STOCK PICKS: Top 5 Small-Cap Stocks for Sept. 12
Management announced that it was pleased with quarterly results that it felt clearly demonstrated a strong global demand for Met-Pro's products. While the company's stock price has risen over the last year, driven by its strong earnings growth, we feel that Met-Pro's strengths justify this higher price level, even though the stock is now somewhat expensive compared with others in its industry.
Quaker Chemical (KWR) develops, produces and markets a broad range of formulated chemical specialty products for various heavy industrial and manufacturing applications. In addition, the company offers and markets chemical management services.
We have rated Quaker Chemical a buy since May 2007. On July 30, 2008, the company announced record net sales and net income for the second quarter of fiscal 2008. Net sales increased 15.0% year over year, primarily due to higher sales prices and favorable foreign-exchange translations, while net income increased 4.0%.
At 41 cents per share, earnings per diluted share were equal to those of the second quarter of fiscal 2007. Operating cash flow increased $14.3 million from a year ago, which led to a decrease in the company's net debt-to-total-capital ratio from 32% at the end of fiscal 2007 to 28% at the end of the most-recent quarter.Management stated that Quaker Chemical should experience a solid growth year overall, despite the rising cost of raw materials. The company remains committed to making investments in key growth initiatives going forward. Bear in mind, however, that overall customer demand for products greatly affects Quaker's financial performance, so any downturn in its customers' businesses could negatively affect results, as could any unexpected shutdown in customer production. Continued increases in the costs of raw materials and overall economic conditions worldwide could also affect Quaker's future performance.
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