Five high-income commodities investments to purchase offer protection against the unabated attack of Ukraine ordered by Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, the largest inflation in 40 years and Fed rate hikes that are expected to continue in 2022.

The five high-income commodities investments to purchase include those involved in oil and grain production that are proving to be in short supply with no relief in sight. Putin’s launch of what he called a “special military operation” to send Russian troops to invade Ukraine on Feb. 24 has disrupted the neighboring nation’s agricultural production, led to theft of the grain and imposed an ongoing blockade in the Black Sea to stop Ukrainian farmers from exporting their crops.

Crude oil inventories are down to a “dangerously low point” across Europe, North America and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Asia, while spare production capacity from OPEC+ nations slid to the lowest levels since April 2020, according to BofA Global Research. Inventories of petroleum products also have fallen to “precarious levels” for middle distillates and even gasoline as the peak U.S. driving season approaches this summer, the investment firm added.

Refined petroleum cracks — caused by the differences between crude oil and the prices of wholesale petroleum products such as gasoline — recently have “spiked to record levels,” contributing to volatility, BofA wrote. In addition, strategic oil barrels held by OECD governments already are low and likely to decline steeply going forward, leaving consumers exposed to future negative supply shocks, BofA predicted.

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Seasoned Wall Street Veteran Chooses KYN as One of Five High-Income Commodities to Purchase

Kayne Anderson Energy Infrastructure Company (NYSE: KYN), a Houston-based closed ended equity mutual fund launched and managed by KA Fund Advisors, LLC., provides the largest payout of the five high-income commodities investments to purchase. KYN offers a current dividend yield of 8.6% and is a recommendation of Bryan Perry, a high-income aficionado who is a veteran of Wall Street firms and the editor of the Cash Machine investment newsletter.

The plan that Perry shared with his subscribers is to use KYN to increase the weighting of the newsletter’s model portfolio to tap into a secular transition to natural gas from coal at America’s largest electric utilities. The mutual fund provides exposure to the rising demand for exporting natural gas to Europe and Asia through liquified natural gas (LNG).

KYN seeks to provide high after-tax total return with an emphasis on giving dividend payouts to its stockholders. The fund intends to invest at least 80% of its total assets in securities of energy infrastructure companies.

Its investment focus spans the spectrum of North American energy infrastructure companies engaged in traditional midstream energy, natural gas infrastructure, renewable infrastructure and utilities. Renewable infrastructure companies and utilities tend to have reduced volatility and correlation to the broader equity markets, contracted or regulated cash flows, multi-year growth visibility and attractive environmental, social and governance (ESG) characteristics.

Kayne Anderson MLP Investment Co. (NYSE: KYN) has jumped 1.54% in the last week, 3.71% in the past month, 11.89% in the past three months, 23.61% so far in 2022 and 24.04% in the past year, as of March 26.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Pension Fund Chairman Recommends Broad Dividend-paying Energy Fund

Bob Carlson, a pension fund chairman who also leads the Retirement Watch investment newsletter, currently is recommending New York’s Cohen & Steers MLP & Energy Opportunity Fund (MLOAX) in all the portfolios he detailed in his June 2022 issue.

Oil and natural gas should be good investments as Europe looks to reduce dependence on Russian exports, Carlson told me. Energy producers in the United States are seeking to boost cash flow and earnings, not maximize drilling expenses in the short run to increase output, he added.

Bob Carlson, who leads Retirement Watch, meets with Paul Dykewicz.

Good investment opportunities can be found with companies that provide the pipelines, storage facilities and other infrastructure to supply the world with oil, natural gas and other energy sources, Carlson continued.

“One of the attractive qualities of these investments is that their revenues are independent of the prices of the commodities,” Carlson counseled. “The firms charge fees for their services, and the fees often are adjusted for inflation. Their revenues and earnings depend on the volume of commodities passing through their facilities, not the price of the commodity.”

Key energy service companies provide total returns, aided by current income and price appreciation, through investments in energy-related master limited partnerships (MLPs) and securities of industry companies, Carlson pointed out. Those businesses are expected to derive at least 50% of their revenues or operating income from exploration, production, gathering, transportation, processing, storage, refining, distribution or marketing of natural gas, crude oil and other energy resources.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Cohen & Steers Fund Leads List of Five High-Income Commodities Investments to Purchase 

Cohen & Steers MLP & Energy Opportunity Fund recently held 55 positions and had 48.7% of its portfolio in the 10 largest positions. Top holdings of the fund included Enbridge (NYSE: ENB), Cheniere Energy (NYSEAMERICAN: LNG), Targa Resources Corp. (NYSE: TRGP), Oneok Inc. (NYSE: OKE), Williams Companies (NYSE: WMB) and Energy Transfer (NYSE: ET).

The fund has achieved strong returns since April 2020. In fact, it has been on an upward trajectory since the second half of December 2021.

“Crucially, oil prices have held up well even in the face of a slowing Chinese economy and widespread lockdowns,” according to BofA. “Given that most China indicators point to a major decline in mobility across the country, any improvement in the COVID-19 situation in large Chinese cities could send oil prices much higher.”

Exxon Mobil Earns Berth Among Five High-Income Commodities Investments to Purchase

Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM), of Irving, Texas, is another of the five high-income commodities investments to purchase. The oil and natural gas company has spiked 6.23% in the last week, 18.14% in the past month, 24.85% in the past three months, 60.25% so far in 2022 and 71.32% in the past year, as of March 26.

With a bull market currently underway in the oil patch, Exxon Mobil became a recent recommendation in the Fast Money Alert advisory service co-led by Mark Skousen, PhD, and Jim Woods. Exxon Mobile is one of the biggest and best, large-cap energy companies in the world.

In 2021, Exxon Mobil, the world’s largest refiner, produced 2.3 million barrels of liquids and 8.5 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day. At the end of 2021, its reserves reached 18.5 billion barrels of oil equivalent, 66% of which were liquids. The company’s global refining capacity totals 4.6 million barrels of oil per day and ranks as one of the largest manufacturers of commodity and specialty chemicals.

Another plus is that oil prices have soared due to a combination of robust demand dynamics and constricted supply caused in part by the war between Russia and Ukraine, Skousen and Woods wrote in their May 2 issue of Fast Money Alert. With no end in sight to Russia’s ongoing invasion of adjacent Ukraine, the “smart money” is betting on higher energy prices, and the even smarter, faster money is betting on XOM, they added.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Skousen Selects EPD of One of the Five High-Income Commodities Investments to Purchase

Oil has done much better lately as an inflation hedge than gold, said Mark Skousen, who is recommending Enterprise Products Partners (NYSE: EPD) in his Forecasts & Strategies investment newsletter. Houston-based Enterprise Products Partners has jumped more than up 28.92% year to date and ranks as the newsletter’s “best performer” so far in 2022, Skousen added.

Skousen, who also leads the Five Star Trader, Home Run Trader and TNT Trader services, recently was a featured speaker at the Vancouver Resource Investment Conference and recommended oil as an investment, especially for those seeking inflation protection.

The company is one of the largest publicly traded partnerships and a key North American provider of midstream energy services to producers and consumers of natural gas, natural gas liquids (NGLs), crude oil, refined products and petrochemicals. In addition, the company’s services include natural gas gathering, treating, processing, transportation and storage.

Plus, Enterprise Products Partners provides NGL transportation, fractionation, storage and import and export terminals. It further offers crude oil gathering, transportation, storage and terminals, along with petrochemical and refined products transportation, storage and terminals, as well as a marine transportation business.

Mark Skousen, head of Forecasts & Strategies, meets with Paul Dykewicz.

I personally have owned Enterprise Products Partners since shortly after the 2020 stock market crash when I purchased the stock as it started to recover. The stock has been trending upward since the end of 2021 and is projected to keep climbing as oil prices remain high or even rise further with Russia waging its war in Ukraine and seizing control of additional land in that nation’s eastern region in violation of international law. Russia in facing economic sanctions from the 27-nation European Union (EU), the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Australia and other countries to pressure Putin to withdraw his troops from Ukraine.

Putin’s actions have caused so many civilian deaths and injuries that U.S. President Joe Biden, U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson and key European Union leaders have accused the Russian leader of “war crimes.” Indeed, the International Criminal Court in the Netherlands is obtaining evidence of potential war crimes in Ukraine ordered by Putin, but Russia does not recognize the tribunal’s jurisdiction.

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Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Money Manager Picks One of Five High-Income Commodities Investments to Purchase

Michelle Connell, a seasoned investment professional, told me that she likes farm machinery company Deere (NYSE: DE) to profit from agriculture. A former portfolio manager, Connell now serves as president of Dallas-based Portia Capital Management, said she still favors Deere despite its 14% drop after it reported results last week.

Michelle Connell, CEO, Portia Capital Management

Deere’s key issues are supply-related, since demand for agricultural equipment remains strong, especially for the company’s machinery that is more environmentally friendly than its rivals, Connell continued. The company also provides the farming industry with autonomous equipment, Connell added.

Wall Street analysts expect Deere to have a better story and performance in the second half of 2022 and in full-year 2023. Connell cited the following to support her recommendation of Deere:

-More than half its revenues come from large agriculture.

-If the war in Ukraine continues, U.S. farmers will benefit from higher prices for their crops.

-Increased agricultural profits mean that that farmers and farming corporations will be more likely to buy large, expensive farm equipment.

Deere has fallen back since its recent high on April 20, so investors should be able to purchase shares at reduced prices, Connell continued. It already has been rebounding in the past week.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Supply Chains May Improve as China Starts to Lower COVID Curbs

As China has started to relax its COVID-19 restrictions, the country may allow goods produced there to start flowing normally again in the weeks ahead. China’s lockdowns have affected an estimated 373 million people, including roughly 40% of its gross domestic product (GDP). Disrupted supply chains have affected products such as rice, oil and natural gas.

Shanghai, home to the world’s largest port and 25 million residents, has strained to unload cargo due to strict regulations that have caused shipping containers to stack up. Some Shanghai residents posted videos online to complain about a lack of food, even though government officials tried to block such public expressions of frustration.

Chinese authorities also drew criticism for forcibly separating young children with COVID-19 from their parents to in trying to stop the spread of a new, contagious subvariant of Omicron, BA.2. The variant also has been causing new infections in European nations such as Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland.

U.S. COVID Deaths Rise Past 1-Million Threshold

U.S. COVID-19 deaths crossed the 1-million threshold last week and have jumped further to 1,004,121 as of May 27, according to Johns Hopkins University. Cases in the United States, as of that date, hit 83,837,114. America holds the dubious distinction as the country with the highest numbers of COVID-19 deaths and cases since the global pandemic began.

COVID-19 deaths worldwide totaled 6,284,534 on May 27, according to Johns Hopkins. Cases across the globe have climbed to 527,841,016.

Roughly 77.8% of the U.S. population, or 258,562,059, have obtained at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, as of May 26, the CDC reported. Fully vaccinated people total 221,128,528, or 66.6%, of America’s population, according to the CDC. The United States also has given at least one COVID-19 booster vaccine to 103.1 million people, up roughly 500,000 in the past week.

New data on so-called “long-haul” COVID patients released on May 24 reported that even though some symptoms improve others may persist, according to Chicago’s Northwestern Medicine Neuro COVID-19 Clinic. Most of the 52 patients included in the Northwestern study reported “brain fog,” numbness or tingling, headache, dizziness, blurred vision and fatigue, even 15 months after initial diagnoses of COVID-19.

The five high-income commodities investments to purchase are intended to profit from rising energy and grain prices. Despite the market’s volatility, the highest inflation in 40 years, the Fed’s plan for further interest rate hikes to curb price hikes and increasing federal deficits, investors are finding profitable opportunities in energy and grains.

Paul Dykewicz, www.pauldykewicz.com, is an accomplished, award-winning journalist who has written for Dow Jones, the Wall Street Journal, Investor’s Business Daily, USA Today, the Journal of Commerce, Seeking Alpha, Guru Focus and other publications and websites. Paul, who can be followed on Twitter @PaulDykewicz, is the editor of StockInvestor.com and DividendInvestor.com, a writer for both websites and a columnist. He further is editorial director of Eagle Financial Publications in Washington, D.C., where he edits monthly investment newsletters, time-sensitive trading alerts, free e-letters and other investment reports. Paul previously served as business editor of Baltimore’s Daily Record newspaper. Paul also is the author of an inspirational book, “Holy Smokes! Golden Guidance from Notre Dame’s Championship Chaplain,” with a foreword by former national championship-winning football coach Lou Holtz. The book is great as a gift and is endorsed by Joe Montana, Joe Theismann, Ara Parseghian, “Rocket” Ismail, Reggie Brooks, Dick Vitale and many others. Call 202-677-4457 for multiple-book pricing.

 

Five natural gas investments to purchase for income and capital appreciation offer ways to dodge the worst effects of Russia’s invasion of bordering Ukraine as many countries either are banning or looking to trim their use of energy provided by the attacking nation.

The five natural gas investments to buy as energy prices climb offer opportunities to tap into growing demand for alternatives to energy sources that previously had been provided by Russia before it incurred economic sanctions for its invasion of Ukraine. The United States is among many countries that have chosen to stop importing Russia’s oil and natural gas, while Germany and other countries that lack immediate access to substitute sources of energy are seeking to scale back those imports that are funding a war against Ukraine initiated on Feb. 24 by Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, whose troops have shelled hospitals, schools, nuclear power plants, residential areas, churches, oil refineries and a theater used as a shelter.

U.S. natural gas prices have rocketed higher since mid-March by rising more than $4/MMBtu to $8.80/MMBtu. The latter level of production is the highest since 2008, according to a recent report by BofA Global Research. MMBtu, a standard unit of measurement for natural gas financial contracts, equals one million British Thermal Units.

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U.S. Drilling Restrictions Contribute to Rising Energy Prices

President Joe Biden “aggravated the energy shortage” last week by canceling three oil & gas leasing sales in the Gulf of Mexico and off the coast of Alaska, removing millions of acres from possible drilling amid record-high gas prices, wrote Mark Skousen, PhD, to subscribers of his Forecasts & Strategies investment newsletter.

Not surprisingly, crude oil recovered after that move and is now back to $110 a barrel, boosting the share price for Houston-based pipeline and energy storage company Enterprise Products Partners (NYSE: EPD) to 52-week highs, wrote Skousen, a descendant of Benjamin Franklin. Aside from leading the Forecasts & Strategies newsletter, he also heads the Five Star Trader, Home Run Trader, TNT Trader and Fast Money Alert services.

EPD, offering a dividend yield of more than 7%, has been a stellar stock recommendation for Skousen during 2022 by rising more than 25.41% through Thursday, May 19. In contrast, the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average have plunged 18.16% and 13.99% during that time.

Mark Skousen, head of Forecasts & Strategies, meets with Paul Dykewicz in Philadelphia.

EPD Leads Five Natural Gas Investments to Purchase for Income and Capital Appreciation

Enterprise Products Partners is a large publicly traded partnership and a key North American provider of midstream energy services to producers and consumers of natural gas, natural gas liquids (NGLs), crude oil, refined products and petrochemicals. The company’s services include natural gas gathering, treating, processing, transportation and storage.

