (artofmanliness.com)Why people gravitate toward puzzles when we are depressed. (wired.com)On the difference between detachment and non-attachment. (dariusforoux.com)Two tricks to help tamp down on imposter syndrome. (hunterwalk.com)Why we fall for scams. (daily.jstor.org)AnimalsPangolins are the new pandas. (wsj.com)Why it might be better for older dogs to eat just once a day. (newscientist.com)CannabisMore Americans are smoking pot. What are the health effects? (fivethirtyeight.com)On the use of hemp to create sustainable building materials. (modernfarmer.com)FoodHow Vermont became a hub for saffron. (modernfarmer.com)Lessons learned from eating in nearly 8000 Chinese restaurants. (bbc.com)SportsWhy younger Americans are less interested in sports that previous generations. (insidehook.com)Attendance at sporting events is not back to pre-pandemic levels. (sportico.com)When football coaches start making $10 million a year it may be time to rethink the college athletics model. (nymag.com)Participation in amateur boxing is associated with a greater risk of dementia later in life. (newatlas.com)MusicThe 100 best songs of 2021 including "Be Sweet" by Japanese Breakfast. (npr.org)The 50 best albums of 2021 including 'Dark in Here' by The Mountain Goats. (pastemagazine.com)TV showsThe best TV shows of 2021 including 'White Lotus.' (nytimes.com)Variety critics' best shows of 2021 including 'Succession.' (variety.com)The 30 best shows of 2021 including 'Only Murders in the Building.' (pastemagazine.com)The 14 best shows of 2021 including 'Hacks.' (vanityfair.com)MoviesThe 10 best movies of 2021 including 'The Power of the Dog.' (vanityfair.com)Tyler Cowen's favorite movies of 2021 including 'The Dig.' (marginalrevolution.com)The 25 best movies of 2021 including 'CODA.' (indiewire.com)The 21 most underrated movies of 2021 including 'Test Pattern.' (vanityfair.com)Earlier on Abnormal ReturnsCoronavirus links: the case for boosters. (abnormalreturns.com)What you missed in our Friday linkfest. (abnormalreturns.com)Podcast links: the new world of work. (abnormalreturns.com)December ESG links: emissions incentives. (abnormalreturns.com)Are you a financial adviser looking for some out-of-the-box thinking? Then check out our weekly e-mail newsletter. (newsletter.abnormalreturns.com)Mixed mediaSmall businesses are having to make big bets on inventory this holiday season. (nytimes.com)American distillers are cheering the removal of EU tariffs. (npr.org)People are purging their closets amidst the pandemic. (wsj.com).....»»

Category: blogSource: abnormalreturnsDec 4th, 2021

We tested 13 vacuums designed for pet hair, and these 5 picked up the most fur

We tried 13 vacuums to find the best ones for picking up pet hair and fur, whether on carpet, hardwood floors, or furniture. Prices are accurate at the time of publication.When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.James Brains/InsiderWhen your fur friend sheds constantly, you have to stay on top of your vacuuming or risk an infestation of dust bunnies. A good vacuum makes it easy for you to keep your floors and furniture pet hair-free while also handling other messes.For this guide, I tested 13 vacuums to see how they cleaned up cat and dog hair, cat litter, flour, coffee grounds, and Cheerios on carpeting, hardwood floors, and furniture. I have reviewed vacuums for three years and have developed many objective tests to determine which models are best for different budgets and cleaning needs. Below, I outline how I tested the vacuums and provide answers to pet vacuum FAQs. Find out more about how Insider Reviews tests and reviews home products.Here are the best vacuums for pet hair of 2021Best overall vacuum for pet hair: Dyson V11 Animal Cord-Free Vacuum, $599.99 on Best BuyThe powerful suction of the Dyson V11 Animal Cord-Free Vacuum picked up all of the pet hair in our tests, and emptying the dustbin was easy and clean.Best budget vacuum for pet hair: Bissell CleanView Swivel Rewind Pet Vacuum Cleaner, $154.49 on AmazonWhile there are cheaper options out there, the Bissell CleanView Swivel Rewind Pet Vacuum Cleaner is the most affordable vacuum that still does an outstanding job of collecting pet hair.Best canister vacuum for pet hair: Miele Classic C1 Cat & Dog Vacuum, $593.23 on AmazonThe pricey Miele Classic C1 Cat & Dog Vacuum picked up messes better than any other vac in our tests, and the disposable vacuum bag keeps you out of contact with the debris.Best handheld vacuum for pet hair: Black+Decker Powerseries Extreme Cordless Stick Vacuum Cleaner, $195.23 on AmazonIf you're looking for a vacuum that's easy to use on furniture and in cars, consider the Black+Decker Powerseries Extreme Cordless Stick Vacuum Cleaner with its outstanding performance in its handheld configuration.Best robot vacuum for pet hair: Bissell SpinWave Robot Vacuum, $299 on AmazonThe Bissell SpinWave Robot Vacuum picked up all the pet hair on carpet in our tests and has a great assortment of mop attachments and accessories.Best vacuum for pet hair overallJames Brains/Insider$599.99 FROM BEST BUY$599.99 FROM DYSONThe powerful suction of the Dyson V11 Animal Cord-Free Vacuum picked up all of the pet hair in our tests, and emptying the dustbin was easy and clean.Overall size: 49.6" x 10.3" x 9.8"Weight: 7 poundsDustbin capacity: 0.76 litersFilter type: 5-stage designed to pick up 99.97% of 0.3-micron particlesBattery life: 9 minutes on boost modeCharge time: 4 hours, 15 minutesWarranty: 2 yearsExtras/Attachments: Crevice tool, mini motorized tool, docking station, stiff bristle brush, combination tool, wand clipPros: Performed well in our tests, especially removing pet hair; powerful suction; contact-less debris disposal; comes with a wall-mounted docking stationCons: Tiring to hold in handheld configuration, short battery life in boost mode, have to keep trigger depressed for vacuum to runDyson has developed a name for itself with its collection of high-quality, high-end products. The Dyson V11 Animal Cord-Free Vacuum is a prime example of this quality. Per Dyson, it engineered the V11 Animal for larger homes with pets. For the most part, this bore out in our tests. It was one of only three vacs to collect all of the pet hair on all of the surfaces we tested, and the hair didn't get tangled in the brush. This Dyson vac also did an outstanding job of picking up other debris on hardwood and furniture, leaving behind just a trace of flour. Flour was a challenge for the V11 on carpeting, leaving behind about 17% of the flour. None of the vacuums I tested did well in every category, and the V11 Animal performed poorly in terms of ease of use. You have to keep the trigger depressed for the unit to run. My workaround was to wrap a piece of duct tape around it. To empty the dustbin, you have to remove the attachments. If you don't have it positioned just right, the bin's trap-door release could send debris flying. For the most part, though, I appreciated how cleanly the bin emptied: My hands didn't end up dirty.Lastly, I wasn't impressed with the battery. On boost mode, it only lasted nine minutes. Then it took over four hours to recharge. Granted, the boost mode felt more powerful than the other cordless vacuums I tested. In eco mode, the battery lasted for 75 minutes, and in Auto mode, it lasted for 45.For most uses, you can get by with eco mode, which Dyson claims will run for 60 minutes on a single charge. Since it's removable, you could purchase additional batteries, but they're pricey at $150.On the plus side, the V11 Animal was easy to maneuver. I found I could easily move it perpendicular to where I was standing. The non-Dyson vacuums couldn't do this. Also, the V11 Animal comes with a wall-mounted docking station that holds all of the attachments for convenient, out-of-the-way storage.Read our full Dyson V11 Animal Cord-Free Vacuum review.Best budget vacuum for pet hairJames Brains/Insider$154.49 FROM AMAZON$154.49 FROM BISSELLWhile there are cheaper options out there, the Bissell CleanView Swivel Rewind Pet Vacuum Cleaner is the most affordable vacuum that still does an outstanding job of collecting pet hair.Overall size: 45.5" x 13.5" x 12.5"Weight: 13.65 poundsDustbin capacity: 1 literFilter type: Multi-level filtrationPower source: CordedWarranty: 4 yearsExtras/Attachments: Crevice tool, combination dusting brush and upholstery tool, extension wand, Pet TurboEraser tool, pet hair corner tool.Pros: Picked up all of the pet hair in all of our tests, great on hardwood, features a retractable cord, powerful suctionCons: Messy debris disposalPerhaps unsurprisingly, the four vacuums I tested that cost less than the Bissell CleanView Swivel Rewind Pet Vacuum Cleaner (model 2256) performed poorly. I can't recommend any of them. Consequently, our budget pick is still somewhat pricey at $150, but it's well worth the price.The CleanView Swivel Rewind was one of three vacuums that picked up all the pet hair on all of the surfaces in our tests. Also, the hair didn't get tangled in the brush. While its ability to pick up other debris was just average on carpeting and furniture, it did exceptionally well on hardwood. On every surface, it picked up all of the cat litter and Cheerios. It struggled with the coffee grounds on carpeting and only did a so-so job of collecting flour in all of the tests.I appreciated how simple the Bissell CleanView Swivel Rewind was to use. The swivel head makes it easy to maneuver with one hand. The cord never got in my way thanks to the easy retraction feature (the "Rewind" in the name), and since it's upright, I didn't have to support the weight of the vac. I just guided it as it made quick work of messes. And the hose detached effortlessly to reach elevated areas.However, I had a hard time emptying the dustbin without getting my hands dirty or inadvertently sending gunk flying outside of the trash can. Your best bet is to release the trap-door mechanism with the bottom inside your trash receptacle.Best canister vacuum for pet hairJames Brains/Insider$593.23 FROM AMAZONOriginally $699.00 | Save 15%The pricey Miele Classic C1 Cat & Dog Vacuum picked up messes better than any other vac in our tests, and the disposable vacuum bag keeps you out of contact with the debris.Overall size: 40.5" x 20" x 18"Weight: 21 poundsDustbin capacity: 4.5-liter vacuum bagFilter type: HEPA and charcoalPower source: CordedWarranty: 1 year; 7 years for key components (including motor)Extras/Attachments: Brushless floorhead, dusting brush, upholstery tool, crevice tool, handheld motorized brush, extra filterPros: Did an impressive job of collecting all debris on all surfaces, disposal bags keep debris contained, runs quietlyCons: Not particularly user-friendly, have to buy replacement bags, heavy, expensiveFor those who can afford them, canister vacuums provide a powerful, yet quiet and mess-free way to clean up after your pet. The benefits of a canister vacuum were exemplified in our testing of the Miele Classic C1 Cat & Dog Vacuum. The Classic C1 was the best overall at picking up debris. In addition to picking up all of the pet hair on all of the surfaces we tested — while remaining free of pet hair tangles — the vacuum picked up almost all of the other materials on carpeting, hardwood, and furniture. The only substance it seemed to have any difficulty with was flour, but it still picked up at least 90% of the flour on each surface.My main gripes with the Miele Classic C1 Cat & Dog Canister Vacuum have to do with how user unfriendly it can be. At over 20 pounds, it's the heaviest vacuum we tested. Fortunately, you don't have to support the weight. The motor and debris collect in the wheeled canister which is connected by hose to the handle and vacuum head. However, I didn't like the feel of dragging the canister behind me as I cleaned. While the hard plastic handle felt durable, it wasn't comfortable in my hand. Also, the bulky powerbrush head didn't lend itself to easy maneuverability.I have mixed feelings about the disposable dust bag. The Classic C1 was the only vacuum we tested that used bags. On the one hand, I don't like the idea of producing more garbage, and replacement bags are an added expense ($14.90 for four replacement bags and two filters). (Miele also makes a bagless version of its pet vacuum, the Miele Blizzard CX1 Cat & Dog.) On the other hand, the 4.5-liter bag holds an impressive amount of debris, and it did a great job of keeping particles contained, which makes it a smart solution for allergy sufferers. How often you need to change the bag depends on a variety of factors, but I didn't come close to filling it despite sucking up more than two pounds of debris in my tests.Best handheld vacuum for pet hairJames Brains/Insider$195.23 FROM AMAZONIf you're looking for a vacuum that's easy to use on furniture and in cars, consider the Black+Decker Powerseries Extreme Cordless Stick Vacuum Cleaner with its outstanding performance in its handheld configuration.Overall size: 45.5" x 11" x 8"Weight: 7 poundsDustbin capacity: 0.65 litersFilter type: Washable filter and prefilterBattery life: 13 minutes on top powerCharge time: 4 hours, 45 minutesWarranty: 2 yearsExtras/Attachments: Crevice tool with flip-out brush, toothed attachments for pet hair, accessory holderPros: Cleaned well on all surfaces, lightweight in handheld configuration, easy to use, mess-free dustbin emptying, removable batteryCons: Short battery run time, long charge time, left behind pet hair on carpeting and hardwoodAll of the traditional handheld vacuums I tested performed poorly. Consequently, I can't recommend any of them. We will test more models for future updates to this guide. In the meantime, we wanted to provide a suitable handheld alternative. In its handheld configuration, the Black+Decker Powerseries Extreme Cordless Stick Vacuum Cleaner is your best bet.When used as a handheld, the Powerseries Extreme vacuum picked up all of the cat litter, flour, and pet hair on furniture. Plus, it was light enough that my arm didn't strain while holding it for long periods. In its stick vacuum mode, the performance was less impressive but still good. On both carpet and hardwood, it collected all of the Cheerios, cat litter, and ground coffee. But the Black+Decker vac only picked up around 85% of the pet hair and flour on the two surfaces.The rubberized bristles did a good job of remaining tangle-free, and I liked how the brushroll head swivels so you can make tight turns. I noticed that the vac seemed to do a better job of collecting debris when pulling the head toward me rather than pushing away.Emptying the dustbin was a tidy affair. The narrow design makes it easy to direct the gunk into the trash can, and the trap door release kept the particles out of contact with my hands. The biggest negative with the Black+Decker Powerseries Extreme Cordless Stick Vacuum Cleaner is its battery. On high power, the battery was in the middle of the pack in our tests. However, it was one of the slowest to charge. Fortunately, the battery is removable, and you can buy additional 20V lithium-ion batteries, which work with all Black+Decker cordless tools. They're currently about $35 on Amazon.Best robot vacuum for pet hairJames Brains/Insider$299.00 FROM AMAZONOriginally $399.99 | Save 25%$299.00 FROM WALMARTOriginally $399.99 | Save 25%$299.99 FROM TARGETOriginally $399.99 | Save 25%The Bissell SpinWave Robot Vacuum picked up all the pet hair on carpet in our tests and has a great assortment of mop attachments and accessories.Overall size: 12.25" x 12.25" x 3.25"Weight: 7.5 poundsDustbin capacity: 0.4 litersFilter type: Carbon foam and pleatedBattery life: 130 minutes (in low mode per manufacturer)Charge time: 5 hours (per manufacturer)Warranty: 1 yearExtras/Attachments: Wi-Fi app connectivity (available for iOS and Android), water tank with spinning mop pads, extra mop pads, trial-size cleaning formula, damp-proof mat, extra side brushes, extra air filter, cleaning toolPros: Quiet operation, app connectivity, picked up all of the pet hair in our tests, small size, great mop attachment and accessories, great job on corners and hardwoodCons: Gets stuck easily, can't set up no-go zones, can't clean furniture If you have pets that shed heavily and are tired of vacuuming every day, a robot vacuum may be your best bet. Since these robots try to pack a lot of features into a small space, they tend not to have the suction power or dustbin capacity of other vacuums. For daily, automated cleaning, though, a robot vacuum is indispensable. Since robot vacuums have a mind of their own, I put them through a different testing methodology. You can read more about how we test in our robot vacuum guide.  Based on my testing of dozens of robot vacuums, the Bissell SpinWave Robot Vacuum is the best for pet hair. It picked up all of the pet hair mix I laid out on hardwood and carpeting. And it only left traces of flour and kitty litter behind on hardwood. It also did a great job of going deep into corners. Pets are sometimes skittish around robot vacuums. Fortunately, the SpinWave is one of the quietest models I've tested. On high suction, it's 65 decibels (a little louder than a normal conversation), and it's just 58 decibels on quiet mode. The mop attachment has spinning mop pads that do an outstanding job of scrubbing dried-on liquids while avoiding carpets. The cleaning tool that comes with the vac is perfect for cutting away hairs that get tangled in the brush, though this wasn't a common problem in my testing.You can schedule the SpinWave to clean at the same time every day or mix it up using the Bissell Connect app (available for iOS and Android).The biggest negatives were the robovac got stuck on a one-inch threshold between rooms. You can't set no-go zones to avoid it, so you may need to put a physical barrier in the way. Also, if your pets tend to have frequent accidents, a robot vacuum may not be a good choice since it could potentially spread the mess and destroy the vacuum.What else we testedJames Brains/InsiderWe tested 13 vacuums for this guide. These are the ones that didn't make the cut.What else we recommend and why:Bissell MultiClean Allergen Lift-Off Pet, Model 2852: This and the Bissell CleanView Swivel Rewind were the best upright vacuums we tested. We decided to include the CleanView Swivel Rewind because it's more affordable and did a better job of picking up pet hair. Still, if you find the MultiClean Allergen Lift-Off Pet on sale for cheaper, consider picking it up, especially if your home is heavily carpeted.Bissell ICONpet Edge, Model 2894A: The ICONpet was easy to use, had one of the longest battery runtimes, and charged the fastest. It also did a great job of sucking up cat litter and flour on furniture in its handheld configuration. Emptying the dustbin was mess-free. However, it left behind 23% of the pet hair on carpet and furniture. Dyson V15 Detect: At $700, this is the most expensive model we tested. It has a bunch of fancy, high-end features, such as a screen that gives you a rundown of what size and how much particulate matter it sucked up. It did a great job of cleaning all of the surfaces, except it left behind traces of pet hair on carpeting and furniture. I liked that the battery charged in under four hours, but it only lasted for eight minutes on top power. I also found the unit was tiring to hold in handheld mode, and I didn't like that I had to keep the trigger depressed for it to run.Shark Vertex DuoClean PowerFins, Model AZ2002: The suction and rollers were so powerful with this upright vac that I felt like I was trying to rein in a shark. It excelled on carpet and hardwood. It was also easy to use. The biggest negative was the large dustbin was hard to empty without sending particles flying.What we don't recommend and why:Black+Decker Dustbuster, Model HHVK515JP07: This handheld was easy to use, affordable, and had one of the longest battery runtimes. However, it didn't do a good job of cleaning on any surface. It appears to have a loose flap leading into the dustbin, which caused a lot of the debris it sucked up to just fall back out onto the floor.Bissell Pet Hair Eraser: After testing this corded handheld vac on carpeting and hardwood, I gave up on it. It's just not pleasant to use. The head has a narrow opening so cleaning a mess takes several passes. Cheerios clogged it. Flour would come pouring back out of the head after I turned off the power, and it was hard to stay clean when disposing of debris.Black+Decker Spillbuster Portable Carpet Cleaner: In all fairness, this cordless handheld is designed for cleaning up wet messes. This is a guide for vacuums that clean up pet hair, a dry mess. It did not do well in our tests, but if I ever write a guide about the best vacuums for pet waste, I look forward to putting this vac through its paces.Shark Vertex Ultralight DuoClean PowerFins, Model HZ2002: This corded stick vacuum showed promise, initially picking up all of the materials except flour. As I used it more, I noticed that debris was escaping from the dustbin. This was a dealbreaker.Our pet vacuum testing methodologyJames Brains/InsiderWe put each vacuum in this guide through several objective tests. The most important factors to take into account when buying a vacuum are how well it picks up pet hair on a variety of surfaces and how easy it is to use, empty, and maintain.Here's a breakdown of how much of each material (in grams) the top picks cleaned up on each surface in our tests:Surface - MaterialDyson V11 AnimalBissell CleanViewMiele Classic C1Black+Decker Powerseries ExtremeCarpet - Cheerios47505048Carpet - Litter9710010098Carpet - Coffee100779697Carpet - Hair1110.89Carpet - Flour83889283Hardwood - Cheerios50505050Hardwood - Litter1001009797Hardwood - Coffee1009798100Hardwood - Hair1110.84Hardwood - Flour95939389Furniture - Litter50505050Furniture - Hair1111Furniture - Flour49444549 Here are the main attributes we look for and how we test them:Carpet cleaning: One at a time, I poured 100 grams of different substances on a five-square-foot patch of carpeting. I used 100 grams of flour, coffee grounds, and cat litter; 50 grams of Cheerios; and a one-gram mix of cat and dog hair of varying lengths. Then I vacuumed up as much of each substance as I could in 30 seconds. Lastly, I compared the weight of the dustbin after vacuuming to the starting weight to determine how much of each material the vacuum collected.Hardwood cleaning: The process was the same as with carpet cleaning, only the tests were conducted on five square feet of hardwood flooring.Furniture cleaning: I poured 50 grams each of cat litter and flour plus the one-gram pet hair mix on a chair with fabric upholstery. Then I used the manufacturer-recommended cleaning configuration for furniture. Again, to determine how much debris the vacuum collected in 30 seconds, I compared the weights of the dustbin before and after sucking up each material.Battery (if applicable): I fully charged the vacuum. Then I timed how long it could run on top power until the battery died. Lastly, I timed how long it took to fully charge the vacuum.Ease of use: This is a somewhat subjective experience measurement. As I used each vacuum, I paid close attention to what made it hard or easy to use. For example, the Dyson vacuums were harder to use because you need to keep your finger on the trigger to keep the vacuum running. Also, they were heavy in the handheld configuration. The cord got in the way with some of the corded vacuums. The Miele lost points because of its suboptimal maneuverability.Disposal: Aside from the Miele, which has a disposable vacuum bag, I emptied the dustbins of the vacuums at least a dozen times each. As I did this, I noted how messy the process was and if I came in contact with the debris. Preference was given to vacuums that were easy to empty and didn't send dust flying outside of the trash bin.Pet vacuum FAQsJames Brains/InsiderDo you need a vacuum for pet hair, or is it just marketing?There are certainly vacuums that aren't specifically marketed for pet hair that will work just fine. However, some characteristics set the best ones apart from ordinary vacuum cleaners. The main features that make a vacuum ideal for pet hair are strong suction, excellent filtration, and specialized cleaner heads and attachments. A good cleaner head will loosen up debris stuck deep in the fibers of carpeting and furniture. The strong suction will suck it up, and a well-sealed filtration system will ensure the debris doesn't end up back in the air you breathe.If you're concerned about allergens in your air, be sure you choose a vacuum that has a true HEPA filter. These filters (commonly found in air purifiers) capture 99.7% of 0.3-micron particles. What are the best attachments for pet hair?Powerful suction alone doesn't cut it when you're trying to remove pet hair that is embedded in your carpeting or furniture. To get pesky pet hair, you need a cleaner head that agitates the surface you're cleaning.The brushroll on the main head of most vacuum cleaners will loosen the pet hair enough for the vac to suck it up. But, for furniture, cat trees, dog beds, and other elevated surfaces, look for attachments that have mini-motorized brushrolls or at least bristles that will free up pet hair.What can you do to ensure the longevity and top performance of your vacuum?I'm guilty of not maintaining my vacuum until it gets so clogged that it doesn't work. Today's vacuums are so easy to clean, and the few seconds you take to clean them will increase their cleaning performance so drastically that you'll save time in the long run.Though maintenance varies from vacuum to vacuum and you should consult your user manual for the most accurate information, most models can benefit from regular filter cleaning and checking the brushroll and removing any debris that's built up.GlossaryJames Brains/InsiderBrushroll: Also known as a brush bar or roller brush, this is the long, cylindrical part of the vacuum head that comes in contact with the surface you're cleaning. It's designed to agitate carpet fibers so that the vacuum can suck up embedded dust, hair, and other debris that might not come loose with suction alone. On hard surfaces, you'll typically want to turn the brushroll off since it might scatter the substances you are trying to clean up.Canister: A canister vacuum has a wheeled container that houses the debris collection (typically a vacuum bag), suction motor, and filter system. This container is connected to the handle with a hose. As you vacuum, the debris travels through the vacuum head and hose and collects in the wheeled container that rolls with you as you clean.Crevice tool: This attachment, which comes with most vacuums, is long and narrow making it ideal for reaching into crevices between couch cushions, in your car, and other hard-to-reach spots.Handheld: While you hold most vacuums in your hand, this specifically refers to small vacs that you hold entirely off the ground while you use them. They are ideal for furniture, walls and ceilings, and vehicles.HEPA filter: An acronym for high-efficiency particulate air, HEPA filters must be able to capture at least 99.97% of 0.3-micron particles. This makes them ideal for allergy sufferers or anyone who wants to keep dust out of the air.Upright: Upright vacuums are the popular design that most people think of when they think of a vacuum cleaner. They have all of their components located in one unit: a vacuum head, dustbin, motor, and handle. These vacuums typically feature a cord and can stand upright on their own.Stick: Stick vacuums are becoming increasingly popular due to their versatility and easy storage. The motor, dustbin, and handle are one unit. A pole or stick connects the handle to the vacuum head, and you can typically remove the pole for handheld operation. Most stick vacuums are cordless.Check out our guides to more great vacuum cleanersConnie Chen/InsiderThe best vacuumsThe best affordable vacuum cleanersThe best cordless vacuumsThe best robot vacuumsRead the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderDec 9th, 2021

