Posts Tagged ‘Peter Ricchiuti’
Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012
This year’s Burkenroad Reports Investment Conference attracted a record attendance, and according to conference organizer Peter Ricchiuti, that’s a good sign for the economy.
Peter Ricchiuti, right, says the best-performing Burkenroad Reports stocks this year were tied to consumer products and consumer confidence. (Photo by Stephen Daigle)
“I think investors are starting to get a little bit of their mojo back, and that really showed up in terms of how many people came,” says Ricchiuti, professor of practice and research director of Burkenroad Reports. “The other reason is people are really sick of getting 0 percent on their CDs and money markets. I think that was a driving force, too.”
The conference, which took place on Friday (April 27) at the Westin New Orleans Canal Place, is an annual showcase for the small- and mid-cap companies covered by the Freeman School’s Burkenroad Reports equities research program, but it also serves as a barometer of sorts for the economy, and judging by this year’s results, consumer confidence is back with a vengeance. Of the 40 companies followed by the program’s student analysts, the best performers this year were all consumer-oriented firms.
Leading the pack was Conn’s Inc., a Texas-based electronics retailer, whose stock boasted a total return of 229 percent in the last 12 months. Conn’s was followed by Susser Holdings Corp., an operator of convenience stores in Texas, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Louisiana, which returned 98 percent, and Pool Corp., a wholesale distributor of pool and pool-related products, which returned 56 percent.
Perhaps an even bigger story at the conference this year was the disaster in natural gas prices. A boom in production coupled with an unusually warm winter has had a devastating effect on prices, and that drop has hit some Burkenroad companies hard. RPC Inc., an oilfield services company that does a lot of work with natural gas projects, has seen its share price fall from $18 to $9 in the last year.
The short-term picture may look bleak, but Ricchiuti says the long-term outlook for natural gas—an abundant domestic source of clean-burning fuel—remains bright.
“Sometimes, the stocks that are least loved turn out the best,” Ricchiuti says. “Last year at this time, everybody was worried if consumers would come back, and consumer stocks led the way this year. Now everybody’s fearing that natural gas will be swallowed up alive, so this is probably the time to be buying those stocks.”
This year’s conference attracted more than 700 attendees hailing from 18 states and three foreign countries, and in keeping with tradition, Ricchiuti says that number was almost equally divided between pinstriped professionals and so-called retail investors, the amateurs and hobbyists who attend the conference each year to help them better manage their IRAs and 401(k)s.
“We had some big-name professional people from some big firms, but you still had the housewives from Marrero, ” Ricchiuti laughs. “That was fun too.”
Tuesday, April 17th, 2012
From NPR’s Morning Edition, April 17, 2012:
NPR’s John Ydstie spoke with Peter Ricchiuti, professor of practice and research director of Burkenroad Reports, about the the boom in natural gas production.
Peter Ricchiuti, a professor at Tulane University in New Orleans and an expert on oil and gas production, says the normal supply-and-demand laws of economics aren’t working as they used to in the industry.
“Historically, this has always been kind of a self-governing mechanism,” Ricchiuti says. “When natural gas prices got too low, you’d start to see the industry lay down rigs until prices went back up again, and it was very effective. It was sometimes jokingly referred to as the ‘Redneck OPEC.’ ”
To listen to the entire segment, visit NPR.org:
Sunday, March 11th, 2012
The mutual fund based in part on the Freeman School’s Burkenroad Reports investment research program recently celebrated its 10-year anniversary with a pair of prestigious honors.
Peter Ricchiuti says the performance of the Hancock Horizon Burkenroad Small Cap Fund has been phenomenal.
Morningstar awarded the Hancock Horizon Burkenroad Small Cap Fund a coveted five-star overall rating, and Lipper ranked the fund as the second-best performer out of 303 funds in the small-cap core category over the last 10 years.
“It’s just a phenomenal story,” says Peter Ricchiuti, professor of practice and director of research for Burkenroad Reports. “I had high hopes for the fund, but its performance has exceeded my expectations.”
