Xylem (XYL) One of the “ironies” (for lack of a better word) of Global Warming is that it will put lots of water where many people don’t want it, and it will leave many regions that have enough water now thirsty, and it will threaten to turn many existing supplies of water into unusable toxic sumps. (One important feature of Global Warming to remember is that while the overall phenomenon may be global, the effects are very, very local.) When it comes to water, managing the effects of Global Warming will be about moving it from where it’s not wanted to where it’s needed and keeping supplies usable. Xylem, a member of my Jubak Picks Portfolio moves water, analyzes water, and purifies water. The company performs exactly that mix of services needed to cope with the effects of Global Warming. Even in the current environment–where major global regions have cut back on spending on water infrastructure–Xylem has been able to grow revenue by 8% year over year in the most recent quarter of 2018. Sales for water infrastructure and applied water, two currently lagging areas where I expect to see growth pick up in the first stage of response to Global Warming, showed revenue growth of 4% and 7% from the year-earlier period. Sales for the company’s measurement and control solutions segment grew y 15% year over year. I’d note the high growth in emerging markets with sales up 23% in China and 20% in Latin America. Operating margins improved by 70 basis points, year over year, to 14.6%. What does Xylem do? Its water infrastructure unit (40% of revenue) sells pump and treatment systems to water utilities. The applied water unit (30% of revenue) sells everything from controls for manufacturing plants to circulation systems for beverage producers to irrigation boosters for farms. One part of this applied water unit strikes me as especially valuable for an era of Global Warming: Treatment, monitoring, and control systems that prepare water for reuse. The measurement and control solutions segment is built around the 2016 acquisition of Sensus in 2016. This unit sells smart meters, networking technology, and advanced data analytics for water, gas, and electric industries. As of December 17, I’m raising my target price on Xylem to $74 from the current $63 a share. The stock is up 155% since I added it to the Jubak’s Picks Portfolio on September 4, 2012. (To read my full Special Report: Global Warming–Is Your Portfolio Ready? you’ll have to subscribe to my JubakAM.com site. You can an offer for 20% off–$159 for the first year instead of the regular $199–in a Friday email. You’ll get that same discounted offer in two more times this week on Tuesday and Thursday.)
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