Ribbon (RBBN), Bezeq Ally to Set Up Flexgrid 400G Optical Network

Ribbon (RBBN) partners Israel-based telco, Bezeq, to build a new flexgrid 400G optical backbone network, enabling the latter to address increasing traffic requirements. Ribbon Communications Inc. RBBN has collaborated with a telecommunications company, Bezeq, to build a new flexgrid 400G optical backbone network. The latest move will strengthen Bezeq’s network infrastructure, enabling the telco to manage surging IP traffic loads and address accretive networking requirements.Based in Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel, Bezeq caters to a broad base of customers with avant-garde telecom services, namely fixed-line, mobile telephony, transmission, high-speed Internet and pay TV and domestic and international. Its main subsidiaries are Bezeq On-Line Ltd., Pelephone Communications Ltd. and DBS (Yes). Pelephone Communications is touted as Israel's first cellular phone operator with more than 2.8 million subscribers.Per the agreement, Bezeq capitalized on Ribbon’s Apollo family of optical transport and switching platforms to revamp its Israel-wide network. Together with flexgrid multi-degree Dense Wave Division Multiplexing, the network modernization move is likely to fulfill the traffic requirements for business and wireless customers as well as pave the path for achieving cost efficiencies with greater flexibility.Ribbon’s Apollo portfolio consists of switching and OTN products that provide high-density and energy-efficient solutions to various key sectors like transportation providers, utilities, defense and education. Its programmable and open optical networks function in disaggregated, multivendor environments while providing operators with future-proof solutions that are personalized per the business needs.With smooth capacity growth, it offers high-performance links to 1.2T and 400G ZR+ power-cost optimized pluggable dynamic coherent optics for pay-as-you-grow networks. The Apollo portfolio of switching platforms serves from access to core, covering all network topologies. It simplifies day-to-day operations to improve the overall efficiency of optical networks while addressing the challenging network traffic requirements.Further, the Apollo suite of products and solutions is specifically designed to aid service providers in deploying cost-effective open optical networks for transport continuity. Driven by such robust characteristics, the partnership will be a win-win for both entities. It will not only prepare Bezeq to meet shifting traffic patterns with scalability and lower cost per bit on the back of 400G wavelengths but also augment Ribbon’s thriving ecosystem of partners.Moving forward, Ribbon intends to remain focused on delivering real-time and secure data as well as voice network capabilities for the cloud, network and enterprise edge. The Plano, TX-based communications services developer intends to bolster its total addressable market and global reach in service provider networks and critical infrastructure companies. This will help it expand its relationships with fixed and mobile service providers while capitalizing on the booming 5G market for lucrative cash flow.Ribbon currently has a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). Its shares have declined 19.9% against the industry’s growth of 87.1% in the past year.Image Source: Zacks Investment ResearchYou can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.Harmonic, Inc. HLIT is a better-ranked stock in the broader industry, sporting a Zacks Rank #1. The consensus estimate for current-year earnings has been revised 23.1% upward over the past 60 days.Harmonic delivered a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 61.1%, on average. The stock has appreciated 55.2% in the past year. HLIT has a long-term earnings growth expectation of 15%.Ooma, Inc. OOMA also flaunts a Zacks Rank #1. Although the consensus estimate for current-year earnings remains unchanged over the past 60 days, it has a VGM Score of A, which implies that the stock is likely to outperform over the next one to three months.Ooma delivered a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 44.8%, on average. The stock has gained 19.9% in the past year.Clearfield, Inc. CLFD carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). The Zacks Consensus Estimate for its current-year earnings has been revised 8.8% upward over the past 60 days.Clearfield delivered a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 50.8%, on average. It has surged 162.1% in the past year. Infrastructure Stock Boom to Sweep America A massive push to rebuild the crumbling U.S. infrastructure will soon be underway. It’s bipartisan, urgent, and inevitable. Trillions will be spent. Fortunes will be made. The only question is “Will you get into the right stocks early when their growth potential is greatest?” Zacks has released a Special Report to help you do just that, and today it’s free. Discover 7 special companies that look to gain the most from construction and repair to roads, bridges, and buildings, plus cargo hauling and energy transformation on an almost unimaginable scale.Download FREE: How to Profit from Trillions on Spending for Infrastructure >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report Harmonic Inc. (HLIT): Free Stock Analysis Report Clearfield, Inc. (CLFD): Free Stock Analysis Report Ooma, Inc. (OOMA): Free Stock Analysis Report Ribbon Communications Inc. (RBBN): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacksDec 8th, 2021

Saturday links: efficiency and capacity

On Saturdays we catch up with the non-finance related items that we didn’t get to earlier in the week. You can check... AutosNissan is investing big to make the switch to EVs. (bloomberg.com)How magnetic roads could be used to charge EVs in transit. (nytimes.com)EnvironmentThe U.S. is the world's biggest contributor to plastic waste. (washingtonpost.com)Why Arctic precipitation will switch from snow to rain over time. (newscientist.com)State transportation departments are slowly coming to terms with the effects of climate change on infrastructure. (washingtonpost.com)Wildfire policy doesn't work any more in the U.S. (slate.com)The Bradford pear tree is just awful. (nytimes.com)ScienceResearchers are planning to drill into Antarctic ice to obtain a record of Earth's climate stretching back 1.5 million years. (bbc.com)Paleontologists have found a 'dog-sized dinosaur species that had a unique slashing tail weapon.' (apnews.com)What barnacles know about whales. (hakaimagazine.com)ArchaeologyResearchers have found a piece of jewelry from 41,500 years ago. (nature.com)A 13-year-old in England just found a bronze age axe. (nytimes.com)BehaviorBrett and Kate McKay, "Challenging cognitive distortions is a skill that takes practice to develop." (artofmanliness.com)Why people gravitate toward puzzles when we are depressed. (wired.com)On the difference between detachment and non-attachment. (dariusforoux.com)Two tricks to help tamp down on imposter syndrome. (hunterwalk.com)Why we fall for scams. (daily.jstor.org)AnimalsPangolins are the new pandas. (wsj.com)Why it might be better for older dogs to eat just once a day. (newscientist.com)CannabisMore Americans are smoking pot. What are the health effects? (fivethirtyeight.com)On the use of hemp to create sustainable building materials. (modernfarmer.com)FoodHow Vermont became a hub for saffron. (modernfarmer.com)Lessons learned from eating in nearly 8000 Chinese restaurants. (bbc.com)SportsWhy younger Americans are less interested in sports that previous generations. (insidehook.com)Attendance at sporting events is not back to pre-pandemic levels. (sportico.com)When football coaches start making $10 million a year it may be time to rethink the college athletics model. (nymag.com)Participation in amateur boxing is associated with a greater risk of dementia later in life. (newatlas.com)MusicThe 100 best songs of 2021 including "Be Sweet" by Japanese Breakfast. (npr.org)The 50 best albums of 2021 including 'Dark in Here' by The Mountain Goats. (pastemagazine.com)TV showsThe best TV shows of 2021 including 'White Lotus.' (nytimes.com)Variety critics' best shows of 2021 including 'Succession.' (variety.com)The 30 best shows of 2021 including 'Only Murders in the Building.' (pastemagazine.com)The 14 best shows of 2021 including 'Hacks.' (vanityfair.com)MoviesThe 10 best movies of 2021 including 'The Power of the Dog.' (vanityfair.com)Tyler Cowen's favorite movies of 2021 including 'The Dig.' (marginalrevolution.com)The 25 best movies of 2021 including 'CODA.' (indiewire.com)The 21 most underrated movies of 2021 including 'Test Pattern.' (vanityfair.com)Earlier on Abnormal ReturnsCoronavirus links: the case for boosters. (abnormalreturns.com)What you missed in our Friday linkfest. (abnormalreturns.com)Podcast links: the new world of work. (abnormalreturns.com)December ESG links: emissions incentives. (abnormalreturns.com)Are you a financial adviser looking for some out-of-the-box thinking? Then check out our weekly e-mail newsletter. (newsletter.abnormalreturns.com)Mixed mediaSmall businesses are having to make big bets on inventory this holiday season. (nytimes.com)American distillers are cheering the removal of EU tariffs. (npr.org)People are purging their closets amidst the pandemic. (wsj.com).....»»

