Melissa Davis, senior editor of The Street Sweeper, poses with celebrity stock picker Jim Cramer after a recent taping of his "Mad Money" television show. Davis worked as an investigative reporter for TheStreet.com, where Cramer serves as chairman, before assuming her current role at The Street Sweeper.
FuelCell Energy: Will The Plug Be Pulled On This Overvalued Company?
by Sonya Colberg, Senior Investigative Reporter, 8/20/2014 10:49:48 AM
If only we lived in that magical world where we could scrape up leftovers from Sunday dinner, plop them into a device, add a dollop of fat and presto – the air conditioner churns on uninterrupted. And no messy rendering required between steps.
In that world, FuelCell Energy (FCEL) might also become profitable. Or at least its stock price would rise and fall based on FCEL itself, rather than the misconceived mirroring of Plug Power. Most of all, FCEL would not be poised to lose its biggest customer.
But this is the real world. And it’s inconceivable to TheStreetSweeper how a company with multiple issues plus an accumulated deficit exceeding $797 million could be worth anything approaching $1 billion.
“Anytime you’re a single-dollar or two-dollar stock, there’s a reason you’re a single-dollar or two-dollar stock,” said Jake Dollarhide, CEO of Longbow Asset Management. “They announced they’re cutting costs. Well cutting costs is not what you always want to hear – especially when it’s a new concept company that doesn’t have mass scale at this point.”
The stock has a lot of people spooked. During “Lighting Round” Tuesday on CNBC, analyst Jim Cramer said this about FCEL:
“Ahhh, Fuelcell! I mean, you know, these are just total rank speculation stories. I can’t go there,” Cramer said.
“I’ve got a lot of solid companies that have really good fundamentals that are inexpensive,” he added. “I’m not going FuelCell.”
Indeed, this is a company that is:
- Poised to lose its biggest customer.
- Riding high on a misconceived notion.
- Selling stock. And we wouldn’t be surprised to see more.
- Can’t seem to scale.
- Losing money faster than you can say, “Fool cells.”
- Sporting a completely unjustified market cap.
We see stubborn challenges for the Danbury, Conn.-based company that makes and sells fuel cells that generate electricity.
Synthesis Energy Systems: Running Out Of Gas
by Sonya Colberg, Senior Investigative Reporter, 8/7/2014 10:20:07 AM
Synthesis Energy Systems (SYMX) is trying to hit the gas but the coal gasification company’s problems keep slamming on the brakes. TheStreetSweeper believes its many issues will continue to build into a swerving, stop-and-go ride sure to leave investors screaming to get off.
Key aspects of the Houston company and the coal gasification business have convinced us that the worst is not yet behind SYMX or those brave souls still holding onto the stock.
It’s been just eight months since SYMX restarted its plant in China after a long, painful 2-year shutdown that left SYMX’s market cap practically sitting on empty. Finally able to sell the product, the company’s stock price revved back up to reasonable levels before taking a recent, brief U-turn on some big trades and rumors that the co-founder and chief commercial officer has grabbed his truck-load of shares and taken the nearest exit. The stock price, however, is now recovering.
But the stock value likely will once again hit the skids because we believe SYMX will soon have to shut down its ZZ plant again.
The company offered a rebuttal by email through spokeswoman Susan Roush.
“As for your query about current methanol prices, when commodity prices are lower such as they are now, the plants are able to operate in different modes and continue to generate revenues,” she said.
While TheStreetSweeper believes it could operate in different modes, we do not believe it could generate any significant revenues by doing so - especially considering its track record. A company filing says this:
“The Supplementary Agreement also provides that, to the extent Hai Hua has an unscheduled shutdown, and the plant continues to operate on standby during such period, Hai Hua is still required to pay the energy fee to the ZZ Joint Venture.”
So the plant would be operating and, under that scenario, the revenue could be expected to be the undoubtedly insignificant fee.