In addition, Enterprise Products Partners provides NGL transportation, fractionation, storage and import and export terminals. It further engages in crude oil gathering, transportation, storage and terminals, along with petrochemical and refined products transportation, storage and terminals, as well as a marine transportation business.

I bought shares in Enterprise Products Partners shortly after the 2020 stock market crash when the stock began to rebound after the initial shock of the COVID-19 pandemic. At the market’s close on May 19, the stock had gained 2.78% for the past week, 1.29% for the last month, 15.26% for the past three months, 25.41% so far in 2022 and 18.95% for the last year.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

XOM Makes List of Five Natural Gas Investments to Purchase for Income

Irving, Texas-based Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM) zoomed during its time as a recommendation in the Cash Machine newsletter between July 2021 and May 17, 2022, providing investors with exposure to liquefied natural gas (LNG), oil refining and strong returns. The company ranks as the world’s second-largest supplier of natural gas and jumped about 55% since its addition to the newsletter’s Safe Haven Portfolio.

Perry, leader of the Cash Machine investment newsletter, also heads the Premium Income, Quick Income Trader, Hi-Tech Trader and Breakout Options Alert advisory services, and explained he recommended the stock’s sale when the company’s dividend yield dipped below his 4% limit. With tight energy supply, Perry predicted XOM’s share price would remain well fueled by investors seeking an alternative to the sagging stock market so far in 2022, even if Exxon Mobil no longer fit his requirement for a high-yield dividend stock.

Paul Dykewicz interviews Bryan Perry, whose services include Quick Income Trader.

Exxon Mobil reported strong first-quarter adjusted earnings of $8.8 billion, up from $2.8 billion for the same period a year ago. Adjusted earnings excluded a $3.4 billion after-tax impairment charge stemming from Exxon Mobil’s Russia Sakhalin-1 operation, which the company intends to exit. Its earnings barely missed meeting analysts’ consensus estimates.

XOM has continued to shine amid the market’s slid. The company’s share price has soared 5.46% during the past week, 3.37% in the last month, 18.32% in the past three months, 51.02% thus far in 2022 and 55.82% for the last year.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Pension Fund Chief Provides a Pick for the Five Natural Gas Investments to Purchase for Income

Bob Carlson, a pension fund chairman who also heads the Retirement Watch investment newsletter, recommended the Cohen & Steers MLP & Energy Opportunity Fund (MLOAX) to all the portfolios in his latest issue.

“Natural gas should continue to be a good investment, as long as Europe is looking for ways to reduce dependence on Russia,” Carlson counseled. “In addition, the natural gas drillers in the U.S. are focused on increasing cash flow and earnings. They’re not inclined to maximize drilling expenses in the short run to increase output.”

Bob Carlson, who leads Retirement Watch, meets with columnist and author Paul Dykewicz.

Good investment opportunities exist through companies that provide the pipelines, storage facilities and other infrastructure needed to supply customers with natural gas and other energy sources, Carlson continued.

“One of the attractive qualities of these investments is that their revenues are independent of the prices of the commodities,” Carlson told me. “The firms charge fees for their services, and the fees often are adjusted for inflation. Their revenues and earnings depend on the volume of commodities passing through their facilities, not the price of the commodity.”

“Leading” energy service companies provide total returns, aided by current income and price appreciation, through investments in energy-related master limited partnerships (MLPs) and securities of industry companies, Carlson said. Those businesses are expected to derive at least 50% of their revenues or operating income from exploration, production, gathering, transportation, processing, storage, refining, distribution or marketing of natural gas, crude oil and other energy resources, he added.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Cohen & Steers Fund Finds Place Among Five Natural Gas Investments to Purchase for Income 

The Cohen & Steers MLP & Energy Opportunity Fund recently held 53 positions and had 50% of the fund in the 10 largest positions. Top holdings of the fund were Enbridge (NYSE: ENB), Cheniere Energy (NYSEAMERICAN: LNG), Williams Companies (NYSE: WMB), TC Energy (NYSE: TRP) and Energy Transfer (NYSE: ET).

The fund has notched strong returns since April 2020. It is up 3.20% in the last week after dipping 2.89% in the past month. It also rose 13.47% in the last three months, 20.73% so far in 2022 and 29.08% in the last year.

Connell Chooses Two of Five Natural Gas Investments to Purchase for Income

U.S. LNG inventory is currently below its five-year average for this time of year by double-digit percentages, said Michelle Connell, CFA, president and owner of Portia Capital Management, of Dallas, Texas. A key issue for the U.S. LNG industry is that production of the energy source has never been profitable on its own, but it is as a byproduct of oil production, she added.

“There isn’t enough oil being produced,” Connell said. “Currently, only 11.6 million barrels/day are being produced. Pre-pandemic, we produced 13 million barrels/day.”

Rather than invest to expand capacity, oil companies have been focusing on hiking their dividends, Connell continued. If they pivot, these companies face a backlash from investors who could sell their shares, Connell added.

“Their market value could get crushed,” Connell said.

Former portfolio manager Michelle Connell, CEO, Portia Capital Management

EOG Resources Joins List of Five Natural Gas Investments to Purchase for Income 

LNG companies cannot step up production quickly, Connell cautioned. It takes oil companies a minimum of six to eight months to increase their oil and LNG production, Connell counseled.

Production of oil via shale recently created the largest share of the America’s natural gas reserves, Connell continued. Unfortunately for proponents of increasing output to meet soaring demand, shale production has “decreased exponentially” since the pandemic began and the buildup of LNG reserves has declined, Connell explained.

However, Houston-based EOG Resources Inc. (NYSE: EOG) is producing substantial amounts of oil via shale, and thus considerable LNG. The company’s Chief Executive Officer Ezra Yacob called its recent financial results “outstanding” and said 2021 was a “tremendous year” for EOG with record earnings, record free cash flow and return of cash to shareholders that places it among industry leaders.

Income investors will appreciate that the company’s long-standing focus on free cash flow led to payment of another $1.00 per share special dividend, while also strengthening its balance sheet.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Reasons why Connell likes EOG include:

-Wall Street analysts at investment firms Wells Fargo and Raymond James continue to increase their future earnings estimates and target prices, despite the company’s strong performance of advancing more than 40% so far in 2022;

-Based on its fundamentals, the stock may have another 25% of 12-month upside;

-Its relatively new gas resource in the Gulf Coast could provide additional potential and cash flow for the company;

-Strong cash flow gains are expected for the foreseeable future, powering annualized cash flow growth in excess of 25% per year.

EOG Resources is up 1.06% in the past week and down 0.60% in the last month, after rising 11.39% during the past three months, 40.81% so far in 2022 and 55.36% in the past year.

Pioneer Natural Resources May Be Worth Purchasing After a Share Price Pullback 

Pioneer Natural Resources Co. (NYSE: PXD), a hydrocarbon exploration company headquartered in Irving, Texas, has soared in recent weeks, causing Connell to reconsider her recommendation of the stock due to its increased share price. The company has a market capitalization of $61.72 billion, offers a dividend and has never missed paying a dividend, she added.

In addition, Pioneer Natural Resources has produced an earnings yield of 3.25%, an adjusted cash earnings yield of 7.48% and a five-year average return on equity of 6.61%, Connell said. At the end of 2021, Pioneer Natural Resources had compiled 2.22 billion barrels of oil equivalent, with 44% of its proved reserves from petroleum, 30% natural gas liquid and 16% natural gas.

At PXD’s current price, Connell no longer calls it a buy, but she still spoke positively about the company. The stock has jumped 8.55% in the past week, 5.61% in the last month, 17.77% for the past three months, 51.12% so far this year and 77.51 in the past 12 months.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Supply Chains Woes May Subside as China Lowers COVID Curbs

China has begun to ease its COVID-19 restrictions during the past week, potentially signaling goods produced in that country may start to flow normally again in the weeks ahead to smooth out supply chain snags. Lockdowns in China have affected at least 373 million people, including roughly 40% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP). Worldwide supply chain disruptions have slowed the delivery of products such as rice, oil and natural gas.

Shanghai, home to the world’s largest port and 25 million residents, has strained to unload cargo due to strict regulations that have caused shipping containers to stack up. Some Shanghai residents posted videos online to complain about needing food. Government officials sought to block dissemination of such expressions of frustration.

Chinese authorities also drew public scorn for forcibly separating young children with COVID-19 from their parents. The country’s leaders prioritized stopping the spread of a new, contagious subvariant of Omicron, BA.2. The variant also has been causing new infections in European nations such as Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland.

Russia’s sustained attack of Ukraine not only has caused massive destruction but a humanitarian crisis in which the United Nation estimates more than 12 million people in the embattled country have fled their homes since Putin ordered the attack to begin on Feb. 24. That timing coincided with peak  COVID-19 cases in Ukraine from the Omicron variant of the virus. Poland has accepted 3,418,077 refugees who have fled Ukraine to escape Putin’s war through May 17, according to the United Nations, with Romania ranking a distant second by becoming a safe haven for 937,082 people seeking to escape the onslaught of Russian troops.

President Biden, U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson and others have called for the investigation and potential prosecution of Russian troops and their leaders for war crimes of rape, torture and outright executions of Ukrainian civilians. The United States, the United Kingdom, the European Union, Canada, Japan, Australia, South Korea and many other countries have united to place economic sanctions on Russia in response to Putin’s brutal treatment of his neighboring nation, violation its sovereign borders and more than 10,000 alleged war crimes against its people.

U.S. COVID Deaths Surmount 1-Million Milestone

U.S. COVID-19 deaths topped 1 million, with the number of lives claimed by the virus reaching 1,001,609 as of May 19, according to Johns Hopkins University. Cases in the United States, also as of May 19, hit 83,060,963. America retains the dubious distinction as the nation with the most COVID-19 deaths and cases.

COVID-19 deaths worldwide totaled 6,273,201 on May 19, according to Johns Hopkins, with cases across the globe numbering 523,949,956.

Roughly 77.7% of the U.S. population, or 258,074,668, have obtained at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, as of May 19, the CDC reported. Fully vaccinated people total 220,811,434 or 66.5% of the U.S. population, according to the CDC. America also has provided at least one COVID-19 booster vaccine to 102.5 million people.

New York City Reaches “High” COVID-19 Alert; Mask Wearing Encouraged by Its Officials

New York City leaders reported reaching a “high” COVID-19 alert, indicating a growing spread in the area that is straining the health care system. The city’s health department urged people to wear high-quality masks in public, indoor settings and crowded outdoor gatherings.

Roughly 40% of people in the northeastern United States are in counties considered to have high levels of COVID-19 cases. To promote COVID-19 testing, the Biden administration opened CovidTests.gov for a third round of orders on May 18, with White House officials calling for Congress to approve additional funding to fight the virus.

U.S. households now can order an additional eight “free” COVID testing kits to use at home. COVIDTests.gov has increased the total number of tests available to each household for free to 16 since the start of the program, White House officials said.

The five natural gas investments to purchase offer an opportunity to profit from rising energy prices. The market’s drop earlier this week reduced valuations of many positions and any further pullbacks may give investors a chance to buy natural gas investments at less lofty valuations as hedges against the growing risks of inflation, of the Fed’s plan for further interest rate hikes to combat climbing consumer and producer prices and of increased federal deficit spending.

Paul Dykewicz, www.pauldykewicz.com, is an accomplished, award-winning journalist who has written for Dow Jones, the Wall Street Journal, Investor’s Business Daily, USA Today, the Journal of Commerce, Seeking Alpha, Guru Focus and other publications and websites. Paul, who can be followed on Twitter @PaulDykewicz, is the editor of StockInvestor.com and DividendInvestor.com, a writer for both websites and a columnist. He further is editorial director of Eagle Financial Publications in Washington, D.C., where he edits monthly investment newsletters, time-sensitive trading alerts, free e-letters and other investment reports. Paul previously served as business editor of Baltimore’s Daily Record newspaper. Paul also is the author of an inspirational book, “Holy Smokes! Golden Guidance from Notre Dame’s Championship Chaplain,” with a foreword by former national championship-winning football coach Lou Holtz. The book is great as a gift and is endorsed by Joe Montana, Joe Theismann, Ara Parseghian, “Rocket” Ismail, Reggie Brooks, Dick Vitale and many others. Call 202-677-4457 for multiple-book pricing.

Seven farming investments to purchase for income investors to reap robust returns seem to be strong choices even as Russia’s President Vladimir Putin keeps ordering new attacks against Ukraine and its people who are putting up staunch resistance.

The seven farming investments to purchase feature stocks and broad commodity funds that offer investors multiple catalysts. Key reasons for purchasing agricultural stocks and funds are that grain and oilseed prices are rising.

Global grain and oilseed markets were tight heading into 2022, and the Putin’s war in Ukraine has caused a decreased supply, according to a recent report from BofA Global Research. Since the start of 2022, Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT)  wheat prices nearly doubled from $7.80 per bushel to $14.25 before settling back down to $11.67.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture released its latest World Agriculture Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report on May 12, offering initial projections for the industry marketing year 2022/23. The report trimmed the outlook for global wheat production by 3.6 million metric tons (MMT) MT to 774.8 MMT. Reduced supply is projected from Ukraine, Argentina and Australia, while increases were forecast for Canada, Russia and the United States.

Global consumption is projected at 787.5 MMT, while the U.S farm gate price is forecast to be 65% higher than the same time a year ago, according to U.S. Wheat Associates.

Meanwhile, corn prices have climbed past $8.08 per bushel, an increase of more than 30% so far this year, while soybean prices have rallied more than 30%, reached $17.40 per bushel late last month and traded at $17.23 per bushel on May 13. The three commodities repriced significantly higher, reflecting the likelihood of prolonged disruptions to Ukraine’s agriculture exports and concerns about rising input costs, as well as fertilizer shortages. While prices look high from a historical perspective, tight fundamentals likely will boost spot prices, according to BofA.

Seven Farming Investments to Purchase Amid Fertilizer Shortages

Ukraine grain and oilseed shipments have reportedly fallen more than 80% from approximately 5-6mn mt per month in 2020-21 to roughly 1mn mt per month recently, BofA wrote in a recent research note. These lost exports, if annualized, equate to about 10 days of world food supply, BofA added.

“Fuel, fertilizer and seed shortages, and Russian military presence could disrupt Ukraine’s spring planting and wheat crop harvest this summer, which could lead to sustained shortfalls,” BofA warned. “Drought in U.S., Canada and China has the potential to further add to the tightness, especially for wheat.”

Buyers have leaned on other places to source grain, but ultimately the world has less food than before the war, BofA cautioned. If supply shortfalls outside Ukraine materialize, more food security measures may be needed, push prices even higher and hit emerging market economies the hardest.

