Made in America: Obama's Push to Increase Factory Jobs

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(List compiled by Becca Lipman)

Obama's got a plan, and it's no longer healthcare reform. The new buzz word: more manufacturing jobs.

His focus: swing states, robots, and high-tech green manufacturing. His purpose: Well, re-election come to mind, but there's a notable element of the president just doing his job to invest in the country's future and keep his people employed.

Obama knows this plan will take time to bloom to fruition. "the problems plaguing the economy didn’t happen overnight, and won’t be solved overnight. “But we will solve them,” he says, pointing to the innovators and entrepreneurs building a new clean energy economy, and asking the voters to give him more time."

"The kind of manufacturing Obama holds up as the future relies on workers skilled in computers, math and science, and bears little resemblance to the assembly line of old," according to The Daily Beast.

This opens the path to well paid jobs in skilled labor, (as well as unskilled labor to keep it running). This is also leads to suggestions for reform in our educational system that push students towards the pursuit of math and science related fields.

So, will the future be more futuristic, filled with robots and green industry? Given the possibility, we decided to take a look at some of the American manufacturing companies that would benefit.

To narrow down our list of American Green technology, robotic companies, manufacturing companies and industrial good industries we searched for those that have experienced the greatest levels of institutional buying during the current quarter.

Big money managers think these names have potential. What do you think? Use the list below as a starting point for your own analysis.

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List sorted by % of share float purchased by Big Money in the current quarter.

1. PMFG, Inc. (PMFG): Diversified Machinery Industry. Market cap of $394.12M. Current price at $21.33. Net institutional shares purchased in the current quarter at 2.9M, equivalent to 22.89% of the company's 12.67M share float. The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 7.81% (equivalent to 33.64 days of average volume). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 13.95% over the last week. According to their website, “Peerless is a global provider of engineered equipment for the abatement of air pollution, the removal of contaminants from gases and liquids, industrial noise control, and heat-transfer through its two business segments — Environmental Systems and Process Products. The Environmental Systems segment, designs, engineers, manufactures and sells highly specialized environmental control systems, which are used for air pollution abatement.”  

2. Capstone Turbine Corp. (CPST): Industrial Electrical Equipment Industry. Market cap of $388.98M. Current price at $1.56. Net institutional shares purchased in the current quarter at 26.7M, equivalent to 11.64% of the company's 229.35M share float. The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 16.53% (equivalent to 12.69 days of average volume). The stock has performed poorly over the last month, losing 11.76%. According to their website, “Capstone is the world's leading producer of low-emission microturbine systems, and was first to market with commercially viable air bearing turbine technology. The company has shipped thousands of Capstone turbines to customers worldwide. These award-winning systems have logged millions of documented runtime operating hours. Capstone is committed to improving the efficiency of the nation's energy infrastructure and reducing emissions of pollutants and greenhouse gases.”  

3. Trex Co. Inc. (TREX): Lumber, Wood Production Industry. Market cap of $311.36M. Current price at $20.25. Net institutional shares purchased in the current quarter at 1.6M, equivalent to 11.61% of the company's 13.78M share float. Formed in 1996, The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 21.1% (equivalent to 17.05 days of average volume). It's been a rough couple of days for the stock, losing 20.56% over the last week. According to their website, “Trex Company is the country's largest manufacturer of wood-alternative decking, railing and fencing products. Trex turns millions of pounds of recycled and reclaimed plastic and waste wood each year into Trex products. Most of these raw materials come from recovered plastic grocery bags, plastic film, and waste wood fiber.”  

4. Nordson Corporation (NDSN): Diversified Machinery Industry. Market cap of $3.81B. Current price at $55.42. Net institutional shares purchased in the current quarter at 6.3M, equivalent to 11.12% of the company's 56.63M share float. The stock has had a good month, gaining 14.0%. According to their website, “Nordson is the leader in precision dispensing equipment for applying industrial liquid and powder coatings, adhesives, and sealants to numerous consumer and industrial products during manufacturing operations.”  

