Melissa Davis, senior editor of The Street Sweeper, poses with celebrity stock picker Jim Cramer after a recent taping of his "Mad Money" television show. Davis worked as an investigative reporter for TheStreet.com, where Cramer serves as chairman, before assuming her current role at The Street Sweeper.
Sphere 3D: A Ticking Time Bomb Set to Self-Destruct?
by Melissa Davis, 7/24/2014 11:48:17 AM
* Editor's Note: The following article is the latest of four investigative reports that TheStreetSweeper has published on Sphere 3D, as it continues to move forward with its ongoing investigation of the company. TheStreetSweeper plans to share any major, new discoveries that it uncovers during the course of the research process.
Sphere 3D (Nasdaq: ANY; TSXV: ANY.V) can thank a former regulatory target with a lousy trading record for much of the buying pressure that has allowed its highflying stock to resist the pesky forces of gravity.
With Sphere 3D ranking as a standout performer in the miserable portfolio that determines the size of his annual bonus, Pinetree Capital CEO Sheldon Inwentash has repeatedly stepped forward to bolster the value of that risky investment by purchasing much of the stock that others have understandably chosen to sell. Just go back a few weeks ago for a particularly striking example. When TheStreetSweeper published the latest in a string of disturbing reports on Sphere 3D earlier this month, Inwentash responded by purchasing so much stock that he literally wound up buying more than half of all the shares that changed hands on the open market that day. (The next section of this report presents a full account of those trades in graphic detail.)
A former penny stock that barely topped the 50-cent mark as recently as last summer, Sphere 3D rocketed all the way to a record-breaking high above $11 a share with the help of that powerful buying spree.
Sphere 3D better hope that it fares a whole lot better than most of the other stocks that Inwentash has purchased after Pinetree blew millions on their ill-fated shares, however. Just look at the dismal performance of the investments that cost Pinetree the most. Even with Inwentash splurging on all of those stocks himself – often at prices well above those fetched on the open market today – most of them still trade in the low end of their 52-week range.
Advanced Emissions Solutions (ADES): Clean-up Solutions Company Faces Its Biggest Mess Ever - Itself
by Sonya Colberg, Senior Investigative Reporter, 7/11/2014 10:04:56 AM
Investing in Advanced Emissions Solutions (ADES) is a little like buying land in Florida, sight unseen.
It looks incredibly gorgeous, “green” and tempting at first. Yet after digging deeper, you discover you’ve bought swampland infested with alligators flashing toothy grins. That’s what TheStreetSweeper found in this Highlands Ranch, Colo. holding company specializing in clean solutions for coal-fired power plants.
But with deeper inspection, ADES’ alligators look awfully ugly and hungry. The company stands knee-deep in class action lawsuits alleging securities law violations and “false and/or misleading” statements tied to financial reports that must be restated – and a NASDAQ delisting threat that ADES can’t seem to shake.
Unfortunately, ADES very efforts to try to clean up three quarters – and likely more - of unreliable, consequently misleading financial statements are already snake-bitten.
ADES has hand-picked a rogues’ gallery of handsome men to fix its financial mess and restore investors’ confidence. We’re calling it a rogues’ gallery because this line-up, includes:
*Directors of companies wallowing in the risky penny stock world.
*Co-founders and former top executives of an emotion-charged company tottering just this side of crash and burn.
*Leaders who suddenly ran out on a company where delinquent financials almost killed its NASDAQ listing.
*Audit team members who oversaw ADES’ messy financials to begin with.
Yet these are some of the very people ADES selected to fix its financial reports. We’ll explain the details later in this report.
An ADES representative, who is traveling, plans to interview with TheStreetSweeper so we can write a follow-up.
Investors may find various viewpoints on ADES here.
Let’s take a closer look at issues that make the ADES denizen-infested swampland look so treacherous to today’s investors:
JAMN Finally Spills the Beans -- And It's an Ugly Mess
by Janice Shell, 6/2/2011 10:32:51 AM
To be sure, the 10-K offered investors little reason to sing. For starters, the filing reveals, this once-hot “coffee company” sells no coffee of its own at all. JAMN relies on a supplier based in frigid Canada – far away from the tropical Jamaican home of its co-founder Rohan Marley – to provide the company with an actual product to sell to its customers instead.
Back in April of 2010, JAMN inked a “supply and toll agreement” with Canterbury Coffee of British Columbia that gave it access to some brew. According to that agreement, JAMN relies on Canterbury to fulfill every role – save a minor one – normally satisfied by a firm that classifies itself as a coffee company. Canterbury purchases the coffee beans. It roasts them. And it then packages them in bags supplied by JAMN – the company’s only real product – for sale to the public.
JAMN signed this deal more than a year ago, right before Shane Whittle – a notorious Vancouver stock promoter – officially resigned as CEO of the company. But the company never mentioned that agreement, seemingly material enough to warrant at least a quiet 8-K report, in a single regulatory filing until now.
Jammin Java (JAMN): Hot Stock ... Bitter Aftertaste?
by Janice Shell, 6/2/2011 10:30:25 AM
It’s time to wake up and smell the coffee! That’s exactly what Jammin Java (OTC: JAMN.OB), a heavily promotedcoffee company, and – for very different reasons – TheStreetSweeper would like investors to do.
Since the beginning of the year, JAMN has miraculously risen from the ashes of the “Grey Market” graveyard to become one of the liveliest – and richest – stocks in the entire microcap arena. JAMN has seen its stock shoot straight toward heaven, soaring from 55 cents to peak above $6 a share on massive daily volume, with its market value nowtopping $355 million despite the company’s limited resources and operating history. (As covered in more detail below, two of the Internet tout sheets pushing JAMN the hardest effectively vanished -- disabled by their Internet servers -- on the day the stock’s trading volume exploded past 20 million shares.)
CCME: Few Signs of Life at 'Healthy' Chinese Firm
by Roddy Boyd, 3/23/2011 9:30:34 AM
Also, and this cannot be understated, hanging out on a sidewalk in Fujian–the sidewalks double as parking spots when the streets, which appeared to have been designed in the Han Dynasty, fill up–was not a viable option. There was also the matter of the world-class headache the Financial Investigator was developing from Fuzhou’s diabolical smell, an epic conflation of poor sewage treatment, air pollution and the smell of cabbage that made getting the hell off Dongjie street a matter of vital importance.
The Financial Investigator and his traveling companion for the trip, an American investor with extensive experience in China, decided to head upstairs despite our interview with the CFO having been cancelled at the last minute (with no explanation given.) We thought a quick tour of the offices and meeting a few other executives might open our eyes to a few things.
Though the language barrier was a little steep with the young receptionist–when we asked for writing paper, she provided Kleenex–we were in short order shown to their conference room and told to wait. It did not escape notice that pride of place in the conference room belonged to a framed certificate of participation from the Fall 2010 Rodman & Renshaw conference, the World Cup for reverse merger companies and the pumpers and touts who peddle them.
Eventually chief operating officer James Yu came down and after spending 30 minutes trying to understand who we were, concluded that giving us a tour wouldn’t hurt. Soon enough, his colleague, Vinne Ye–the chairman’s assistant–came out and took us around.
It was most eye-opening.more...
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