Seven Farming Investments to Purchase Navigate 300% Fertilizer Price Hike

Global fertilizer prices have zoomed at least 300% since 2020 due to soaring energy costs, economic sanctions and hoarding, BofA wrote. The fertilizer price spike added about $1 per bushel and $0.60 per bushel to corn and soybean costs, respectively. Many farmers pay the increase, while others could opt to cut their use of fertilizer and risk reduced yield.

“Estimating the impact of lower fertilizer use on crop yields is a challenge due to limited data and other factors affecting yields, but there is a positive relationship between fertilizer use on agricultural lands and cereal crop yields,” BofA wrote.

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Seven Farming Investments to Purchase for Income Aided by Economic Sanctions Triggered by Putin

The shelling of hospitals, schools, residential areas, churches, nuclear power plants, oil refineries and a theater used as a shelter became a precursor to brutal rapes, torture and outright executions of Ukrainian civilians that caused many countries to put sanctions on Russia. The sanctions include scaling back or severing ties with Russia as a producer of grain, oil and natural gas.

Russia’s loss directly from Putin’s invasion are leading to potential gains for Western oil companies that are trying to fill the void for European and other customers seeking to wean themselves away from buying Russian commodities that are helping to fund the war against Ukraine. As an old adage goes, there always is a bull market somewhere. One of the newest is in agriculture.

Fertilizer Stocks Are Among Seven Farming Investments to Purchase for Income

Fertilizer manufacturers appear most likely to profit from Russia’s attack against Ukraine, said Bryan Perry, head of the Cash Machine investment newsletter, as well as the Premium Income, Quick Income Trader, Hi-Tech Trader and Breakout Options Alert advisory services. While there may be “demand destruction” in energy markets, there will not be in the global food supply and demand curves, he added.

Paul Dykewicz interviews Bryan Perry, who leads the high-income Cash Machine newsletter.

Wheat, corn and soybean prices jumped upon the full revelation of the Russian attack of Ukraine, Perry continued. One of the biggest winners from pure demand and sanctions will be CF Industries Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: CF), a manufacturer and distributor of agricultural fertilizers that include ammonia. The company, based in the Chicago suburb of Deerfield, Illinois, is facing increased distribution costs, particularly for transportation.

Plus, the cost of producing nitrogen fertilizers is highly dependent on the cost of natural gas, which is the principal raw material and primary fuel source used in ammonia production at the company’s manufacturing facilities. For many producers globally, more than 70% of the total cost to produce ammonia is from the cost of natural gas.

The cost of natural gas varies significantly between geographic locations. For example, European customers may see their burden grow, since natural gas prices there have been surging.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Seven Farming Investments to Purchase for Income Include Nutrien

Nutrien Ltd. (NYSE: NTR), a Canadian fertilizer company based in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, is the largest producer of potash and the third-largest producer of nitrogen fertilizer in the world. The company’s interim chief executive Ken Seitz said Nutrien will boost potash production if supply problems worsen in Russia and Belarus, the world’s second- and third-largest potash-producing countries after Canada.

The economic sanctions imposed by the United States, the European Union and others against Russia may hurt the country’s exports of natural gas, potash and nitrogen. Belarus, a puppet state of Russia, has joined the invasion of Ukraine and must adjust to economic sanctions that have restricted its potash exports.

The decision by Putin to wage war against Ukraine further has raised concerns about wheat, corn and vegetable oil supply problems in the Black Sea region. The result is sharply rising world prices for these agricultural products.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

CVR Partners Joins Seven Farming Investments to Purchase

CVR Partners LP (NYSE: UAN), of Sugar Land, Texas, makes and provides nitrogen fertilizer products as a subsidiary of Coffeyville Resources, a unit of CVR Energy Inc. UAN is another of Perry’s four farming picks. Income investors should appreciate the stock’s 9.2% dividend yield.

The company’s nitrogen fertilizer manufacturing facility includes a 1,300-ton-per-day ammonia unit, a 3,000 ton-per-day urea ammonium nitrate (UAN) unit and a dual-train gasifier complex that can produce 89 million standard cubic feet of hydrogen per day. The UAN solution, produced by combining urea, nitric acid and ammonia, is a liquid fertilizer product with a nitrogen content ranging between 28% and 32%.

UAN can be applied more uniformly than non-liquid forms of fertilizer. The solution also can be mixed with herbicides, pesticides and other nutrients to let farmers cut costs by applying several materials simultaneously rather than making separate applications.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Mosaic Ranks Among Seven Farming Investments to Purchase for Income

The fourth farming investment favored by Perry is Mosaic Company (NYSE: MOS), a Fortune 500 company headquartered in Tampa, Florida, mines phosphate and potash and urea. The largest U.S. producer of potash and phosphate fertilizer, Mosaic operates through segments such as international distribution and Mosaic Fertilizantes.

Russia is a major producer of potash, a key crop nutrient used in farming production. Mosaic reported solid earnings on Feb. 22 that were in line with expectations.

Mosaic’s year-over-year earnings per share (EPS) growth rose about 242%. In addition, pricing pressure in the industry caused by less supply from Russia has lifted the share price of MOS.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Money Manager Picks One of Seven Farming Investments to Purchase for Income

A seasoned investment professional who favors farming machinery company Deere (NYSE: DE) is Michelle Connell, a former portfolio manager and the current president of Dallas-based Portia Capital Management.

Michelle Connell, CEO, Portia Capital Management

The rationale for recommending Deere, Connell said, includes:

-More than half its revenues come from large agriculture.

-If the war in Ukraine continues, U.S. farmers will benefit from higher prices for their crops.

-Higher farm profits mean that that farmers and farming corporations will be more likely to buy large expensive farm equipment.

Deere has fallen back more than 15% from its recent high on April 20, so investors might find its current price to be a good entry point, Connell continued.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

KROP Becomes the Final of Seven Farming Investments to Buy

Global X AgTech & Food Innovation ETF (NASDAQ: KROP) looks interesting as a possible buy, Connell continued. KROP is an agricultural technology ETF.

KROP holds companies that focus on ecological ways of feeding the world, Connell commented. The fund has done well this year, but several of its individual holdings have retreated with the market sell-off, she added.

However, KROP might be a less risky way to invest in these innovative companies, Connell mentioned.`

A few key holdings of KROP include:

  • Nutrien, the world’s largest fertilizer producer; and
  • Corteva, a spin-off from Dupont that focuses on the development of seeds that are more pest and weather-resistant, while using more environmentally friendly crop chemicals.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Pension Head Picks MOO as One of the Seven Farming Investments to Buy

Investors should weight the purchase of the ETF VanEck Agribusiness (MOO), said Bob Carlson, a pension fund chairman who also leads the Retirement Watch investment newsletter. The fund, which I personally have owned for years, seeks to track the MVIS Global Agribusiness Index. The index is composed of companies that generate at least 50% of their revenues from agrichemicals, animal health and fertilizers, seeds and traits, farm/irrigation equipment, farm machinery, aquaculture, fishing, livestock and more.

Bob Carlson, who leads Retirement Watch, meets with Paul Dykewicz.

MOO’s largest holdings recently included Deere & Co. (NYSE: DE), Nutrien (NYSE: NTR), Bayer (OTCMKTS: BAYRY), Zoetis (NYSE: ZTS) and Archer-Daniels Midland (NYSE: ADM). The ETF owns more than 50 stocks and has nearly 60% of its holdings in its 10 largest positions.

Income investors cannot be blamed if they lack excitement about MOO’s almost non-existent dividend. With a dividend per share of just 0.02%, Stock Rover shows the yield as 0.00%.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Supply Chains at Risk as China Tightens COVID Restrictions Further

China risks a “tsunami” of COVID-19 infections and an estimated 1.6 million deaths if its government abandons its 0% policy and allows the highly-infectious omicron variant to spread unrestrained, according to researchers at Shanghai’s Fudan University. Shanghai is tightening its COVID-19 restrictions again after fleetingly easing them, frustrating residents who had hoped more than a month-long lockdown was on the verge of scaling back. However, new cases occurred in the city’s financial center. Also this week, authorities suspended service on the city’s last two subway lines that still had been operating. The shutdown idled the city’s entire subway system.

The lockdowns in China have affected at least 373 million people, including roughly 40% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP). A key effect is continued disruption of the world’s supply chain for products, such as rice and oil.

Most of Shanghai’s 25 million residents remain in lockdown, with Chinese military and additional health workers assisting in the response. Shanghai, home to the world’s largest port, has been unable to keep up with unloading cargo due to strict regulations that have caused shipping containers to stack up.

Some frustrated Shanghai residents have taken videos that went viral to show residents yelling from high-rise buildings about needing food. But government officials are trying to crack down on the posting of such expressions of discontent.

Also in China, young children with COVID-19 have been separated forcibly from their parents by authorities, who have sparked public discord, as Chinese leaders seek to stop the spread of the latest contagious subvariant of Omicron, BA.2. The variant also is causing new infections in European nations such as Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland.

U.S. COVID Near 1 Million 

As the U.S. COVID-19 deaths topped 1 million this week, a report indicated a rising proportion of COVID-19 deaths are occurring among vaccinated people. U.S. COVID-19 cases, as of May 13, hit 82,401,197, with deaths rising to 999,470. America still has the dubious distinction as the country totaling the most COVID-19 cases and deaths.

COVID-19 deaths worldwide exceeded 6.26 million to total 6,261,872 on May 13, according to Johns Hopkins University. Cases across the globe have jumped to 520,451,021.

As of May 13, 257,738,565 people, or 77.6% of the U.S. population, have obtained at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, the CDC reported. Fully vaccinated people total 220,502,022 or 66.4% of the U.S. population, according to the CDC. America also has topped a key milestone by giving a COVID-19 booster vaccine to 102.1 million people.

The seven farming investments to purchase for income investors to reap returns are fortified by rising food prices. Investors may find price drops in farming stocks and funds lately offer discounts to purchase shares at reduced prices.

Paul Dykewicz, www.pauldykewicz.com, is an accomplished, award-winning journalist who has written for Dow Jones, the Wall Street Journal, Investor’s Business Daily, USA Today, the Journal of Commerce, Seeking Alpha, Guru Focus and other publications and websites. Paul, who can be followed on Twitter @PaulDykewicz, is the editor of StockInvestor.com and DividendInvestor.com, a writer for both websites and a columnist. He further is editorial director of Eagle Financial Publications in Washington, D.C., where he edits monthly investment newsletters, time-sensitive trading alerts, free e-letters and other investment reports. Paul previously served as business editor of Baltimore’s Daily Record newspaper. Paul also is the author of an inspirational book, “Holy Smokes! Golden Guidance from Notre Dame’s Championship Chaplain,” with a foreword by former national championship-winning football coach Lou Holtz. The book is great as a gift and is endorsed by Joe Montana, Joe Theismann, Ara Parseghian, “Rocket” Ismail, Reggie Brooks, Dick Vitale and many others. Call 202-677-4457 for multiple-book pricing.

The best dividend stock nobody is talking about is an undervalued, high-dividend chemical company poised to grow at an exponential rate.

The company we’re talking about is Westlake Chemical (NYSE:WLKP), of Houston. Westlake Chemical operates primarily in the United States and uses its operating interests through Westlake Chemical OpCo. Through OpCo, the company invests in and acquires ethylene production facilities, which it uses to convert ethane into usable ethylene.

In addition to ethylene, OpCo also sells propylene, crude butadiene, hydrogen and pyrolysis gasoline to Westlake and other United States companies.

Shown below is its price over a trailing one-year period

Chart generated using Stock Rover.

The Best Dividend Stock Nobody is Talking About has Strong Upward Momentum

Momentum indicators indicate WLKP is oversold and trading at a meaningful discount. We can uncover this by checking out the moving average convergence divergence (MACD).

Chart generated using Stock Rover.

If you’re not familiar with MACD, here’s a brief explanation:

We can calculate MACD by subtracting the 26-period exponential moving average (EMA) — a trading indicator that determines when to enter and exit positions for short-term trades — from a shorter 12-period EMA. Comparing these two moving averages of the same security can give us insight as to where the stock price will go next.

The resulting line is the MACD line, shown in dark blue above. Then, a nine-day EMA of the MACD is plotted on top of the line, and can be used as a trigger for buy and sell signals. Traders may buy the underlying security when the MACD crosses above the signal line (then resulting in positive divergence, shown in orange) and sell when the MACD crosses below the signal line (resulting in negative divergence).

High divergence means a price increase is possible. Low divergence means it is more likely to drop than go up. In the case of this MACD chart, we see positive divergence as the MACD line crosses over the signal line, indicating the bullish tendencies of WLKP are strengthening and it may be a good time to buy.

To see more momentum data, you can generate plenty of technical charts like this through a free trial with Stock Rover.

The Best Dividend Stock Nobody is Talking About is More Profitable than Industry Norms

With a gross profit margin of 36.4% — among other high markers — WLKP is considered more profitable than 84% of other publicly traded companies. Its gross margin is 35.8% higher than the industry average of 26.8%, and this sharp difference continues further when we analyze operating margin.

Chart generated using Stock Rover.

Although the industry average is favorable in net margin and return on assets, the return on equity is considerably higher, and return on invested capital (ROIC) is approximately the same.

The Best Dividend Stock Nobody is Talking About Pays a Consistent, High Dividend

Westlake Chemical has paid out a dividend every quarter since it began dividend distribution at the end of 2014. It currently pays $0.47 per quarter, annualizing to $1.89 distributed for each share. This, with the current share price of WLKP, means the company is consistently maintaining a dividend yield of 6.9%.

Shown below is the historical dividend yield for the entire history of WLKP’s dividend.

Chart generated using Stock Rover.

For nearly all of its time paying dividends, Westlake Chemical has kept its yield above 5%, an impressive feat. It is also worth noting that the current high dividend yield of 6.9% is surprisingly low for what the company typically delivers.

With an average dividend growth rate of 6.4% over the last 5 years, Westlake Chemical’s dividend payments — and its dividend yield — are likely to grow. It could become a massive payer in the savvy dividend investor’s portfolio.

Chart generated using Stock Rover.

The Best Dividend Stock Nobody is Talking About Has Fallen in Price

In both dividend distributions and profitability, Westlake Chemical is excelling, either reaching or surpassing its already high historical expectations. These expectations remain high for valuation metrics, but despite the price being low, several of these metrics indicate WLKP is a better value than it has ever been.

To visualize this clearly, we can use an analytical tool affectionately called the “Football Field.”

Chart generated using Stock Rover.

The Football Field is a graphic representation of historic values in several metrics. It plots the historical range of WLKP metrics over the trailing one-year period, then plots the current values relative to where they have been in the last year. In general, we hope to see the centerline (current values) in the green.

The company’s enterprise value / earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EV/EBITDA) is incredibly favorable right now, alongside its price-to-earnings ratio (P/E ratio) and its price-to-sale ratio (PS ratio). While price to free cash flow ratio (P/FCF) appears high at 2.9, compare this to the industry average of 12.0 and the S&P 500 average of 23.6. Although WLKP may not be as undervalued as it has been historically, the ultimately low P/FCF points to a significant and current undervaluation.

