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Dana Blankenhorn  

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  • UnitedHealth Opens New Front On Express Scripts With Catamaran Buy
    Today, 10:46 AM UNH Comment!

    Summary

    • UnitedHealth gets better control of its drug costs by buying another large Pharmacy Benefit Manager.
    • Express Scripts, the largest player, now faces a new competitive landscape.
    • Expect more mergers in the medical channel.
  • Dana's Guide To The Big Rip-Off In Municipal Bonds
    Yesterday, 11:43 AM GTFBX, MUB, SCHW 18 Comments

    Summary

    • Municipal bonds should be the next big thing, offering baby boomers guaranteed retirement income.
    • Default rates are low, but expenses are high because the market is so thinly-traded.
    • So were mortgages, once upon a time.
  • Apple Could Go Down In The Class Struggle
    Yesterday, 10:06 AM AAPL 242 Comments

    Summary

    • Apple is setting up a special retail experience for buyers of its $10,000 Edition Watch.
    • Apple has spent a lot of money bringing in luxury goods experts to remake its in-store experience.
    • Will the class struggle take the Watch down?
  • Salesforce Makes Political, But Not Yet Economic, Statement Over Indiana
    Sat, Mar. 28 CRM 49 Comments

    Summary

    • Salesforce has cancelled a sales conference in Indiana and is threatening to do more.
    • The company bought ExactTarget for $2.5 billion less than two years ago and has over 2,000 employees there.
    • The danger of mixing business and politics.
  • American Apparel Stock Crashing Due To Troubles With Charney
    Sat, Mar. 28 APP 11 Comments

    Summary

    • Ousted founder Dov Charney is still trying to return to the helm.
    • Successor Paula Schneider is trying to resurrect the brand.
    • Charney's efforts may yet kill the company.
  • If You Think Amazon Is OverPriced Do Not Think Of Buying Facebook
    Sat, Mar. 28 FB, AMZN 81 Comments

    Summary

    • Amazon is a favorite stock to diss at Seeking Alpha, Facebook a favorite stock to boost.
    • Yet you're paying much more for Facebook shares, measured by sales, assets or cash flow, than any other stock.
    • If growth is overpriced, what is Facebook really worth?
  • Apollo Warns, Get Out Of For-Profit Education Now
    Fri, Mar. 27 APOL 24 Comments

    Summary

    • Parent of the University of Phoenix crashed overnight on losses.
    • The whole sector is going down the drain as the "baby boom echo" fades and unemployment falls.
    • Don't wait for the dead cat bounce. Get out now.
  • Buffett Keeps Faith With Lemann In Kraft Deal
    Thu, Mar. 26 KRFT 15 Comments

    Summary

    • Kraft rose 24% overnight on word it will be merged into Heinz by Buffett and 3G Capital.
    • Managers had just been let go following a loss covering retirement benefits.
    • Next up is relentless cost-cutting, as at Burger King, Tim Horton's and Heinz.
  • Has The Second Solar Boom Begun?
    Thu, Mar. 26 CSIQ, DUK, FSLR 28 Comments

    Summary

    • The utility model for solar power is now established, with California now getting 5% of its power from solar.
    • New capacity is coming online and costs are continuing to decline.
    • As war clouds threaten higher oil prices the stocks could be a buying opportunity.
  • Who Benefits From End Of Cloud Price Wars
    Wed, Mar. 25 AMZN, MSFT, IBM 1 Comment

    Summary

    • A new report from RBS says the cloud price wars may be ending.
    • This benefits the present market leaders, who can now seek to profit from their positions.
    • Look to Amazon for its infrastructure, Rackspace for its platform and Microsoft for its SaaS offerings.
  • Tenet Plays The Doctor Glut
    Wed, Mar. 25 THC 5 Comments

    Summary

    • Hospital chains like Tenet are extending their reach into surgery and other specialties.
    • This gives them pricing power.
    • Given a glut of specialists, insurers have a way to fight back.
  • Google Rises 2% On A Job Hop?
    Wed, Mar. 25 GOOGL, GOOG 30 Comments

    Summary

    • A new CFO gave a 2% pop to Google stock.
    • The move makes no sense since the founders have absolute control over the company.
    • Google is ill-served by its dual-share structure and is, at best, a weak hold.
  • HealthStream Buy Makes It A Takeout Candidate
    Tue, Mar. 24 HSTM 4 Comments

    Summary

    • HealthStream recently bought HealthLine Systems to put a public face on its hospital training software.
    • The company's margins have been declining as the Health IT space has matured.
    • HealthStream could make a tasty morsel for a larger company as consolidation continues.
  • The Oil Nibblers' Time Horizon
    Tue, Mar. 24 WLL, CHK 2 Comments

    Summary

    • You need a three-year time horizon to invest in oil now.
    • Only big players have the visibility into targets' books necessary for true investment.
    • If your time horizon is short, you're plunging and trading, not investing.
  • How Big Will The Biotech Bubble Get?
    Tue, Mar. 24 BIIB, CELG, GILD 15 Comments

    Summary

    • Biotech is being compared with the dot-com stocks of the 1990s.
    • The search for blockbusters is blinding investors to the risks of competition.
    • Is this 1997, 1998 or 1999?
  • Yellen Hit It Out Of The Park
    Mon, Mar. 23 UUP, FXE, FXY 6 Comments