Inspired by the “stocks under rocks” philosophy of Burkenroad Reports, Hancock Bank launched the Burkenroad Fund in December 2001 to target companies located in the South with market capitalizations of less than $2 billion, a category that often flies under the radar of Wall Street. Befitting its name, fund managers use Burkenroad Reports as a significant source of research and invest in many of the companies followed by the program’s student analysts.
From less than $1 million in assets at launch, the fund has grown to more than $90 million. Even more impressively, it’s generated a return of 10.59 percent since inception, almost double that of the benchmark Russell 2000 index.
“The fund has outperformed about 99 percent of all equity mutual funds in its lifetime, and if you break it down to one-year, three-year and five-year numbers, the fund beat the benchmarks in those years too,” Ricchiuti says. “That’s unusual because you’re usually going to have times where some sectors or investment styles do better than others. To beat the S&P 500 and Russell 2000 in every period over 10 years is kind of amazing.”
To date, nearly 600 graduates of the Burkenroad Reports program have gone on to careers in the investment field. Ricchiuti says the success of the mutual fund gives students seeking to follow in those footsteps another valuable talking point for job interviews.
“The students not only have Burkenroad Reports to show prospective employers, but now they have the fund to talk about as well,” Ricchiuti says. “To be able to say your recommendations are going into a $90 million five-star mutual fund is a pretty impressive thing.”
Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011
From wsj.com, May 2, 2011:
With so much hand-wringing going on, MarketBeat dropped a line to Peter Ricchiuti, a professor at Tulane University’s A.B. Freeman School of Business who has been tracking and trading small-cap companies for the past two decades. Are even some of small-cap’s biggest long-term boosters starting to get a bit hot under the collar? Uh, yes.
“I don’t know if it can continue,” Ricchiuti says, ticking off a list of worries. “The gap between pricing on large- and small-caps is, historically, very high. Another negative is that small caps tend to outperform large caps in the early stages of a recovery, and we’re starting to get some traction in the economy. That doesn’t bode well either.”
To read the entire article, visit http://blogs.wsj.com:
Monday, April 18th, 2011
It might not be obvious from the standing-room-only crowds, but investment professionals still regard the Burkenroad Reports Investment Conference, which took place on April 15 at the downtown Sheraton, as one of the industry’s best-kept secrets.
Peter Ricchiuti, center, with James Harp, left, and Todd Hornbeck of Hornbeck Offshore Services, says this year's conference attracted more retail investors than in recent years.
“It’s not as visited yet by a lot of institutional investors or analysts, so you have the opportunity to get a lot of face time with the company executives,” says Richard Tullis (MBA ’97), senior analyst, energy exploration and production, with Capital One Southcoast. “You’re not really in competition with a ton of other investors, so you have a little bit of an advantage.”
For 15 years, the conference has served a showcase for the regional small- and mid-cap companies followed by Burkenroad Reports, the Freeman School’s acclaimed equities research program, but unlike most investor events, the Burkenroad conference caters equally to investment professionals and retail investors, the individuals who use information gathered at the conference to make decisions about their personal portfolios and retirement accounts. Nearly 600 people attended this year’s conference, making it the biggest in the event’s history, and conference organizer Peter Ricchiuti attributes much of that increase to renewed interest among retail investors.
“We got many more retail investors this year,” says Ricchiuti, research director of Burkenroad Reports. “The stock market has doubled in the last two years and they’ve been reluctant to get in. It seems like they’re finally ready to stick a toe in the water.”
Ricchiuti says some of companies drawing the biggest crowds this year were Cyberonics, Evolution Petroleum, Rollins and Iberia Bank, which has emerged as a major player in Florida by purchasing the assets of banks closed by the FDIC.
“The feds close them on Friday and want a vinyl banner in front on Monday and it can’t say ‘U.S. Government,’” Ricchiuti says. “I guess Iberia is just quick on their feet and knows somebody in the sign business, because they get all the good ones.”