Category: blogSource: abnormalreturnsDec 4th, 2021

60 gifts you can get on Amazon for under $50

A more expensive gift isn't always more meaningful. Here are 60 gifts under $50 that you'll love to give and others will love to receive. When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more. Wake up early and make mini heart-shaped waffles for a breakfast together. Amazon Affordable gifts can be just as thoughtful and useful as expensive gifts. We rounded up 60 gifts on Amazon for under $50 that anyone would love to receive. From an ice cream maker to a foot massager, there's a gift for everyone in this guide. For more gift ideas, check out all Insider Reviews gift guides. Your friends and family may not want an expensive gift, and it's a myth that a higher price tag means a present is more meaningful. It doesn't take more than $50 to bolster your mother's watercolor hobby or improve your brother's morning routine with a new coffee thermos. Finding a perfect gift also doesn't necessarily need to require an hour of your time in the trenches of Amazon search results. Below, we've rounded up 60 of the best finds on Amazon - with all the perks of easy, fast shipping and saved payment information. Check out all 60 cool gifts under $50 on Amazon: An electric s'mores maker to use indoors Amazon Indoor Electric S'mores Maker, $24.89This electric tabletop s'mores maker is game-changing as it lets you roasts s'mores indoors and all year long. It comes with two roasting forks an comportments trays to hold the s'mores ingredients for the perfect toasted treat. A portable touchscreen vanity mirror Amazon Touchscreen Vanity Mirror, $25.99This touchscreen vanity mirror enhances any facial ritual from glam, skincare routines, to shaving. It makes your face clearly visible with its 33 radiant LED lights and works up to 250 minutes on a full charge. The portable device offers comfortable viewing angles at 30 or 100 degrees at adjustable brightness levels.  A digital camera that instantly prints your memories Amazon Kodak Printomatic Digital Instant Print Camera, $49.99Instead of waiting on photos, this digital camera instantly prints those precious memories. Each moment is captured on 2 x 3" photos that are in full-color and durable, where they are tear and water-resistant. This convenient device can also save the photos to a MicroSD Card.  A comfy polyester bathrobe Amazon/Insider NY Threads Men's Polyester Bathrobe, from $19.99NY Threads Women's Polyester Bathrobe, from $19.99If looking to stay warm, this ultra-soft polyester bathrobe is perfect to relax and lounge in for the cold months. It features front pockets and an adjustable waist belt for a snug fit.  A pan that makes ice cream in minutes Amazon Chef'n Sweet Spot Ice Cream Maker, $44.95For a simple and quick way to make ice cream, you'll want to surprise them with this ice cream maker. There's no electricity, buttons, or tech involved, making it a great gift for anyone, even those with children. It's basically a quick-freeze shallow metal bowl that freezes your ice cream batter in a matter of minutes. You can read more about why we love this product, in our guide to the best ice cream makers.  A pocket projector for the movie enthusiast Amazon ARTlii Pico Projector, $49.99Projectors used to be clunky and old school, but this mini projector makes viewing easy and compact. They can slip it into their pocket and even travel with it, minus any hassle. They'll be sure to enjoy many movie nights with this gift. A small toiletry bag for the avid traveler Herschel Herschel Chapter Toiletry Kit, from $25.49If they're getting back into traveling, you can't go wrong with gifting them a toiletry bag. They can ditch the plastic bags or pouches that aren't even waterproof. This toiletry kit has a waterproof main compartment, an internal mesh storage sleeve, and a leather accent on the zipper. Plus, it's small enough to fit into their backpack, work bag, or carry-on.  A cocktail shaker for the one who likes to get creative in the kitchen Connie Chen/Insider BrüMate Shaker, $34.99With summertime upon us, there's no better gift than a cocktail shaker for the one who loves to create new drinks. This one in particular is even named the best cobbler option in our guide to the best cocktail shakers. We love this shaker because it doubles as a drinking vessel, is triple-insulated, has a built-in strainer, and comes in a bunch of colors.  A foot massager to ease stress and pain Amazon HoMedics Triple Action Shiatsu Foot Massager, $49.99After long days on their feet, they'll appreciate this foot massager gift. We name this one the best budget option in our guide to the best foot massagers for a reason. It can be used on all parts of the foot and parts of the body, is relatively compact, and is easy to store. Their feet will thank you for the endless massages that come with this gift.  An all-in-one wallet for the jetsetter Amazon Zoppen Travel Passport Wallet, $14.99With more people getting vaccinated and travel restrictions lifting, this wallet will help them prep for their next trip. It holds passports, boarding passes, credit cards, and every other essential in one slim design. A relaxing weighted blanket Amazon YnM Weighted Blanket, from $49.80Gift a peaceful night's sleep with this calming blanket that comes in 40 colors and 15 various sizes and weights. Its seven-layer system includes tiny beads that deliver a contoured but comfortable fit to your body.Read our full review of the YnM Weighted Blanket here. Fluffy slippers that feel and look like a cloud Amazon Parlovable Faux Fur Slippers, from $18.99The Parlovable Faux Fur Slippers are among our favorite slippers for lounging around the house. They make your feet feel — and look — like clouds thanks to the faux fur upper and memory foam sole.    A watercolor set that's great for beginners Amazon/Business Insider Norberg & Linden Watercolor Paint Set, $15.99Everything they need lives in this watercolor starter kit: a 36-color palette, a 12-page watercolor pad, and six brushes of various sizes. Not only does this set contain all of the essentials for a newcomer, but it's also portable. The pad measures in at 5.5 inches x 8.5 inches, and the watercolors themselves come in a lightweight, covered pan. Family and friends of all ages can enjoy painting with this kit. A journal for maximizing productivity and organization amazon Productivity Planner, $24.99For the high achiever in your life, this productivity journal can help further motivate them to be their best self. This journal's undated, daily layout provides priority templates to get them headed in the right direction to accomplish their many goals. It also includes extra space for them to jot down their ideas, future tasks, and inspirations. A jade roller for the beauty enthusiast Amazon/Business Insider Ginger Chi Jade Roller, $23.99They can pamper themselves on the regular with this jade roller from Ginger Chi. It's made from 100% certified Xiuyan jade along with silver nickel. The double-sided roller helps to reduce puffiness and increase elasticity, with a larger end for all over your face and a smaller end for tighter areas. A travel pouch and a tester of the brand's Regenerating Serum also come with the jade roller, making it perfect for novices and travelers alike. This product has even earned a spot as best for beginners in our guide to the best jade rollers. A portable cooler bag for spring and summer excursions Amazon Lifewit Collapsible Cooler Bag, $32.99Look no further than this convenient, hefty, and compact cooler bag. They can travel in style to spring and summer picnics, camping trips, and beach days. The padded handle and removable shoulder strap make it comfortable to carry, while its ability to collapse makes it easy to store. It's also large with a 24 liter capacity, meaning they can fit all of their essentials in one insulated bag. A stylish bucket hat for any season Amazon/Business Insider The Hat Depot 300N Unisex Bucket Hat, from $10.99They'll appreciate this bucket hat that's both trendy and protective. It comes in just about any pattern and color — neons, tie-dyes, camos, and neutrals are just a few of the options. This hat is made of 100% cotton and includes eyelets for a more breathable feel. Plus, the nearly 2.25-inch brim will keep their skin and eyes protected from the sun. A coffee table that's more than just decor Amazon "Humans" by Brandon Stanton, $13.87A coffee table book is a great housewarming gift. But this hardcover book does more than just look pretty. It's an expansion of Brandon Stanton's "Humans of New York" photography project. Page after page follows Stanton's travels across the world, documenting portraits and short, but impactful stories of the people he's encountered.  The gift of light Amazon AIXPI LED Ring Light, $16.14Give the gift of light with Insider Reviews' best budget ring light. This simple, easy-to-use light has everything that phone videographers need to get started. It includes a tripod setup that's easy to move and adjust to your angles. You can also toggle between its three different light settings — white, warm yellow, and warm white — to find your perfect glow.  An ambient moon lamp Amazon DTOETKD Multi-Color Moon Lamp, $19.88Earning the title as Insider Reviews' best multi-color moon lamp, this light basks the room in 16 different soothing hues. Its wooden stand props up the 3D moon and, thanks to its sleep timer, you can fall asleep to its glow without needing to worry about leaving it on all night.  A portable picnic blanket Amazon Oniva Outdoor Picnic Blanket Tote XL, from $33.95The Oniva Outdoor Picnic Blanket Tote is a huge blanket that fits six people easily. Our Insider Reviews team loved it so much they named it the best picnic blanket overall. Its soft fleece interior has water-resistant backing that folds up quite compact. A Bluetooth microphone to sing karaoke Amazon Wireless Karaoke Microphone, $19.99It's a gift for everyone to enjoy, whether or not you can carry a tune. You can connect your phone and play music through the microphone's speakers, and turn the volume up and down depending on your comfort. It's the perfect thing to shake up a night in or to break the ice at a holiday gathering. A vintage puzzle that doubles as cute home decor Amazon Cavallini Papers & Co. Butterflies 1,000 Piece Puzzle, $22All the puzzle lovers in your life will be beyond grateful for this gift. From house plants to constellations, Cavallini Papers & Co. puzzles are both challenging and aesthetically pleasing. Once they're done, they can frame it and hang it up as wall decor.  A smart home camera at a fraction of the cost Amazon Wyze Alexa-Enabled Smart Home Camera, $31.28With 3,000+ five star reviews, the Wyze v3 Camera is a popular and inexpensive smart home option that rivals expensive models. It's Alexa- and Google Assistant-enabled and lets you view anywhere on your mobile device.  Read our full review of the Wyze v3 Camera here.  A media streamer that can turn a basic TV into a smart one Amazon Roku Streaming Stick+, $49Essentially, the Roku Streaming Stick+ is your standard media streaming stick and can convert a basic TV into a smart one that can stream Netflix, Prime Video, Hulu, and more. It's Alexa-enabled, too, so you can control it by voice.Read our full review of the Roku Streaming Stick+ here.  Homemade breakfast made with a heart-shaped waffle maker Amazon Dash Mini Waffle Maker Machine, $19.99Get up early, and make your friend, significant other, or family member heart-shaped mini waffles for breakfast. The Dash Mini Maker is compact enough to keep for special occasions without cramping your kitchen, too.   A wooden caddy tray for the world's most luxurious bath Amazon Royal Craft Luxury Bathtub Caddy, from $39.97Few things are as luxurious as a long bath filled with plenty of activities and treats. This one is waterproof, slip-resistant, and designed to accommodate one or two bathers at once.  A compilation of the love letters of great men Amazon "Love Letters of Great Men", $13.95If you find yourself at a loss for words, let the love letters of great men do the talking for you. This volume includes love letters written by Mark Twain, Winston Churchill, Napoleon Bonaparte, James Joyce, John Keats, Dylan Thomas, and more.  A calendar for dog lovers Amazon/Business Insider WeRateDogs 2021 Calendar, $13.41If they're a dog person (and even if they're not), they'll appreciate waking up each day to a new pup photo with an exciting backstory. The calendar follows the same format as WeRateDogs' popular Twitter account, and don't worry, every dog receives a rating of at least 11/10. A vacuum insulated stainless steel water bottle that people swear by Hydro Flask Hydro Flask 12 oz Travel Coffee Mug, $34.45Hydro Flask is a cult favorite for its water bottles, and these vacuum insulated stainless steel mugs work just as well. They'll keep hot drinks hot for up to six hours, and cold drinks cold up to twenty-four hours. Amazon/Business Insider Anker Nano 20W USB-C Charger, $13.59This year's iPhones won't come with a charging adaptor in the box, so if you're getting someone a new phone during the holidays, they'll definitely need one of these. The Anker Nano charges three times faster than the typical Apple charger and is physically the same size. An unfussy cookbook meant for hosting one person or many Amazon "Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat: Mastering the Elements of Good Cooking" by Samin Nosrat, $16.67"Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat" is a New York Times bestseller and a James Beard Award winner for a reason. This book offers a great explanation of exactly why food tastes so good, breaking it down into four main elements.   A powerful wireless charger for their desk Amazon Anker Wireless Charger, $49.89Get them a wireless charger that lets them charge their phone without having to plug it in or take off their phone case first.  A durable, inexpensive Fire tablet Amazon Fire 7 Tablet, $49.99Amazon's Fire tablets are a relatively great deal for a tablet if you're not looking for anything super high-performance driven or luxe. For the average user, they're a good fit. It's Alexa-enabled, so you can ask for quick access to music and entertainment or messages and calling, and it has up to seven hours of battery life. You can shop the latest versions for a bit more money here. A portable laptop desk Amazon AmazonBasics Adjustable and Portable Laptop Table, from $42.55As more and more people find themselves working from home, a laptop desk is essential for comfort, convenience, and efficiency. This model is height-adjustable, so it can easily double as a breakfast tray or writing station.  A notebook that they can fill with their favorite travel memories Amazon Maleden Spiral Bound Traveler Notebook, $12.99If they're always recounting memories from their favorite trip, a travel journal is an excellent place for them to put all of these stories to paper. This particular model comes with binder rings, so they can easily include tickets, photos, and other mementos. A candle that pays homage to their favorite place on Earth Amazon Homesick Candles, $34Gift them a candle customized to smell like their beloved hometown, college town, or favorite getaway. Read our full review of Homesick Candles here.  A bestselling book Amazon "Where the Crawdads Sing" by Delia Owens, $16.49A bestseller and one of the most talked-about books, "Where the Crawdads Sing" is an ode to the natural world and a heartbreaking coming-of-age story. It's set in a coastal town in North Carolina and follows a possible murder and the local suspect, the misunderstood Kya Clark, who's been known simply as "Marsh Girl" for years. A tough, wind-resistant umbrella they can rely upon Amazon Repel Windproof Travel Umbrella, $23.95Hear me out. It may seem boring, but everybody needs an umbrella, and this is way better than whatever version they bought the last time they veered into a CVS while it was raining. We think it's the best umbrella you can buy thanks to how well it resists wind and how long it lasts, and they'll find themselves thankful for it often.  A portable and waterproof speaker Amazon Anker Soundcore 2 Portable Bluetooth Speaker, from $39.99This wireless Bluetooth speaker is waterproof, durable, and easily portable. It has 24 hours of playtime and maintains sound quality even at high volumes.  Another noteworthy book Amazon "On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous: A Novel" by Ocean Vuong, $9.67Ocean Vuong is an American poet, and "On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous" is his much-anticipated debut novel. Published in 2019, it's a letter from a son to a mother who cannot read that delves into family history, addiction, violence, trauma, compassion, and tenderness. If they're a bookworm looking for the next bittersweet American classic, you may want to start here. Looking for other options? Amazon has a list of 2020 bestsellers, and a list of 100 books to read in a lifetime.  A cast-iron skillet with almost 10,000 five-star reviews Amazon Lodge 10.25-Inch Cast-Iron Skillet, from $17.90This 10.25-inch cast-iron skillet is one that became minorly famous online and garnered over 98,000 Amazon reviews. Lodge has been making cast iron cookware since 1896, so they've learned a thing or two about what makes a great kitchen tool.  An electric bottle opener Amazon Oster Cordless Electric Wine Bottle Opener with Foil Cutter, $19.99This slim device cuts foil and uncorks wine bottles seamlessly, then stows easily out of sight. It has to be charged, but it'll open 30 bottles per charge.  Highly rated in-ear earbuds Amazon Panasonic ErgoFit In-Ear Earbud Headphones, from $9.99Whether for everyday use, the gym, as a backup, or just for travel when Bluetooth headphones won't connect to the in-flight entertainment, there are ample uses for really solid in-ear buds with a stereo plug. This pair has an extended cord and three sets of ear pads for the perfect fit. A famous hot sauce made from peppers grown in over 30 community gardens in the Bronx Amazon Small Axe Peppers Variety 3-Pack, $21.99This all-natural, tangy hot sauce is best known for its part in the popular Youtube series "Hot Ones." It's made from peppers grown in community gardens across the US.  Anthony Bourdain's bestselling culinary and travel memoir Amazon "A Cook's Tour: Global Adventures in Extreme Cuisines" by Anthony Bourdain, from $13.19This is Anthony Bourdain's New York Times bestselling chronicle of traveling the world in search of the globe's greatest culinary adventures. From California to Cambodia, Bourdain spent much of his adult life searching for the perfect meal. A cold brew coffee maker Amazon Takeya Deluxe Cold Brew Coffee Maker, $24.99This cold brew maker is as inexpensive as it is convenient, and it can even save hundreds of dollars per year. It easily fits into most refrigerator doors, is simple to use, and makes a good amount of cold brew at once. If they need more than one quart, there's also a two-quart option under $40. Read our full review of the Takeya Deluxe Cold Brew Coffee Maker here. The cult-favorite clay mask that took over the internet Amazon Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay Facial & Body Mask, $14.95The Aztec Clay Mask is one of those cult-favorite products of the internet that's driven from the obscure depths of Amazon to beauty vlogs, Youtube testimonials with over 4 million views, and even the Sephora beauty blog. It's been called "the world's most powerful facial," and it's also under $10. It can be mixed with water, but it works best with a little bit of apple cider vinegar.Read our full review of the Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay Facial & Body Mask here. A universal USB wall charger that fits four devices Amazon Anker 4-Port USB Wall Charger with Foldable Plug, $31.99Double the outlet space with this four-port USB wall charger. Its advanced charging capacity also means their tech will charge faster than average. An Atlas Obscura calendar full of daily photos and tidbits about the world's strangest and coolest places or festivals Amazon Atlas Obscura Page-A-Day 2021 Calendar, $15.99The Atlas Obscura calendar is a fun, novel way to infuse each day with an anchor of appreciation and wonder for the world. There are hundreds of photos that celebrate the world's strangest and coolest places, festivals, and foods. Travelers and life-long learners are particularly good candidates for this one. A milk frother so they can make their favorite coffee or hot chocolate drinks from home Amazon PowerLix Milk Frother, $14.95A milk frother is an unexpectedly convenient tool to have around the house, and it can make an otherwise normal cup of coffee or hot chocolate closer to what you'd buy at the cafe. With it, they can make lattes, cappuccinos, and frothy coffees every morning for less. The best travel pillow we've found Amazon Trtl Travel Pillow, from $29.99We know it sounds gimmicky, but these travel pillows from Trtl really do make a difference, which is why we've voted them the best travel pillows you can buy. There's a slightly more expensive version that's even better, too.  A delicious gift basket of caramel, chocolate, and crunchy gourmet treats Amazon Chocolate, Caramel and Crunch Grand Gift Basket, $37For less than $40, you can gift gourmet chocolates and caramels pre-wrapped in a keepsake basket. The set includes seasonal favorites like caramel corn, chocolate pretzels, and peanut brittle.  A hair turban that will cut drying time in half Amazon Aquis Original Microfiber Hair Turban, from $20.99Aquis' cult-favorite hair towels have inspired a slew of rave reviews online, including one from our own team of product reviewers.The towels are made from a proprietary fabric called Aquitex that's composed of ultra-fine fibers (finer than silk) that work to reduce the amount of friction the hair experiences while in its weakest state. It also prevents hygral fatigue — the stretching and swelling of wet hair that makes it vulnerable to frizz and damage — by cutting the hair's drying time by 50%. A charging case that protects and charges wireless devices on the go Amazon Mophie Wireless Power Capsule External Battery Charger, $20.67This compact, portable case charges wearables like the Fitbit Flex, Beats by Dre, and JBL Wireless Earbuds on the go. The 1,4000 mAh rechargeable battery translates to about 60 hours of audio playback in wireless earbuds.  Alexa-enabled smart plugs Amazon Wemo Mini Smart WiFi-Enabled Plug, $28These plugs turn your devices into smart tech. They help your giftee control their lights and appliances from a free app on their phone, or by voice using Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Apple HomeKit.  A hilarious card game Amazon What Do You Meme? Party Game, $29.99This hilarious popular card game brings together the funniest memes of the Internet with over 350 caption cards for funny combinations.  A highly rated pump with universal wine stoppers to keep open bottles fresh for longer Amazon The Original Vacu Vin Wine Saver with Two Vacuum Stoppers, $17.99This hyper-popular pump and universal wine stopper set keeps open bottles of wine from prolonged exposure to the air, which is what causes the breakdown of its character and taste. This version makes a "click" sound when the user has managed to create an airtight seal and has almost 6,000 five-star reviews. A photo book from one of the most renowned wildlife photographers Amazon "Polar Obsession" by Paul Nicklen, $35.49Paul Nicklen is an acclaimed Canadian photographer, film-maker, and marine biologist known for his work in the Arctic. He's a frequent contributor to National Geographic and has won the BBC Wildlife Photographer award of the year as well as the prestigious World Press Photo award for photojournalism, and this coffee table book is a beautiful homage to polar landscapes.  A powerful external battery Amazon Elecjet PowerPie, $49.99It's not groundbreaking to give your partner a portable charger, but they'll find themselves grateful for it repeatedly. It's perfect for traveling and commuting, when it's safe to again, and acts as insurance for long days away from home. It reportedly charges iPhones twice as fast as the original iPhone charger. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderSep 28th, 2021

Coronavirus links: two years of knowledge

A coronavirus-focused linkfest is a weekly feature here at Abnormal Returns. Please stay safe, get a booster shotat a vaccination site near... VaccinesNearly all teens in the ICU are unvaccinated. (washingtonpost.com)Americans aren't getting their flu shots. (nytimes.com)Where are the variant-specific boosters? (marginalrevolution.com)It's not clear that we will need Omicron-specific vaccines. (nytimes.com)OmicronOmicron may be milder, but that doesn't mean it isn't going to have a big societal impact. (theatlantic.com)It's still worth it to push off an Omicron infection a couple of months. (bloomberg.com)PregnancyAccording to a new study, unvaccinated pregnant people who get Covid-19 are at much higher risk for complications. (statnews.com)Pregnant, unvaccinated women are taking some big risks. (slate.com)ChildrenHow a school principal is trying to manage through the pandemic. (slate.com)How has the pandemic has affected development of young children. (nature.com)OSHAThe U.S. Supreme Court has struck down OSHA's vaccine-or-test rule. (statnews.com)The U.S. Supreme Court takes precautions against Covid that its ruling denies companies. (washingtonpost.com)WorkMore Americans aren't isolating because they have to go to work. (theatlantic.com)Covid was the leading cause of death for U.S. police officers in 2021. (nytimes.com)United Airlines ($UAL) has thousands of workers out with Covid, but zero of its vaccinated employees are currently hospitalized. (npr.org)Citigroup ($C) employees have responded to its vaccine mandate. (nytimes.com)It's not always easy to walk away from a job that is also a calling. (wsj.com)Why front line workers aren't tested more often. (statnews.com)Unvaccinated workers miss more work. (axios.com)CareNurses are being pressured to keep working. (businessinsider.com)Staff shortages are forcing hospitals to cut capacity. (wsj.com)How staff shortages ripple through a hospital. (statnews.com)A first hand story of how Omicron-filled ERs are putting other patients at-risk. (ritholtz.com)What it's like inside a hospital overwhelmed with Covid patients. (indystar.com)How to combat nursing burnout. (statnews.com)Nurses are worn out. (scientificamerican.com)DataU.S. Covid cases are hitting record highs. (washingtonpost.com)Why distinguishing between Covid cases 'with or for' is a big distraction. (theatlantic.com)How the Covid vaccination divide has evolved over time. (ritholtz.com)MaskingThe CDC wants you to wear better masks. (statnews.com)Health care workers should be wearing N95 masks at this point. (theatlantic.com)It's time to upgrade to N95 masks. (vox.com)People in surgical masks are perceived as more attractive. (theguardian.com)How often can you reuse a N95 mask? (washingtonpost.com)TestingSome companies are being generous with Covid tests. (nytimes.com)Are throat swabs better at detecting Omicron? (wsj.com)First vaccines, now testing is the target of misinformation. (nytimes.com)How to get reimbursed for your at-home Covid tests. (npr.org)Next week you can order four free at-home Covid tests. (npr.org)ResearchHow some Covid-19 infections seem to generate an autoimmune response. (sciencedaily.com)How humidity, time and temperature affect the ability of the virus to infect. (bloomberg.com)How B and T cells work to keep us from getting sick. (vox.com)GlobalCountries are scrambling to get Covid antiviral pills. (wapo.st)Omicron will put China's zero-Covid, and vaccines, to the test. (wsj.com)Cases seem to have peaked in the UK. (nytimes.com)Is Covax finally finding its footing? (vox.com)StatesHow Omicron is hitting well-vaccinated Puerto Rico. (vox.com)Texas hospitals are still living through a surge in cases. (vox.com)PodcastsAndy Slavitt talks with Michael Mina, Chief Science Officer at eMed, about the ins and outs of testing. (podcasts.apple.com)Russ Roberts talks with Gregory Zuckerman about his book "A Shot to Save the World." (econtalk.org)Bakari Sellers talks with Dr. Anthony Fauci talk about Covid-19 misconceptions. (open.spotify.com)RisksDr. Aaron Carroll, "If you are sick, even with severe Covid, you want someone with a doctor’s viewpoint caring for you. America, however, is not a patient." (nytimes.com)A changing virus and inconsistent messaging has made for mass confusion. (washingtonpost.com)Spotify ($SPOT) has a policy against Covid misinformation, except when it comes to Joe Rogan. (vulture.com)We are collectively still pretty bad talking about pandemic risks. (theatlantic.com)Why it's best not to get Covid during peak infection. (jeremyconrad.com)Mixed mediaTyler Cowen, "In January 2022, America remains an emotionally damaged nation." (bloomberg.com)Post-Omicron people are ready to go back out. (wsj.com)On the rise of the "vaxxed and done" crowd. (theatlantic.com).....»»

Category: blogSource: abnormalreturnsJan 15th, 2022

Eni (E) Acquires Solar Konzept Greece Amid Clean Energy Plan

With the acquisition, Eni (E) extends its renewable energy footprint to Greece as it aims to reach carbon neutrality by 2050. Eni E, through its retail gas and power division Eni gas e luce, acquired Solar Konzept Greece (“SKGR”) from Solar Konzept International for an undisclosed amount.The acquisition marks Eni’s entry into the renewable electricity generation market of Greece. Eni extends its renewable energy footprint to the country as it aims to reach carbon neutrality by 2050.SKGR has a development platform for photovoltaic plants in Greece. Its portfolio involves a pipeline of projects at various development stages. The portfolio of projects is said to have a capacity of nearly 800 megawatts. The projects will constitute the basis for further development in the country.Eni gas e luce, which will be renamed as Plenitude, has been contributing to the Greek retail energy market since 2000. The company has about 500,000 retail customers in the country. Eni gas e luce owned an operating renewable energy portfolio, with a capacity of 1.2 gigawatts (GW) at 2021-end. It aims to increase the capacity to more than 6 GW by 2025 and 15 GW by 2030.Eni focuses on capitalizing on the mounting demand for renewables and green energy products. The company focuses on creating more value through energy transition. Notably, the latest acquisition is part of Eni’s plans to expand its renewable capacity along with vertically integrated activities in the power retail business. The agreement fits well with Eni’s goal of being a leader in the production and marketing of decarbonized products.Company Profile & Price PerformanceHeadquartered in Rome, Italy, Eni is one of the leading integrated energy players in the world.Shares of Eni have outperformed the industry in the past six months. The stock has gained 30.9% compared with the industry’s 26.9% growth. Image Source: Zacks Investment Research Zacks Rank & Key PicksEni currently carries a Zack Rank #3 (Hold).Investors interested in the energy sector might look at the following companies that presently carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.Patterson-UTI Energy, Inc. PTEN is one of the largest North American land drilling contractors, having a large, high-quality fleet of drilling rigs. The company’s technologically advanced ‘Apex’ rigs are the key to its success. Patterson-UTI’s proprietary design makes the rigs move faster than conventional ones, drill quicker and more efficiently than conventional ones, and allows for a safer operating environment.Patterson-UTI’s long-term debt is around $902 million. Importantly, the company's debt-to-capitalization at the end of the third quarter was 34.3%, quite conservative versus 39.4% for the sub-industry to which it belongs. Apart from low leverage for its industry, PTEN has ample liquidity with cash and cash equivalents of $956 million, and $600 million available under the revolving credit facility. Also, the company has a comfortable debt maturity profile with no major debt outstanding until 2028.Transocean, Inc. RIG, based in Switzerland, is the world’s largest offshore drilling contractor and leading provider of drilling management services. Despite the struggles with the coronavirus-induced price and demand slump, Transocean's backlog of $7.1 billion reflects steady customer demand, and offers earnings and cash flow visibility.RIG reported revenue efficiency of an impressive 98.1% in the third quarter of 2021. This is an indication of a minimal loss of revenues due to downtime and Transocean’s superior efficiency in translating its industry-leading backlog into cash.PetroChina Company Limited PTR is the largest integrated oil company in China. PetroChina is one of the largest producers of crude oil and natural gas in the world. The company’s natural gas business offers lucrative growth prospects in the coming years as China moves from coal to natural gas.PetroChina currently has a Zacks Style Score of A for both Value and Momentum. In the first six months of 2021, PTR's upstream segment posted an operating income of RMB 30.9 billion, nearly tripling from the year-ago profit of RMB 10.4 billion. Infrastructure Stock Boom to Sweep America A massive push to rebuild the crumbling U.S. infrastructure will soon be underway. It’s bipartisan, urgent, and inevitable. Trillions will be spent. Fortunes will be made. The only question is “Will you get into the right stocks early when their growth potential is greatest?” Zacks has released a Special Report to help you do just that, and today it’s free. Discover 5 special companies that look to gain the most from construction and repair to roads, bridges, and buildings, plus cargo hauling and energy transformation on an almost unimaginable scale.Download FREE: How to Profit from Trillions on Spending for Infrastructure >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report Transocean Ltd. (RIG): Free Stock Analysis Report PattersonUTI Energy, Inc. (PTEN): Free Stock Analysis Report Eni SpA (E): Free Stock Analysis Report PetroChina Company Limited (PTR): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here......»»

