We are retaining our Neutral recommendation on
), following its third quarter results. Though CNA Financial
posted improved results alongside enhanced results from equity
and limited partnership investments at the parent company, lower
earnings at Diamond Offshore weighed on the results.
Loews remains on track to take the hotel count from 18 to more
than 30 in the next three to five years, besides tripling its net
income by 2015. It had purchased Renaissance Hotel & Spa in
Hollywood in California and planned the renovation of Loews
Recently, Loews Hotels announced a decision to buy Madison
Hotel in Washington, D.C. from Jamestown Properties. With
capital at its disposal to acquire and develop property, the
company will seek like opportunities in Boston, Chicago, San
Francisco, Washington, D.C., New York, Dallas, Toronto and
Seattle to add assets to its portfolio and hence cater to a
larger customer base.
The company had forayed into natural gas liquids business with
Boardwalk Pipeline, its subsidiary, acquiring PL Midstream. The
acquisition of Boardwalk Louisiana Midstream (PL Midstream
acquired through the joint venture was renamed Boardwalk
Louisiana Midstream) along with the organic growth projects (the
Southeast market expansion and the Eagle Ford expansion projects)
is expected to put up $1.2 billion of new assets for Boardwalk.
On the flip side, revenue at HighMount continues to remain soft.
Also, HighMount is estimated to record non-cash after-tax ceiling
test impairments of $50 million to $100 million in the fourth
quarter of 2012. For full year, it is estimated to be $386
million to $436 million.
However, to weather the declining natural gas price
environment, HighMount is focusing its drilling activities into
various sites -- Mississippian line in Oklahoma and the Wolfcamp
strata in Sonora, Texas in particular -- that could result in
higher oil production.
DIAMOND OFFSHOR (DO): Free Stock Analysis
LOEWS CORP (L): Free Stock Analysis Report
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), despite posting lower earnings yet again, announced plans to
rebuild the Ocean Apex, a Victory-class semi-submersible rig at a
cost of approximately $300 million.
The Zacks Consensus Estimate for fourth quarter and 2012 is
currently pegged at 37 cents and $1.80 respectively. These
represent a year-over-year decline of 52.6% and 33.5% for fourth
quarter and 2012.
Loews carries a Zacks #3 Rank, translating into a short-term Hold