    Summary

    • Janet Yellen jawboned the dollar down last week.
    • This provides room for Europe and Japan to keep easing.
    • Expect real interest rates to return in June, but expect a very slow rise, with an eye on forex.
  • Energous Works To Keep Air In The Balloon
    Sat, Mar. 21 WATT 31 Comments

    Summary

    • Wireless charging is a real thing, and Energous has a solid solution.
    • If a big smartphone maker endorses it, and the FCC approves it, it's off to the races.
    • Your investment is subject to forces neither you nor the company you're buying can control.
  • SolarCity Making Storage The Hot New Trend In Solar
    Sat, Mar. 21 SCTY 273 Comments

    Summary

    • Utilities love renewable power, but only when it adds to their own capex.
    • SolarCity is pushing microgrid solutions to make renewables more affordable.
    • An after-market for Tesla batteries has been created.
  • Getting 3D Printing Out Of Its Slough Of Despond
    Fri, Mar. 20 DDD 22 Comments

    Summary

    • 3D printing stocks have fallen due to limitations in their technology.
    • HP's MultiJet and start-up Carbon3D's CLIP technology promise to revolutionize the industry.
    • Can the present industry leaders get on this train in time?
  • Target Buyers Suffer From Premature Jocularity
    Fri, Mar. 20 TGT 6 Comments

    Summary

    • Since becoming CEO last June Brian Cornell has made the right moves at Target.
    • Exiting Canada and giving employees raises will cost money.
    • So why is this stock performing better than Wal-Mart?
  • To Make The Costco Pain Go Away, American Express Goes After Capitol One
    Thu, Mar. 19 AXP 5 Comments

    Summary

    • The loss of Costco will leave a mark on American Express results next year.
    • It is trying to make up for any losses with Plenti, a reward program for one store in each category.
    • The target is Capital One, but Capital One is the better buy.
  • Oracle Remains Tech's Capital Extraction Expert
    Wed, Mar. 18 ORCL 9 Comments

    Summary

    • Oracle missed top-line estimates on currency, met them on cost controls.
    • Oracle hiked its dividend and increased its stock buybacks.
    • It's a great capital extractor, but at some point capital is extracted and change happens.
  • Matt Harvey And The Fed
    Tue, Mar. 17 EUO, UUP 7 Comments

    Summary

    • The Fed is taking the economy out of rehab by creating real interest rates.
    • This will send U.S. markets down in the near term.
    • The second half of the economic recovery is about to begin.
  • Facebook's China Campaign
    Tue, Mar. 17 FB 45 Comments

    Summary

    • Facebook's CEO Mark Zuckerberg is obsessed with cracking the China market.
    • He has learned Mandarin and made his policies compatible with those of China's government.
    • When he gets in look for an immediate pop in the stock.
  • Today's Oil Crash Presages The Next One
    Tue, Mar. 17 EOG, KMI, LNG 64 Comments

    Summary

    • Oil companies can manipulate supply to raise prices in the near term.
    • In the longer term, five years and more out, rising renewable supplies make that impossible.
    • The next oil crash will be permanent.
  • HP Put A Cloud In A Box - Is It A Big Deal?
    Tue, Mar. 17 HPQ 3 Comments

    Summary

    • Hewlett-Packard has launched a new line of cloud servers called Cloudline.
    • It could maintain its cloud market share, but it's losing sales in traditional servers at the same time.
    • This won't move the financial needle.
  • Take The Controversy Out Of General Electric
    Mon, Mar. 16 GE 13 Comments

    Summary

    • GE is an industrial stock, not a financial stock.
    • It's a solid dividend stock focused on the long term.
    • Jeff Immelt is not going anywhere and neither is GE.
  • Is Herbalife Actually Selling Anything?
    Sat, Mar. 14 HLF 231 Comments

    Summary

    • Bill Ackman and Herbalife have been fighting for two years over how Herbalife sells its supplements.
    • New York's attorney general has opened up a new front, attacking the whole supplements industry.
    • The rest of the supplements industry is now in the line of fire.
  • Why Amazon Is Still Cheap
    Sat, Mar. 14 AMZN 211 Comments

    Summary

    • Critics say Amazon has little profit, declining cash flow, and scant sales growth.
    • Compare the value of the businesses making up Amazon to those of competitors.
    • My math says it's fairly priced and could be worth more.
  • The Golden Age Of Radio Bedevils PCs And Tablets Alike
    Fri, Mar. 13 AAPL 29 Comments

    Summary

    • Wireless upgrades and software storage discourage upgrades of tablets and PCs.
    • The heart of all upgrades is the operating system, a market Apple now dominates.
    • Mac selling prices remain stable while those of PCs plunge. Advantage Apple.
  • Ending The Bear Market In Tesla
    Fri, Mar. 13 TSLA 208 Comments

    Summary

    • Tesla's gigafactory is on schedule.
    • Tesla owns far more of each sale than any other car company.
    • If Tesla can deliver 500,000 cars/year by 2020, as planned, it can justify today's valuation.
  • Lumber Liquidators: Can This Dead Cat Bounce?
    Thu, Mar. 12 LL 12 Comments

    Summary

    • LL currently sells at a discount to sales, while other hardware retailers sell at a premium.
    • Some of its product may not have met California standards, but California is just one state.
    • You can speculate that this unique, niche product has a future.