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  • Grupo Financiero Santander México: Another High Quality Bank In The Santander Group [View article]
    Advill thank you the feedback is appreciated. That is a very good point on the PE ratios and it one of the reasons why I think that SAN represents far better value than its independently listed subs. Obviously along with the diversification. But for those investors seeking specific exposure to U.S listed Latam bank both Santander Chile and Mexico represents strong contenders.
    Sep 27, 2012. 09:50 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Grupo Financiero Santander México: Another High Quality Bank In The Santander Group [View article]
    Vincent thank you appreciated, my oversight. Have you thought about becoming a contributor?
    Sep 27, 2012. 09:47 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Grupo Financiero Santander México: Another High Quality Bank In The Santander Group [View article]
    Bax a very interesting question and a lot of it comes down my style of investing and the longer-term opportunities I see with BBVA particularly with regard to Latam that have been undervalued by the market. I hope to expand on that in a two piece article on BBVA I have been working on, but a lot of it comes down to BBVA´s position in Latam´s most unloved markets of Venezuela and Argentina (I know that comment will not make me many friends) and its strong franchises in Colombia and Chile with a dominant position in Mexico.

    Overall I think with SAN and BBVA it comes down to personal preference, though SAN appears to have made some questionable business decisions, though these have certainly not detracted from its overall appeal as an investment.

    Apologies for not answering your message will get on to that today. I have been away for a while conducting some research.
    Sep 27, 2012. 09:46 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Grupo Financiero Santander México: Another High Quality Bank In The Santander Group [View article]
    Austin thank you! I would actually be quite interested in meeting my readers. Will certainly be discussing some ideas I have around that with Seeking Alpha.
    Sep 27, 2012. 09:38 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Grupo Financiero Santander México: Another High Quality Bank In The Santander Group [View article]
    Vincent thank you for the additional info. A very interesting history indeed I would be very interested in being able to find out the reasoning behind the transactions.
    Sep 27, 2012. 09:36 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Grupo Financiero Santander México: Another High Quality Bank In The Santander Group [View article]
    Thanks Fidel I was just trying to get a feel for whether it is a worthwhile investment as I was a little cynical at first given the history of BSBR since it floated in 2009. But the numbers around asset quality and financial performance do show a particularly strong business.
    Sep 27, 2012. 09:34 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Telefonica: Cheap For A Reason (Equity) [View article]
    All of the factors I have mentioned have been priced in by the market and that is why TEF is still significantly down.

    The company also needs to make considerable capex investments in Latam especially Brazil if it is too tap the local market and it will be sometime before it sees a sizeable return for those investments. Furthermore, given the need to pay down its mountain of debt with its FCF it has had to slash its capex program delaying that expansion.

    Brazil also currently lacks not only the infrastructure to support a smartphone service but also the broad based middle class to make such a roll out financially sustainable. I don't see any significant uptake in smartphones in Brazil for sometime primarily due to the country's social demography.

    The outlook for Europe and particularly Spain for the short to medium-term is also still quite negative economically and this will have a significant impact on revenues for some time. Spain is nowhere near recovery with unemployment over 20% and the ongoing implementation of austerity measures are having further economic impacts.

    The assets being sold were once seen as key assets to allow growth and are now being sold at prices far below the value at which they purchased. This would indicate that it will be reliant solely upon organic growth where the majority of its markets are suffering significant economic down turns and consumer spending is falling. Besides destroying shareholder value this again indicates that it will be sometime before the company experiences any growth.

    The sovereign risk in Spain is abating but the economic risk is still quite high and will remain high for the foreseeable future. I doubt there will be any significant economic recovery in TEF's core market for the short to medium-term. This is going to have a significant impact on revenue.
    Sep 27, 2012. 08:38 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Telefonica: Cheap For A Reason (Equity) [View article]
    Veritas, it would seem that the ECB is heading the direction you have suggested. While this will be a long-term positive for Europe and particularly the PIIGS in the short to medium-term I doubt that it will act as a sufficient stimulus to lift Spain out of the deep recession which it is currently in. This will act as a drag on revenues and profitability and I also believe that the company's prospects in Latam and particularly Brazil at this time are over-rated.
    Sep 27, 2012. 08:28 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Keep An Eye On Ecopetrol For A Shorting Opportunity [View article]
    Ecopetrol's profitability has fallen primarily due to production disruptions caused by attacks on oil sector infrastructure in Colombia by the FARC and ELN. Mainly being oil pipelines but with some attacks on well heads and the kidnapping and murder of employees.

