News & Our Thinking

Weekly Investor

Weekly Investor – August 16, 2021

16 August 2021

S&P Closes Week at All-Time High

The S&P 500® Index rose 0.7% last week, closing the week at an all-time high of 4,468. For the year, the index is up 20%. Stocks advanced Tuesday as an infrastructure spending plan was passed by the U.S. Senate. U.S. initial jobless claims of 375K equaled expectations and were lower than the previous week.

Steel producer Nucor Corporation was the best performing stock in the S&P 500 Index, rising 21% as the passing of the infrastructure plan boosted the stock and helped Materials become the top-performing sector for the week. The S&P 500 Semiconductor & Semiconductor Equipment Index declined 2.3%. Some of the chip-related stocks that fell for the week included Micron Technology, Inc., Lam Research Corporation, Applied Materials, Inc., KLA Corporation and Teradyne, Inc. Micron Technology, Inc. was downgraded by Morgan Stanley on concerns of possible weakness regarding memory chips going forward. Earnings announcements expected this week include Applied Materials, Inc., Cisco Systems, Inc., Deere & Company, The Home Depot, Inc., Lowe’s Companies, Inc., NVIDIA Corporation, Target Corporation and Walmart Inc.

The S&P 500 Index was up 0.7% for the week. Its top-performing sectors were Basic Materials (2.7%) and Consumer Staples (2.1%), while the bottom-performing sectors were Real Estate (0.0%) and Energy (-0.8%). In the fixed-income market, the 10-year Treasury yield was even, ending at 1.3%.

We continue to seek companies that reflect our Change-BasedSM investment approach.

Change Based Investment

United Rentals, Inc. is the world’s largest equipment rental company. The company rents industrial equipment such as trucks, forklifts, earth movers and homeowner equipment to industrial companies, utilities, municipalities and individuals. In addition to rentals, the company offers new and used equipment sales, servicing and safety training.

United Rentals is a dominant player in the industrial equipment rental market. The company is driving change with a new CEO who has implemented growth and profitability initiatives. Concerns over an economic slowdown from COVID-19 have impacted the company’s near-term operations. However, given its positive long-term outlook, we believe United Rentals is a good fit for Argent’s Change-BasedSM investment approach.

Top 5 Equity Holdings

Large Cap Growth

Alphabet, Inc.(Google) 8.1%
Apple, Inc. 6.4%
Target Corporation 5.9%
Danaher Corporation 5.9%
D.R. Horton, Inc. 4.8%

Small Cap Core

Fortinet, Inc. 4.9%
Medpace Holdings, Inc. 4.3%
OneMain Holdings, Inc. 4.2%
America’s Car-Mart Inc. 3.1%
FirstService Corporation 3.1%

Dividend Select

Target Corporation 7.1%
Microsoft Corporation 6.2%
JPMorgan Chase & Co. 5.4%
Eaton Corporation Plc 4.4%
Life Storage, Inc. 4.2%

Mid Cap 

Zebra Technologies Corp. 4.6%
CDW Corporation 4.2%
Marvell Technology, Inc. 3.9%
Cintas Corporation 3.7%
Builders FirstSource, Inc. 3.4%

This newsletter presents selected recommendations from portfolio managers of Argent Capital Management LLC, a registered investment advisor. Opinions reflect the portfolio manager’s judgment on the date above and are subject to change. A list of stocks recommended by Argent is available upon request. You should not assume that these recommendations are or will be profitable. In the course of it’s business, Argent’s client accounts may be buying and selling these stocks.