Category: topSource: zacksJan 14th, 2022

Marriott Vacations (VAC) Benefits From Robust Occupancy

Marriott Vacations (VAC) benefits from strong occupancies (for most of its North America resorts) and solid contract sales. The Hotels and Motels industry is gradually coming out of the woods. In the past year, the industry has gained 18.4%. Marriott Vacations Worldwide Corporation VAC, which belongs to the same industry, has gained 25.8% in the same time frame. The company has been benefiting from strong occupancies (for most of its North America resorts) and solid contract sales.Let’s take a look at the estimate revision trend in order to get a clear picture of what analysts are thinking about the company. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings for2022 is pegged at $9.71 per share, up from $9.33 in the past 60 days. This indicates an improvement of 132.9% from the year-ago period. The consensus mark for revenues stands at $4.52 billion, suggesting growth of 15.6% year over year. Let’s delve deeper and analyze the factors that are pushing the stock higher.Factors Driving GrowthMarriott Vacations have been witnessing sequential improvement in occupancy rates, which reflects people’s willingness to go on vacations. During third-quarter 2021, the company reported sequential improvements in occupancy at its European locations. The company reported solid improvements in urban locations such as San Diego and Boston with occupancy rates of approximately 85% and 95%, respectively. The company remains optimistic about a growing willingness among customers to resume travel. Meanwhile, owner and preview reservations for the first half of 2022 were up 10% from 2019 levels.Hoteliers are adopting aggressive technological ways to sustain competition and meet the changing nature of consumer demand. Marriott Vacations has been focusing on digital expansion and innovation of the latest techniques. The company has been pursuing opportunities in other social media and digital advertising platforms. Management is optimistic about integrating data analytics into its marketing strategy. It continues to utilize technology to lower back-office costs and improve associates' experience by leveraging artificial intelligence to augment and automate several high-volume internal transactional processes.During the third quarter of 2021, the company’s Vacation Ownership business launched a new digital reservation technology to boost marketing efficiency and improve customer service. It is making good progress on the technology needed to link Marriott, Westin and Sheraton products into a single points-based offering by early 2022. The company will increase the use of digital tools to strengthen its infrastructure, grow online package sales, enable self-service bookings, make real-time offerings to enhance the overall customer experience and drive back-office efficiencies.The Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) company has sufficient liquidity to temporarily survive the current scenario of unpredictability. As of Sep 30, 2021, cash and cash equivalents were $0.4 billion compared with $1.3 billion as of Jun 30, 2021. The company stated availability of funds under the Warehouse Credit Facility and the Revolving Corporate Credit Facility with a borrowing capacity of $600 million. Marriott Vacations had $4.4 billion in debt outstanding (net of unamortized debt issuance costs) at the end of the third quarter, down from $5.3 billion at the end of second-quarter 2021. The company stated that it has no corporate debt maturities before late 2022. The times-interest-earned ratio at the end of the third quarter came in at 1.2x compared with 0.4x in the previous quarter. This indicates that the company is well-poised to meet debt obligations.Image Source: Zacks Investment ResearchOther Key PicksOther top-ranked stocks, which warrant a look in the Consumer Discretionary sector include Hilton Grand Vacations Inc. HGV, Bluegreen Vacations Holding Corporation BVH and RCI Hospitality Holdings, Inc. RICK. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.Hilton Grand Vacations sports a Zacks Rank #1. The company has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 411.1%, on average. Shares of the company have increased 67.8% in the past year.The Zacks Consensus Estimate for Hilton Grand Vacations’ 2022 sales and earnings per share (EPS) suggests growth of 27.7% and 154.4%, respectively, from the year-ago period’s levels.Bluegreen Vacations sports a Zacks Rank #1. The company has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 695%, on average. Shares of the company have surged 166.1% in the past year.The Zacks Consensus Estimate for Bluegreen Vacations’ 2022 sales and EPS indicates a rise of 7.6% and 0.4%, respectively, from the year-ago period’s levels.RCI Hospitality flaunts a Zacks Rank #1. The company has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 67.7%, on average. Shares of the company have surged 144.7% in the past year.The Zacks Consensus Estimate for RCI Hospitality’s 2022 sales and EPS suggests growth of 34.9% and 22.1%, respectively, from the year-ago period’s levels. Infrastructure Stock Boom to Sweep America A massive push to rebuild the crumbling U.S. infrastructure will soon be underway. It’s bipartisan, urgent, and inevitable. Trillions will be spent. Fortunes will be made. The only question is “Will you get into the right stocks early when their growth potential is greatest?” Zacks has released a Special Report to help you do just that, and today it’s free. Discover 5 special companies that look to gain the most from construction and repair to roads, bridges, and buildings, plus cargo hauling and energy transformation on an almost unimaginable scale.Download FREE: How to Profit from Trillions on Spending for Infrastructure >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report Marriot Vacations Worldwide Corporation (VAC): Free Stock Analysis Report RCI Hospitality Holdings, Inc. (RICK): Free Stock Analysis Report Hilton Grand Vacations Inc. (HGV): Free Stock Analysis Report Bluegreen Vacations Holding Corporation (BVH): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here......»»

Category: topSource: zacksJan 14th, 2022

Delta Air Lines Announces December Quarter and Full Year 2021 Financial Results

ATLANTA, Jan. 13, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL) today reported financial results for the December quarter and full year 2021 and provided its outlook for the March quarter 2022.  Highlights of the December quarter and full year 2021 results, including both GAAP and adjusted metrics, are on page five and are incorporated here. "2021 was a year like no other for Delta, with significant progress in our recovery supported by growing brand preference, enabling us to be the only major U.S. airline to deliver profitability across the second half of the year," said Ed Bastian, Delta's chief executive officer.  "As always, our people drove this success, which is why we were happy to announce this morning a special profit-sharing payment for all eligible employees." "While the rapidly spreading omicron variant has significantly impacted staffing levels and disrupted travel across the industry, Delta's operation has stabilized over the last week and returned to pre-holiday performance," Bastian said.  "Omicron is expected to temporarily delay the demand recovery 60 days, but as we look past the peak, we are confident in a strong spring and summer travel season with significant pent-up demand for consumer and business travel." December Quarter 2021 Financial Results  Adjusted pre-tax income of $170 million excludes a net impact of $564 million primarily in equity method losses, mark-to-market adjustments on investments and special profit-sharing payment Adjusted operating revenue of $8.4 billion, which excludes third-party refinery sales, was 74 percent recovered versus December quarter 2019 on capacity that was 79 percent restored Total operating expense decreased $833 million compared to the December quarter 2019. Adjusted for costs from third-party refinery sales, total operating expense decreased $1.9 billion or 19% percent in the December quarter 2021 versus the comparable 2019 period Remuneration from American Express in the quarter was $1.2 billion, up 11 percent compared to the December quarter 2019 At the end of the December quarter, the company had $14.2 billion in liquidity, including cash and cash equivalents, short-term investments and undrawn revolving credit facilities Full Year 2021 Financial Results  Adjusted pre-tax loss of $3.4 billion excludes a net benefit of $3.8 billion from items primarily related to the Payroll Support Programs (PSP), partially offset by equity method losses, debt extinguishment charges and special profit-sharing payment Generated a pre-tax profit of $1.1 billion in the second half of 2021. Excluding PSP, mark-to-market adjustments, equity method losses and debt extinguishment charges reported an adjusted pre-tax profit of $386 million in the second half of 2021 Adjusted operating revenue of $26.7 billion, which excludes third-party refinery sales, was 57 percent recovered versus full year 2019 on capacity that was 71 percent restored Total operating expense, which includes $4.5 billion of benefit related to PSP, decreased $12.4 billion compared to 2019. Adjusted for the benefits related to PSP and costs from third-party refinery sales, total operating expense, adjusted decreased $10.9 billion or 27 percent versus 2019 Remuneration from American Express for full year 2021 was $4.0 billion, 98 percent restored compared to full year 2019 Invested $2.9 billion back in the business and reduced financial obligations by $7 billion, including fully funding the pension plans on a Pension Protection Act (PPA) basis The company had total debt and finance lease obligations of $26.9 billion with adjusted net debt of $20.6 billion at the end of December 2021 March Quarter 2022 Outlook 1Q22 Forecast Capacity 1 83% - 85% Total Revenue 1, 2 72% - 76% Fuel Price ($/gal) 2, 3 $2.35 - $2.50 CASM-Ex 1, 2, 4 Up ~15% Gross Capital Expenditures 2 ~$1.6 billion Adjusted Net Debt 2 ~$22 billion 1 Compared to March quarter 2019 2 Non-GAAP measure 3 Fuel guidance based on prices as of January 11 (Brent at $81, cracks at $17, Monroe profit with RINS at $1.31) 4 Includes an ~3 point impact of operational disruption related cost Revenue Environment "The commercial strengths we spoke about last month at Capital Markets Day are evident in our December quarter results.  We ended December with revenues nearly 80 percent recovered to 2019 levels on strong demand and pricing during the holiday period, our premium products continued to perform well, we saw encouraging trends in business and international travel and our diverse revenue streams remained resilient," said Glen Hauenstein, Delta's president. "The recent rise in COVID cases associated with the omicron variant is expected to impact the pace of demand recovery early in the quarter, with recovery momentum resuming from President's Day weekend forward.  Factoring this in to our outlook, we expect total March quarter revenue to recover to 72 to 76% of 2019 levels, compared to 74% in the December quarter."  Operating revenue, adjusted of $8.4 billion for the December quarter 2021 improved 2 percent, or $149 million from September quarter 2021.  Compared to the same period in 2019, operating revenue, adjusted was 74 percent restored, in line with the company's mid-December guidance update on system capacity that was 79 percent restored compared to December quarter 2019 levels. Compared to the September quarter 2021, system yields improved 7 percent on a system load factor decline of 2 points to 78 percent.  As a result, total unit revenue, adjusted improved 6 percent sequentially. Revenue-related Highlights: Domestic revenue recovery progresses on strong holiday demand: Domestic passenger revenue was 78 percent restored compared to December quarter 2019, a 6 point sequential improvement in the rate of recovery versus the September quarter 2021 driven by robust leisure demand, improving corporate travel and strong holiday bookings. International passenger revenue recovered to 50 percent of December quarter 2019 levels, an 8 point improvement sequentially. Premium cabins continue to outperform main cabin: Domestic and short-haul Latin premium product revenue recovery outpaced main cabin by approximately 10 points, flat sequentially, with Domestic premium revenues 84 percent recovered compared to December quarter 2019. Business demand continues to improve: Business travel continues to progress with domestic passenger volumes approaching 60 percent restored during the December quarter 2021. This includes both managed corporate and Small and Medium Enterprises. American Express remuneration exceeded 2019 levels: American Express remuneration of $1.2 billion in the quarter was up 11 percent compared to December quarter 2019 and up 8 points sequentially. Co-brand spend was 121 percent of December quarter 2019, driven by strong holiday retail spend and T&E spend that exceeded December quarter 2019. Co-brand card acquisitions were 86 percent recovered compared to December quarter 2019. Cargo revenue achieves five consecutive quarters of positive growth: Cargo revenue increased to $304 million, a 63 percent improvement compared to the December quarter 2019 and up 24 points sequentially on strong holiday demand and yields. Cost Performance "The Delta team executed incredibly well in 2021, delivering another profitable quarter in an environment that remains dynamic," said Dan Janki, Delta's chief financial officer.  "With omicron impacting our near-term outlook, we expect losses in January and February months with a return to profitability in the month of March.  Despite expectations for a loss in the March quarter, we remain positioned to generate a healthy profit in the June, September and December quarters, resulting in a meaningful profit in 2022." For 2021, total operating expense, adjusted of $29.2 billion decreased 27 percent compared to full year 2019, driven by lower salaries and related benefits, fuel and volume and selling-related expense.  Non-fuel CASM for 2021 increased 11.4 percent versus 2019, on 29 percent lower capacity over the same period. Total operating expense, adjusted of $8.1 billion in the December quarter 2021 increased 3 percent sequentially, driven by both higher fuel and non-fuel costs from the continued restoration of the airline.  Fuel expense, adjusted of $1.6 billion in the December quarter 2021 increased 4 percent, or $55 million compared to the September quarter 2021.  Adjusted fuel price of $2.10 per gallon was up 8 percent compared to the September quarter 2021 driven by higher market prices and partially offset by continued refinery contribution and an improvement in RINs pricing and volume obligations.  During the December quarter 2021, fuel efficiency, defined as gallons per 1,000 ASMs, improved 4.3 percent versus the same period in 2019 as a result of our fleet renewal efforts.  In addition, carbon offsets expensed during the quarter drove a 3¢ impact on fuel prices as Delta supports its commitment to carbon neutrality by pursuing high quality, verified offsets.  Non-fuel cost, adjusted of $6.5 billion was up 3 percent sequentially on a 4 percent decrease in capacity.  This was driven primarily by people-related and seasonal costs.  Compared to the December quarter of 2019, non-fuel unit costs (CASM-Ex) were 8.3 percent higher, including a 1.2 point impact primarily due to omicron disruptions the last two weeks of the December quarter. Non-operating expense for the December quarter 2021 was $658 million including equity method losses, mark-to-market losses on certain investments and losses on the extinguishment of debt.  Non-operating expense, adjusted was $175 million. Balance Sheet, Cash and Liquidity "During 2021, we made significant progress restoring our balance sheet, reducing gross debt by $6 billion and fully funding our pension plans on a PPA basis," Janki said.  "Reducing debt remains a top financial priority as operating cash flow improves to support the return of our balance sheet back to investment grade metrics by 2024." At the end of the December quarter 2021, the company had total debt and finance lease obligations of $26.9 billion with adjusted net debt of $20.6 billion and a weighted average interest rate of 4.2 percent.  Operating cash flow during the December quarter 2021 was $555 million.  Free cash flow was negative $441 million for the quarter with gross capital expenditures reinvested in the business of $948 million. The company's Air Traffic Liability was $6.4 billion at December quarter-end, approximately flat compared to the end of the September quarter.  Delta ended the December quarter with $14.2 billion in liquidity, including $2.9 billion in undrawn revolver capacity.  Other Highlights from the December Quarter 2021 Culture and People Increased vaccination rates to more than 95 percent of employees as Delta continues to prioritize the health and safety of the Delta people Provided free, convenient COVID-19 testing options to Delta people Celebrated 75 years of Delta Cargo, which has played a pivotal role throughout the pandemic transporting vaccines and personal protective equipment as well as life-saving organs for transplant Committed to an eight-year partnership with LA28, making Delta the inaugural founding partner of the Olympic and Paralympic Games Los Angeles 2028 and a sponsor of the United States Olympic and Paralympic teams through 2028. As Team USA's official airline, Delta will manage travel for U.S. Olympians and Paralympians to Beijing 2022, Paris 2024, Milano Cortina 2026 and Los Angeles 2028 Celebrated 200 Chairman's Club inductees through a historic 25th annual gala; this special one-time class of 200 honorees were recognized for embodying the spirit of Delta Customer Experience and Loyalty Named No. 1 in the annual Business Travel News Airline Survey for the 11th consecutive year, sweeping all categories for the 8th straight year Opened the first-ever Delta-TSA PreCheck express lobby and bag drop at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, with expanded facial recognition capabilities for touch-free, seamless entry Installed high-speed Viasat-powered Wi-Fi on 300 aircraft in 2021, enabling customers on Delta's most popular routes to stream and browse their favorite sites at fast speeds for a simple, flat rate of $5 per flight Launched in-flight entertainment partnership with leading interactive fitness platform Peloton to offer exclusive well-being focused content, giving customers more ways to stretch and unwind at their seats Enhanced Delta FlyReady, a digital solution that takes the guesswork out of international travel in the pandemic era, enabling customers to understand and manage entry requirements at their destination Extended Medallion Status for current Medallion members and rolled over all Medallion Qualification Miles for the second year in a row Launched updates to Global Upgrade Certificates, allowing customers more access to premium seats in Delta Premium Select Environmental, Social and Governance Announced strengthening of executive leadership team with the hiring of Pam Fletcher as the industry's only C-suite Chief Sustainability Officer Recognized as the No. 1 transportation company on The Just 100: Companies Doing Right By America and an overall ranking of No. 38 on the comprehensive global list Promoted health equity and responded to employee feedback with a new 2022 healthcare option designed to increase predictability and lower unplanned, out-of-pocket expenses for plan participants Engaged senior leaders in Racial Equity Leadership Workshops, led by the Groundwater Institute Built upon Delta's commitment to supplier diversity by launching vodka from Du Nord Social Spirits, America's first Black-owned distillery, on all domestic flights and Une Femme's 100 percent women-made wine on select flights Concluded 2021 with a robust set of climate-related goals including committing to set a medium-term science-based target for our global airline as well as a net zero emissions target for 2050, both aligned with the SBTi framework and the UN Race to Zero Signed 27 SAF agreements with corporate and agency customers in 2021. Beginning in 2025, Delta expects to receive 81 million gallons of SAF annually from producers Aemetis, Gevo, Neste and NWABF December Quarter and Full Year 2021 Results December quarter and full year results have been adjusted primarily for the government grant recognition, impairments and equity method losses, losses on extinguishment of debt, unrealized losses on investments, special profit-sharing payment and third-party refinery sales as described in the reconciliations in Note A. GAAP Adjusted GAAP Adjusted ($ in millions except per share and unit costs) 4Q21 4Q19 4Q21 4Q19 FY21 FY19 FY21 FY19 Pre-tax (loss)/income (395) 1,397 170 1,417 398 6,198 (3,415) 6,214 Net (loss)/income (408) 1,099 143 1,098 280 4,767 (2,598) 4,776 (Loss)/diluted earnings per share (0.64) 1.71 0.22 1.70 0.44 7.30 (4.08) 7.32 Pre-tax margin (4.2)% 12.2 % 2.0 % 12.4 % 1.3 % 13.2 % (12.8)% 13.3 % Operating revenue 9,470 11,439 8,430 11,384 29,899 47,007 26,670 46,718 Total revenue per available seat mile (TRASM) (cents) 18.30 17.47 16.29 17.39 15.37 17.07 13.71 16.97 Operating expense 9,207 10,040 8,086 9,961 28,013 40,389 29,197 40,082 Capital expenditures 1,217 1,072 948 954 3,247 4,936 2,876 5,306 Total debt and finance lease obligations 26,920 11,160 26,920 11,160 Adjusted net debt 20,581 10,489 20,581 10,489 Cost per available seat mile (CASM) (cents) 17.79 15.34 12.56 11.59 14.40 14.67 12.12 10.88 Fuel expense 1,577 2,012 1,588 1,983 5,633 8,519 5,625 8,477 Average fuel price per gallon 2.09 2.01 2.10 1.99 2.02 2.02 2.02 2.01 Non-operating expense 658 2 175 6 1,488 420 888 422 Operating cash flow / free cash flow 555 969 (441) 141 3,264 8,425 1,255 4,164 About Delta Air Lines  In a world that thrives on connection, no one better connects the world than Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL). Powered by its people around the world, Delta is the U.S. global airline leader in safety, innovation, reliability and customer experience. Delta was named by J.D. Power & Associates as the No. 1 airline in its 2021 North American Satisfaction Study, a recognition of its decade-long airline industry leadership in operational excellence and award-winning customer service. Delta is a values-driven company with a mission of connecting the people and cultures of the globe, striving to foster understanding across a diverse world. Delta is the first airline to commit to becoming carbon neutral on a global basis by focusing on carbon reductions and removals, stakeholder engagement, and coalition building. Delta's long-term vision is zero-impact aviation: air travel that does not damage the environment directly or indirectly via greenhouse gas emissions, noise, waste generation or other environmental impacts. Its people are committed to these values while leading the way in ensuring safe, reliable and comfortable travel. Forward Looking Statements Statements made in this press release that are not historical facts, including statements regarding our estimates, expectations, beliefs, intentions, projections, goals, aspirations, commitments or strategies for the future, should be considered "forward-looking statements" under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements are not guarantees or promised outcomes and should not be construed as such. All forward-looking statements involve a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from the estimates, expectations, beliefs, intentions, projections, goals, aspirations, commitments and strategies reflected in or suggested by the forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, the material adverse effect that the COVID-19 pandemic is having on our business; the impact of incurring significant debt in response to the pandemic; failure to comply with the financial and other covenants in our financing agreements; the possible effects of accidents involving our aircraft or aircraft of our airline partners; breaches or lapses in the security of technology systems on which we rely; disruptions in our information technology infrastructure; our dependence on technology in our operations; our commercial relationships with airlines in other parts of the world and the investments we have in certain of those airlines; the effects of a significant disruption in the operations or performance of third parties on which we rely; failure to realize the full value of intangible or long-lived assets; labor issues; the effects of weather, natural disasters and seasonality on our business; the cost of aircraft fuel; the availability of aircraft fuel; failure or inability of insurance to cover a significant liability at Monroe's Trainer refinery; failure to comply with existing and future environmental regulations to which Monroe's refinery operations are subject, including costs related to compliance with renewable fuel standard regulations; our ability to retain senior management and other key employees, and to maintain our company culture; significant damage to our reputation and brand, including from exposure to significant adverse publicity; the effects of terrorist attacks, geopolitical conflict or security events; competitive conditions in the airline industry; extended interruptions or disruptions in service at major airports at which we operate or significant problems associated with types of aircraft or engines we operate; the effects of extensive government regulation we are subject to; the impact of environmental regulation, including increased regulation to reduce emissions and other risks associated with climate change, on our business; and unfavorable economic or political conditions in the markets in which we operate or volatility in currency exchange rates. Additional information concerning risks and uncertainties that could cause differences between actual results and forward-looking statements is contained in our Securities and Exchange Commission filings, including our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020 and our Quarterly Report for the quarterly period ended September 30, 2021. Caution should be taken not to place undue reliance on our forward-looking statements, which represent our views only as of the date of this press release, and which we undertake no obligation to update except to the extent required by law. DELTA AIR LINES, INC. Consolidated Statements of Operations (Unaudited) Three Months Ended Year Ended December 31, December 31, (in millions, except per share data) 2021 2019 $ Change % Change 2021 2019 $ Change % Change Operating Revenue: Passenger $       7,241 $     10,245 $      (3,004) (29)% $     22,519 $     42,277 $    (19,758) (47)% Cargo 304 187 117 63% 1,032 753 279 37% Other 1,925 1,007 918 91% 6,348 3,977 2,371 60%   Total operating revenue 9,470 11,439 (1,969) (17)% 29,899 47,007 (17,108) (36)% Operating Expense: Salaries and related costs 2,632 3,046 (414) (14)% 9,728 11,601 (1,873) (16)% Aircraft fuel and related taxes 1,577 2,012 (435) (22)% 5,633 8,519 (2,886) (34)% Ancillary businesses and refinery 1,233 299 934 NM 3,957 1,245 2,712 NM Contracted services 697 742 (45) (6)% 2,420 2,942 (522) (18)% Landing fees and other rents 542 538 4 1% 2,019 2,176 (157) (7)% Depreciation and amortization 504 622 (118) (19)% 1,998 2,581 (583) (23)% Regional carrier expense 478 536 (58) (11)% 1,736 2,158 (422) (20)% Aircraft maintenance materials and outside repairs 386 417 (31) (7)% 1,401 1,751 (350) (20)% Passenger commissions and other selling expenses 313 542 (229) (42)% 953 2,211 (1,258) (57)% Passenger service 236 325 (89) (27)% 756 1,312 (556) (42)% Aircraft rent 118 105 13 12% 430 423 7 2% Restructuring charges (16) — (16) NM (19) — (19) NM Profit sharing 108 387 (279) (72)% 108 1,643 (1,535) (93)% Government grant recognition — — — NM (4,512) — (4,512) NM Other 399 469 (70) (15)% 1,405 1,827 (422) (23)%   Total operating expense 9,207 10,040 (833) (8)% 28,013 40,389 (12,376) (31)% Operating Income 263 1,399 (1,136) (81)% 1,886 6,618 (4,732) (72)% Non-Operating Expense: Interest expense, net (265) (72) (193) NM (1,279) (301) (978) NM Impairments and equity method (losses)/gains (232) 18 (250) NM (337) (62) (275) NM Gain/(Loss) on investments, net (197) 136 (333) NM 56 119 (63) (53)% Loss on extinguishment of debt (54) — (54) NM (319) — (319) NM Miscellaneous, net 90 (84) 174 NM 391 (176) 567 NM   Total non-operating expense, net (658) (2) (656) NM (1,488) (420) (1,068) NM (Loss)/Income Before Income Taxes (395) 1,397 (1,792) NM 398 6,198 (5,800) (94)% Income Tax Provision (13) (298) 285 (96)% (118) (1,431) 1,313 (92)% Net (Loss)/Income (408) 1,099 (1,507) NM $          280 $       4,767 $      (4,487) (94)% Basic (Loss)/Earnings Per Share $        (0.64) $         1.71 $         0.44 $         7.32 Diluted (Loss)/Earnings Per Share $        (0.64) $         1.71 $         0.44 $         7.30 Basic Weighted Average Shares Outstanding 637 642 636 651 Diluted Weighted Average Shares Outstanding 637 644 641 653   DELTA AIR LINES, INC. Passenger Revenue (Unaudited) Three Months Ended Year Ended December 31, December 31, (in millions) 2021 2019 $ Change % Change 2021 2019 $ Change % Change Ticket - Main cabin $       3,687 $       5,238 $      (1,551) (30)% $     11,626 $     21,919 $    (10,293) (47)% Ticket - Business cabin and premium products 2,585 3,684 (1,099) (30)% 7,713 14,989 (7,276) (49)% Loyalty travel awards 573 726 (153) (21)% 1,786 2,900 (1,114) (38)% Travel-related services 396 597 (201) (34)% 1,394 2,469 (1,075) (44)% Total passenger revenue $       7,241 $     10,245 $      (3,004) (29)% $     22,519 $     42,277 $    (19,758) (47)%.....»»