Investors interested in the historical range of WLKP’s P/E ratio can refer to the chart below. The red indicates a yearly maximum, while the green indicates a yearly minimum. The blue line is the actual trailing value.

Chart generated using Stock Rover.

Due to all of these indicators, we believe WLKP may be undervalued by as much as 35%, and expect it to rise to $36.00 as the market catches up.

The Best Dividend Stock Nobody is Talking About is Undervalued and Largely Undiscovered

With growth potential like this while still maintaining an absurdly high dividend, investors have the potential to make a major profit off Westlake Chemical. Yet, even though the stock seems to promise high returns, there is always some risk involved. Use a disciplined sell strategy and be sure to diversify one’s portfolio with other assets as well.

Jonathan Wolfgram is an investment analyst who writes website content at Eagle Financial Publications. He graduated from the University of Minnesota with Bachelor’s degrees in Finance and Philosophy. Jonathan writes for www.DividendInvestor.com and www.StockInvestor.com.

Four oil refiner investments to buy for income offer a fountain of flowing opportunities as the sector enters what BofA Global Securities calls a new “golden age,” despite Russia’s President Vladimir Putin’s invasion and continued war with Ukraine and its people.

The four oil refiner investments to buy feature two stocks and two broad commodity funds that should rise amid multiple catalysts. U.S. oil refiners hold structural cost advantages compared to international rivals and are likely to ascend from an expected post-COVID recovery in demand and refinery closings that reduce supply and enhance margins.

BofA Global Securities recently released a research report that described a new regional ‘Golden Age’ for U.S. oil refining. Valuation, aided by sustainable free cash flow (FCF) that measures the cash left after a company pays its operating expenses and capital expenditures, is the basis for that optimistic view. BofA added.

Free cash flow yields are at their highest levels in a decade to shift momentum toward oil refiners, BofA reported. Recent geopolitical events, such as Putin’s persistent attack of Ukraine, put a spot light on the consequences of underinvestment in production, the investment firm wrote.

Click here for a free two-week trial of Stock Rover.

Four Oil Refiner Investments to Buy Boosted by Economic Sanctions Against Russia

The shelling of hospitals, schools, residential areas, churches, nuclear power plants, oil refineries and a theater used as a shelter became a precursor to barbaric rapes, torture and outright executions of Ukrainian civilians that caused many countries to put economic sanctions on Russia. Among those sanctions is severing ties with Russia as a provider of oil or natural gas, or significantly slashing such trade.

Russia’s losses due directly to Putin’s policies are leading to potential gains for Western oil refiners that are trying to fill the void for European customers seeking to wean themselves away from purchasing energy from Russia that Putin then uses to fund his war on Ukraine. As the old adage goes, there always is a bull market somewhere. One of the latest is in the oil patch.

And one of the biggest large-cap energy companies in the market is Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM), a recent addition to the recommendations in the Fast Money Alert trading service led by seasoned stock pickers Mark Skousen, PhD, and Jim Woods. The integrated oil and gas company explores for, produces and refines oil worldwide.

Mark Skousen, a descendant of Benjamin Franklin, talks to Paul Dykewicz. Skousen leads the Forecasts & Strategies newsletter, along with the Five Star Trader, Home Run Trader, TNT Trader and Fast Money Alert services.

Exxon Mobil Leads the Four Oil Refiner Investments to Buy Despite Putin’s War

Irving, Texas-based Exxon Mobil produced an average of 2.3 million barrels of liquids and 8.5 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day in 2021. At the end of 2021, its reserves totaled 18.5 billion barrels of oil equivalent, including 66% from liquids. The company is the world’s largest refiner with a total global refining capacity of 4.6 million barrels of oil per day to rank as one of the world’s largest manufacturers of commodity and specialty chemicals.

“Size does matter when you are talking about oil and gas companies,” Skousen and Woods wrote to their Fast Money Alert subscribers. “What also matters is that oil prices have soared due to a combination of robust demand dynamics and constricted supply caused in part by Russia waging war against Ukraine.”

Paul Dykewicz meets with Jim Woods, who leads the Successful Investing and Intelligence Report investment newsletters, as well as the Bullseye Stock Trader, High Velocity Options and Fast Money Alert trading services.

With no end for Putin’s war in sight, the “smart money” is betting on higher energy prices, and even smarter money is buying XOM, Skousen and Woods wrote. The proof comes from a 3.57% rise in the last week, a 49.03% jump so far this year and a 53.86% surge in the past 12 months.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Another investment guru who recommends Exxon Mobil is Bryan Perry, head of the Cash Machine investment newsletter, along with the Premium Income, Quick Income Trader, Hi-Tech Trader and Breakout Options Alert advisory services. Perry, who has a track record for profitably recommending dividend-paying oil and natural gas companies, also is known for finding high-income investments.

Bryan Perry heads the Cash Machine newsletter.

Exxon Mobil offers a current dividend yield of 4%. In addition, BofA has put a $120 price target on the stock.

Money Manager Picks One of Four Oil Refiner Investments to Buy for Income 

A third investment professional who is recommending Exxon Mobil is Michelle Connell, a former portfolio manager who now is president of Dallas-based Portia Capital Management. Connell also told me she likes Valero Energy Corp. (NYSE: VLO), of San Antonio, Texas, offering a current dividend yield of 3.4%.

Valero is San Antonio’s largest publicly traded company and is among the world’s largest independent petroleum refiners. It also claims to be North America’s largest producer of renewable fuels, as well as the world’s second-largest producer of sustainable diesel.

Michelle Connell, CEO, Portia Capital Management

Connell said her rationale for recommending Valero includes:

  • Its status as the second-largest refiner in the United States.
  • U.S. refiners wield cost advantages compared to foreign competitors in the European Union and elsewhere.
  • The company’s natural gas used to refine oil is the cheapest in the United States.
  • Analysts recently boosted VLO earnings estimates and price targets.
  • The stock’s potential 12-month upside of 15-20%. BofA set a $140 price target.
  • A dividend yield of 3.4%.

“The fundamentals that drove strong results in the first quarter, particularly in March, continue to provide a positive backdrop for refining margins,” said Valero’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Joe Gorder, when the company reported its latest financial results.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

BofA Recommends Two of the Four Oil Refiner Investments to Buy

BofA also recommends VLO but cautions downside risks to its price objective include the company’s heavy weighting toward “sour crude.” As light-heavy crude differentials narrow, the benefits of a more complex refinery may dim and delay return on investment, BofA continued.

Plus, the company is vulnerable to a dip in refining margin, BofA opined. If demand for refined products is weaker than expected, or if oil prices stay high, margins could be pressured.

Other risks include potential increases in operating expenses, capital expenditures and taxes. Another risk stems from the uncertainty of whether tax reform will be passed.

Potential outperformance of the price target for VLO could come from higher-than-expected spreads and stronger-than-forecast gasoline demand, BofA wrote.

Non-Dividend-paying PBF Energy Does Not Qualify as One of Four Oil Refiner Investments to Buy

PBF Energy Inc., (NYSE: PBF), of Parsippany-Troy Hills, New Jersey, is one of the largest independent petroleum refiners and supplies unbranded transportation fuels, heating oil and petrochemicals.

BofA gave PBF a $35 price objective, based on an assessed discounted cash flow (DCF) value that treats the assets as annuities after deducting maintenance capital. The investment firm used a long-term Gulf Coast 321 crack spread in its benchmark assumptions of $11.50/bbl., a long-term crude differential of $3.50, a weighted average cost of capital (WACC) of 9.3%, a zero terminal growth rate and a 22% corporate tax rate.

The potential of PBF to outperform PBF’s price objective could include crude spreads and crack spreads staying above BofA’s expectations, higher-than-expected earnings and improved valuation. Downside risks to meet BofA’s price objective may include if margins and crude spreads compress faster than forecast, hurting earnings and share price.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Pension Fund Chief Picks Two of Four Oil Refiner Investments to Buy

Overbought oil stocks are a risk faced by investors amid their surging prices so far this year, said Bob Carlson, chairman of the Board of Trustees of Virginia’s Fairfax County Employees’ Retirement System with more than $4 billion in assets. Investors are worried that monetary tightening by the Federal Reserve and weakened growth in China due to surging COVID-19 cases and lockdowns will cut global growth and slacken demand for energy.

“My top pick remains the ETF Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE),” said Carlson, who also heads the Retirement Watch investment newsletter. “It tracks the S&P 500 energy sector, which is the top-performing sector in the S&P 500 in 2022 after years of underperforming the rest of the index.”

The ETF holds 21 stocks and three other types of investments. About 76% of the fund is in its 10 largest positions. Exxon Mobil (NYSE: XOM) was almost 23% of the fund, and Chevron (NYSE: CHX) was just over 21% of the fund. Other major holdings include EOG Resources (NYSE: EOG), Schlumberger NV (NYSE: SLB) and Conoco Phillips (NYSE: COP).

The diversified energy fund holds a portfolio of refiners, exploration and production (E&P) stocks, as well as companies engaged in two or more activities. XLE is up 60.58% in the last 12 months, 46.42% for the year to date, 17.94% in the past three months and 4.40% in last week. The gain in the past week shows the fund stays on the ascent.

“As long as economic growth remains solid, demand will exceed supply and support high prices for energy products,” Carlson said.

Even though companies are working to increase production, it takes a “long time” to do so with new sources or to restore old ones that have been shut down, Carlson said.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

MLOAX Joins Four Oil Retailer Investments to Buy 

A fairly aggressive fund is Cohen & Steers MLP & Energy Opportunity (MLOAX), Carlson said. It looks for companies in exploration, production, gathering, transportation, processing, storage, refining, distribution, or marketing of oil, natural gas and other energy sources.

The fund’s largest holding is Enbridge Inc. (NYSE: ENB), which has an extensive pipeline network that transports natural gas and other energy products. The fund’s second-largest holding is Cheniere Energy Inc. (NYSEAMERICAN: LNG), which exports liquefied natural gas (LNG). Other top holdings are the Williams Companies (NYSE: WMB), TC Energy (NYSE: TRP) and Energy Transfer LP (NYSE: ET).

The fund has 56 positions, with 55% of the fund in the 10 largest positions. MLOAX is up 33.25% in the past 12 months and 21.93% for the year to date. It also has climbed 12.55% for the past three months and 0.49% in the last week.

As an open-ended mutual fund with several share classes, MLOAX should be assessed by investors based on which share class has the lowest cost. A good source for that information would be stock brokers.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

COVID-19 Infections Affect More than Half the U.S. Population

COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations have risen about 10% in the last week. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also has reported more than 50% of the U.S. population, including most children, have been infected with the coronavirus.

In China, lockdowns have occurred with at least 373 million people, as well as weighed on about 40% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP). A key effect is continued disruption of the world’s supply chain for many products, including oil.

Most of Shanghai’s 25 million residents remain in lockdown, as the Chinese military and additional health workers have been dispatched there to aid in the response. Shanghai, home to the world’s largest port, has strained to unload cargo due to strict regulations that have caused shipping containers to stack up. Frustrated Shanghai residents, in some cases, have taken videos have went viral to show people screaming from high-rise buildings about needing food, but the government has been cracking down on the posting of such expressions of frustration.

Also in China, young children with COVID-19 have been separated forcibly from their parents, fueling public discord, as Chinese leaders seek to stop the spread of a new, contagious subvariant of Omicron, BA.2. The variant also is causing a new wave of infections in European nations that include Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland.

U.S. COVID Booster Shots Exceed 1 Million and Deaths Approach 1 Million 

COVID-19 deaths worldwide neared 6.25 million to total 6,248,986 on May 6, according to Johns Hopkins University. Cases across the globe have jumped to 516,913,818.

U.S. COVID-19 cases, as of May 5, 81,777,560, with deaths rising to 997,267. America has the dubious distinction as the nation with the most COVID-19 cases and deaths.

Also as of May 5, 257,995,280 people, or 77.7% of the U.S. population, have obtained at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, the CDC reported. Fully vaccinated people total 220,022,176 or 66.3% of the U.S. population, according to the CDC. America also has topped a key milestone by giving a COVID-19 booster vaccine to 101.2 million people.

The four oil refiner investments to buy for income offer energy stocks and funds that show signs of paying investors to stay patient amid current volatility after a 0.5% rate hike by the Fed on May 4. Investors willing to buy after the assets have risen significantly in value could be treated to further gains, even if the journey has ups and down along the way.

Paul Dykewicz, www.pauldykewicz.com, is an accomplished, award-winning journalist who has written for Dow Jones, the Wall Street Journal, Investor’s Business Daily, USA Today, the Journal of Commerce, Seeking Alpha, Guru Focus and other publications and websites. Paul, who can be followed on Twitter @PaulDykewicz, is the editor of StockInvestor.com and DividendInvestor.com, a writer for both websites and a columnist. He further is editorial director of Eagle Financial Publications in Washington, D.C., where he edits monthly investment newsletters, time-sensitive trading alerts, free e-letters and other investment reports. Paul previously served as business editor of Baltimore’s Daily Record newspaper. Paul also is the author of an inspirational book, “Holy Smokes! Golden Guidance from Notre Dame’s Championship Chaplain,” with a foreword by former national championship-winning football coach Lou Holtz. The book is great as a gift and is endorsed by Joe Montana, Joe Theismann, Ara Parseghian, “Rocket” Ismail, Reggie Brooks, Dick Vitale and many others. Call 202-677-4457 for multiple-book pricing.

Seven oil exploration and production investments to purchase for fueling income amid the war started by Russia’s President Vladimir Putin against the people of neighboring Ukraine give investors a way to profit from rising energy  prices despite the market’s recent pullback.

The contrarian approach to investing involves strategically choosing the right stocks and funds that are devoted to  exploration and production (E&P). The seven oil exploration and production investments to purchase feature three funds and four stocks that are positioned to rise despite Putin’s peril-filled policies to attack Ukrainians, whether they are women, children or the elderly, aside from men between the ages of 18 and 60 who have been called upon to defend their country from Russian invaders.

E&P companies are engaged in the early stage of energy production known as the upstream segment of the business. Such E&P entails searching for and extracting oil and gas from the ground. Typically, E&P companies do not refine or produce energy, but instead try to find and extract raw materials.

Share Price Pulls Back for Seven Oil Exploration and Production Investments to Purchase

Despite a run-up in energy prices early in 2022 that lifted industry stocks and funds, the sector has pulled back in the last couple of weeks as new COVID-19 lockdowns take place in China, governments in many countries start to raise interest rates to fight inflation and demand for oil has weakened. Plus, supply has been limited by government policies in the United States and elsewhere that are opposed to fossil fuels and geopolitical events that include Russia shelling Ukrainian oil refineries and even nuclear power plants.

BofA Global Research monitors private U.S. E&P companies closely and forecasts their rig activity will top pre-COVID levels, while public U.S. E&Ps are expected to slide 45% below pre-COVID levels. While public E&Ps will raise their activities modestly above maintenance, probably producing 20%-plus year over year (y/y) growth in the group’s capital expenditures (capex), private E&Ps should provide the biggest increases in 2022.