To see photos from the conference, visit the Freeman School’s Flickr page at www.flickr.com/freemanschool.
Tuesday, September 28th, 2010
From left to right, Alexandra Thurber, Mark Popovich, David Cusimano, Max Joseph, Daniel Crowley, Anthony Elia, Dennis Grosche, Peter Ricchiuti, Ioana Martian and Jacque Noel.
The always enthusiastic Peter Ricchiuti, clinical professor of finance and research director of the Burkenroad Reports program, led a group of Burkenroad Reports analysts and investment research managers on a tour of the New York Stock Exchange during Freeman Days New York, which took place Sept. 16-17 at locations around New York.
This year’s Freeman Days was the biggest in the event’s history, with 28 companies, more than 150 students and nearly 150 alumni taking part in various sessions. Among the companies interviewing students, hosting site visits or delivering information sessions were Bergdorf Goodman, CBS, Bloomberg, Raymond James, BNP Paribas, Ernst & Young, Morgan Stanley, Google, Deutsche Bank, Macy’s, Citi, UBS, NFL, JP Morgan Investment Banking, Goldman Sachs and World Wrestling Entertainment.
Freeman Days New York was the first of four Freeman Days events sponsored by the Career Management Center this year. Freeman Days Houston will take place Sept. 30-Oct. 1 at the Marriott Hotel West Loop; Freeman Days Washington D.C. will take place on Oct. 29 at the Washington Marriott at Metro Center; and Freeman Days New Orleans will take place Feb. 10-11 at the Freeman School.
If you’re an employer or an alumnus and you’re interested in participating, visit FreemanDays.com for more information.
Friday, June 11th, 2010
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 11, 2010
Contact: Ben Haimowitz
NEW ORLEANS – The likely effect of the Gulf oil spill on the future stock performance of energy companies in the region may be less dire than one might imagine, suggests a Tulane business professor who is a leading expert on the area’s economy, particularly small-cap firms that he calls “stocks under rocks.” While the six-month moratorium on deep-water drilling may play havoc with the prospects of many firms in the energy sector, which dominates the region, it may actually benefit others.
This assessment comes from Peter Ricchiuti, a clinical professor of finance at Tulane’s A. B. Freeman School of Business and director of its Burkenroad Reports program, in which business students analyze stocks of 40 small-cap companies in Louisiana and nearby states (www.burkenroad.org). A mutual fund based in large part on Burkenroad Reports has outperformed 99 percent of U.S. mutual funds since its inception in 2001.
Clinical professor of finance Peter Ricchiuti says some of the companies followed by the Freeman School's Burkenroad Reports program may actually benefit from a moratorium on deep-water drilling.
According to Prof. Ricchiuti, there are four major energy initiatives in Louisiana and the Gulf area in general, “and they’re all spectacular.” The first initiative is based on the massive natural gas deposits of the Haynesville Shale, near Shreveport, which “in two or three years,” he says, “will be the biggest natural gas field in the world”; the second exploits old land wells and gives them a new lease on life; the third focuses on potentially major natural gas deposits 25,000 or more feet below shallow-water portions of the Gulf; and the fourth involves wells in deep water, where a six-month moratorium on further drilling has been instituted by the Obama administration.
That moratorium in deep water, the professor thinks, could work to the benefit of Burkenroad-covered companies in the three other exploration sectors, as they get more attention and money.
Tuesday, May 4th, 2010
What a difference a year makes.
At last year’s Burkenroad Reports Investment Conference, 33 of the 34 companies that participated posted negative returns for the preceding 12 months. This year, 28 of 33 companies posted positive returns, including top performer Stone Energy, which returned a spectacular 337.89 percent for the year.
Peter Ricchiuti, left, with Cyberonics CFO Greg Browne, said investors are starting to bid up stocks in anticipation of a sustained economic recovery.