Category: earningsSource: benzingaJan 13th, 2022

Omicron cases could fall as quickly as they rose in the US — new models suggest daily infections may have already hit their max

Omicron cases could be peaking roughly a month after they started rising in the US. Experts predict that cases could come back down just as quickly. People take COVID-19 tests at pop-up testing site in New York City on December 7, 2021.Reuters/Brendan McDermid Omicron cases could be peaking roughly a month after they started rising in the US, models suggest. Disease experts predict that cases could fall back down as quickly as they rose. By the end of the wave, Omicron may have infected "a substantial fraction," if not a majority, of the US. Omicron appears to take a swifter, sharper course than its predecessors: Cases of the variant tend to rise within a population for about a month, then fall back down just as quickly, early observations suggest.South Africa's daily COVID-19 cases began to drop off in late December, roughly one month after scientists first spotted Omicron there. The United Kingdom seems to have followed suit: Daily COVID-19 cases started rising there in early December, but in the last week they've fallen 14%, on average, from around 181,000 to 156,000 cases per day. New models predict the US could be headed for a similar trajectory."It's certainly possible that we could see a rapid fall just as much as we've seen a rapid rise," David Dowdy, an epidemiologist at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, told Insider.According to projections from the University of Washington's Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME), daily coronavirus infections may have already peaked at more than 6.2 million on January 6. A recent report from the University of Texas suggests that daily COVID-19 cases could peak around Thursday. The model assumes, based on the current science, that Omicron is more transmissible and better at evading the immune system than Delta, but results in less severe disease.Those same models, however, predict that Omicron will continue to drive up COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths in the US through the end of January. The IHME model estimates that COVID-19 deaths will peak at around 2,100 per day on January 28.Omicron's rise and fall could be even more dramatic on the local level, Dowdy said — though many cities and states haven't seen the worst of their outbreaks yet."What we're seeing on a national level is a smoothing over of all of these local effects," Dowdy said, adding: "The West Coast is just taking off. The South is just taking off. You're going to see these cases continue to rise because there are more places where it's taking off than where it's peaking."Winter weather and indoor gatherings may have fueled Omicron's rapid rise A student arrives for classes at A. N. Pritzker elementary school on January 12, 2022 in Chicago, Illinois.Scott Olson/Getty ImagesA highly transmissible virus tends to tear quickly through a population until it runs out of people to infect, and Omicron may be close to reaching that point. The US already reported its highest-ever number of daily cases — more than 1.4 million — on Monday, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. That's nearly five times the number of daily cases reported during the last peak in January 2021.But Dowdy said there are other explanations for why Omicron cases took off so quickly. Winter months often facilitate the spread of respiratory viruses, he said, and more people are congregating indoors this winter than last."It's not only about, or even primarily about, the transmissibility of the virus," Dowdy said. "Last winter, schools were closed, you couldn't go into a restaurant at full capacity, and you surely couldn't go to an indoor gathering of more than 50 people. Now you can go to a concert, you can easily go to a full restaurant, and all our schools are open. Had you had this behavior last year, you might have seen a much more rapid rise."With Omicron, there's also a shorter window of time between getting infected and infecting someone else. A recent study from Norway found that Omicron symptoms usually appear around three days after exposure, whereas Delta symptoms develop around four to five days after someone is infected, on average."It may only be shorter by a day, but when you're talking about how long it takes to double your numbers, a day makes a big difference," Dowdy said.Omicron will have infected a 'substantial fraction' of the US by the end of the wavePeople wait in line as city workers hand out take-home COVID-19 tests in Manhattan on December 23, 2021.Spencer Platt/Getty ImagesEven if Omicron cases fall dramatically soon, many Americans will have gotten sick during the current wave."Omicron, with its extraordinary, unprecedented degree of efficiency of transmissibility, will ultimately find just about everybody," Dr. Anthony Fauci said during a virtual chat with the Center for Strategic and International Studies Commission on Tuesday."Those who have been vaccinated, and vaccinated and boosted, would get exposed," Fauci said. "Some, maybe a lot of them, will get infected but will very likely, with some exceptions, do reasonably well in the sense of not having hospitalization and death."Dowdy is bit more optimistic. The current Omicron wave will likely infect "a substantial fraction of people," he said, but probably not the majority of US residents."This virus is burning through certain networks of people who are having more contact with each other [or have] lower levels of vaccination or recent infection," he said. "Once it makes it through those networks, it doesn't have other places to go, and then you start to see it fall."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderJan 13th, 2022

Semtech"s (SMTC) Latest LoRa Updates to Boost IoT Deployments

Semtech (SMTC) strengthens its portfolio with the release of software updates for LoRa integrated circuits and gateways. Semtech Corporation SMTC recently introduced software updates for LoRa integrated circuits and gateways.The software upgrade has increased network capacity and enabled robust interference. It has also enabled low power and direct data links from sensors to satellites.Semtech’s LoRa transceivers including SX1261, SX1262, LoRa Edge platform and the V2.1 gateway reference design will be equipped with the software updates.The recent software enhancement is in sync with Semtech’s growing efforts toward IoT deployments in densely populated areas.Semtech Corporation Price and Consensus Semtech Corporation price-consensus-chart | Semtech Corporation QuoteExpanding Portfolio of SolutionsApart from the software upgrades, Semtech has brought some advanced solutions in its LoRa portfolio offerings.The company recently introduced the LoRa Developer Portal in order to help developers quickly develop IoT devices connected with the LoRaWAN standard.In addition, it has expanded the LoRa Core portfolio by adding a new solution, LoRa CorecellReference Design, for full duplex gateway applications in the U.S. 902-928MHz ISM band. The new product enables LoRaWAN gateways to simultaneously receive and transmit data.Further, it unveiled the LoRa Core portfolio comprising a new chipset, which offers LoRaWAN connectivity to various vertical industries including asset tracking, building, home, agriculture, metering and factory automation.Growing ClienteleDue to the robustness of LoRa portfolio solutions, Semtech has signed contracts with a number of companies.Recently, it announced that LoRa devices and the LoRaWAN standard are being leveraged by Spain-based Arson Metering.Its LoRa devices and LoRaWAN standard are also being used by Elvexys for delivering real-time data to Oiken’s supervision control room in case of power grid failure.In addition, the company’s LoRaWAN standard has been integrated into GTI’s new Natural Gas Smart Safety Shutoff System.SMTC’s solutions are also leveraged by ICT International to make an improvement in urban forest management and carbon accounting.We believe that these recent collaborations are likely to continue contributing well to Semtech’s top-line growth.Zacks Rank & Stocks to ConsiderCurrently, Semtech carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).Investors interested in the broader technology sector can consider some better-ranked stocks like Advanced Micro Devices AMD, Mimecast Limited MIME and TaskUs TASK, each carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.Advanced Micro Devices has gained 49.6% over a year. The long-term earnings growth rate for AMD is currently projected at 46.2%.Mimecast has gained 73.9% over a year. The long-term earnings growth rate for MIME is currently projected at 35%.TaskUs has gained 52.8% over a year. The long-term earnings growth rate for TASK is currently projected at 32.8%. Breakout Biotech Stocks with Triple-Digit Profit Potential The biotech sector is projected to surge beyond $2.4 trillion by 2028 as scientists develop treatments for thousands of diseases. They’re also finding ways to edit the human genome to literally erase our vulnerability to these diseases. Zacks has just released Century of Biology: 7 Biotech Stocks to Buy Right Now to help investors profit from 7 stocks poised for outperformance. Recommendations from previous editions of this report have produced gains of +205%, +258% and +477%. The stocks in this report could perform even better.See these 7 breakthrough stocks now >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (AMD): Free Stock Analysis Report Semtech Corporation (SMTC): Free Stock Analysis Report Mimecast Limited (MIME): Free Stock Analysis Report TaskUs, Inc. (TASK): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here......»»

Category: topSource: zacksJan 13th, 2022

Top Stock Picks For 2022

2022 is a stock pickers market and the recent dip provides us with some favorable pricing for these winning picks. After a brief yield-fueled market pullback to start the year, 2022’s looks ripe with fresh investment opportunities. Below I break down 6 innovation-powered picks for the rapidly digitalizing economic environment that the new normal is poised to drive materially higher.An Accommodative FedFed Chair Powell's dovish words of relief in his reconfirmation hearing on Capitol Hill provided a friendly bid for recently pressured equities (especially deeply discounted innovation), giving US Treasury yields a chance to take a momentary pause before the Fed's January meeting at the end of this month.Jerome Powell remains stoic in his positioning regarding the persistent nature of global supply and demand imbalances that he maintains are being generated by relentless COVID pressures, which have yet to subside (I agree with this perspective).Jerome acknowledged that the aggressive monetary stimulus the Fed provided public markets for nearly 2 years now is no longer necessary but didn't sound anxious to raise the Fed Funds rate back to pre-pandemic levels in any expedited manner.Powell reiterated what he had said in December's FOMC meeting: we are operating in a digitalized economic environment that is entirely different than the one we left behind in 2019 (no past comparable can be used as reference). The Fed has lowered its long-term target Fed Funds range by 50 basis points since the pandemic began, implying a systemic economic shift that could support lower rates.Jerome's dovish comments about the natural inflation curbing ahead coupled with a slow and steady monetary tightening strategy were just what the market needed to hear. Powell may have put a bottom in for the best-positioned high-growth stocks in the market. It's time to get greedy as others remain fearful.CrowdStrike (CRWD)When asked what he thought the greatest threat to the US economy was at present, Fed Chair Jerome Powell's answer wasn't the Omicron-variant, inflation, or even global economic turmoil but a cyberattack on a prominent US financial institution. CrowdStrike CRWD and its unmatchable cutting-edge AI-fueled cybersecurity platform is the long-term opportunity for this looming digital threat. Any price below $200 a share is a steal for CRWD.CrowdStrike is trusted by Wall Street's top firms, including Goldman Sachs GS and Credit Suisse CS, who can't afford to have any digital vulnerabilities.CrowdStrike is a modern cloud-based solution for the escalating security threats that the increasingly mobile internet age has brought. This company leverages AI, cloud computing, and graph databases for its vigilant security software. CrowdStrike's security AI is perpetually improving as it advances from crowdsourcing and economies of scale. CRWD's cloud-based Falcon platform is an intelligent and evolving digital protector that detects and stops breaches in real-time. This business was provided with a tremendous tailwind in 2020 as the enterprise's best-in-class AI-driven cybersecurity platform became arguably the most sought-after in the industry. Business spending is taking off as we enter 2022 and the economy finally reemerges from the Pandemic downturn. Upgrading cybersecurity is on the top of that Cap Ex list for many financial institutions. CrowdStrike's best-in-class AI-powered Falcon platforms are the obvious solution to any business's digital susceptibility concerns.The TradeThe Fed has now set its interest rate expectations for 2022, and I believe it's prudent to start a position in this best-in-class cybersecurity stock for the future.The market looks to have put in a bottom to CRWD's precipitous decline at just below $175 a share. Look to buy CRWD between $200 and $190, which I presume we reach at some point in today's session, with profit pulling in mega-cap tech weighing on sentiment for high-valuation stocks.Final Thought On CRWDCrowdStrike is taking over the cybersecurity space with its unmatchable threat detection and immediate response capabilities that continue to improve as its proven AI-driven platform learns and adapts to mounting risks. No matter what happens in the broader economy, there will continue to be a swelling demand for this technology as the rapid digital adaptation exposes more and more endpoint liabilities.The company is expected to turn a full-year profit in 2022. Its proliferating subscription-based business model provides the visibility & reliability that justify its still frothy valuation (24x price to forward sales).This is a high-risk/high-reward play, so I am only giving it a 5% allocation. Still, with price targets averaging around $300 a share, I am confident that reward far outweighs the risk in the long run, as long as you can stomach some short-term volatility.ACM Research (ACMR)The time to reopen our Headline Trader portfolio to the recently suppressed Chinese stocks has come, with Biden's administration making clear efforts to resume its alliance with Beijing (after years of political turmoil). At the same time, China's overdue economic recovery commences as it prepares for the 2022 Olympics in Beijing, which is now less than 4 weeks away.At the same time, the ripping rally in US public equities has been decelerating over the past 2 months, following an over 100% bull run from the S&P 500 since the pandemic lows in March 2020 (40% above pre-pandemic high), and investors are beginning to look abroad for higher return opportunities.I am adding ACM Research ACMR, a niche small-cap semiconductor play with ideal exposure in Asia. ACMR provides substantial upside potential at its currently discounted valuation, with its rapidly accelerating chipmaking capacity and its strategic Chinese exposure being the primary buy catalyst.ACM Research is a global leader in semiconductor equipment. As chip manufacturers in Asia begin ramping up production, ACM's best-in-class chipmaking equipment is poised to take flight following a year and a half of sideways trading action.Chip demands far surpassing current production capacities entering the digital renaissance of the 4th Industrial Revolution, positioning this business to explode as the Roaring 20s recommence.China Risk's May Be USChinese stocks have been hammered for nearly a year now, as President Xi and his increasingly autocratic communist administration crackdown on the swelling wealth in its booming tech sector. Xi's fear of losing control of "his" nation to a wealthy group of elites is reminiscent of Mao Zedong's totalitarian regime.This paranoid egotistical positioning has led to a tidal wave of new tech-focused regulations under the guise of elevating "equality" and improved "productivity." These have capitulated the value of this nation's most prominent innovators by a meaningful amount.Those stocks that had been at the center of these regulatory headwinds have seen their share values significantly deteriorate, presenting some superior long-term prospects as the global economy reemerges from the pandemic with a digitally fueled ambition.The CatalystACM Research is a US-based capital equipment firm. Yet, its 3 most prominent customers, representing 76% of 2020 revenue, are based in mainland China, with another nearly 10% of its sales going to a South Korean chip innovator. Over the past 5 years, China and Korea have seen their semiconductor spaces drive compounded annual revenue growth of 20.7% & 19.5% and have become the epicenter for future development for ACMR.As ACM Research takes advantage of the booming demand, this chip equipment powerhouse is rapidly ramping up its own equipment production capacity and capabilities (more offerings) in the region. The company has several new expansion projects for organic growth that will continue to fuel this stock's growth in 2022.ACMR remains a small-cap equity with a market cap of less than $1.5 billion, but with proven profitable growth between 35% - 45% in the past 3 years, and a place in Morgan Stanley's short list of 2022 chip picks, it’s only a matter of time before the market gets wind of this unique investment thesis and lifts ACMR out of its small-cap shadow and into the large-cap spotlight.6 out of 6 analysts are calling ACMR a buy today now, with price targets between $100 and $150 (representing upsides between 27% and 92%). Not to mention the increasingly bullish outlook on ACMR has thrusted this stock into a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).SMART Global Holdings (SGH)SMART Global Holdings SGH is the under-the-radar semiconductor stock you've been looking for, with its broadening portfolio of cutting-edge chips poised to take flight in this commencing technological Renaissance.SGH is roaring out of the shadows with an ambitious growth strategy that won't remain under the investors' radars for much longer. New CEO Mark Adams is transforming this once complacent memory-focused legacy tech business into a motivated leader in niche innovations.The company released a record quarterly report at the start of 2022, blowing analysts' estimates out of the water and raising forward guidance. However, SGH's undiscovered attributes appear to have both positive and negative consequences, which we saw in its (unwarranted) post-earnings capitulation. This drop-off is a technical retreat catalyzed by the overbought RSI levels it had reached in recent weeks after an over 100% 52-week run into this year opening earnings report (confusion about the upcoming stock split may also be playing a role).The good news is that it presents us with an excellent long-term investment and short-term trading opportunity as the stock picks up support at its 50-day moving average.SMART Global shares' exceedingly thin trading volumes (low liquidity due to its under-the-radar quality) allowed a small group of controlling institutional shareholders to direct its post-earnings narrative. They pulled profits from this recent winner (up 70% since mid-October), and the downward momentum catalyzed a fear-fueled momentum sell-off.The TradeDon't let these big-shot Wall Street firms scare you away from this clear-cut winner. SGH's post-earnings capitulation is extraordinarily overdone and with the recent shareholder shuffle.Silver Lake, a nearly $100 billion tech-focus private equity fund, had been the primary shareholders of SGH since it went public in 2017 until this past fall when the global investment group completely exited the trade (with public returns of nearly 400% in just a few years), leaving $10s of millions in stock value up for grabs.SMART Global's ownership has since been erratic, with most of the investing world still unaware of this small-cap stock's existence. SGH's ownership is almost entirely institutional at this point, and with the already thin volumes, its vulnerability to short-term price manipulation is high.Nevertheless, those analysts covering SGH are more bullish than ever after its most recent quarterly release.The Earnings ReportSMART Global SGH reported its November quarter results (fiscal Q1 2022) after the closing bell Tuesday afternoon (1/4), beating analysts' estimates and raising guidance, yet SGH fell off a cliff. SMART Global achieved record revenues and margins that flowed down to an incredible 177% increase in per-share profits, with its top-of-the-line intelligence platforms (AI, HPC, & other cloud-functionality) being this next-generation innovator's primary growth driver.SGH was down as much as 18% in its post-earnings price action, but I remain unconvinced that it will stay below $70 a share for long. This knee-jerk sell-off reaction resulted from its small market cap (less than $1.5 billion), concentrated ownership, and overbought RSI levels, which SGH had floated up into following its sizable 25% end-of-year rally.SGH also announced that it would be initiating a 2-for-1 stock split, which would go into effect at the beginning of February. This is a clear signal from SMART Global's new CEO, Mark Adams, whose savvy ambition for innovative growth is the primary reason we are in SGH, that this stock is headed much higher. Either way, I'm more bullish on SGH post-earnings than ever before.The TransformationNow is the time to add this hidden gem to your portfolio before the broader investing world catches wind of this discounted chip winner.SMART Global has been around since the late 80s, but it wasn't until Mark Adams took the helm amid the pandemic last year that this chipmaker's upside potential went through the roof. Adams is transforming this once complacent memory-focused legacy tech company into an energized visionary.Adams was the leading force behind SGH's quick strategic acquisition of Cree's niche LED chip business at the peak of pandemic fear for a steal at $300 million. Cree LED's synergies are already paying dividends as it drives margin expansion, improves the firm's capital & operational efficiency, and provides critical industry relationships.SMART Global's new forward-thinking chief has already vastly improved its operational performance and is ramping up R&D spending to ensure that the enterprise remains ahead of the innovative curve.Analysts are getting increasingly bullish on this under-the-radar transformation play as SGH flips the switch on accelerating profitable growth, knocking estimates out of the park by an expanding percentage over the past 3 quarters. Zacks Consensus EPS Estimates for SGH's have been soaring across all time horizons after this most recent quarterly report driving the stock into a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy), and all 6 covering analysts agree on a buy rating for the unique value opportunity here.The New Business MixSMART Global Holdings had been a reliable pure-play memory leader in the chip space for over 30 years before deciding to broaden its product portfolio, which appeared to be catalyzed by activist investors following SGH's 2017 IPO. The company has since executed 4 strategic acquisitions.Penguin Computing was SGH's first vital acquisition ($85 million price tag) back in 2018, adding a broad portfolio of leading next-generation products, including high-performance computing (HPC), cloud computing, hyperscale data centers, and the development of artificial intelligence (AI). This segment has exploded since its acquisition as its AI-focused products experience budding demand. In the summer of 2019, this resourceful chip giant acquired Artesyn Embedded Computing and Inforce Computing for $80 million and $12 million, respectively. Artesyn (which is now called Smart Embedded Computing) provides critical data center architecture used in "industries such as telecom, military and aerospace, medical, and diverse automation and industrial markets," according to its website.SMART Wireless Computing (formerly known as Inforce Computing) exposes the enterprise to cutting-edge technologies like "medical imaging, collaboration/videoconferencing, wearable hands-free computing, and robotics/unmanned aerial vehicles," according to its investor relations page.SMART's diverse set of growing end-market demands provides the company with an enormous total addressable market (TAM), significant upside potential, and not to mention an excellent hedge against the cyclical nature of the semiconductor market.The mere 11x forward P/E that SGH is currently trading at is a remarkably underappreciated valuation multiple for a high-growth tech business that is expected to exhibit consistent 20%+ earnings growth in the years to come.Final Thoughts On SGHWith its fresh innovation-oriented operational outlay, Mark Adams at the helm (with a now proven track record of skilled management), and an industry-wide outlook of accelerating growth, the future SGH has never been brighter. SGH’s post-earnings capitulation has presented us with an incredible investment opportunity today.Analysts are more bullish than ever on this undiscovered profitable growth chip innovator, which will likely not remain under the broader market’s radar for long. I’m looking at price targets between $90 and $100 a share.Uber (UBER)Uber's UBER heavily discounted valuation is finally receiving the attention it deserves as investors begin to recognize the opportunity that this leading mobility-as-a-service (MaaS) business provides in the new normal. Uber Eats & Uber Rides are poised to explode with margin expanding growth in the new normal as our digitally conditioned global economy relies on these leading mobility services more than ever.A flood of analysts are coming out with exceptionally bullish outlooks on this next-generation global leader in digitally fueled mobility solutions. 22 out of 25 analysts are calling Uber a buy now, with no sell ratings. UBER is trading 75% below its average price target of more than $70 a share and it continues to rise.Alaskan Air (ALK)Alaskan Air ALK is perfectly positioned for the 2022 as it becomes the go-to budget airliner. Alaskan took advantage of the unique growth opportunity the pandemic shutdowns presented, adding 70 new markets, and is one of the few commercial airlines to return to profitability in the third quarter of 2021. Its commitment to customer satisfaction and focus on ESG goals will keep ALK at the top of its class.  The CompanyAlaskan Air ALK, primarily driven by vacationers instead of business travel, generated its first positive quarterly earnings since the pandemic began in Q3 as it benefited from the summer getaway rush. I see ALK as the best-positioned airline moving forward with its best-in-class budget vacation offering and still ripening synergies from its acquisition of Virgin America back in 2016.ALK has been an outperforming airline throughout the pandemic with an ESG-focus and no business travel reliance. Analysts have been pushing their price targets to around $80 a share (38% upside), with estimated record earnings by 2023. ALK just busted above its 50-day moving average, and is on its way towards its consensus price target.With remote working functionalities like cloud computing, video conferencing, team messaging, workflow automation, etc., analysts are beginning to rightly question whether companies will be paying up for flights when the job can and has proven to be done in a remote environment.Corporate travel will not return to pre-pandemic levels, at least not anytime soon, and the stocks to stick with are the budget vacation plays, with Alaskan Air being at the top of that value list. I’m looking at price targets between $75 and $100 a share, for this airliner of the New Normal.Upstart (UPST)Upstart UPST, the AI-driven fintech innovator changing the way creditworthiness is assessed, is ripe for a buy today with a couple of key support levels ready to maintain its recent buoyancy, following an overdone sell-off.The final quarter of 2021 was horrendous for the top fintech innovators, with Cathie Wood's ARK Invest Fintech ETF ARKF, the benchmark for next-generation digital finance, falling over 25%. Investors have been selling growth stocks indiscriminately, creating some excellent buying opportunities for the best-positioned fintech equities.UPST has seen significant valuation compression from its mid-October 2021 highs at $400, but the over 1,500% gain it saw from its IPO last December may have been a little overzealous. With UPST now 70% below those highs, it's time to consider adding UPST to your portfolio.Upstart's recent capitulation was catalyzed by profit-pulling in the face of Q3 earnings coupled with the Fed's accelerating tapering timeline, which has valuation compressing impacts on this fintech giant, do to its outsized growth outlay (analysts expecting to see 250% topline appreciation in 2021).UPST found critical support at a vital Fib-derived level around $160, where the markets appear to have put in a temporary bottom.I am looking at a UPST price target of $300+ with quarterly performance continuously outpacing even the most optimistic analysts. Upstart is looking at an unprecedented profitable growth outlook, and with most fresh fintech startups not even able to post positive earnings, UPST is more attractive than ever.The BusinessThis AI-powered cloud incepted fintech business is changing the way banks assess creditworthiness. Many fintech giants are competing against banks, but Upstart has decided to partner with them in its next-generation offering. This is an excellent position to be in as a high-growth company in a rising interest rate environment because higher rates means more profits for banks, which should inevitably drive significant demand for Upstart's one-of-a-kind product offering.The AI platform uses more than 1,600 differing variables before coming to the conclusion of creditworthiness compared to the typical bank, which only looks at 8-15 and the most sophisticated models 30.Upstart's CEO David Girouard said his lending algorithm is 5 times more effective than current systems at accurately depicting a person's ability to repay a loan. Saying that on a scale of 1-100, the current credit regimes are only at about 2 on predicting risk of default, and David believes his AI platform would put banks at closer to a 10, with still a lot more room to grow. Upstart's AI is continuously learning and will continue to be more effective as it is provided with more datasets.A Strategy To Stick To Amid 2022’s Chop:“Be Greedy When Others Are Fearful”Continue to buy the dips in your favorite stocks and look past the short-term volatility (don’t let this choppy market discourage you).Happy Trading!Dan LaboeEquity Strategist & Manager of The Headline Trader Portfolio at Zacks Investment Research Breakout Biotech Stocks with Triple-Digit Profit Potential The biotech sector is projected to surge beyond $2.4 trillion by 2028 as scientists develop treatments for thousands of diseases. They’re also finding ways to edit the human genome to literally erase our vulnerability to these diseases. Zacks has just released Century of Biology: 7 Biotech Stocks to Buy Right Now to help investors profit from 7 stocks poised for outperformance. Recommendations from previous editions of this report have produced gains of +205%, +258% and +477%. The stocks in this report could perform even better.See these 7 breakthrough stocks now >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (GS): Free Stock Analysis Report Credit Suisse Group (CS): Free Stock Analysis Report ACM Research, Inc. (ACMR): Free Stock Analysis Report Alaska Air Group, Inc. (ALK): Free Stock Analysis Report SMART Global Holdings, Inc. (SGH): Free Stock Analysis Report ARK Fintech Innovation ETF (ARKF): ETF Research Reports Uber Technologies, Inc. (UBER): Free Stock Analysis Report CrowdStrike (CRWD): Free Stock Analysis Report Upstart Holdings, Inc. (UPST): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacksJan 13th, 2022