5. Mueller Water Products, Inc. (MWA): Industrial Equipment & Components Industry. Market cap of $573.72M. Current price at $3.68. Net institutional shares purchased in the current quarter at 10.8M, equivalent to 7.56% of the company's 142.84M share float. This is a risky stock that is significantly more volatile than the overall market (beta = 2.41). The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 6.78% (equivalent to 8.9 days of average volume). According to their website, Mueller is “a water infrastructure company that designs and manufactures long-lasting, low-maintenance, smart solutions for communities and contractors who recognize that an investment in quality today is the most cost-effective way to keep safe water flowing for many tomorrows.“  

6. Brooks Automation Inc. (BRKS): Semiconductor Equipment & Materials Industry. Market cap of $672.75M. Current price at $10.23. Net institutional shares purchased in the current quarter at 4.5M, equivalent to 7.26% of the company's 61.96M share float. It's been a rough couple of days for the stock, losing 8.05% over the last week. According to their website, “Brooks Automation is a leading worldwide provider of automation, vacuum and instrumentation solutions to the global semiconductor and related industries. Our products and services are meeting the needs of customers across a broad spectrum of applications and industries and the global semiconductor manufacturing sector is our largest served market.”  

7. LSB Industries Inc. (LXU): General Building Materials Industry. Market cap of $967.52M. Current price at $43.37. Net institutional shares purchased in the current quarter at 1.1M, equivalent to 6.66% of the company's 16.52M share float. The stock has gained 12.54% over the last year. According to their website, “The Company is organized, through its subsidiary companies into business groups referred to as "Businesses". Each Business has its own organization and management.” LSB's Businesses are market leaders in specific segments of the fertilizer, mining products, industrial acids, and environmental control markets. http://www.lsb-okc.com/

8. Manitowoc Co. Inc. (MTW): Farm & Construction Machinery Industry. Market cap of $2.17B. Current price at $16.52. Net institutional shares purchased in the current quarter at 8.2M, equivalent to 6.47% of the company's 126.65M share float. This is a risky stock that is significantly more volatile than the overall market (beta = 2.68). It's been a rough couple of days for the stock, losing 6.04% over the last week. According to their website, “the company is comprised of two segments – cranes and foodservice equipment. In each of these segments Manitowoc is the industry leader in market share, product innovation, and product support services.  

9. TriMas Corporation (TRS): Industrial Equipment & Components Industry. Market cap of $903.44M. Current price at $25.33. Net institutional shares purchased in the current quarter at 1.5M, equivalent to 6.05% of the company's 24.80M share float. This is a risky stock that is significantly more volatile than the overall market (beta = 2.53). The stock has had a good month, gaining 30.22%. According to their website, TriMas is a leading manufacturer in the focused markets we serve. This includes, packaging, energy, aerospace & defense, engineering components, and Cequent (a designer, manufacturer and distributor of a wide variety of high quality, custom-engineered towing and trailer products).  

10. Koppers Holdings Inc. (KOP): Lumber, Wood Production Industry. Market cap of $765.29M. Current price at $37.03. Net institutional shares purchased in the current quarter at 1.2M, equivalent to 5.97% of the company's 20.10M share float. This is a risky stock that is significantly more volatile than the overall market (beta = 2.05). The stock has lost 14.02% over the last year. According to their website, Koppers is a global company and a leading integrated producer of carbon compounds and treated wood products for the aluminum, steel, chemical, rubber, railroad and utility industries.  

11. MKS Instruments Inc. (MKSI): Diversified Machinery Industry. Market cap of $1.30B. Current price at $25. Net institutional shares purchased in the current quarter at 3.0M, equivalent to 5.9% of the company's 50.83M share float. It's been a rough couple of days for the stock, losing 5.22% over the last week. According to their website, MKS Instruments, Inc. is a global provider of instruments, subsystems and process control solutions that measure, control, power, monitor and analyze critical parameters of advanced manufacturing processes to improve process performance and productivity.



The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.



This article appears in: Investing , Investing Ideas , Stocks


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