For example, BofA expects private E&P capex to surge by roughly 55% in 2022. Overall, U.S. E&P capex is projected by BofA to rise 37% this year, including roughly 10% due to inflation.

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Clean Energy Fund Gains Place Among Seven Oil Exploration and Production Investments to Purchase

President Biden’s recent proposal to support clean energy underscores the value of several recommendations of Bob Carlson, a pension fund chairman who also heads the Retirement Watch investment newsletter.

Carlson recommended broad-based commodities investments that he said should do well at this time. One is the iShares GSCI Commodity Dynamic Roll Strategy ETF (NASDAQ GM: COMT). That ETF seeks to track the investment results of an index composed of a wide range of commodity stocks.

The fund gives investors access to commodities across energy, metals, agriculture and livestock sectors through a rules-based futures strategy aimed at minimizing costs associated with futures investing. The ETF also simplifies tax filings by not requiring K-1 reporting that investors often dread due to it complicating tax returns. The fund further uses a diverse commodities portfolio to help protect against inflation.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

COMT rose -0.07% in the past week and slid 3.99% in the last month, but climbed 25.61% in the past three months, 35.78% so far in 2022 and 54.31% in the past 12 months.

Seven Oil Exploration and Production Investments to Purchase Can Provide Income Despite Inflation

“The energy sector in general and oil-related investments, in particular, are overbought at this point because of the surge so far this year,” said Carlson, chairman of the Board of Trustees of Virginia’s Fairfax County Employees’ Retirement System with more than $4 billion in assets. “Investors are worried that tightening by the Federal Reserve and slower growth in China due to surging COVID-19 cases will reduce global growth and therefore demand for energy.”

However, a sharp decline in economic growth is unlikely, continued Carlson. The Fed has barely begun to combat inflation, and the economy still has significant upward momentum, he added.

In addition, China is going to do whatever it takes to maintain economic growth, Carlson counseled. China’s real gross domestic product (GDP), measuring growth after accounting for inflation, reached 8.1% in 2021, after nearly averaging 10% since 1978, even though the World Bank expects just 5.0% in 2022.

Bob Carlson, head of Retirement Watch, talks to author Paul Dykewicz.

XLE Earns Slot Among Seven Oil Exploration and Production Investments to Purchase

“My top pick remains the ETF Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE),” Carlson told me. “It tracks the S&P 500 energy sector, which is the top-performing sector in the S&P 500 in 2022 after years of underperforming the rest of the index.”

The ETF holds 21 stocks and three other types of investments. About 76% of the fund is in its 10 largest positions. Exxon Mobil (NYSE: XOM) was almost 23% of the fund, and Chevron (NYSE: CHX) was just over 21% of the fund. Other top holdings were EOG Resources (NYSE: EOG), Schlumberger NV (NYSE: SLB) and Conoco Phillips (NYSE: COP).

The fund is a diversified energy investment that holds a portfolio of refiners, E&P stocks, as well as diversified companies engaged in two or more activities. XLE is up 69.09% in the last 12 months, 38.56% for the year to date, 23.14% in the past three months but only 0.83% in the prior four weeks. The slight gain in the past month shows the fund has become overbought and its appreciation will slow for a while, Carlson cautioned.

“As long as economic growth remains solid, demand will exceed supply and support high prices for energy products,” Carlson said.

Even though companies are working to increase production, it takes a “long time” to do so with new sources or to restore old ones that have been shut down, Carlson said.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

MLOAX Joins Seven Oil Exploration and Production Investments to Purchase

A more aggressive fund to consider is Cohen & Steers MLP & Energy Opportunity (MLOAX), Carlson commented. The fund looks for companies in exploration, production, gathering, transportation, processing, storage, refining, distribution, or marketing of oil, natural gas and other energy sources.

For example, the fund’s largest holding is Enbridge Inc. (NYSE: ENB), which has an extensive pipeline network through which it transports natural gas and other energy products. The fund’s second-largest holding is Cheniere Energy Inc. (NYSEAMERICAN: LNG), which focuses on liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports. Other top holdings are the Williams Companies (NYSE: WMB), TC Energy (NYSE: TRP) and Energy Transfer LP (NYSE: ET).

The fund has 56 positions, with 55% of the fund in the 10 largest positions. MLOAX is up almost 40% in the past 12 months and more than 20% for the year to date. It also has climbed 4.83% in the last four weeks.

As an open-ended mutual fund with several share classes, investors should determine which share class has the lowest cost by inquiring with their brokers.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Exxon Mobil Motors onto Seven Oil Exploration and Production Investments to Purchase

Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM) is recommended by BofA Global Research and two  investment prognosticators, including Bryan Perry, who heads the Cash Machine investment newsletter, as well as the Premium Income, Quick Income Trader, Hi-Tech Trader and Breakout Options Alert advisory services. Perry has had a good track record of producing winning trades with energy stocks.

The other investment professional who told me she especially likes XOM is Michelle Connell, a former portfolio manager who now serves as president of Dallas-based Portia Capital Management.

Michelle Connell, CEO, Portia Capital Management

The stock has retreated 6.23% in the past week and 3.42% in the last month but jumped 12.13% in the last three months and 54.08% in the past year. It also pays a modest dividend.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

BofA has given XOM a price objective of $120 per share, based on $70 Brent and $66.50 WTI long-term prices. The investment firm is using a weighted average cost of capital (WACC) for XOM of 7%, based on the BofA strategy team’s risk premium and a 2-year weekly beta.

Risk to BofA’s price objective include 1) the oil and gas price and margin environment, 2) significant delays to the new upstream projects critical to XOM’s growth targets, and 3) any inability to capture the price environment due to cost pressures from operating expenses, capital expenditures and taxation. Upside risks to the price objective are higher oil & gas prices.

Hess Holds Place Among Seven Oil Exploration and Production Investments to Purchase

BofA set a price objective of $180 per share on Hess Corp., assuming $70 Brent and $66.50 WTI long-term oil prices. The investment firm also applied a WACC of 6.5%, based on the BofA strategy team’s assumed risk premium and a 2-year weekly beta.

The risks to its price objective are the same as with Exxon Mobil, except that the news flow around HES’ exploratory and appraisal drilling activities could hurt the stock. Upside risks to the price objective are higher oil and gas prices.

Hess slipped 11.28% in the past week and 6.97% in the last month but rose 17.65% in the past three months and 50.56% in the previous 12 months.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

APA Added to Seven Oil Exploration and Production Investments to Purchase

BofA put a $65 price objective on APA Corporation (NASDAQ: APA), assuming the same oil prices as it did for XOM and HES, while applying the same WACC, risk premium and 2-year weekly beta. Potential ways to outperform the BofA price target for APA include 1) higher commodity prices, 2) exploration success in Suriname and 3) exploration success and increased drilling activity in Egypt.

On the other hand, those potential strengths may not be manifested. The risks to achieving the BofA price objective are 1) lower commodity prices, 2) Egyptian political risk and 3) exploration risk in Suriname.

APA fell 12.72% in the past week and 6.71% in the last month, while jumping 17.02% in the past three months and 108.89% in the last 12 months.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Suncor Energy Lands on List of Seven Oil Exploration and Production Investments to Purchase

Suncor Energy (NYSE: SU) received a BofA price objective of $47 US and $60 CN, based on a $70 Brent and $66.50 WTI long-term prices. BofA assumed long-term HH natural gas of $3.50, as it did for the other stocks.

The investment firm also used a WACC of 6.7%, following the capital asset pricing model and using a weighted average cost of historical debt, along with a 2-year weekly beta.

Downside pressures on the price target for SU are 1) oil price risk, 2) deterioration in refining margins, 3) interruption of production at units related to operational issues, fires, etc. 4) tax policy in the regions in which it operates and 5) a lack of generalist investor interest.

SU slid 8.76% for the past week and 8.19% for the last month, while jumping 14.42% for the last three months and 58.37% for the past year.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Woods’ Market-Timing Strategy Offered Through ‘Successful Investing’ Signals

The NASDAQ Composite now is officially in bear market territory. Year to date through April 29, the tech-heavy index is down 24.81%, with much of that selling taking place in the final two weeks of April, said Jim Woods, who heads the Successful Investing and Intelligence Report investment newsletters, as well as the Bullseye Stock Trader and High Velocity Options trading services.

Technically speaking, all four of the major domestic averages, the Dow Industrials, S&P 500, Nasdaq Composite and Russell 2000, continue to suggest that the dominant trend going forward is bearish, with all four of those indices now trading below their respective 50-day and 200-day moving averages, Woods wrote to his Successful Investing subscribers. The latest data show inflation surging to record highs, as producer prices soared 11.2% year over year to multi-decade highs. If price hikes continue, Woods predicted that the Fed will be forced to become as aggressive as possible in battling inflation.

His Successful Investing newsletter uses a plan to signal when to invest in the market and when to step away. On Jan. 21, those subscribers received a Domestic Fund Composite (DFC) and an International Fund Composite (DFC) “Sell” signal to wait out the market storm calmly. While the numbers dictate a current abstention from broad-based equities, Woods added he thinks that stocks could see a substantive rebound.

For that rebound to take place, a confluence of positives would be needed, such as a less hawkish Fed, a very strong corporate earnings season, a ceasefire or a peace agreement to end Russia’s attack against Ukraine and reduced inflation, Woods advised.

Paul Dykewicz meets with Jim Woods, head of the Successful Investing and Intelligence Report investment newsletters.

Russia’s unrelenting war against Ukraine is keeping the pressure on oil prices. Russian President Vladimir Putin has all but squelched any chances of a diplomatic solution to the conflict, Woods added.

The civilian atrocities Putin-led forces reportedly have inflicted upon the Ukrainian people have not only caused world leaders such as President Biden of the United States, Prime Minister Boris Johnson of the United Kingdom and France’s President Emmanuel Macron to call Putin a war criminal but to express the need for a formal prosecution.

Leaders in France, Germany, Italy, Greece, the Czech Republic and Poland expressed outrage at images of Ukrainian civilians tortured and killed. Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala called the images “horrifying” and joined in calling the actions war crimes. Germany’s Chancellor Olaf Scholz added that international organizations should receive access to the areas where atrocities are reported to have occurred to document them independently.

COVID-19 Infects More than Half Americans, Fueling Further Economic Concern

The latest COVID-19 news from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that more than half the people in America, including most children, now have been infected with the coronavirus. In China, lockdowns have affected at least 373 million people, including roughly 40% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP). A key effect is continued disruption of the world’s supply chain for many products.

Most of Shanghai’s 25 million residents still remain in lockdown, as the Chinese military and additional health workers have been dispatched there to aid in the response. Home to the world’s largest port, Shanghai has struggled to unload cargo due to strict regulations that have caused shipping containers to stack up. Some frustrated Shanghai residents have taken videos that went viral to show people screaming from high-rise buildings about the need for food and the government is attempting to crack down on the posting of such real-world frustration.

Also in China, young children with COVID-19 have been separated forcibly from their parents, fueling public dissent, as Chinese leaders seek to stop the spread of a new, highly contagious subvariant of Omicron, BA.2. The variant also is causing a new wave of infections in European nations such as Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland.

COVID-19 Booster Shots in America Top 1 Million, Deaths Approach 1 Million

COVID-19 deaths worldwide exceeded 6.2 million to total 6,233,628 on April 29, according to Johns Hopkins University. Cases across the globe have jumped to 512,935,802.

U.S. COVID-19 cases, as of April 29, hit 81,320,794, with deaths rising to 993,571. America has the dubious distinction as the country with the most COVID-19 cases and deaths.

As of April 29, 257,565,087 people, or 77.6% of the U.S. population, have obtained at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, the CDC reported. Fully vaccinated people total 219,610,128, or 66.1%, of the U.S. population, according to the CDC. America also has reached another key milestone by giving a COVID-19 booster vaccine to 100 million people.

The seven oil exploration and production investments to buy show that fossil fuels continue to have a key role in sustaining economic growth and employment, as well as providing a return to their investors. Those seeking to be rewarded for taking additional risk by investing in the market soon may be rewarded if some potentially positive developments begin to occur.

Paul Dykewicz, www.pauldykewicz.com, is an accomplished, award-winning journalist who has written for Dow Jones, the Wall Street Journal, Investor’s Business Daily, USA Today, the Journal of Commerce, Seeking Alpha, Guru Focus and other publications and websites. Paul, who can be followed on Twitter @PaulDykewicz, is the editor of StockInvestor.com and DividendInvestor.com, a writer for both websites and a columnist. He further is editorial director of Eagle Financial Publications in Washington, D.C., where he edits monthly investment newsletters, time-sensitive trading alerts, free e-letters and other investment reports. Paul previously served as business editor of Baltimore’s Daily Record newspaper. Paul also is the author of an inspirational book, “Holy Smokes! Golden Guidance from Notre Dame’s Championship Chaplain,” with a foreword by former national championship-winning football coach Lou Holtz. The book is great as a gift and is endorsed by Joe Montana, Joe Theismann, Ara Parseghian, “Rocket” Ismail, Reggie Brooks, Dick Vitale and many others. Call 202-677-4457 for multiple-book pricing.

By Josh Arnold for Sure Dividend

Why invest in Dividend Aristocrats for the long term? It is based on the belief that buying stocks that have raised their payouts for at least 25 consecutive years has proven their mettle.

For investors looking to compound their wealth, picking high-quality dividend growth stocks to buy and hold has been shown to be a successful way to build wealth. There are many ways to pick dividend growth stocks, but one great place to start is by tapping into a list of Dividend Aristocrats that have at least 25 consecutive years of increasing their payouts.

In this article, we’ll explain why we like the Dividend Aristocrats, as well as provide three examples that we think are great long-term buys.

Why Invest in Dividend Aristocrats? Rising Payouts Are Compelling

The Dividend Aristocrats are a group of stocks that belong to the S&P 500 and have at least 25 consecutive years of dividend increases. Stocks that meet these requirements have stood the test of time in terms of competitive advantages, reliable, growing profits and recession resistance. Without all those factors, the longevity required to be a Dividend Aristocrat would be nearly impossible.

What is left when we apply these criteria is a group of just 66 stocks that have proven to be among the best-of-the-best in terms of dividend growth and longevity, and we see the Dividend Aristocrats as a great place to start the search for a dividend stock purchase.

Now, we’ll provide three examples of Dividend Aristocrats we think are well positioned for the years to come.

Why Invest in Dividend Aristocrats? Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ)

Our first stock is Johnson & Johnson, a highly diversified consumer products and healthcare company based in the United States that operates globally. The company has three distinct businesses: Consumer Health, Pharmaceutical, and Medical Devices. Through these segments, Johnson & Johnson manufactures and distributes a wide variety of consumer brands such as Aveeno, Listerine, Neutrogena and much more. In addition, it offers various pharmaceutical products for immunology, infectious diseases, oncology, and more. Finally, the company offers medical devices for a wide variety of ailments such as orthopedics, cardiovascular disease and metabolic disease, among others.