5 Steel Stocks to Boost Your Portfolio Even as Prices Retreat

Despite the recent pullback in prices from historic highs, the favorable fundamentals make the steel space an attractive area to invest in right now. CMC, TMST, TKAMY, NUE and X are worth adding to your portfolio. The steel industry had a banner year in 2021 as steel prices touched all-time highs, allowing companies in this space to churn our record profits despite a spike in the cost of raw materials including ferrous scrap and headwinds from supply-chain and logistics issues.  However, steel prices lost steam in the last three months of the year, partly due to the improving supply-side situation. Despite the pullback, prices remain elevated compared with historic levels while demand fundamentals for steel continue to be solid. In the current scenario, stocks like Commercial Metals Company CMC, TimkenSteel Corporation TMST, thyssenkrupp AG TKAMY, Nucor Corporation NUE and United States Steel Corporation X are worth adding to your portfolio now.Industry Remains on Firm FootingThe steel industry staged a strong comeback last year after being battered by the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic in 2020, thanks to a strong revival in end-market demand and an upswing in steel prices.The pandemic hurt demand for steel across major end-use markets for much of the first half of 2020. However, the industry rebounded strongly on solid pent-up demand and a rally in steel prices. The resumption of operations across major steel-consuming sectors such as construction and automotive following the easing of lockdowns and restrictions globally led to an uptick in steel demand.An upturn in industrial activities is driving demand for steel. Demand remains robust across construction and manufacturing sectors. Order activities in the non-residential construction and equipment remain strong. Steel makers are also seeing improved demand in the energy space.Steel prices also escalated to historically high levels in 2021. Notably, the U.S. steel industry reaped the benefits of record-high steel prices last year, courtesy of an upsurge in demand in major end-use markets and tight supply conditions partly due to production disruptions at domestic steel mills and sizable Section 232 tariffs on steel imports.After hitting a pandemic-led low of roughly $440 per short ton in August 2020, the benchmark hot-rolled coil (“HRC”) prices witnessed a significant rally, breaking above the $1,900 per short ton level in August 2021 on the back of a mismatch between supply and demand.However, HRC prices have come under pressure since October after peaking in September 2021, dragged down by shorter lead times and a slowdown in demand in automotive resulting from production cuts by carmakers in the wake of the semiconductor shortage.The upswing in U.S. steel prices in 2021 also created an unprecedented price arbitrage between U.S. and international prices, thereby attracting imports of lower-priced foreign steel. The strong price arbitrage triggered more steel shipments to U.S. shores last year despite the hefty tariffs. Higher steel imports have been exerting downward pressure on U.S. steel prices of late. Rising production levels have also brought down steel prices. Steel production is expected to pick up going forward with steel mills having completed scheduled maintenances in the final quarter of 2021 and more capacity coming online this year.Nevertheless, HRC prices (currently hovering around $1,600) remain elevated notwithstanding the recent steep correction from its peak levels. They are well above the year-ago levels and nearly four times higher than the August 2020 low.Demand weakness in automotive is likely to continue as the chip shortages are unlikely to abate anytime soon.  Despite a slowdown in steel demand in the automotive space amid the ongoing chip crunch, healthy demand in other end markets including construction is likely to support HRC prices over the near term, driving profit margins of steel companies.The massive infrastructure development project is also expected to be a significant catalyst for the American steel industry and U.S. HRC prices in 2022. On Nov 15, President Joe Biden signed the more than $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill into law. The bill includes about $550 billion in new spending on roads, bridges, tunnels and the electric grid, as well as airports, broadband and other infrastructure improvements. The sizable infrastructure spending will spur demand for domestic steel.Favorable Zacks Industry RankThe Zacks Steel Producers industry currently carries a Zacks Industry Rank #39, which places it in the top 15% of more than 250 Zacks industries. The favorable rank reflects the industry’s strength. Our research shows that the top 50% of the Zacks-ranked industries outperforms the bottom 50% by a factor of more than 2 to 1.5 Steel Stocks to Snap UpNotwithstanding the recent pullback in prices from historic highs, the favorable fundamentals make the steel space an attractive area to invest in right now. Strong end-market demand aided by higher industrial activities, still-elevated steel prices, and a sizable infrastructure investment bode well for the industry. Here we pick five steel stocks with a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) or 2 (Buy) that are good options for investment right now.You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.Commercial Metals: Texas-based Commercial Metals, sporting a Zacks Rank #1, is gaining from robust steel demand, driven by elevated spending on the residential and construction sector in North America and recovery in the manufacturing sector. It continues to witness stellar demand for steel products across most end markets. In North America, the company is gaining from strong rebar demand, supported by the solid construction growth along with robust merchant bar and wire rod demand. Strength across the key end markets in both North America and Europe is supporting solid steel sales volumes. CMC also continues to gain from its ongoing network optimization efforts. It also has solid liquidity and financial position, and remains focused on reducing debt.Commercial Metals has expected earnings growth of 10.5% for fiscal 2022. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for fiscal 2022 earnings for CMC has been revised 6.6% upward over the past 60 days. The company has also outpaced the Zacks Consensus Estimate in three of the trailing four quarters. In this time frame, it has delivered an average earnings surprise of roughly 7.4%.TimkenSteel: Ohio-based TimkenSteel carries a Zacks Rank #1.  The company is benefiting from higher industrial and energy demand and a strong pricing environment notwithstanding the semiconductor supply-chain disruptions that are affecting shipments to mobile customers. TMST is seeing continued recovery in its industrial markets. Higher end-market demand and cost-reduction actions are also aiding its performance. It is benefiting from its efforts to improve its cost structure and manufacturing efficiency.TimkenSteel has an expected earnings growth rate of 0.7% for 2022. The consensus estimate for 2022 earnings has been revised 22% upward over the past 60 days. The company surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in each of the trailing four quarters, the average being 59.2%.thyssenkrupp: Germany-based thyssenkrupp sports a Zacks Rank #1. The company’s actions to transform into a high-performance and sustainable group of companies contribute to its performance. TKAMY’s Materials Services unit is benefiting from higher prices and sales volumes. It is seeing an upturn in demand across Materials Services and Industrial Components segments on the back of the ongoing macroeconomic recovery. Its Automotive Technology unit is also benefiting from favorable demand conditions and structural improvements. A recovery in demand and higher market prices are also driving its Steel Europe segment.thyssenkrupp has an expected earnings growth rate of 1,085.7% for fiscal 2022. The consensus estimate for fiscal 2022 earnings has been revised 41.8% upward over the past 60 days.Nucor: Charlotte, NC-based Nucor, carrying a Zacks Rank #1, is benefiting from strength in the non-residential construction market and a recovery in the automotive market. The company is also seeing strength in heavy and agriculture equipment and improved conditions in energy markets. Higher demand is supporting its shipments. NUE should also gain from its strategic investments in its most-significant growth projects. It remains committed to boosting production capacity, which should drive profitable growth and strengthen its position as a low-cost producer.The consensus estimate for Nucor’s 2022 earnings has been revised 10.1% upward over the past 60 days. NUE has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of roughly 2.7%, on average.United States Steel: Pennsylvania-based United States Steel, carrying a Zacks Rank #2, is gaining from strong demand across end markets, its Best for All business model and higher domestic steel prices. It is witnessing strong consumer-driven demand. The investment in Big River Steel is also expected to be accretive to X’s earnings and will generate significant synergies. Cost-saving initiatives and efforts to improve operation efficiency are also driving its results.The Zacks Consensus Estimate for United States Steel’s 2022 earnings has been revised 57.6% upward over the past 60 days. X also surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in each of the trailing four quarters, the average being 24.5%. Zacks Top 10 Stocks for 2022 In addition to the investment ideas discussed above, would you like to know about our 10 top picks for the entirety of 2022? From inception in 2012 through November, the Zacks Top 10 Stocks gained an impressive +962.5% versus the S&P 500’s +329.4%. Now our Director of Research is combing through 4,000 companies covered by the Zacks Rank to handpick the best 10 tickers to buy and hold. Don’t miss your chance to get in on these stocks when they’re released on January 3.Be First to New Top 10 Stocks >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report United States Steel Corporation (X): Free Stock Analysis Report Nucor Corporation (NUE): Free Stock Analysis Report Commercial Metals Company (CMC): Free Stock Analysis Report Timken Steel Corporation (TMST): Free Stock Analysis Report ThyssenKrupp AG Sponsored ADR (TKAMY): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacksJan 6th, 2022

Sealed Air (SEE) Hits New 52-Week High: What"s Aiding the Stock

Sealed Air's (SEE) robust demand for automated equipment and sustainable packaging contributes to its share-price rally. Sealed Air Corporation SEE scaled a fresh 52-week high of $68.54 during the trading session on Jan 5, before retracting to close at $66.80. Strong demand for automated equipment and sustainable packaging solutions is driving share price appreciation. Consistent strength in packaging demand for food, medical supplies and consumer staples and surging e-commerce activities are also aiding growth.Price PerformanceSealed Air’s shares have gained 43.4% in the past year compared with the industry’s growth of 9.9%.Image Source: Zacks Investment ResearchDriving FactorsStrong demand for automated equipment and sustainable packaging solutions continues to drive Sealed Air’s food and protected packaging segments’ growth. In food, the retail channel and protein exports are expected to be solid. Its protein automation pipeline continues to grow across all regions, with major food producers committing to its SEE Touchless Automation future. The company has been witnessing higher foodservice demand compared with year-ago levels owing to the reopening of restaurants and other public venues. Backed by this, its fluid solutions portfolio, comprising Cryovac Barrier Bags and pouches for condiments, soups and sauces, is witnessing growth. These categories account for 50% of the Food segment’s sales. In protective, continued growth in e-commerce and fulfillment and higher demand in the industrial end markets are likely to drive performance. E-commerce sales, which contribute around 14% to the company’s sales, have been on the rise amid the stay-at-home scenario.Sealed Air’s focus on automation, digital and sustainability is likely to boost market-beating growth in its core business, enabling it to expand into new and adjacent markets. The company’s SEE automated solutions strategy is driving growth for the next phase of its Reinvent SEE business transformation. The company meets customers' most critical safety, productivity and labor scarcity needs with its touchless automated solutions. The company’s pipeline for automated equipment continues to improve, and it has set a target of more than $500 million by 2025. It is investing more than $30 million in capacity expansion to meet the strong demand for equipment solutions. These investments along with the company’s acquisitions of Automated Packaging Systems, AFP, Inc and Fagerdala will stoke growth.Sealed Air’s Reinvent SEE Strategy, which focuses on innovations, SG&A productivity, product-cost efficiency, channel optimization and customer-service enhancements, is contributing to earnings. One of the most vital aspects of this strategy involves investing in technology and resources and focusing on the new and existing high-growth markets. The company is on track to realize the benefits from Reinvent SEE of around $65 million for full-year 2021.Positive Growth ProjectionsThe Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings for 2022 is currently pegged at $4.14, which suggests year-over-year growth of 16.2%. The estimate has been revised upward by 1.2% in the past 60 days.Zacks Rank and Other Stocks to ConsiderSealed Air currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.A few other top-ranked stocks in the Industrial Products sector are Berry Global Group, Inc. BERY, ScanSource, Inc. SCSC and MSC Industrial Direct Co., Inc. MSM. While BERY flaunts a Zacks Rank #1, SCSC and MSM carry a Zacks Rank #2.Berry Global Group has an estimated earnings growth rate of around 2.8% for fiscal 2022. In the past 60 days, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for fiscal 2022 earnings has been revised upward by 18%.In a year, the company’s shares have increased 30.5%. Berry Global Group has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 16.5%, on average.ScanSource has an expected earnings growth rate of 18.9% for fiscal 2022. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for fiscal 2022 earnings has been revised upward by 0.9% in the past 60 days.ScanSource’s shares have rallied 31.4% in the past year. SCSC has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 34.7%, on average.MSC Industrial has a projected earnings growth rate of 19.9% for fiscal 2022. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for fiscal 2022 earnings has been revised upward by 2.9% in the past 60 days.MSM’s shares have gained 5.5% in a year. MSC Industrial has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 2.9%, on average. Zacks Top 10 Stocks for 2022 In addition to the investment ideas discussed above, would you like to know about our 10 top picks for the entirety of 2022? From inception in 2012 through November, the Zacks Top 10 Stocks gained an impressive +962.5% versus the S&P 500’s +329.4%. Now our Director of Research is combing through 4,000 companies covered by the Zacks Rank to handpick the best 10 tickers to buy and hold. Don’t miss your chance to get in on these stocks when they’re released on January 3.Be First To New Top 10 Stocks >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report Sealed Air Corporation (SEE): Free Stock Analysis Report MSC Industrial Direct Company, Inc. (MSM): Free Stock Analysis Report ScanSource, Inc. (SCSC): Free Stock Analysis Report Berry Global Group, Inc. (BERY): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here......»»