    This has disrupted production and placed EC in the position where it had to lower its 2012 production forecast. This has also had a significant impact on production and profitability for other small to mid-cap players in Colombia's oil sector such as Gran Tierra and Pacific Rubiales.

    These attacks have also forced EC to invest greater amounts in infrastructure repairs, updates and maintenance and as well as security, which has seen costs rise, also affecting profitability.

    However, with the current peace talks under way between the FARC and the Colombian govt this issue should come closer to resolution and it maybe possible for EC to increase production. The ELN have also flagged an interest in peace talks. If successful it will allow EC to continuer with its goal of raising production to 1MMBOED, which other global macro currents with standing, obviously see profitability increase. This will also be a big plus for other players in Colombia's oil sector that are also grappling with this problem.

    For EC the only key risk then left outstanding that investors would need to consider is the lack of reserves, particularly in comparison to other oil majors. I have a positive view that this issue will be resolved but to date there has not been any considerable amounts of good news on this front and again this is partly because of the unstable security situation which is affecting exploration. Again the current peace talks bode well for exploration prospects within Colombia.

    Overall I don't see a significant shorting opportunity in EC for the reasons listed and when global oil supply side constraints are considered as well I would expect the price to rise. Obviously other global macro events that affect oil prices will impact profitability. If your interested you can see my review of EC's 2Q12 results here http://seekingalpha.co... .
    Sep 27, 2012. 04:11 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Latin American Banks: 3 Of The Best For Investors In 2012 [View article]
    k2climber thank you for the feedback appreciated. BAP has been an exceptionally strong and consistent performer and I believe for all of the reasons you have listed that it will continue to do so for sometime. Approx 6 weeks ago I wrote an updated focus article on BAP which sets out the bank's strengths and weaknesses available here http://seekingalpha.co... .
    Sep 27, 2012. 03:34 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • China Unleashes $158B Infrastructure Spend [View instapost]
    They are still targeting 7.5% GDP growth which is well below the level that supported the iron ore bubble. Current PMI figures suggest a significant slow down, which I doubt an infrastructure spend will fix. Long and rocky road for Latam's export focused resource dependent economies.
    Sep 9, 2012. 08:52 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Is The Outlook For YPF Growing More Positive? (Part 1) [View article]
    skwestorange thank you for the feedback, just tidying it up now. My preference is for one article but hard to do YPF justice over one article. Any feedback or specific issues that you would like covered off please let me know.
    Sep 8, 2012. 09:17 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Banco Santander (SAN) wastes no time taking advantage of the quick turn in European sentiment, offering €2.5B of 3.5 year paper, and hoping to price it at the same yield it sold 2-year notes for a month ago. Order books closed with €6B in bids from about 400 accounts. Shares +3.2% premarket. [View news story]
    TJ and fmarone I agree with your sentiments. Along with BBVA it is one of the best managed banks in the world with an enviable share of the Latin American market.
    Sep 8, 2012. 02:05 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Telefonica: Cheap For A Reason (Equity) [View article]
    designshoe thank you for the additional views. The issues aren't solely confined to debt but also to:

    1. Reduced revenue and margin pressures resulting from Spain's deep recession.

    2. The inability to continue growing revenue in Latam and in particular Brazil because of having to cut capex and being unable to fund the development of the infrastructure required to expand along with demographic factors that preclude the development of high margin mature post-paid business.

    3. The ongoing geopolitical risk in Latam including recent regulatory pressure from the Argentine government and the Peruvian government requiring that it reapply for its license.

    All of these factors along with the fire sale of assets at a loss and diminishing cash flows indicate that a recovery in the company is a long way off. Furthermore, we have yet to see any significant recovery in the share price since it started slipping over a year and half ago. I also doubt there will be any significant recovery over the short-term and that for the reasons listed it will remain flat for sometime.
    Sep 7, 2012. 12:31 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Investors Should Exercise Caution On Vale [View article]
    eremmell thank you for the feedback. I don't think it is an outright case of staying away if you were interested in investing but more of being cautious and watching the key indicators that influence its performance. These include Chinese economic activity, iron ore prices, the taxation and royalties disputes and the actions of the Brazilian government to try and identify a positive turning point before investing.
    Sep 5, 2012. 08:15 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
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