The “clean coal” company sells its coal-based syngas technology and equipment to its partner in China. Zao Zhuang, or ZZ, uses the syngas with coke oven gas to produce methanol, which is used to produce more complex chemicals or blended with gasoline for motor fuel. Naturally, ZZ wants as high a price as possible from its methanol. And a high price is necessary because operating expenses are so high.
Now, methanol prices are hovering around a 2-year low, threatening to once again shutter the plant. SYMX stands to face not quite the revenue drop to zero that it suffered last shutdown, but a significant sales decline all the same.
JAMN Finally Spills the Beans -- And It's an Ugly Mess
by Janice Shell, 6/2/2011 10:32:51 AM
To be sure, the 10-K offered investors little reason to sing. For starters, the filing reveals, this once-hot “coffee company” sells no coffee of its own at all. JAMN relies on a supplier based in frigid Canada – far away from the tropical Jamaican home of its co-founder Rohan Marley – to provide the company with an actual product to sell to its customers instead.
Back in April of 2010, JAMN inked a “supply and toll agreement” with Canterbury Coffee of British Columbia that gave it access to some brew. According to that agreement, JAMN relies on Canterbury to fulfill every role – save a minor one – normally satisfied by a firm that classifies itself as a coffee company. Canterbury purchases the coffee beans. It roasts them. And it then packages them in bags supplied by JAMN – the company’s only real product – for sale to the public.
JAMN signed this deal more than a year ago, right before Shane Whittle – a notorious Vancouver stock promoter – officially resigned as CEO of the company. But the company never mentioned that agreement, seemingly material enough to warrant at least a quiet 8-K report, in a single regulatory filing until now.
Jammin Java (JAMN): Hot Stock ... Bitter Aftertaste?
by Janice Shell, 6/2/2011 10:30:25 AM
It’s time to wake up and smell the coffee! That’s exactly what Jammin Java (OTC: JAMN.OB), a heavily promotedcoffee company, and – for very different reasons – TheStreetSweeper would like investors to do.
Since the beginning of the year, JAMN has miraculously risen from the ashes of the “Grey Market” graveyard to become one of the liveliest – and richest – stocks in the entire microcap arena. JAMN has seen its stock shoot straight toward heaven, soaring from 55 cents to peak above $6 a share on massive daily volume, with its market value nowtopping $355 million despite the company’s limited resources and operating history. (As covered in more detail below, two of the Internet tout sheets pushing JAMN the hardest effectively vanished -- disabled by their Internet servers -- on the day the stock’s trading volume exploded past 20 million shares.)
CCME: Few Signs of Life at 'Healthy' Chinese Firm
by Roddy Boyd, 3/23/2011 9:30:34 AM
Also, and this cannot be understated, hanging out on a sidewalk in Fujian–the sidewalks double as parking spots when the streets, which appeared to have been designed in the Han Dynasty, fill up–was not a viable option. There was also the matter of the world-class headache the Financial Investigator was developing from Fuzhou’s diabolical smell, an epic conflation of poor sewage treatment, air pollution and the smell of cabbage that made getting the hell off Dongjie street a matter of vital importance.
The Financial Investigator and his traveling companion for the trip, an American investor with extensive experience in China, decided to head upstairs despite our interview with the CFO having been cancelled at the last minute (with no explanation given.) We thought a quick tour of the offices and meeting a few other executives might open our eyes to a few things.
Though the language barrier was a little steep with the young receptionist–when we asked for writing paper, she provided Kleenex–we were in short order shown to their conference room and told to wait. It did not escape notice that pride of place in the conference room belonged to a framed certificate of participation from the Fall 2010 Rodman & Renshaw conference, the World Cup for reverse merger companies and the pumpers and touts who peddle them.
Eventually chief operating officer James Yu came down and after spending 30 minutes trying to understand who we were, concluded that giving us a tour wouldn’t hurt. Soon enough, his colleague, Vinne Ye–the chairman’s assistant–came out and took us around.
It was most eye-opening.more...
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