Category: topSource: zacksJan 6th, 2022

Boeing (BA) Expands in ULCC Market, Wins Deal for 737 MAX Jet

The Boeing Company (BA) clinches an order for 50 ultra-low-cost carrier 737 MAX aircraft along with an option for 50 more aircraft from Allegiant Air, thus expanding its operations in the ULCC market. The Boeing Company BA recently clinched an order for 50 737 MAX aircraft from Allegiant Air, an ultra-low-cost carrier (ULCC) airline operating in the United States. The deal marks Boeing’s entry into the growing ULCC market.The order comprises two variants from Boeing’s 737 Max family of aircraft: the 737-7 and the high-capacity 737-8-200. Both variants offer the lowest seat-mile costs for a single-aisle aircraft and high-dispatch reliability that stands to fulfill Allegiant Air’s quest for capacity growth, bring flexibility in its operation and replace old aircraft from its existing fleet. Further, the deal involves an option for the addition of 50 more aircraft to its fleet going forward.Significance of the 737-7 and 737-8-200 AircraftULCC involves services that fulfill the purpose of operating with the lost-cost fleet, thus enabling airliners to provide customers with low-cost tickets. BA’s 737-7 and 737-8-200 aircraft offer operational cost benefits to airlines. These aircraft deliver superior efficiency, flexibility and reliability while reducing fuel use and carbon emissions by at least 14%.Such enhanced features exhibit additional opportunities for Boeing to clinch orders for the 737-7 and 737-8-200 aircraft demand for ULCC rises.Boeing’s Growth ProspectsThe 737 Max family of aircraft remains a key catalyst for Boeing’s commercial business ramp-up. In the last reported quarter, the company delivered 66 737 Max family of aircraft compared with only three in the same period last year.Moreover, since its return to operations following the Federal Aviation Administration approval, Boeing has delivered over 195 737 MAX aircraft, while airlines have returned more than 200 previously grounded aircraft to service. Currently, 31 airlines are operating the 737 MAX, thus highlighting the growing importance and adoption of the aircraft.Per Boeing’s CMO, the requirement for aircraft by airlines globally is projected to be more than 43,000, valued at $7.2 trillion, over the next 20 years. Meanwhile, 19,000 aircraft, valued at $3.2 trillion, will be needed to meet the rising demand for the next 10 years. Such forecasts exemplify immense growth potential for Boeing in the commercial business segment.Such projections will not only benefit Boeing but also aerospace majors, namely Airbus SE EADSY, Embraer SA ERJ and Textron TXT.The Airbus SE family of commercial aircraft comprises the A220 family, A320 family, A330 family and A350 family.Airbus’ average earnings surprise for the last two quarters was 69.70%. EADSY stock has rallied 21.3% in the past year.Embraer’s family of jets consists of the families of E-JETS E2, E-JETS and ERJs.  The company delivered nine commercial aircraft in the last reported quarter.The long-term (three to five years) earnings growth rate of Embraer is pegged at 17%. It has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 42.21%, on average. ERJ has returned a whopping 148.9% in the past year.Another aerospace giant, Textron, recently announced the launch of a pair of its next-generation business jets, namely Cessna Citation M2 Gen2 and Cessna Citation XLS Gen2 at the National Business Aviation Association - Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition. Textron expects the delivery of jets to begin by the end of the first and second quarters of 2022.Textron has delivered an earnings surprise of 13.33% in the last reported quarter. It has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 27.89%, on average. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2022 earnings has been revised upward by 2% in the past 90 days. Shares of TXT have appreciated 56.4% in the past year.Price PerformanceShares of Boeing have rallied 0.2% in the past year against the industry’s decline of 28.3%.Image Source: Zacks Investment ResearchZacks RankThe company carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here. Zacks Top 10 Stocks for 2022 In addition to the investment ideas discussed above, would you like to know about our 10 top picks for the entirety of 2022? From inception in 2012 through November, the Zacks Top 10 Stocks gained an impressive +962.5% versus the S&P 500’s +329.4%. Now our Director of Research is combing through 4,000 companies covered by the Zacks Rank to handpick the best 10 tickers to buy and hold. Don’t miss your chance to get in on these stocks when they’re released on January 3.Be First To New Top 10 Stocks >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report The Boeing Company (BA): Free Stock Analysis Report EmbraerEmpresa Brasileira de Aeronautica (ERJ): Free Stock Analysis Report Textron Inc. (TXT): Free Stock Analysis Report Airbus Group (EADSY): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacksJan 6th, 2022

Ultra-low-cost airline Allegiant is flipping its business strategy by buying 50 Boeing 737 MAX jets

Industry expert Henry Harteveldt told Insider Alleginat's order makes sense because of the jet's impressive operating capabilities. Rendering of Allegiant 737 MAX jets.Allegiant Air Allegiant Air announced it has purchased 50 new Boeing 737 MAX jets to add to its all-Airbus fleet. The decision breaks from the typical low-cost business strategy of operating just one aircraft type. Industry expert Henry Harteveldt said the order makes sense because of the jet's operating capabilities. Ultra-low-cost carrier Allegiant Air announced Wednesday that it is buying 50 new Boeing 737 MAX jets as it continues to modernize and grow its fleet. Allegiant's multi-year deal with Boeing will see the delivery of 50 new MAX jets by 2025, including the 737-7 and 737-8-200 models, the carrier said in a press release. The deal also includes the option to buy 50 additional planes, which will put the airline in a favorable position for future growth, according to the company."Our approach to fleet has always been opportunistic, and this exciting transaction with Boeing is no exception," Allegiant CEO Maurice J. Gallagher, Jr. said. "While the heart of our strategy continues to center on previously-owned aircraft, the infusion of up to 100 direct-from-the-manufacturer 737s will bring numerous benefits for the future – including flexibility for capacity growth and aircraft retirements, significant environmental benefits, and modern configuration and cabin features our customers will appreciate."The carrier explained the pandemic presented "unique opportunities to acquire new equipment." Henry Harteveldt, travel analyst and president of Atmosphere Research Group, told Insider Allegiant likely got a good deal on the planes and a faster delivery from Boeing than Airbus could promise.  Allegiant's MAX jets will feature Space Bins and Boeing's Sky Interior, offering more legroom, a more spacious cabin, and more seating capacity, as well as making the storing and retrieving of carry-on bags easier for travelers. Moreover, the jet will provide better efficiency, burning 20% less fuel than the older A320 family, according to the airline. The company's historic order is the first-ever deal between Boeing and an ultra-low-cost carrier in the US, with deliveries scheduled to begin in 2023, according to the carrier. Currently, Allegiant operates an all-Airbus fleet consisting of the 75 A319 and A320s.While switching to a mixed fleet is not a common business strategy for ultra-low-cost carriers, which typically only operate one aircraft type as a way to keep costs low, Allegiant said the addition of the MAX "will add significant economic and operational benefits for years to come."Harteveldt explained that Allegiant's purchase of the MAX jet makes sense because of the plane's "impressive operating capabilities.""If Allegiant wants, it can have its 737 Max jets certified for ETOPS operations, allowing the planes to fly more direct overwater routes that are further from land," he told Insider. This could allow Allegiant to launch new overwater routes to Hawaii or Latin America, as well as other longer routes over land."Harteveldt also explained the 737-8-200 variant is ultra-high-density, giving Allegiant the ability to add more passenger capacity during peak-demand periods.This is not the first time Allegiant has operated Boeing jets. In 2010, the carrier acquired six 757 single-aisle planes to fly to Hawaii, though demand waned and the aircraft proved too expensive to operate, so the type was retired in 2017, according to FlightGlobal.The company also operated the MD80 twin-engine jet, but the aging fleet was officially retired in 2018 due to high oil prices and the aircraft's low fuel efficiency, leaving Allegiant with just Airbus planes.While Allegiant has decided to once again operate a mixed fleet, other low-cost carriers have remained hesitant to introduce a new type. In March 2021, Southwest Airlines signed a deal with Boeing for 100 MAX 7 planes but had been weighing the option to buy the Airbus A220 instead, according to CNBC.The company's COO Mike Van de Ven said at the time having multiple aircraft types would create issues with pilot training and maintenance, and the change would be "a big undertaking for us."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: personnelSource: nytJan 6th, 2022

MIT made the longest flexible fiber battery to date, and it can be woven, washed, and resist fire

The design is unique because key materials like lithium are contained inside the fiber, with a protective layer on the outside. It's a rechargeable lithium-ion device, only a few hundred microns thick but 140 meters long.MIT A team of MIT engineers created the world's longest flexible fiber battery. It can stretch to over half a mile long and it's rechargeable and fire-resistant. It can also be woven and washed, meaning it could power fiber-based sensors or electrical devices. Modern batteries will need to overcome countless obstacles in order to power new technologies like flexible devices, electric vehicles, and medical devices.Engineers from MIT have made a breakthrough in this field, creating the world's longest flexible battery. It's a rechargeable lithium-ion device, only a few hundred microns thick but 140 meters long. According to the MIT website, the battery can be woven and washed. This could enable it to be integrated into ordinary clothing as a power source. The design is unique because key materials like lithium are contained inside the fiber, with a protective layer on the outside that makes it waterproof. New gel electrodes and a gel electrolyte also make the battery fire-resistant.To make the battery, the parts are placed in a cylinder and heated to just below the melting point. This material is then compressed down to a much smaller size."All the active materials are very well-integrated, so they don't change their position," said Tural Khudiyev, a lead author of the study.The battery is flexible, thin, and extremely longThe prototype offers a storage capacity of 123 milliamp-hours. This means that it could charge smartwatches or phones, Khudiyev said.In addition to being the longest, it's also the world's thinnest fiber battery design."There's no obvious upper limit to the length. We could definitely do a kilometer-scale length," Khudiyev added."The beauty of our approach is that we can embed multiple devices in an individual fiber," said another of the lead authors, Jung Tae Lee.To highlight the flexibility and potential of the material, the team wrapped a toy submarine with the battery fiber to provide it with power.If devices like this could incorporate batteries into their physical structures, it would reduce their weight and increase their range."This is the first 3D printing of a fiber battery device," Khudiyev said.The MIT team has already applied for a patent and hopes that it will reach the commercial market in a few years. The team is  now focused on improving the efficiency and capacity of the battery.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderJan 6th, 2022

Merger Date of PNM Resources (PNM) & AVANGRID Gets Extended

The merger deal between PNM Resources (PNM) and AVANGRID (AGR) gets extended to April 2023 from fourth-quarter 2021 as the proposal was turned down by the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission. PNM Resources PNM signs an amendment of the merger agreement with AVANGRID AGR for pushing the closure date to Apr 20, 2023, which is subject to a three-month extension by the mutual consent of the companies, based on various closing conditions. The merger can be terminated by both AGR and PNM under certain circumstances, including if the same is not completed within the stipulated time.The merger deal was announced in October 2020 and was expected to get completed in the fourth quarter of 2021, post the approval of the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission. However, the order for the approval of the merger got rejected, which would have otherwise fetched more than $300 million worth benefits for New Mexico customers and communities.New Mexico utility regulators felt that the deal's risks were more than the benefits to state ratepayers and consequently, rejected the proposed $8-billion acquisition.Motive Behind the MovePNM Resources’ long-standing expertise in fulfilling environmental regulations and its focus on developing cost-effective generation units to provide reliable and affordable power prompted AGR to defer the transaction instead of cancelling it. The acquisition will aid AVANGRID’s expansion of renewables business in the Southwest. Also, the scope and diversity of the combined business will augment its ability to invest in energy efficiency and new technologies.The combined entity will have an improved credit profile, greater financial flexibility and lower cost of capital. Given that AVANGRID's parent company is Iberdrola, S.A., funding of growth projects won’t be a concern. The deal will create a leading U.S. regulated utility and renewable energy platform, which seems lucrative to both companies.Clean Energy GoalsThe US government announced plans to generate carbon-free electricity by 2035 and reach net-zero emissions within 2050.The directive for utilities to cut down on emissions will help lower the release of harmful greenhouse gases. Companies from the Zacks Utilities sector were already setting targets to reduce their emissions much before the current administration unveiled its plans.PNM Resources is focused on exiting coal-fired generation by 2024 and intends to have an emissions-free generating portfolio by 2040. This will add cleaner energy sources to its production portfolio, thus becoming carbon neutral before 2045. New Mexico Legislation passed 100% carbon-free electricity target. In sync with the same, PNM will target an early exit at the end of 2024 from the Four Corners Power Plant. It expects an approval for the early retirement of the same in the fourth quarter of 2021.AVANGRID is the third largest wind and solar operator in the United States, with operations in 24 states having nearly 70 such facilities. AGR plans to create a clean generation portfolio with 90% renewables and the Scope 1 carbon neutrality goal by 2035. Also, it aims to reduce the Scope 1 greenhouse gas emissions by 35% within 2025 from the 2015 level. As of the third quarter of 2021, it invested nearly $616 million in renewables.Along with PNM and AGR, other electric utilities like CMS Energy Corporation CMS and Algonquin Power & Utilities Corp. AQN are adopting measures to meet clean energy targets.In December, CMS Energy’s subsidiary Consumer Energy inked a deal with Swisslane Farms to build a biodigester facility in Michigan, which will produce renewable natural gas. The move will enable CMS to inch closer to its goal of achieving net-zero methane emissions within2030.CMS Energy expects to make strategic investments to expand its renewable portfolio and spend $2.7 billion on renewable, including investments in wind, solar and hydroelectric generation resources during the 2021-2025 period.Algonquin has plans to invest $12.4 billion during the 2022-2026 time frame to strengthen its infrastructure and add renewable power to its generation portfolio.AQN’s renewable generation capacity represents more than 60% of its total generation capacity. It aims to achieve 75% renewable generation capacity by the end of 2023. Algonquin plans to become net zero by 2050.Zacks Rank & Price PerformanceThe stock currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.In the past six months, shares of PNM have lost 6.7% against the industry’s 9% growth.Image Source: Zacks Investment Research Infrastructure Stock Boom to Sweep America A massive push to rebuild the crumbling U.S. infrastructure will soon be underway. It’s bipartisan, urgent, and inevitable. Trillions will be spent. Fortunes will be made. The only question is “Will you get into the right stocks early when their growth potential is greatest?” Zacks has released a Special Report to help you do just that, and today it’s free. Discover 5 special companies that look to gain the most from construction and repair to roads, bridges, and buildings, plus cargo hauling and energy transformation on an almost unimaginable scale.Download FREE: How to Profit from Trillions on Spending for Infrastructure >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report CMS Energy Corporation (CMS): Free Stock Analysis Report PNM Resources, Inc. (PNM): Free Stock Analysis Report Avangrid, Inc. (AGR): Free Stock Analysis Report Algonquin Power & Utilities Corp. (AQN): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacksJan 5th, 2022

The 21 best books to help you form a new habit this year

Bestselling self-help books like "Atomic Habits," "The High 5 Habit," and "The Power of Habit" can help you reach your 2022 resolutions. Prices are accurate at the time of publication.When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.Bestselling self-help books like "Atomic Habits," "The High 5 Habit," and "The Power of Habit" can help you reach your 2022 resolutions.Amazon; Alyssa Powell/Insider A new year can be a great inspiration to make new changes in your life. Keeping your resolutions often means adopting lasting and impactful habits. These non-fiction self-help books and memoirs offer helpful perspectives on habit-forming. A new year is a great opportunity to create resolutions and goals for ourselves, but we all know resolutions can be hard to keep as the motivation and inspiration fades. To keep your resolutions and reach your goals, the best tactic is to form habits that will last throughout the year. There are plenty of great self-help books that can help you focus on breaking bad habits, building great ones, and keeping new habits long after the New Year's confetti has been cleaned up. 21 books that can help you form new habits and reach your 2022 goals:A helpful book to build good habits — and break bad onesAmazon"Atomic Habits" by James Clear, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $11.98This bestselling self-help book outlines how habits are formed and the psychology of creating good habits and ditching bad ones to help readers reach their goals. With plenty of examples, helpful advice, and tips to keep your habits on track, this guide is informative and inspirational for readers to transform their habits and find lasting success.A deeper examination of how we form habitsAmazon"The Power of Habit" by Charles Duhigg, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $10.95In "The Power of Habit," author Charles Duhigg draws upon a variety of anecdotes to demonstrate how the mastery of habits can transform our lives and help us reach great success in a short amount of time. Filled with research, academic studies, and interviews, this self-help book encourages readers to examine the roots of their current habits on a biological level in order to transform them in a lasting and impactful way.A book about adopting confidence as a habitAmazon"The High 5 Habit: Take Control of Your Life with One Simple Habit" by Mel Robbins, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $16.66This personal development book encourages readers to adopt just one habit into their lives: Giving yourself a high-five. "The High 5 Habit" is about transforming your mindset to become your own greatest cheerleader and adopting habits that help you believe in yourself.An iconic book to help change your organizing habitsBookshop"The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up" by Marie Kondo, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $8.58From famed Japanese cleaning consultant Marie Kondo, this book helps readers reset their organization and create new habits for keeping spaces clean and organized. With a little-by-little approach, Marie Kondo's decluttering techniques have inspired countless readers to pursue tidy homes through a change in perspective and organizational habits.A psychology book focused on our technology habitsAmazon"Digital Minimalism: Choosing a Focused Life in a Noisy World" by Cal Newport, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $12.99This habit-transforming book focuses on readers' relationship with technology and social media to help reduce our negative habits associated with both. Aiming to help readers who wish to disconnect from the digital world, "Digital Minimalism" offers strategies to transform our technology-focused habits and reconnect with the natural world and relationships around us.A personal story to inspire new habits and changesBookshop"Can't Hurt Me" by David Goggins, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $17.99"Can't Hurt Me" is an inspirational story that uses David Goggins' personal anecdotes to demonstrate how most people only utilize a fraction of their potential and how pushing beyond those mental barriers can unlock new levels of success. This passionate, bestselling book offers personal lessons to inspire readers to change their daily habits and conquer the self-imposed obstacles keeping them from achieving their goals.A book to help you change your habits in 30 daysAmazon"Do It for a Day: How to Make or Break Any Habit in 30 Days" by Mark Batterson, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $14.99This productivity book challenges readers to make or break a new habit in 30 days, starting right now. By helping readers identify a meaningful, measurable, and maintainable change, this book can help you adopt daily habits step-by-step with helpful techniques to change your life in a long-lasting way.A self-help read about changing the habits of your mindsetBookshop"Mindset: The New Psychology of Success" by Carol S. Dweck, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $8.55With decades of research behind her philosophy, Carol S. Dweck aims to teach readers that the key to success in any aspect of life is to adopt a growth mindset. With an introduction to the concept and helpful advice on how to apply a new mindset habit to your own life, this book offers simple insights to improve not only your personal mindset but that of your community or organization.A famous bestselling book about habitsAmazon"The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People" by Stephen R. Covey, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $12.53This 1988 self-help book is still loved by readers today for its principle-centered approach for anyone seeking to change their habits to improve their career, relationships, or personal development. By examining the seven habits of "highly effective people," this book inspires readers to apply these habits to their own lives in practical ways to improve our character first, which will, in turn, affect our habits.A book of habits and lessons drawn from interviewsBookshop"Tools of Titans" by Tim Ferriss, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $15.37Tim Ferriss is used to interviewing successful celebrities, business leaders, and athletes on his podcast. In this book, he draws the greatest and most universal tools and tactics these successful figures have used to reach great heights. Fascinating and explorative, "Tools of Titans" distills the best habits and life lessons for readers and teaches you how to apply them in order to improve your life.A book to refocus your energy into sustainable habitsAmazon"At Your Best: How to Get Time, Energy, and Priorities Working in Your Favor" by Carey Nieuwhof, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $21.49"At Your Best" is loved for its practical approach to helping readers apply principles to managing stress, reducing distractions, and adopting sustainable habits into your work and personal life. This book recognizes the high rate of burnout that many people are experiencing and offers solutions to restructure your schedule, find healthy habits, and refocus your energy in a more productive and sustainable way.A book that begins with one simple habitBookshop"Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life...And Maybe the World" by William H. McRaven, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $11.94Written by a Navy Admiral, this quick read explains the greatest lessons and habits William H. McRaven learned from his military career and how the simple habit of making your bed can change your life and even the world. Loved for its optimistic and conversational tone, this self-help book has practical advice and lessons that can be applied to any reader's life.A book that teaches the habits of monksAmazon"Think Like a Monk: Train Your Mind for Peace and Purpose Every Day" by Jay Shetty, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $13After college, Jay Shetty traveled to India to become a monk. After three years of training, he returned home to London with countless lessons he used to coach his friends to achieve greater happiness and mindfulness. In this book, Shetty teaches readers how to overcome damaging habits and adopt ones that offer stress relief, improved communication, and greater overall happiness in their lives.A short but inspirational habit-changing readBookshop"Unfu*k Yourself: Get Out of Your Head and Into Your Life" by Gary John Bishop, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $12.73Perfect for readers who find their greatest obstacles are themselves, this motivational and funny book aims to help readers confront the excuses they make and adopt habits to change their lives for good. A quick read full of actionable lessons, this read is a straightforward message about changing your habits, your mentality, and your life.A read to create meaningful habitsBookshop"Four Thousand Weeks: Time Management for Mortals" by Oliver Burkeman, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $24.84This productivity book begins by analyzing our obsession with time, time management, "life hacking," and efficiency. With philosophical principles, this productivity book encourages readers to shift habits from a productivity focus to a meaningful focus in order to adopt healthier habits that help us make the most of our lives.A book about a simple habitAmazon"The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right" by Atul Gawande, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $8.97While many other books offer complex productivity "hacks," this self-help book focuses on the simple habit of making a checklist. With interesting anecdotes and helpful tips, this book hopes to inspire readers to adopt a simple checklist habit to improve their lives.A productivity book to build focused habitsBookshop"Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World" by Cal Newport, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $14.99In this two-part self-help read, Cal Newport first presents an argument for the benefits of a deep work ethic and then offers four habits you can adopt to help focus on cognitively demanding tasks. Relevant in our email- and social media-saturated world, this habit-forming book is perfect for readers who struggle to avoid distractions at work.A unique and engaging read about a proven habit frameworkBookshop"Make Time: How to Focus on What Matters Every Day" by Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $21.49"Make Time" was written by two former Silicon Valley tech designers who tested countless habits and routines to find what was most effective in helping them achieve success. In this engaging read, they offer a four-step habit framework readers can apply to each day not to manage our time better, but to ensure we are making time for the most important things.The cumulative research of a year of habit-changing experimentsAmazon"The Productivity Project: Accomplishing More by Managing Your Time, Attention, and Energy" by Chris Bailey, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $14.49"The Productivity Project" is the result of the author's year-long experiment to find the best productivity habits that actually improved the quality and quantity of his work. From changing his sleep habits to the amount of time he spent on his phone, this productivity book is the culmination of a year's research and the 25 best habits the author found to increase his productivity.A reference to help form a bullet journaling habitAmazon"The Bullet Journal Method: Track the Past, Order the Present, Design the Future" by Ryder Carroll, available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble, $21.99In this personal development read, the author encourages readers to adopt a habit of bullet journaling to organize tasks, track the past, and create actionable steps to reach future goals. While bullet journals can absolutely be a creative outlet as well, this book offers a go-to structure to help create a useful bullet journal that can help you focus on what needs to be done. A self-help read for stress-free habit changesBookshop"Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity" by David Allen, available at Amazon and Bookshop, from $10.25"Getting Things Done" recognizes the stress that is often associated with the pressures of productivity and aims to help readers relax in order to organize their thoughts and achieve greater potential. With new habits to help readers plan, delegate, and overcome the feeling of being overwhelmed, this book can help them transform their habits instead of adding on new ones.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderJan 5th, 2022

