Latest Posts

  • "Should Analysts Who Don't Own Stocks Be Trusted?"

    Jun 17, 2008 / 9:40am / in Americas, Equities, International Investing

    Remove the part about "Who Don't Own Stock" and you've got a legit story. Another silly rule designed to prevent conflicts makes analyst guesses less trustworthy.

    You've almost certainly seen it: Every time an analyst on CNBC comes on to talk about a stock there is The Screen. We find out whether they own the stock, their family owns the stock, their firm owns the stock, their pet owns the stock, etc.

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  • Is Wall St. 'Full of Bull'?

    Apr 23, 2008 / 10:11am / in Equities, General, International Investing

    Gekko's comments in the movie Wall St. still ring true, "They're analysts, they don't know preferred stock from livestock, alright?" Businessweek sums up a new book which details how little respect should be paid to the dart throwers:

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  • The Cost of Running an Internet Business

    Apr 17, 2008 / 10:23am / in Americas, Equities, General, International Investing

    Many people were surprised in 2006 when WSJ pointed out that being on the intranet does not lower capital investment costs. According to the article (Jeff Matthews' notes are very good here)

    “What does this have to do with Google? Well, Google management highlighted big capital expenditure plans at last week’s analyst meeting—which at a minimum would equal 19% of net sales.

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  • What is the connection between the overall economy and market returns?

    Apr 14, 2008 / 10:44am / in Americas, Equities, General, International Investing

    In the short run, it's hard to say.

    Though it is hard to observe in the everyday noise of the stock market, in the long run stock prices are driven by two factors: earnings growth (or decline) and/or price-to-earnings expansion (or contraction).

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  • Meet the World’s Best Performing Stock Market: Pakistan

    Apr 2, 2008 / 9:31am / in Africa, Americas, Asia, Emerging Markets, Equities, General, International Investing

    Today's WSJ has the story. The other surprise here is the large equity decline in China and India:

    ...the only booming stock markets are those in the most emerging of emerging markets: Pakistan, Peru, and Chile. Those stocks markets have risen, respectively, 9.5%, 7.1%, and 6.6% this year, according to data provided to Deal Journal by FactSet Research Systems. Taiwan, it should be noted, posted a 7.5% rise for the first quarter.

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  • The 9-Year Stock Slump

    Mar 26, 2008 / 5:01am / in Americas, Equities, General, International Investing

    From the WSJ:

    The stock market is trading right where it was nine years ago. Stocks, long touted as the best investment for the long term, have been one of the worst investments over the nine-year period, trounced even by lowly Treasury bonds.

    Ouch!

    After the tech boom and bust, and now the housing bust, buy and hold investors are still stuck. All those gyrations and there was no net benefit. Only their fund managers are better off.

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  • Another Ugly Day in the Market

    Mar 4, 2008 / 9:59am / in Americas, Equities, General, International Investing

    Ugly day 3-4-08

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  • What's With Tech Valuations?

    Feb 11, 2008 / 10:30am / in Americas, Equities, General, International Investing

    Huge contract on valuation since the start of the decade with no floor:

    Microsoft Corp. shares haven't been as cheap since 1986, the year Bill Gates took what would become the world's largest software maker public. Nokia Oyj is trading at its least expensive level since surpassing Motorola Inc. as the biggest producer of mobile phones in 1998.

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  • Betting on Fear - Trading With VIX

    Jan 31, 2008 / 12:02pm / in Americas, Equities, General, International Investing

    The VIX or volitality index is sometimes called the "fear gauge" for its ability to discern market sentiment. Fortune magazine discussed how to play this indicator in any market direction:

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  • Time to Short Bankrate

    Jan 21, 2008 / 6:48am / in Americas, Equities, General, International Investing

    This article from Whiskey & Gunpowder makes a strong case for shorting Bankrate and a good primer on what to look for in short sales in general:

    Bankrate exhibits several traits of what you want to look for in a short sale:

    1.    An expensive stock price
    2.    A contracting customer base
    3.    A history of making value-destroying acquisitions
    4.    Aggressive accounting
    5.    A very generous stock option program.

    An Expensive Stock

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