“The market is up 83 percent in the last 13 months, which is the best 13 months in history,” says Peter Ricchiuti, research director of Burkenroad Reports and organizer of the annual conference. “I think the people in attendance were looking back at last year and the bargains that had been presented and kicking themselves for not buying them.”
The conference, which took place on April 23 at the New Orleans Sheraton, was established to serve as an annual showcase for the small- and mid-cap companies followed by the student analysts of Freeman’s Burkenroad Reports equities research program, but in its 14-year history it’s also become a barometer of the regional economy.
Ricchiuti says the central message of this year’s conference was that—despite what you might hear on Fox News—the nation’s economy is rebounding in a really big way.
Thursday, May 7th, 2009
Assistant Dean Peter Ricchiuti was interviewed by ABC News for a Good Morning America segment on May 7 that examined the Gulf Coast’s surprisingly strong economy. Ricchiuti is research director of Burkenroad Reports, which follows 38 small- and mid-cap companies across the Southeast.
Click here to watch Ricchiuti’s segment.
Monday, October 20th, 2008
Billionaire investor Warren Buffett shared his thoughts on the future of Wall Street, the upcoming presidential election and what he looks for in an investment with a group of 27 Freeman School students during a two-hour question-and-answer session at the headquarters of Berkshire Hathaway Inc.
The students traveled to Omaha, Neb., on Oct. 17 to meet Buffett, chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., tour two of his companies, and enjoy lunch with the “Oracle of Omaha.” The trip was part of an annual event Buffett hosts for college students. Students from Tulane and five other universities got an audience with Buffett the same day he published a headline-grabbing opinion piece in the New York Times announcing his plans to take his cash holdings and invest in U.S. stocks.
“You couldn’t have timed the trip better,” says Assistant Dean Peter Ricchiuti, who accompanied the students. “He spent two hours answering our questions and then he took us to lunch at a place called Piccolo Pete’s. After the lunch he must have spent an hour and a half letting us take pictures with him.”
“The trip was amazing,” says Stephen Frapart (BSM ’09), who was instrumental in organizing the visit. “It was truly one of the most special experiences in my life. Everything you’ve read, seen or heard about Warren Buffett is all true. He is charismatic, humble, funny, sincere, brilliant and an excellent communicator.”
Ricchiuti says the students were impressed that, despite being one of the world’s richest men, Buffett lives a modest, unassuming life. He drives his own car, a late 1990s Lincoln Continental, and lives in the same house as he did 40 years ago.
The all-day visit included tours of Berkshire Hathaway subsidiaries Nebraska Furniture Mart and Borsheims, one of the largest independent jewelry stores in the nation.
During the question-and-answer sessions, Frapart asked Buffett what he considered to be the defining moments in his life and what he learned from them. Other Tulane students asked how the economic slowdown in the United States would affect other countries and how Buffett determined his vote in the presidential election. Buffett said he approached the election the same way he views other choices in life, by looking at the larger picture. He said to look at the world’s population as a lottery with 6.1 billion names in a barrel. If your fate were determined by picking a station in life, who would you want representing your interests?
“(In picking from the barrel), you didn’t know what you would get. You could be somebody from Bangladesh, from the United States, or male or female, black or white, or healthy or sick,” Ricchiuti says, recounting Buffett’s views. “If that were the situation, who would you vote for? Who was going to be the best president for everybody?”
Students also asked Buffett about his definition of success. He described a successful person as someone everyone wanted to be around and someone everyone wanted to make sure was around, says Kathleen Murphy (MBA ’09). “My favorite idea that he talked about was that an individual chooses his or her behavior and personality,” Murphy says. “I liked it because it reminded me of something my dad has been telling me for as long as I can remember. My dad says that happiness is an act of will. I liked that Warren Buffett wanted to talk about appreciating and enjoying life as much as he wanted to talk about investing.”
Buffett told the students he looks for simplicity in investments and seeks companies that are positioned for growth because of their service or product, not because of their management, which can easily change. He told students to look for companies that “an idiot could run, because at some point an idiot is going to run it,” Ricchiuti says.