Here"s Why You Should Buy Westlake (WLK) Stock Right Now

Westlake (WLK) benefits from strong demand for its products on continued global economic expansion, higher pricing and synergies of acquisitions. Shares of Westlake Chemical Corporation WLK have gained 15.6% over the past six months, outperforming its industry’s rise of 13% over the same time frame. The company, currently sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), is benefiting from the global economic rebound, higher sales prices for most of its key products, and demand strength in building and construction materials business.We are positive on the company’s prospects and believe that the time is right for you to add the stock to the portfolio as it looks promising and is poised to carry the momentum ahead. Image Source: Zacks Investment Research Let’s delve deeper into the factors that make this chemical maker an attractive choice for investors right now.Estimates Going UpOver the past two months, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for Westlake Chemical for 2021 has increased around 9%. The consensus estimate for fourth-quarter 2021 has also been revised 9.7% upward over the same time frame. The favorable estimate revisions instill investor confidence in the stock.Solid Growth ProspectsThe Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings for 2021 for Westlake Chemical is currently pegged at $15.59, reflecting an expected year-over-year growth of 580.8%. Earnings are also expected to register a 419.5% growth in fourth-quarter 2021.Impressive Earnings Surprise HistoryWestlake Chemical has outpaced the Zacks Consensus Estimate in each of the trailing four quarters. In this time frame, it has delivered an earnings surprise of 17.8%, on average.Growth Drivers in PlaceWestlake Chemical is benefiting from strong demand for most of its products on continued global economic expansion. It is gaining from higher demand in its polyethylene business in specialty applications, especially consumer product packaging, and strength in global demand for polyvinyl chloride (“PVC”) resin. The company is witnessing strong demand in the downstream building products business on the back of continued housing growth and spending on repair and remodeling activities.Strong demand in North American residential construction and the repair and remodeling markets is also driving prices of PVC resin. Westlake Chemical’s Olefins unit is also benefiting from higher prices of all products on the back of strong global demand.The company will also gain from its capacity expansion projects and actions to improve operating efficiency and reduce costs. It is also making disciplined investments, developing new products and leveraging its current products and footprint globally.Westlake Chemical should also benefit from synergies of acquisitions. The company, in its third-quarter call, said that it expects that the recently completed acquisitions of LASCO Fittings, Boral North America and Dimex, totaling around $2.6 billion, will initiate a stage of development and growth for its building products business. It is optimistic that the investments will strengthen its footprint in the sustainable building product markets and provide long-term growth opportunities.The company, in Nov 2021, formed a definitive agreement with Hexion Inc. to acquire the latter’s global epoxy business. The deal will add a downstream portfolio of coatings and composite products to its chloro-vinyls businesses. This will enable the company to expand its integrated business. The industries served by Hexion Epoxy are lucrative to Westlake and promise to be a synergistic addition to its existing businesses.Stocks to ConsiderOther top-ranked stocks worth considering in the basic materials space include Albemarle Corporation ALB, Commercial Metals Company CMC and Olin Corporation OLN. Albemarle, currently sporting a Zacks Rank #1, has an expected earnings growth rate of 49.8% for the current year. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for ALB's current-year earnings has been revised 9.2% upward over the past 60 days. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.Albemarle beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings in each of the trailing four quarters, the average being 22.1%. ALB has rallied around 39% in a year.Commercial Metals, carrying a Zacks Rank #1, has a projected earnings growth rate of 10.5% for the current fiscal year. CMC's consensus estimate for the current fiscal year has been revised 6.6% upward over the past 60 days.Commercial Metals beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings in three of the last four quarters while missed once. It has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of roughly 7.4%, on average. CMC has rallied around 60% in a year.Olin currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). OLN has a projected earnings growth rate of 4.2% for the current year.The Zacks Consensus Estimate for Olin's current-year earnings has been revised 5.9% upward over the past 60 days. OLN shares have popped around 106% in a year. Infrastructure Stock Boom to Sweep America A massive push to rebuild the crumbling U.S. infrastructure will soon be underway. It’s bipartisan, urgent, and inevitable. Trillions will be spent. Fortunes will be made. The only question is “Will you get into the right stocks early when their growth potential is greatest?” Zacks has released a Special Report to help you do just that, and today it’s free. Discover 5 special companies that look to gain the most from construction and repair to roads, bridges, and buildings, plus cargo hauling and energy transformation on an almost unimaginable scale.Download FREE: How to Profit from Trillions on Spending for Infrastructure >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report Westlake Chemical Corporation (WLK): Free Stock Analysis Report Albemarle Corporation (ALB): Free Stock Analysis Report Commercial Metals Company (CMC): Free Stock Analysis Report Olin Corporation (OLN): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacksJan 5th, 2022

MillerKnoll, Inc. Reports Second Quarter Fiscal 2022 Results

ZEELAND, Mich., Jan. 4, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Strong demand drove quarterly orders of $1.2 billion; an increase of 83.9% over the prior year, up 26.4%* organically Our diversified go-to-market strategy helped drive growth in every segment Integration of the Knoll acquisition is progressing as planned; we remain confident in our ability to deliver $100 million of run rate cost synergies within two years of the closing, and now expect $120 million by the end of year three Webcast to be held Tuesday, January 4, 2022, at 5:30 PM ET Second Quarter Fiscal 2022 Financial Results (Unaudited) (Unaudited) Three Months Ended Six Months Ended (Dollars in millions, except per share data) November 27, 2021 November 28, 2020 % Chg. November 27, 2021 November 28, 2020 % Chg. Net Sales $ 1,026.3 $ 626.3 63.9 % $ 1,816.0 $ 1,253.0 44.9 % Gross Margin % 34.2 % 39.0 % N/A 34.6 % 39.4 % N/A Adjusted Gross Margin %* 34.6 % 39.0 % N/A 35.2 % 39.5 % N/A Operating Expenses $ 346.8 $ 173.2 100.2 % $ 677.1 $ 327.8 106.6 % Adjusted Operating Expenses* $ 294.4 $ 170.8 72.4 % $ 529.6 $ 326.6 62.2 % Operating Earnings (Loss) % 0.4 % 11.3 % N/A (2.7) % 13.3 % N/A Adjusted Operating Earnings %* 5.9 % 11.7 % N/A 6.0 % 13.5 % N/A Net (Loss) Earnings Attributable to MillerKnoll, Inc. $ (3.4) $ 51.3 N/A $ (64.9) $ 124.2 N/A (Loss) Earnings Per Share – Diluted $ (0.05) $ 0.87 N/A $ (0.92) $ 2.10 N/A Adjusted Earnings Per Share – Diluted* $ 0.51 $ 0.89 (42.7) % $ 1.00 $ 2.13 (53.1) % Orders $ 1,157.9 $ 629.7 83.9 % $ 2,074.4 $ 1,185.7 75.0 % Backlog $ 967.3 $ 403.4 139.8 % *Items indicated represent Non-GAAP measurements; see the reconciliations of Non-GAAP financial measures and related explanations below. To our shareholders: During the second quarter of fiscal year 2022 we reached exciting and symbolic milestones.  It was our first full quarter as MillerKnoll, our company name officially changed, and we began trading with our new stock ticker symbol, NASDAQ: MLKN. We are making excellent progress on our integration journey and remain confident that we will deliver our cost synergies target of $100 million within two years of closing. Furthermore, as our teams completed integration planning, they identified additional synergy opportunities and we now expect to increase run rate savings to $120 million by the end of year three. In bringing together the best of Herman Miller and Knoll, we've created a stronger and more resilient organization, built for long-term success. Second quarter demand shows the power of MillerKnoll and we are confident in our ability to drive continued growth and shareholder value.  Financial Results The following table highlights non-comparable items that impacted U.S. GAAP net earnings per diluted share, defined as earnings per diluted share adjusted, to exclude the impact of special charges, acquisition and integration-related expenses, expense related to debt extinguishment, and intangible asset amortization related to the Knoll acquisition. Three Months Ended Six Months Ended November 27,2021 November 28, 2020 November 27, 2021 November 28, 2020 (Loss) Earnings per Share - Diluted $ (0.05) $ 0.87 $ (0.92) $ 2.10 Non-comparable items: Add: Special charges, after tax — — — 0.01 Add: Amortization of purchased intangibles, after tax 0.16 — 0.52 — Add: Acquisition and integration charges, after tax 0.40 — 1.26 — Add: Debt extinguishment, after tax — — 0.14 — Add: Restructuring expenses, after tax — 0.02 — 0.02 Adjusted Earnings per Share - Diluted $ 0.51 $ 0.89 $ 1.00 $ 2.13 Weighted Average Shares Outstanding (to Calculate Adjusted Earnings per Share) – Diluted 75,304,752 59,267,398 70,803,483 59,043,928 Note: The adjustments above are net of tax. For the three and six months ended November 27, 2021, the tax impact of the adjustments were $0.20 and $0.51, respectively. For the three and six months ended November 28, 2020, the tax impact of the adjustments was immaterial. MillerKnoll Consolidated Results Second quarter consolidated net sales were $1.0 billion, reflecting an increase of 63.9% on a reported basis and 11.1% organically compared to prior year. Orders in the quarter of $1.2 billion were 83.9% higher than the prior year. Notably, order levels were up over prior year across all four reporting segments. On an organic basis, orders of $795.7 million reflected sequential improvement of 6.4% compared to the first quarter, and were up 26.4% over the prior year.  While order demand was strong, our ability to produce and ship orders was impacted in the near-term by continued global supply chain and labor supply disruptions. We estimate these disruptions adversely impacted net sales by approximately $50 million during the quarter. We continue to implement a range of countermeasures to combat these pressures, but expect to continue to feel their effects in the second half of this fiscal year.   Gross margin for the quarter was 480 basis points lower than the prior year, due largely to the impact of rising commodity prices, particularly steel, and other inflationary pressures including labor and transportation. The price increase we implemented in the first quarter helped mitigate some of these inflationary pressures. Additional price increases implemented in the second and third quarters are expected to help further offset these pressures.  Consolidated operating expenses for the quarter were $346.8 million, compared to $173.2 million in the prior year. Consolidated adjusted operating expenses of $294.4 million, were up $123.6 million from last year, primarily due to the inclusion of Knoll adjusted operating expenses of $99.1 million and additional variable selling expenses as a result of increased sales in the current year. We are managing operating expenses carefully and will continue to adapt based on evolving market dynamics.  Operating margin for the quarter was 0.4% compared to 11.3% during the prior year. On an adjusted basis, which excludes acquisition and integration-related charges of $57.2 million, consolidated operating margin was 5.9% compared to 11.7% in the prior year. Despite inflationary pressures, our Global Retail business delivered another strong quarter of profitability with adjusted operating margins of 11.3%. We reported a net loss per share of $0.05 for the quarter. Adjusted earnings per share were $0.51 in the quarter, compared to $0.89 in the prior year. At the end of our second quarter, our liquidity position reflected cash on hand and availability on our revolving credit facility totaling $573.8 million. Using the Power of MillerKnoll and Delivering Cost Synergies We are making progress bringing Herman Miller and Knoll together, unleashing the power of our combined brands and delivering cost synergies. At the close of the second quarter, we had implemented $43 million in run rate savings. This meaningful progress toward our goal, and along with our robust integration roadmap, gives us confidence that we will achieve our planned cost synergies, even with inflationary and supply chain pressures.  During the quarter, we completed the work behind creating our new MillerKnoll organizational structure. This involved selecting talent and integrating the two teams into a new structure to execute our strategies and drive the business forward. Our new structure ensures we are capturing operational efficiencies across our collective of brands while strengthening the unique position of each individual brand to drive continued growth and create future development opportunities for our employees. The most compelling reason for creating MillerKnoll is the power of our combined portfolio and distribution network. MillerKnoll will have the largest and most capable dealer network in the world and together we will offer our customers the most comprehensive suite of products and services in the industry. Creating the MillerKnoll dealer network is our top priority and we are well on our way. Our first MillerKnoll dealer pilots in Texas and Arizona have been successful, and the learnings will inform the plan for operationalizing the network. We are on track with our plans to transition from the legacy Herman Miller and Knoll dealer networks to a unified MillerKnoll dealer network in the middle of calendar 2022.  As MillerKnoll, we also have a greater impact in our communities. November 2 was MillerKnoll's Global Day of Purpose. Our combined 11,000 employees took the day to give back to their communities in a variety of meaningful ways. It was an extraordinary culture-building moment for our organization and a testament to the good we can, and will, do together.  Driving Growth Across Geographies With a Diversified Go-To-Market Strategy That Combines Contract and Retail Retail Momentum Continues Second quarter Global Retail sales were up 18.2% and orders were up 20.6% compared to the prior year. This growth was fueled, in part, by investments we've made to drive customer acquisition and by continued assortment expansion. We are focused on improving our operational capabilities with new order management, planning and allocation, and point-of-sale systems coming later in the fiscal year.  Following the opening of our San Jose and San Francisco stores in the quarter, our total fleet of Herman Miller retail stores now stands at 13. These stores, which highlight Herman Miller's unmatched collection of ergonomic seating products, are an important entry point for customers experiencing our brands for the first time and we expect to build on our initial success with this concept through an expanded brick-and-mortar presence in 2022.   International Retail, which includes Herman Miller and HAY International, was another bright spot in the quarter, with sales up 22.1% and orders up 10.9% versus the prior year. We launched new Herman Miller websites in Germany and France, and both exceeded sales and orders expectations for the quarter. The Global Retail segment also felt the macro-economic pressures the industry is experiencing. We increased shipping fees on furniture and implemented a shipping fee on task seating. These actions helped offset freight costs without impacting demand. We also implemented targeted price increases across our retail product lineup in the second quarter to help offset inflationary pressures.   We entered the important holiday shopping season with momentum. The Retail team delivered our strongest performance during the Black Friday-Cyber Monday period. In addition, our gaming product sales were strong during this timeframe and throughout the second quarter. We will continue to drive growth in the gaming segment through new product introductions, regional expansion in Europe, and strategic partnerships. We expect the Retail business to continue delivering double-digit revenue growth and low teens operating margin in the near term. Longer term, we expect our growth investments in retail will enable further margin expansion from current levels. Growth initiatives in the second half of the fiscal year include upgrading our Herman Miller Japan and China eCommerce platforms, expanding our product assortment with a steady drumbeat of new products across our brands, including gaming, and expanding studios and stores.  Strong Demand Environment During the second quarter, we saw continued improvement in the demand environment in each of our other segments- Americas Contract, International Contract and Knoll. Americas Contract Americas Contract sales of $361.5 million increased 4.1% over the prior year. Business fundamentals in the Americas reflect continued improvement in the demand environment as organizations accelerated their return to the workplace. Order entry levels of $407.2 million were strong across all regions and sectors and were 29.3% higher than the prior year. The Americas segment felt the impact of supply chain and internal manufacturing capacity disruptions in the quarter, which impacted our ability to ship orders in the period. Our teams are actively working on initiatives to help mitigate these pressures, but we do expect them to remain a factor in our operations in the second half of the fiscal year. International Contract International Contract performance was strong across all geographies and brands in the quarter. Orders were up 30.3% and sales were up 23.3% over the prior year. Many regions met or exceeded pre-COVID performance as the global return to the workplace continued to accelerate through the quarter. Demand in Europe, including the UK, was especially strong, with orders in Europe up 42% over prior year. Cost pressure impacts have been less of a factor in the International Contract segment compared to Americas Contract segment. Global account activity drove a significant portion of the strong orders performance in this segment during the quarter, with significant wins in India and Japan. We expect this trend to continue as more customers bring employees back to the workplace in 2022. At the same time, we are seeing an increase in activity from local domestic companies which is driving new and sustained growth, especially in Australia and China.  With the global return to offices pacing ahead of the Americas, we are gaining a clearer picture of workplace design trends. More mature markets are leaning into floorplates with more collaborative spaces, while developing markets like India and China continue to favor a more traditional floorplate, albeit with a gradual shift to more collaborative spaces. HAY Contract's performance in Europe speaks to the demand for collaborative solutions in that region, with orders up 55% and sales up 48% from prior year. Knoll Knoll sales were up 5.3% and orders were up 29.6% versus the prior year. Both the Knoll workplace and residential categories grew in the quarter. Notably, Holly Hunt and Muuto both experienced record sales in the quarter. Through the pandemic, these two brands have demonstrated consistent growth across channels, including to-the-trade and consumer retail. This performance points to the power of our diversified strategy and strong business fundamentals. Applying Our Research and Firsthand Experience to Deliver Innovative Future of Work Solutions MillerKnoll is the global leader in providing adaptable solutions to create innovative, productive environments for the workplace and homes of our clients. We are sharing our firsthand experiences with hybrid workplaces and leveraging our global insight partnerships to inform the future of work.  While the world continues to grapple with the impacts of the pandemic, including new variants and regional surges in cases, leasing data indicates that companies are returning to the office. In our conversations with C-suite executives from a variety of industries, there is a strong desire among leaders to bring their teams back together for the purposes of culture building, collaboration, and problem-solving efficiency. Research also indicates that most people want the option to return to the office. According to Future Forum's consortium of companies working on the Future of Work, more than 80% of employees want access to an office, but not every day and not from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm. In fact, 76% of employees want more flexibility in where they can work, and far more, 93%, want flexibility in when they can work. Employers are recognizing their workplaces need to be reimagined as desirable and on-demand resources that are designed to meet the changed expectations of the post-pandemic workforce. We have the products, the services, and the tools to help them achieve their goals for their workplaces. Leveraging Our Competitive Advantages to Drive Growth and Create Value for Our Shareholders We believe in the power of design to solve problems. While we are facing many of the same headwinds as the rest of our industry, our people are delivering creative and sustainable solutions to overcome these challenges. We are leveraging our global distribution, production, design, and sales capabilities to combat supply chain issues, shipping delays, and inflationary pressures. We've ramped up production capacity in facilities closer to our customers and built inventory behind higher demand items. We are also leaning into the partnerships that exist across our collective of brands to increase global shipping capacity even during this period of extreme scarcity. Our pricing and discount strategies are helping to offset margin pressures – contract pricing increases began in Q1 and continued through the quarter, with Global Retail price increases to take effect in the third quarter.  We are innovating across our brands and leveraging our relationships with a global network of designers to bring new solutions such as the Knoll Iquo indoor/outdoor café chairs in partnership with Ini Archibong. Across MillerKnoll's expansive textile capability we introduced several new products this quarter, including Knoll's New Fundamentals Collection, and expanded Maharam's Textiles of the 20th Century series with the reissue of six of Alexander Girard's most enduring designs across three applications (upholstery, wallcoverings, and a hand-woven rug).  Outlook We expect sales in the third quarter of fiscal year 2022 to range between $1,010 million and $1,050 million. The mid-point of this range implies a revenue increase of 74% compared to the same quarter last fiscal year on a reported basis and 18% on an organic basis, excluding the impact of the Knoll acquisition. We anticipate earnings per share to be between $0.24 and $0.30 for the period. Our forecast for the third quarter also considers the near-term impacts of supply chain disruptions and inflationary pressures.  Designing the Future MillerKnoll is built for growth. We are powered by the most comprehensive portfolio of complementary brands in our industry. With our enhanced capabilities and the financial strength of our diversified business, we are well positioned to drive growth and increase value for all our stakeholders as we design our future as MillerKnoll.  We appreciate your continued support of our company and look forward to an exciting 2022 together.  Andi Owen Jeff Stutz President and Chief Executive Officer Chief Financial Officer Financial highlights for the three and six months ended November 27, 2021 follow: MillerKnoll, Inc. Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations (Unaudited) (Dollars in millions, except per share and common share data) Three Months Ended Six Months Ended November 27, 2021 November 28, 2020 November 27, 2021 November 28, 2020 Net Sales $ 1,026.3 100.0 % $ 626.3 100.0 % $ 1,816.0 100.0 % $ 1,253.0 100.0 % Cost of Sales 675.7 65.8 % 382.1 61.0 % 1,187.9 65.4 % 758.8 60.6 % Gross Margin 350.6 34.2 % 244.2 39.0 % 628.1 34.6 % 494.2 39.4 % Operating Expenses 294.4 28.7 % 170.8 27.3 % 529.6 29.2 % 326.6 26.1 % Restructuring Expenses — — % 2.4 0.4 % — — % 1.2 0.1 % Acquisition and Integration Charges 52.4 5.1 % — — % 147.5 8.1 % — — % Operating Earnings (Loss)  3.8 0.4 % 71.0 11.3 % (49.0) (2.7) % 166.4 13.3 % Other Expenses, net 8.2 0.8 % 2.2 0.4 % 26.1 1.4 % 3.7 0.3 % (Loss) Earnings Before Income Taxes and Equity Income (4.4) (0.4) % 68.8 11.0 % (75.1) (4.1) % 162.7 13.0 % Income Tax (Benefit) Expense (3.4) (0.3) % 16.2 2.6 % (14.1) (0.8) % 36.9 2.9 % Equity (Loss) Income, net of tax (0.1) — % 0.2 — % — — % 0.4 — % Net (Loss) Earnings (1.1) (0.1) % 52.8 8.4 % (61.0) (3.4) % 126.2 10.1 % Net Earnings Attributable to Redeemable Noncontrolling Interests 2.3 0.2 % 1.5 0.2 % 3.9 0.2 % 2.0 0.2 % Net (Loss) Earnings Attributable to MillerKnoll, Inc. $ (3.4) (0.3) % $ 51.3 8.2 % $ (64.9) (3.6) % $ 124.2 9.9 % Amounts per Common Share Attributable to MillerKnoll, Inc. (Loss) Earnings Per Share – Basic ($0.05) $0.87 ($0.92) $2.11 Weighted Average Basic Common Shares 75,304,752 58,908,094.....»»

Category: earningsSource: benzingaJan 4th, 2022