This Day On The Street
Continue to site
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Nanotech's High Huckster Multiple

"Altair has had its technology out there for five or six years, and it has yet to be validated by a single top-tier industrial partner," says Nordan. "There's been no real validation in terms of commitment to ship products based on Altair's materials. What there has been is the word nanotechnology in the company name and, you know, a great deal of press-release activity."

Nevada-based Altair has been around for decades as a miner and explorer for gold. It wasn't until 2002 that it added the word "nanotechnologies" to its name. Earlier this month, investors shrugged off the abrupt resignation of its president for the last three years, Rudi Moerck -- normally a cause of concern among shareholders. But a week earlier, the stock shot up 16% on news of -- that's right -- another patent.

Diamonds in the nanotech rough are more likely to avoid calling themselves nanotech companies, even if they have a better shot at benefiting from the fruits of nanoscience. As examples of companies that could benefit, Nordan points to Cambridge Display Technology (OLED - Get Report), which makes polymer light-emitting diodes in cell phones and flat-panel displays; American Pharmaceutical Partners (APPX), whose Abraxane drug was approved in January; and Westaim (WEDX), which makes wound dressings.

Even with companies that are producing products based on nanotechnology, there remains the risk that the market demand for them just won't be that strong. "We're seeing again and again more technology push than market pull in nanotechnology," says Harper. "Carbon nanotubes have been around for about 15 years now, but you're still looking for that killer application. We saw this with the Internet as well: The technology got way ahead of the market pull. Too much of that overhang and you're in danger of a crash."

3 of 3

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Submit an article to us!
SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG
ALTI $0.68 172.00%
IBM $169.60 -1.30%
NVEC $66.77 -0.51%
OLED $44.76 -0.75%
NGEN $0.00 100.00%

Markets

DOW 17,799.01 -129.19 -0.72%
S&P 500 2,077.93 -11.53 -0.55%
NASDAQ 4,909.2630 -30.0640 -0.61%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs