The analyst primarily responsible for the preparation of this research report attests to the following: (1) that the views and opinions rendered in this research report reflect her personal views about the subject companies or issuers; and (2) that no part of the research analyst’s compensation was, is, or will be directly related to the specific recommendations or views in this research report.
Analyst Certifications And Independence Of Research
Each of the Tier4 Research LLC analysts whose names appear on the front page of this report hereby certify that all the views expressed in this Report accurately reflect our personal views about any and all of the subject securities or issuers and that no part of our compensation was, is, or will be, directly or indirectly, related to the specific recommendations or views of in this Report. Tier4 Research LLC (the “Company”) is an independent equity research provider. The Company is not a member of the FINRA or the SIPC and is not a registered broker dealer or investment adviser. Tier4 Research LLC has no other regulated or unregulated business activities which conflict with its provision of independent research.
Current Ratings Definition
Tier4 Research LLC’s recommendations are based on a stock’s total forecasted return over a twelve- month period. Total forecasted return is equal to the expected percentage price return plus gross dividend yield. We divide our stocks under coverage into three primary ratings categories, with the following return guidelines:
STRONG BUY (1):
Solid fundamentals should facilitate LT earnings growth, we have a clear understanding of strategy, and valuation is compelling. Data points collected from overlapping surveys provide underlying support to our thesis and can also be highlighted as a trading catalyst. We recommend immediate action – looking for the shares to trade up by 15% or more looking out twelve months.
We lean positive, but not ready to make an aggressive trading call. Positive factors include a strong long-term fundamentals, a changing macro landscape, and/or attractive valuation. Yet, the Tier4 Research talking points are not fully aligned with surveys. We do see enough support from the channel checks overlapping the portfolio. Any positive channel read in one area is offset by weakness elsewhere – crosscurrents reduce conviction. We recommend over-weighting the position, but we may prefer other covered names. The shares are positioned to trade 5-15% higher over the next twelve months.
We do not plan to use this rating on the active coverage group, unless there are ancillary factors that should be considered where we cannot provide insight. Investor sentiment or trading activity likely to be influenced by headlines: pending mergers, on-going litigation, executive management changes and/or unplanned production outages.
We lean negative, not ready to make an aggressive trading sell call. There are early indications of a breakdown in fundamentals but channel sentiment and survey data points may be holding. Ultimate trading downside may be limited by an offsetting factor like long-term earnings potential, changes in management or corporate strategy, cost reduction efforts, or valuation. We recommend under-weighting the position. The shares are positioned to trade down 5-15% over the next twelve months.
A visible breakdown in fundamentals and increasing earnings downside risk. Data points collected from key surveys provide underlying support to the negative thesis and will also be highlighted as a trading catalyst. We recommend immediate action – looking for the shares to trade down by 15% or more looking out twelve months.
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