Johnson & Johnson traces its beginning to 1886, generates about $100 billion in annual revenue and has a current market cap of $469 billion.

We like Johnson & Johnson for a few reasons. First, it is inherently recession-resistant because of its immense, defensive product portfolio. The company sells consumer staples that tend to see steady demand irrespective of economic conditions, in addition to pharmaceutical and medical device products that tend to have very little correlation to economic activity. In other words, Johnson & Johnson has positioned its portfolio to be quite predictable and that means investors can be confident of earnings estimates. That kind of security helps investors through the emotional challenges of tough periods in the market.

That security also allows Johnson & Johnson to raise its dividend, and it has done so for a staggering 59 consecutive years, making it one of the best stocks in the world on that measure.

Why Invest in Dividend Aristocrats? McDonald’s (NYSE: MCD)

Our next stock is McDonald’s, the ubiquitous purveyor of fast food that operates about 40,000 stores worldwide, most of which are franchised. McDonald’s offers its familiar blend of breakfast, lunch and dinner items, covering all dayparts, and constantly innovates its menu to help keep it relevant.

The company was founded in 1940, and in the decades since, has grown to $24 billion in revenue – most of which comes from franchise and licensing fees – and a market cap of $185 billion.

We like McDonald’s because even though it operates in the restaurant category, which is typically highly cyclical, McDonald’s has managed to operate almost as a consumer staple instead. It’s low-cost, quick meals have proven popular even during recessions. In this way, the company has turned itself into a defensive, dividend growth stock.

McDonald’s also has a very impressive dividend growth streak, which currently stands at 46 years. The stock’s yield is 2.2%, which is almost a full percentage point better than that of the S&P 500. In addition, the payout ratio is only 55% of this year’s earnings, which makes it very safe considering the predictable nature of the company’s revenue streams, and robust profit margins.

Why Invest in Dividend Aristocrats? Coca-Cola (NYSE: KO)

Our final stock is Coca-Cola, the largest beverage company in the world. Coca-Cola manufacturers, markets and distributes hundreds of nonalcoholic beverage brands worldwide, in various categories such as sports drinks, water, sparkling water, tea and coffee, plant-based beverages, energy drinks and, of course, its soda brands such as its namesake.

Coca-Cola was founded in 1886, generates $42 billion in annual revenue and trades today with a market cap of $273 billion.

Like the others on this list, Coca-Cola operates like a consumer staple company in that its wide diversity of product, as well as the fact that its products are seen as an affordable luxury, means demand isn’t necessarily subject to economic conditions. We expect Coca-Cola to see steadily rising revenue and earnings in the years to come, irrespective of prevailing economic conditions globally.

Coca-Cola’s dividend history is virtually unparalleled, as the company has paid rising dividends for an outstanding 60 consecutive years following its February 2022 increase. That puts Coca-Cola in truly rare company on that measure, but the attractive nature of its dividend doesn’t end there.

The stock yields 2.8% today, which is about double that of the S&P 500, and the payout ratio is just 70% of earnings. While that’s somewhat higher than the others on this list, given the company’s reliable revenue and earnings, we see that as a perfectly acceptable level.

Why Invest in Dividend Aristocrats? Final Thoughts

While investors have plenty of options when it comes to finding their next stock to purchase, we favor the tried-and-true strategy of buying high-quality dividend growth stocks. The Dividend Aristocrats are the cream of the crop when it comes to high-quality dividend investing, and we believe that is the best place for investors to start their search.

We’ve highlighted three Dividend Aristocrats here – Johnson & Johnson, McDonald’s, and Coca-Cola – all of which we see as having very long runways to continue their already-impressive dividend growth streaks. All offer current dividend yields well above that of the broader market, and inherent recession resilience.

Five energy investments to purchase for income and protection from Russia’s President Vladimir Putin’s war in Ukraine seem primed for a climb, despite the invading forces intensifying their assault this week in the Donbas region of the neighboring nation.

The two dividend-paying stocks and three funds that form the five energy investments to purchase for income and protection from Putin’s war appear especially strong as the European Union (EU) is moving toward n outright ban on importing oil from Russia. Even though negotiations for an oil embargo would not begin among the EU member countries until after the final round of elections in France on April 24 that will decide whether President Emmanuel Macron will be re-elected, momentum is growing at least to restrict importing Russian oil that is helping to finance Putin’s continuing siege of Ukrainian cities such as Mariupol.

A ban had been resisted due to the dependence some European nations such as Germany on Russian oil due to a lack of readily available substitutes and the infrastructure to store huge volumes of the commodity if it is shipped from offshore rather than delivered through existing pipelines. However, Macron is among the European leaders who are calling for the ban in response to Russian troops killing thousands of Ukrainian civilians, including women and children, while attacking hospitals, schools, residential areas, churches and a theater used as a shelter. Putin’s forces also shelled and seized Ukrainian nuclear power plants.

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New Fortress Leads Five Energy Investments to Purchase for Income as Russia Ravages Ukraine

With Europe importing 36.5% of its oil and 41.1% of its natural gas from Russia in 2020, it will not be easy to obtain such large amounts of those commodities from other sources. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced on April 5 that Europe will impose an import ban on coal from Russia valued at $4.39 billion, or 4 billion euros, annually to cut another important revenue source for Russia. The EU bought 19.3% of its coal from Russia in 2020.

To seize opportunities for investing in oil and natural gas, Jim Woods, who heads the Successful Investing and Intelligence Report investment newsletters, as well as the Bullseye Stock Trader and High Velocity Options trading services, is recommending New Fortress Energy LLC (NASDAQW: NFE). In the April 14 edition of Bullseye Stock Trader, Woods laid out his case for buying shares in New Fortress Energy, an integrated gas-to-power company that provides modern infrastructure solutions to produce clean and reliable energy.

The company’s business model spans the entire production and delivery chain from natural gas procurement and liquefaction to logistics, shipping, terminals and conversion or development of a natural gas-fired generation. Geographically, it has operations in North America, the Caribbean and Europe.

“As we all know, the price of oil and natural gas has been elevated by the supply constrictions emanating from Russia’s ghastly war on Ukraine,” Woods indicated. “That’s caused a reallocation of capital into domestic firms that produce these key ingredients needed to power the planet.”

First of Five Energy Investments to Purchase for Income Soars Despite Russia Relentlessly Attacking Ukraine

Woods referred to NFE’s most recent quarter, when the stock grew its earnings per share (EPS) by an astronomical 7,100%. As for share price appreciation, so far in 2022, NFE has risen 67.94% and it is up 97.76% in the last three months. For the past month, the stock is up 22.36%. However, NFE is down 9.04% for the past week and 4.30% in the last year.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Woods predicted that a recent pullback in the share price could serve as a “launching pad” for the shares heading into its next quarterly earnings release. That earnings report is expected on Thursday, May 5, before the market’s opening bell.

Paul Dykewicz meets with Jim Woods, who leads the Successful Investing and Intelligence Report investment newsletters.

Pension Fund Chairman Chooses Three of Five Energy Investments to Purchase for Income

Bob Carlson, a pension fund chairman who also heads the Retirement Watch investment newsletter, said his favorite way to invest in oil is through Energy Select SPDR (XLE). In fact, Carlson describes XLE as his top fund choice for 2022.

“I think the imbalance between demand and supply for energy and oil is likely to continue for a while,” Carlson informed me. “The main risk to investors is that global economic growth declines and reduces demand for energy and oil. That’s a real possibility as higher prices reduce demand by forcing people to reduce consumption or seek alternatives. Supply and labor problems also are reducing growth because businesses can’t provide goods and services.

“Recent data indicate growth is slowing in China and many other areas. It’s something to watch closely. For now, demand is well above supply and will keep energy prices elevated until growth slows or even declines.”

XLE’s share price dipped 4.57% in the past week, after rising 0.83% in the past month, 23.14% in the last three months, 38.56% so far this year and 69.09% in the previous 12 months.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Five Energy Investments to Purchase for Income Include Tortoise North American Pipeline Fund

Tortoise North American Pipeline (TPYP) uses a passive management approach to track the total return performance of the Tortoise North American Pipeline Index. The fund is intended to reflect the characteristics of the market, serve as a benchmark to analyze the pipeline sector and provide an attractive total return in a historically defensive sector.

TPYP, with $566.1 million in assets, holds a coveted five-star rating from Morningstar. The investment also does not send its shareholders the K-1 tax forms that many people seek to avoid due to their complexity.

Bob Carlson, head of Retirement Watch, talks to author Paul Dykewicz.

Tortoise North American Pipeline is down 1.53% in the last week, but up 5.22% in the past month, 17.71% in the last three months, 21.74% so far this year and 39.95% in the past year. Among the fund’s holdings, 78.07% are in the energy business and 21.93% are utilities.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Broad Commodity Fund Joins Five Energy Investments to Purchase for Income

ETF iShares GSCI Commodity Dynamic Roll (COMT) is another fund that Carlson told me that he favors. The fund seeks to follow the Goldman Sachs Commodity Index, which is more heavily weighted to energy than most other commodity indexes, he added.

“I prefer to invest in the commodities themselves instead of companies in commodity businesses,” said Carlson, who also serves as chairman of the Board of Trustees of Virginia’s Fairfax County Employees’ Retirement System with more than $4 billion in assets. “Investing in the commodities avoids potential problems with management, debt levels, regulators, labor and more.”

Funds are the best way for most investors to take positions in commodities, Carlson counseled. COMT dipped 3.09% in trading on April 19, 3.08% in the past week and 0.46% in the last month. However, it strung together gains of 24.50% in the past three months, 33.45% so far in 2022 and 55.48% in the last year.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Exxon Mobil Earns a Berth Among the Five Energy Investments to Purchase for Income

Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM) received the recommendation of two investment leaders, Bryan Perry, who heads the Cash Machine investment newsletters, as well as the Premium Income, Quick Income Trader, Hi-Tech Trader and Breakout Options Alert advisory services, and Michelle Connell, president of Dallas-based Portia Capital Management.

Other than a 3.07% pullback in the past week, XOM has been climbing. The stock jumped 4.02% in the last month, 19.18% in the past three months, 40.56% for far in 2022 and 60.36% in the last year.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Given that President Biden lifted drilling restrictions for public lands, maybe oil and gas prices will ease a little, Connell suggested. Even though Exxon Mobil has risen significantly in more than the past year, she still sees further upside and suggested investors may want to accumulate shares by using a dollar-cost-averaging strategy. That occurs when an investor divides the total amount of an investment across periodic purchases of a given asset to reduce the impact of volatility on the overall price.

Michelle Connell, CEO, Portia Capital Management

Exxon is one of the major oil players that has exposure to countries that are relatively new to oil production, Connell continued. Such actions would decrease the developed world’s reliance not only on Russia, but on other “bad actors” such as Iran and Venezuela, she added.

Exxon has as many as 10 oil projects under development in the Caribbean, commented Connell, a former portfolio manager. These potential projects could lead to XOM producing an additional 1 million barrels per day by 2027, she added.

Other reasons why Connell indicated she liked Exxon Mobil are that the company is:

  • the world’s largest refiner with a total capacity of 4.6 barrels per day;
  • paying a strong dividend yield of 4%;
  • continuing to pay dividends for 140 straight years and boosting its payout annually for the last 39 years;
  • using its strong cash flow to cut debt and repurchase stock;
  • selling for a relatively cheap 9.9 times its forward price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio;
  • and forecast to report good results on April 29.

Craig Elam, a senior market analyst with UK & EMEA OANDA, focuses on major macroeconomic trends, technical analysis and worldwide events that affect different asset classes and investors. He remarked that trading in oil markets led Brent and WTI to fall around 5% on April 19 due to reduced growth forecasts and slower Chinese growth at the end of the first quarter when lockdowns appear to have driven most of the move, after a four-day rally as the world’s second-largest economy eased some strict COVID-19 restrictions.

Protests in Libya have knocked out around half a million barrels per day of output, Elam commented. While only a temporary hit, it comes at a bad time as far as global supply is concerned, Elam added.

In addition, OPEC+ countries produced 1.45 million barrels per day less than promised as part of a previous deal to gradually return output to pre-pandemic levels, Elam said.

COVID-19 Lockdowns Expand in China, Further Imperiling Global Supply Chains

COVID-19 lockdowns have affected at least 373 million people in Chinese cities that represent roughly 40% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP). A key effect likely will be further disruption of the world’s supply chain for a variety of products.

Many of Shanghai’s 25 million residents remain in lockdown, as the Chinese military and additional health workers have been dispatched there to aid in the response. Home to the world’s largest port, Shanghai has struggled to unload cargo due to strict regulations that have caused shipping containers to stack up. Some frustrated Shanghai residents have taken videos that have gone viral to show people screaming from high-rise buildings about the need for food.

Also in China, young children with COVID-19 have been separated forcibly from their parents, fueling public dissent, as Chinese leaders seek to stop the spread of a new, highly contagious subvariant of Omicron, BA.2. The variant also is spreading a new wave of infections in European nations such as Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland.

COVID-19 Deaths Globally Top 6.2 Million, While U.S. Booster Shots Approach 100 Million

COVID-19 deaths worldwide exceeded 6.2 million to total 6,215,1673 on April 22, according to Johns Hopkins University. Cases across the globe have jumped to 508,524,104.

U.S. COVID-19 cases, as of April 22, hit 80,952,109, with deaths rising to 991,171. America has the dreaded distinction as the nation with the most COVID-19 cases and deaths.

As of April 22, 257,105,236 people, or 77.4% of the U.S. population, have obtained at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, the CDC reported. Fully vaccinated people total 219,208,559, or 66%, of the U.S. population, according to the CDC. In addition, 99.9 million people have received a booster dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

The five energy investments to purchase for income and protection from Putin’s war offer opportunities to profit from fossil fuels that have become increasingly important as many countries worldwide impose economic sanctions on Russia to pressure its leaders to call their troops home. However, Putin seems willing to continue sending soldiers to their deaths and indiscriminately killing Ukrainian civilians to achieve his goal of expanding Russia’s control of sovereign soil, ports and commodities of its natural-resource-rich neighbor.

Paul Dykewicz, www.pauldykewicz.com, is an accomplished, award-winning journalist who has written for Dow Jones, the Wall Street Journal, Investor’s Business Daily, USA Today, the Journal of Commerce, Seeking Alpha, Guru Focus and other publications and websites. Paul, who can be followed on Twitter @PaulDykewicz, is the editor of StockInvestor.com and DividendInvestor.com, a writer for both websites and a columnist. He further is editorial director of Eagle Financial Publications in Washington, D.C., where he edits monthly investment newsletters, time-sensitive trading alerts, free e-letters and other investment reports. Paul previously served as business editor of Baltimore’s Daily Record newspaper. Paul also is the author of an inspirational book, “Holy Smokes! Golden Guidance from Notre Dame’s Championship Chaplain,” with a foreword by former national championship-winning football coach Lou Holtz. The book is great as a gift and is endorsed by Joe Montana, Joe Theismann, Ara Parseghian, “Rocket” Ismail, Reggie Brooks, Dick Vitale and many others. Call 202-677-4457 for multiple-book pricing.

