Sunday, March 1, 2009

2009 - Ideas For The Year Performance Update

At the beginning of the year I made a list of picks and pans for the year which I planned to review at the end of each month. I started out posting further thoughts about some of the picks, but failed quite miserably to add much new stuff over the past month. I'll try to fix this over this next month! The purpose of this exercise is to provide ideas for your own research, some potential opportunities for 2009, as well as some companies I feel are best avoided. At this point I am just going for a brief overview, I may get into some more in depth analysis later in the year. I will focus on specific companies in this instance, although later in the year I may look in more depth at specific sectors, or the economy as a whole.

So here are the performances for 2009 to date.

My Long Picks for 2009, with 02/28/09 closing prices

Anadys Pharmaceuticals (ANDS) - $6.12 (+289.81%)
Quicksilver Gas Services LP (KGS) - $12.20 (+28.69%)
Natural Resources Partners LP (NRP) - $20.73 (+18.80%)
Urban Outfitters (URBN) - $16.64 (+11.08%)
Ecology & Environment (EEI) - $12.49 (+4.26%)
Dorchester Minerals LP (DMLP) - $16.31 (+2.77%)
Himax Technologies (HIMX) - $1.65 (+2.48%)
Highveld Steel and Vanadium (HSVLY) - $6.742 (-12.21%)
Chase Corporation (CCF) - $9.12 (-19.22%)
UFP Technologies (UFPT) - $4.10 (-22.50%)
Yanzhou Coal (YZC) - $5.68 (-24.47%)
Raven Industries (RAVN) - $18.18 (-24.56%)
Hugoton Royalty Trust (HGT) - $9.93 (-38.13%)
Versar, Inc. (VSR) - $2.44 (-40.78%)

A pretty dismal performance from my picks this month. Shares in Anadys Pharmaceuticals (ANDS) skyrocketed last month following the release of promising HCV data and have maintained a steady run. Highveld Steel and Vanadium (HSVLY) was the best performer of the month, although still sitting at a loss for 2009.

My Short Picks for 2009, with 02/28/09 closing prices

Ann Taylor Stores (ANN) - $6.58 (+30.56%)
Red Robin Gourmet Burgers (RRGB) - $14.21 (-15.57%)
Build-A-Bear Workshop (BBW) - $3.62 (-25.51%)
LaCrosse Footwear (BOOT) - $8.5185 (-31.74%)
Mercantile Bancorp (MBR) - $5.94 (-43.70%)
La-Z-Boy (LZB) - $0.90 (-58.53%)
Converted Organics (COIN) - $1.27 (-64.12%)
Office Depot (ODP) - $1.05 (-64.77%)
Bank of America (BAC) - $3.95 (-71.95%)
Citigroup (C) - $1.50 (-77.65%)
Circuit City (CCTYQ) - $0.007 (-94.62%) - Bankrupt
Smurfit Stone Container Corporation (SSCC) - $0.00 (-100%) - Bankrupt

Well, as a group my short picks worked out a whole lot better than the long picks. The banks in particular had a rough month, with Bank of America (BAC), Citigroup (C) and Mercantile Bancorp (MBR) all suffering big drops. The one jewel among the short picks is Ann Taylor Stores (ANN) which is up over 30% since the beginning of the year. In fact despite the economy, certain retailers seem to be holding up a lot better than most people expected.

Well, I will review the list again at the end of March to see how my picks and pans are performing. Until then, happy investing!

Disclosure: At the time of writing the author held shares in Highveld Steel and Vanadium (HSVLY), Himax Technologies (HIMX), Hugoton Royalty Trust (HGT), UFP Technologies (UFPT), and Versar, Inc. (VSR).

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