Four liquified natural gas investments to purchase for income should shine amid economic sanctions imposed against Russia by many of its customers protesting President Vladimir Putin’s dogged attack of Ukraine that has drawn international outrage from countries seeking to pressure the aggressor to withdraw its forces.

The four liquified natural gas (LNG) investments to purchase appear to be potential beneficiaries of Russia’s invasion that has led many European countries to restrict or outright ban importing Russia’s energy products to avoid funding Putin’s war against neighboring Ukraine.  In addition, the four liquified natural gas investments to purchase seem to be seeking to replace the flow of Russia’s oil and LNG products at least partially.

The 27-nation European Union (EU), the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Australia and other countries placed economic sanctions on Russia in a direct response to Putin ordering his troops to use heavy weapons and deadly force against thousands of Ukrainian civilians. Putin’s military forces have caused so much mayhem and thousands of civilian deaths in Ukraine that its President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and many other world leaders have described as “war crimes.”

Four Liquified Natural Gas Investments to Purchase May Find New Opportunities to Serve Europe

Global demand is climbing for liquified natural gas (LNG) to replace what Russia had been supplying to Europe. In 2021, Russia provided 40% of the natural gas consumed in the EU.

“This is a staggering statistic,” Bryan Perry wrote in the May 2022 issue of his Cash Machine investment newsletter.

Paul Dykewicz interviews Bryan Perry, whose investment advisory services include
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Four Liquified Natural Gas Investments to Purchase for Income as America’s LNG Exports Rise

The United States is exporting record amounts of LNG as nations rapidly convert to gas-burning utilities from less environmentally friendly coal-fired plants. The burning of natural gas to produce energy causes fewer emissions of nearly all kinds of air pollution and carbon dioxide (CO2) than using coal or petroleum products to provide an equal amount of energy, according to the U.S. Energy Information Agency (EIA).

“U.S. exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) set a record high in 2021, averaging 9.7 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d),” reported the latest edition of the EIA’s Natural Gas Monthly. “U.S. LNG exports increased by 50% from 2020. The increase in U.S. LNG exports was driven by rising demand in both Europe and Asia, particularly China, and by expanding U.S. liquefaction capacity. In 2021, liquefaction at the six U.S. LNG export terminals averaged 102% of nameplate (or nominal) capacity and 89% of peak capacity, according to our estimates.”

Nominal capacity specifies the amount of LNG produced in a calendar year under normal operating conditions, based on the engineering design of a facility. With U.S. LNG production at near capacity, prices should remain high as the supply/demand equation strongly favors producers and shippers of LNG to foreign buyers.

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Five Liquified Natural Gas Investments to Buy as Europe Seeks New Suppliers

The United States committed on March 25 to boost LNG shipments to Europe to help reduce or remove dependence on Russia. The Biden administration is proposing to send up to 15 billion cubic meters (bcm) to Europe, but that amount is only about 10% of the 150 bcm Europe used in 2021.

U.S. LNG capacity has grown quickly since America’s 48 contiguous states first began exporting the energy source in February 2016. In 2019, the United States became the world’s third-largest LNG exporter, trailing Australia and Qatar. Once the new LNG liquefaction units Sabine Pass and Calcasieu Pass in Louisiana are put into service by the end of 2022, the United States will have the world’s largest LNG export capacity.

The United States, United Kingdom, European Union, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Australia and other countries placed economic sanctions on Russia to try to compel Putin to stop his invasion and bring his troops home. However, Putin’s persistence has led to stinging criticism of him from U.S. President Joe Biden, U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson and other leaders for brutally bombing civilian targets such as hospitals, schools, residential buildings and cultural sites. Biden said publicly on April 12 for the first time that Putin was committing “genocide,” after previously citing evidence that Russia’s leader was perpetrating war crimes against Ukrainian civilians since he launched his invasion on Feb. 24.

Perry Picks Exxon Mobil as One of Four Liquified Natural Gas Investments to Purchase for Income

A recommendation that Perry has included in his Cash Machine newsletter since July 2021 offers exposure to the LNG opportunity. Irving, Texas-based Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM) ranks as the world’s second-largest supplier of natural gas, pays a 4.9% dividend yield and already has jumped more than 57.5% since Perry began recommending it during July 2021 in his newsletter’s Safe Haven Portfolio.

Germany is among the European countries that needs time to prepare to transition fully from importing oil and LNG from Russia, but it is seeking alternative producers that include the United States. Europe is looking at LNG as its main energy substitute, with a plan to trim Russian energy imports by two-thirds in 2022.

However, prices in general are climbing sharply as the Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose at an annualized 8.5% in March, compared to a year ago, to mark the fastest annual jump since December 1981. The increase was one-tenth of a percentage point above what had been expected.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

Pension Head Names Fund Among Four Liquified Natural Gas Investments to Purchase for Income

A good way to tap the LNG trend is to invest in energy service companies, advised Bob Carlson, a pension fund chairman who also leads the Retirement Watch investment newsletter. Investment opportunities exist with companies that provide the pipelines, storage facilities and other infrastructure used to supply the world with natural gas and other energy sources, he added.

“One of the attractive qualities of these investments is that their revenues are independent of the prices of the commodities,” Carlson counseled. “The firms charge fees for their services, and the fees often are adjusted for inflation. Their revenues and earnings depend on the volume of commodities passing through their facilities, not the price of the commodity.”

A diversified way to invest in the growing demand for LNG energy is Cohen & Steers MLP & Energy Opportunity Fund (MLOAX). This open-end mutual fund invests primarily in energy master limited partnerships and in former partnerships that have converted to corporations. These “leading” energy service companies provide total returns, aided by current income and price appreciation, through investments in energy-related master limited partnerships (MLPs) and securities of industry companies. Those businesses are expected to derive at least 50% of their revenues or operating income from exploration, production, gathering, transportation, processing, storage, refining, distribution or marketing of natural gas, crude oil and other energy resources.

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Cohen & Steers Fund Joins List of Four Liquified Natural Gas Investments to Purchase for Income

The Cohen & Steers MLP & Energy Opportunity Fund recently held 53 positions and had 50% of the fund in the 10 largest positions. Top holdings of the fund were Enbridge (NYSE: ENB), Cheniere Energy (NYSEAMERICAN: LNG), Williams Companies (NYSE: WMB), TC Energy (NYSE: TRP) and Energy Transfer (NYSE: ET).

The fund has notched strong returns since April 2020. It is up 23.13% so far in 2022, 11.07% in the last month and 41.75% in the past year, while offering a dividend yield of 2.6%.

Bob Carlson, head of Retirement Watch, speaks with columnist Paul Dykewicz.

Carlson’s second LNG recommendation is non-dividend-paying ETF United States Natural Gas (UNG). The fund invests in natural gas futures contracts and related contracts on natural gas prices. The contracts are collaterized with cash and treasury securities.

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The fund has zoomed 55.43% in the last month, 104.96% for the year to date and 165.84 in the past year.

Connell Chooses Two of Four Liquified Natural Gas Investments to Purchase for Income

U.S. LNG inventory is currently 17% below its 5-year average for this time of year, said Michelle Connell, CFA, president and owner of Portia Capital Management, of Dallas, Texas. The biggest issue for the U.S. LNG industry is that production of the energy source has never been profitable on its own but is a byproduct of oil production, she added.

“There isn’t enough oil being produced,” Connell said. “Currently, only 11.6 million barrels/day are being produced. Pre-pandemic, we produced 13 million barrels/day.”

Instead of investing to increase capacity, oil companies have been focusing on raising their dividend payments, Connell continued. If they pivot, these companies face a backlash from investors who could sell their shares, Connell added.

“Their market value could get crushed,” Connell said.

Michelle Connell, CEO, Portia Capital Management

EOG Resources Gains Place With Four Liquified Natural Gas Investments to Purchase for Income

Even if the oil companies started to invest more into production, it will take six to eight months at a minimum to increase their oil and LNG production, Connell counseled. Most recently, the production of oil via shale created the largest share of the America’s natural gas reserves, Connell continued.

Unfortunately for advocates of increased output to meet rising demand, shale production has “decreased exponentially” since the pandemic began and the build-up of LNG reserves has declined, Connell explained.

However, Connell conveyed that she found two investments that produce substantial amounts of oil via shale, and thus considerable LNG. One of them is Houston-based EOG Resources Inc. (NYSE: EOG)

“The outstanding fourth-quarter results cap off a tremendous year for EOG — record earnings, record free cash flow and return of cash that places EOG among the leaders in our industry and across the broader market,” said Ezra Yacob, chief executive officer of EOG, in reporting those results. “Reflecting these results, we are continuing to deliver on our long-standing free cash flow priorities with another $1.00 per share special dividend while further strengthening the balance sheet.”

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EOG Resources has amassed a market capitalization of $70 billion and offers a dividend yield of 4.7%. Among other financial metrics that Connell tracks, she pointed out that EOG has an earnings yield of 6.29%, an adjusted cash earnings yield of 11.19% and a five-year average return on investment of 13.73%.

The company’s reserves, as of year-end 2021, reached 3.22 billion barrels, with petroleum accounting for 51%, natural gas liquid contributing 22% and natural gas equaling 27%. Connell calculated a 12-to-18-month upside in the stock of 30-35%.

Pioneer Earns Berth Among  Five Liquified Natural Gas Investments to Buy

Pioneer Natural Resources Co. (NYSE: PXD), a hydrocarbon exploration company headquartered in Irving, Texas, is the second LNG stock that Connell proposed for investment. The company has a market capitalization of $61.72 billion, offers a dividend yield of 4.2% and has never missed paying a dividend, she added.

In addition, Pioneer Natural Resources has produced an earnings yield of 3.25%, an adjusted cash earnings yield of 7.48% and a five-year average return on equity of 6.61%, Connell said. At the end of 2021, Pioneer Natural Resources had compiled 2.22 billion barrels of oil equivalent, with 44% of its proved reserves from petroleum, 30% from natural gas liquid and 16% from natural gas. Connell set a 12-to-18-month price target for the company of 35-40% upside from current levels.

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Worldwide COVID-19 Cases Top 502 Million and Deaths Nearing 6.2 Million

COVID-19 cases worldwide topped 502 million for the first time on April 14, according to Johns Hopkins University. Meanwhile, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that the BA.2 subvariant of the Omicron version of COVID-19 caused 86% of new COVID-19 cases in the United States last week.

COVID-19 cases and deaths have been rising slightly in the United States during recent days, cautioned Anthony Fauci, M.D., director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Dr. Fauci said America “certainly” is seeing the start of a surge of new infections as mask-wearing requirements have eased and people increasing choose to travel.

As for China, Shanghai has become its hotspot for the Omicron variant of COVID-19 and most of its 25 million residents remain under lockdown. The rising incidence of COVID-19 in China have led to calling on members of its military and health care community to aid in the response. In fact, the Nomura financial securities firm estimated that as many as 45 cities in China were implementing either full or partial lockdowns as of April 14, affecting more than a quarter of the country’s population.

China Reports Its Highest Case Numbers Since 2022 When COVID-19 Originated in Wuhan

China is reporting its highest case numbers since the virus first became detected in its Wuhan region during 2020 when the global COVID-18 pandemic began. Young children with COVID-19 have been separated forcibly from their parents, fueling public dissent, as Chinese leaders try to stop the spread of a new, highly contagious subvariant of Omicron, BA.2. The variant also has been spreading a new wave of infections in Europe, where COVID cases are rising in countries such as Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland.

COVID-19 cases across the globe have jumped by more than 2 million in just two days to hit 502,495,440. Worldwide COVID-19 deaths during the same time span have climbed nearly 9,000 to total 6,192,554 on April 14, according to Johns Hopkins University.

U.S. COVID-19 cases, as of April 14, hit 80,570,474, with deaths rising to 988,102. America has the dubious distinction as the country with the most COVID-19 cases and deaths.

As of April 14, 256,590,734 people, or 77.3% of the U.S. population, have obtained at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, the CDC reported. Fully vaccinated people reached 218,707,476, or 65.9%, of the U.S. population, according to the CDC. In addition, 99.1 million people have received at least one booster dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

The four liquified natural gas investments to purchase for income offer the potential to serve international customers that Putin’s war has been driving away from Russia’s suppliers since his invasion of Ukraine and confirmed reports that thousands of civilians there have been killed by the soldiers he ordered into the country. As European countries seek to stop purchasing oil and natural gas from Russia to avoid funding its war with Ukraine, the four liquified natural gas investments to purchase for income seem poised to become alternative energy suppliers.

Paul Dykewicz, www.pauldykewicz.com, is an accomplished, award-winning journalist who has written for Dow Jones, the Wall Street Journal, Investor’s Business Daily, USA Today, the Journal of Commerce, Seeking Alpha, GuruFocus and other publications and websites. Paul, who can be followed on Twitter @PaulDykewicz, is the editor of StockInvestor.com and DividendInvestor.com, a writer for both websites and a columnist. He further is editorial director of Eagle Financial Publications in Washington, D.C., where he edits monthly investment newsletters, time-sensitive trading alerts, free e-letters and other investment reports. Paul previously served as business editor of Baltimore’s Daily Record newspaper. Paul also is the author of an inspirational book, “Holy Smokes! Golden Guidance from Notre Dame’s Championship Chaplain,” with a foreword by former national championship-winning football coach Lou Holtz. The book is great as a gift and is endorsed by Joe Montana, Joe Theismann, Ara Parseghian, “Rocket” Ismail, Reggie Brooks, Dick Vitale and many others. Call 202-677-4457 for multiple-book pricing.

Five clean energy investments to purchase may interest income seekers to tap President Joe Biden’s plans to develop domestic supplies of critical materials to avoid dependence on China and other countries that may not prove to be reliable trade partners.

The companies composing the five clean energy investments to purchase are engaged in providing key minerals such as rare earth elements, lithium and cobalt that are needed in products used in computers and household appliances. The Biden administration has been looking into U.S. “vulnerabilities” and exploring ways to assure clean energy technologies like batteries, electric vehicles, wind turbines and solar panels have access to the vital inputs they need.

The White House projects global demand for these critical minerals to “skyrocket” by 400-600% in the next several decades. Demand for minerals such as lithium and graphite used in electric vehicle (EV) batteries will rise by as much as 4,000%, the Biden administration predicts.

However, the United States increasingly is dependent on foreign sources for many processed versions of these minerals. For example, China controls most of the market for processing and refining cobalt, lithium, rare earth elements and other critical minerals.

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Critical Minerals Supply Chain Needs Domestic Development

The Biden administration released a supply chain assessment in June 2021 that found America’s overreliance on foreign sources and adversarial nations for critical minerals and materials posed national and economic security threats. However, the five clean energy investments to purchase are positioned to benefit from these opportunities.

One is Albemarle Corporation (NYSE: ALB), a specialty chemicals manufacturing company in Charlotte, North Carolina. It operates three divisions: lithium, bromine specialties and catalysts. The company ranks among the largest providers of lithium to meet growing demand for electric vehicle (EV) batteries.

Albemarle Ranks as One of Five Clean Energy Investments to Purchase

“ALB is definitely one to feature,” said Jim Woods, who heads the Successful Investing and Intelligence Report investment newsletters, as well as the Bullseye Stock Trader and High Velocity Options trading services.

Albemarle’s share price has dipped 4.21% in the past week, risen 23.33% for the last month, while falling 9.21% for the year to date, after surging 48.51% in the past 12 months. Albemarle offers a current dividend yield of 0.7% and has averaged a five-year return of 14%.

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Albemarle is a current recommendation in the Intelligence Report investment newsletter that Woods leads. The stock is part of his Income Multipliers portfolio that seeks to include dividend-paying investments.

Paul Dykewicz meets with Jim Woods, who leads the Successful Investing and Intelligence Report investment newsletters.

Five Clean Energy Investments to Purchase Include Dividend-paying Metals & Mining ETF

The SPDR S&P Metals & Mining ETF (NYSE: XME) seeks to provide investment results that correspond generally to the total return of the S&P Metals and Mining Select Industry Index. The metals & mining segment comprises sub-industries such as aluminum, coal and consumable fuels, copper, diversified metals and mining, gold, precious metals and minerals, silver and steel. Although the fund includes many metals and mining stocks that do not encompass those considered critical materials by the Biden administration, Woods still recommends it for investment purposes.

“If you want targeted sector exposure to U.S. companies engaged in the extraction of metals and other natural resources, then you need XME,” said Jim Woods, editor of Successful Investing, Intelligence Report and Bullseye Stock Trader.

“This exchange traded fund, whose full name is the SPDR S&P Metals & Mining ETF, contains the biggest and arguably the best metals and mining stocks in the market today,” said Woods, who also partners with Mark Skousen on the Fast Money Alert trading service. “And as natural resource prices climb, XME may also serve as a hedge against commodity inflationary.”

The ETF slipped 1.68% in the last week, but is up 7.61% in the last month, 37.17% for the year to date and 54.67% in the last 12 months. XME also offers a modest dividend yield of 0.4% and has amassed total assets of $3.5 billion.

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Five Clean Energy Investments to Purchase Could Fortify America’s National Defense

President Biden announced on March 31 that he will issue a directive authorizing the use of the Defense Production Act (DPA) to secure American production of critical materials to reduce reliance on China and other foreign countries for the minerals and materials that power clean energy. Specifically, the DPA will be authorized to support the production and processing of minerals and materials such as lithium, nickel, cobalt, graphite and manganese that are used for large-capacity batteries.

The sectors such as transportation that are supported by these large-capacity batteries account for more than half of U.S. carbon emissions, according to the White House. President Biden also indicated he is reviewing potential uses of DPA for more than minerals and materials to secure “safer, cleaner and more resilient energy” for America.

Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of neighboring Ukraine and his troops’ assaults against hospitals, schools, residential areas, churches, nuclear power plants and a theater used as a shelter serve as a reminder of how quickly critical minerals can be cut off. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine led to a shortage of neon gas and palladium, which are crucial to the manufacture of computer chips.

Roughly 45-54% of the world’s semiconductor-grade neon that is critical lasers used to make computer chips comes from two Ukrainian companies, Ingas and Cryon. Plus, Putin’s invasion of Ukraine has spurred economic sanctions from the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Australia and the European Union to pressure him to withdraw his troops and stop torturing, injuring and killing civilians in acts of violence that recently led President Biden to blast the Russian leader’s brutality.

Carlson Chooses COMT as Third of Five Clean Energy Investments to Purchase

President Biden’s proposal reinforces several recommendations of Bob Carlson, a pension fund chairman who also heads the Retirement Watch investment newsletter.

Carlson recommended broad-based commodities investments that he said should do well at this time. One is the iShares GSCI Commodity Dynamic Roll Strategy ETF (NASDAQ GM: COMT). That ETF seeks to track the investment results of an index composed of a wide range of commodity exposure.

The fund gives investors access to commodities across energy, metals, agriculture and livestock sectors through a rules-based futures strategy aimed at minimizing costs associated with futures investing. The ETF also simplifies tax filings by not requiring K-1 tax reporting. The fund further uses a diverse commodities portfolio to help protect against inflation.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

COMT rose 0.45% in the past week and slid 10.71% in the last month, but climbed 30.41% so far in 2022 and 58.67% in the past 12 months.

AAASX is Fourth of Five Clean Energy Investments to Purchase

Another choice is a broader-based real assets portfolio such as DWS RREEF Real Assets Fund (AAASX), Carlson continued. The mutual fund strives to create a holistic portfolio of real assets across real estate, infrastructure, natural resource equities, commodity futures and Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities (TIPS).

Even though the fund does not focus solely on clean energy, its broad nature aids in diversification to reduce risk. The fund has produced returns of 0.29% for the past week, 4.59% in the last month, 5.39% since the start of 2022 and 21.09% in the latest 12 months.

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PICK Offers the Fifth of Five Clean Energy Stocks to Purchase

Carlson also chose iShares MSCI Global Metals and Mining Producers (PICK). He began recommending the exchange-traded fund (ETF) last fall and has seen it rise by double-digit percentages.

PICK has dropped 2.15% in the past week, but jumped 8.06% for the last month, 20.53% so far in 2022 and 24.10% in the past 12 months. The ETF tracks an index of global mining companies that excludes gold and silver miners.

Chart courtesy of www.stockcharts.com

The index consists of 216 stocks, but its capitalization weighting means 50% of the fund is in its 10 largest positions. Top holdings recently consisted of BHP Group Ltd. (NYSE: BHP), Rio Tinto Limited (OTCMKTS: RTNTF), Vale S.A. (NYSE: VALE), Freeport-McMoRan Inc. (NYSE: FCX) and Anglo-American plc (OTCMKTS: NGLOY).

“I was attracted to this ETF even before the invasion of Ukraine,” Carlson commented. “The mining companies had gone through a long bear market. They worked to reduce debt and otherwise clean up their balance sheets. Their more efficient operations mean most of them can profit at relatively low prices for their commodities and will earn strong profits as prices rise. The strong global demand, combined with the recent supply shocks, make them more attractive.”

Bob Carlson, head of Retirement Watch, talks to author Paul Dykewicz.

Roughly 23% of the fund is in North American-based companies. Other leading regions in the fund are the United Kingdom, 13%; Developed Europe, 9%; Emerging Europe, 4.9%; and Africa/Middle East, 4.9%.

Portia Capital Management President Prefers PICK to Provide Mining Diversification

Michelle Connell, a former portfolio manager who now is the president and owner of Dallas-based Portia Capital Management, said she also likes PICK to diversify beyond a pure play mining stock in a single investment.

Michelle Connell, CEO, Portia Capital Management

“There are several reasons for my rationale,” Connell said.

One, PICK holds a “plethora of companies” that have strong fundamentals, Connell counseled. Second, PICK’s dividend yield is compelling at nearly 5%, she added.

PICK provides exposure to worldwide mining and production of diversified metals, except for gold and silver. The investment rationale is to buy a basket of diversified metals — many of them necessary for manufacturing — as an inflation hedge.

Caution is warranted since PICK is market-cap-weighted, with its top 10 stock holdings comprising more than 50% of the ETF’s portfolio. As a result, underperformance by any of those key positions could crimp the fund’s returns, Connell continued.

Freeport-McMoRan (NYSE: FCX), of Phoenix, Arizona, ranks near the top of the ETF’s biggest positions. The company owns copper mines across the globe. With copper in short supply and used in many manufacturing processes, including green technology and electric vehicles, Freeport-McMoRan is strong fundamentally and its 12-month upside is 30-40%, Connell continued.

DBC is an Alternative to the Five Clean Energy Investments to Purchase

The non-dividend-paying Invesco DB Commodity Index Tracking Fund (NYSE ARCA: DBC) is another way to invest broadly in commodities, Carlson commented. DBC edged up 1.87% in the last week, dipped 4.81% in the past month, but climbed 28.59% since the start of 2022 and 58.67% in the past 12 months.

The fund is designed for investors who want a cost-effective and convenient way to gain exposure to commodity futures. The rules-based index followed by DBC tracks futures contracts on 14 of the most heavily traded and important physical commodities in the world. The fund and the Index are rebalanced and reconstituted annually each November.

The fund is not suitable for all investors due to its speculative nature. Futures contracts are inherently volatile. Plus, frequent moves of market prices for the underlying futures contracts may cause large losses.

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Green Metals Fund Is Another Alternative to Five Clean Energy Investments to Purchase

Connell further suggested buying the non-dividend-paying VanEck Green Metals ETF (NYSE ARCA: GMET) that launched November 9, 2021. She praised its “basket approach” of owning high-risk investments and metals/materials as commodities that could be viewed as high risk.

GMET seeks to track the price and yield performance of the MVIS Global Clean-Tech Metals Index (MVGMETTR). The fund aims to mirror the performance of companies involved in the production, refining, processing and recycling of green metals that are used in the applications, products and processes that enable the energy transition from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources and technologies.

The ETF has $28.5 million in total net assets and offers dividend income, too. Key selling points for the ETF include the reality that certain metals are critical to energy transition. Its holdings offer comprehensive global exposure, and demand for “green” metals is outstripping supply.

A transition to a low-carbon economy need “green” metals such as cobalt, copper, lithium, rare earths and zinc. The fund’s portfolio provides access to companies involved in the production of green metals globally. One example is access to China A-shares. Part of the investment case is that future production of key minerals may not be sufficient to meet supply requirements to meet rising demand.

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President Biden Cites ‘Brutal’ Attacks Against Ukrainian Civilians in Calling Putin a ‘War Criminal’

The need for sourcing critical materials domestically for clean energy was affirmed when President Biden said on Monday, April 4, that he regards Putin as a “war criminal” for ordering Russian soldiers to invade Ukraine, where news reports have documented the rape of women and girls, as well as the execution of some of them. In addition, many civilian males have been murdered. With the documented killing of civilians who were bound and shot in the heads and chests, President Biden added further sanctions against Russia this week that targeted Russian financial institutions, along with Kremlin officials and their family members,.

Putin is “brutal” and the killing of civilians by Russian troops needs to be documented for a potential “wartime trial,” President Biden said. Meanwhile, Ukraine should be provided with the weapons it needs to “continue the fight” to defend against Russia’s invasion, he added.

The killing of many civilians in Bucha, Ukraine, and other cities in the country is “outrageous,” said President Biden, who previously announced economic sanctions against Russia and called Putin a “butcher” for ordering his troops to attack Ukrainian civilians who include men, women and children. Putin’s forces who fired upon nuclear power plants reportedly were exposed to significant levels of radiation when taking control of them at gunpoint.

Czech Internet Businessman Responds to Horrific Treatment of Ukrainians With Big Donation

Bodies in mass graves, strewn on streets or hidden in homes have shown firsthand the horrors of Russia’s war against Ukraine. The latest corporate leader to speak out against the killings came forward on Monday, April 4, when Ivo Lukačovič, a Czech businessman and founder of internet company Seznam.cz, announced he would send 100 million Kc (roughly €4 million) of his own funds to assist Ukraine.

He cited horrific footage from the town of Bucha that first appeared on April 1 after the retreat of Russian troops from the area. The videos documented corpses of hundreds of dead civilians where the Russian forces had just left.

Fears are high among Ukrainian leaders and others that such atrocities could occur or may already have taken place in other towns and cities still occupied by Russian forces in violation of international law.

The 48-year-old entrepreneur and billionaire posted on Twitter that the video evidence of inhumanity by the Russian troops appalled him. As a result, Luckovich pledged to dedicate part of his private wealth to buy weapons for the Ukrainian army.

In early March, Seznam announced it would allocate up to 100 million Kc to donate to non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and associations helping Ukrainian refugees. In February, Lukačovič personally committed to donate 23 million Kc for that same purpose.

COVID-19 Cases Surge in China, Cause Lockdowns, Take Children from Parents

COVID-19 still is having an impact on businesses and the economy with cases surging in Shanghai, China, now the country’s hotspot. All 25 million residents there were placed in lockdown, as military personnel and extra health workers were dispatched to aid in the response.

China reported more than 20,000 new cases on Tuesday, April 5, setting a record in the country where the virus originated in Wuhan during 2020 when the global pandemic began. Young children with COVID-19 have been separated forcibly from their parents, fueling public dissent, as Chinese leaders seek to halt the spread of a new, highly contagious subvariant of Omicron, BA.2. The variant also is spreading a new wave of infections in Europe, where COVID cases are climbing in Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland.

Moderna Inc. reported on Friday, April 8, that it was recalling 764,900 doses of its COVID-19 vaccine prepared by its contract manufacturer Rovi, after a vial was found to have been contaminated by a foreign body. The doses, distributed in Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain and Sweden during January 2022, have not have any safety issues thus far but Moderna officials said they ordered the recall out of an “abundance of caution.”

COVID-19 deaths worldwide exceeded 6.17 million to total 6,172,850 on April 8, according to Johns Hopkins University. Cases across the globe have jumped by more than 3 million in the past two days to 496,909,906.

U.S. COVID-19 cases, as of April 8, hit 80,348,778, with deaths rising to 984,934. America has the dreaded distinction as the nation with the most COVID-19 cases and deaths.

As of April 8, 256,062,152 people, or 77.1% of the U.S. population, have obtained at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, the CDC reported. Fully vaccinated people total 218,235,689, or 65.7%, of the U.S. population, according to the CDC. In addition, 98,533,836 people have received a booster dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

The five clean energy investments to purchase offer one stock and four funds that may help income seekers capitalize on the shift the Biden administration is advocating away from fossil fuels. Even though some of the funds are diversified in various metals and mining activities to enhance investment returns with more than just clean energy initiatives, they also are positioned to profit from many European countries that currently buy oil and natural gas from Russia seeking alternative sources of fossil fuel and climate-friendly power sources to meet their needs.

Paul Dykewicz, www.pauldykewicz.com, is an accomplished, award-winning journalist who has written for Dow Jones, the Wall Street Journal, Investor’s Business Daily, USA Today, the Journal of Commerce, Seeking Alpha, Guru Focus and other publications and websites. Paul, who can be followed on Twitter @PaulDykewicz, is the editor of StockInvestor.com and DividendInvestor.com, a writer for both websites and a columnist. He further is editorial director of Eagle Financial Publications in Washington, D.C., where he edits monthly investment newsletters, time-sensitive trading alerts, free e-letters and other investment reports. Paul previously served as business editor of Baltimore’s Daily Record newspaper. Paul also is the author of an inspirational book, “Holy Smokes! Golden Guidance from Notre Dame’s Championship Chaplain,” with a foreword by former national championship-winning football coach Lou Holtz. The book is great as a gift and is endorsed by Joe Montana, Joe Theismann, Ara Parseghian, “Rocket” Ismail, Reggie Brooks, Dick Vitale and many others. Call 202-677-4457 for multiple-book pricing.

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