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Joseph Levy

 
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  • Top 10 Pick: Amazon Financials Understate Growth [View article]
    In your next column I would appreciate it if you could explain why 4 years of $800+ stimulus spending, plus the most accommodative monetary policy by the Fed, produced such meager and now declining economic growth. Also please comment on where we stand in the current market cycle that began with a bottom on March 9, 2009. An average of the 4 major indexes (DJI, S&P, Russell 2000 & NASDAQ) is now up approximately 107% since the March 9, 2009 low.
    Oct 25, 2012. 01:06 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Top 10 Pick: Amazon Financials Understate Growth [View article]
    Hi Arne,

    I wish I could be as optimistic as you. From what I see we are heading towards some type of major financial disaster.

    Federal budget deficits peaked in 1992 at $290 billion. Thereafter deficits declined each succeeding year, until going green to a surplus of $69 billion in 1998. Surpluses increased each year from 1998 through 2000 ($236 billion surplus) and then declined to a surplus of $126 billion in 2001 before going red in 2002.

    From 2002 through 2008 the annual deficits ranged from $158 billion to $459 billion and averaged $305 billion during those seven years.

    In 2009, the deficit ballooned to $1.4 trillion. One could argue that the $800+ billion "stimulus" was the primary cause of the gigantic 2009 deficit. However, the annual deficits for 2010 ($1.29 trillion), 2011 ($1.30 trillion) plus the estimated 2012 deficit ($1.33 trillion) are out of control and suggest we have had four straight years (not just one year) of enormous “stimulus” spending.

    The bottom line is that we have had an $800+ billion "stimulus" in each of the past four years, coupled with historically low interest rates bordering on 0%. We have little to show for the financial lunacy, besides the $16+ trillion and growing debt, and declining GDP growth, now at an annual rate under 1.5%. Not only has the U.S. been living off a credit card but the irony is that we are following the examples of Greece, Spain, Italy, California etc. What's the saying about learning from history???????

    I am curious what makes you optimistic?

    My investment strategy today is very defensive and includes the following: Covered calls with short term expiration's; Long in the money puts with expiration's in 2014 and 2015; Long a limited number of micro-caps that I'm willing to hold for years; and Short a limited number of equities, including Amazon.

    I think Amazon is a very good company that lacks financial discipline. As you know, depending on the stock price, a very good company can also turn out to be a poor investment.

    Good luck on your other investments besides AMZN and please let me know why you are so bullish?

    Best,


    Joe
    Oct 24, 2012. 05:02 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Top 10 Pick: Amazon Financials Understate Growth [View article]
    Any reason for not publishing your top 10 picks for 2011?

    If you have such a list please show it.
    Oct 24, 2012. 02:23 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple Is Worth More Than 8X RIM, But... [View article]
    I previously disclosed that I sold my position in RIMM before the end of 2010, basically breaking even when the stock was trading in the 50's.

    When playing golf with friends I joke that the only thing more humbling than playing golf is investing in stocks. I think my article about RIMM vs. APPL is a perfect example of this. I no longer follow RIMM and don't have an opinion about the stock today.
    Aug 29, 2012. 11:20 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Dynatronics: A Small Cap Makes a Major Transformation [View article]
    I have not sold any of my shares since writing the article.

    I do expect the share price to increase in the future and think you made a good buy at $0.50.

    The one weakness I see is that the sales force has not executed as expected, which I believe is a failure in execution by Larry Beardall, executive vice president of sales and marketing.

    Good Luck with your investment.
    Aug 29, 2012. 11:07 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Natural Resource Partners: An 8% Dividend, But Cause for Caution [View article]
    My primary concern had to do with their accounting. I thought the quarterly dividend paid out was too high in relation to their fundamentals. They recently increased it by $0.01 from $0.54 to $0.55, which is contrary to what I expected. I never traded the stock because of my concerns.

    Best,

    Joe
    Apr 2, 2012. 02:46 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Apple Worth 8.4 X Research in Motion? [View article]
    You are correct. However, as disclosed in my article discussing my 2010 performance I closed my RIMM position during 2010 at a breakeven. It is important to be flexible when making investment decisions both on the upside as well as on the downside. Apple is an incredible company that has achieved remarkable performance in the last 5 years.
    Jan 14, 2012. 10:58 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Dynatronics Hits a New Inflection Point [View article]
    Very good article and presentation.
    May 14, 2011. 12:04 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Whitney Tilson's 17 Newest Stock Picks From February: Part 1 [View article]
    Check your numbers on WRLS.

    EPS was $0.20 for 12 months ended 12-31-10 and $0.24 for the fiscal year ended 09-30-10 (not $2.44).
    Apr 1, 2011. 01:31 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • AXT and CalAmp: Two New Picks for 2011 [View article]
    Currently, I am still long AXTI shares and have not sold any of our position. The stock price should mirror their operating performance (most importantly future forecasts) and we should know more when they announce next Wednesday.

    I'm not surprised the stock sold off some considering the downgrade and the fact that the stock price more than tripled in 2010.

    As far as downgrades by brokers, I take them with a grain of salt. After seeing some stocks out perform after downgrades I wonder if this is sometimes done by brokers to buy stocks at a lower price. My opinion of some brokers was expressed in an article about Goldman Sachs:

    seekingalpha.com/artic...

    I still like AXTI very much but I am always humble enough to know that I'm not always right.

    Best.

    Joe
    Feb 19, 2011. 02:57 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • My 2010 Results: 8 Up and 2 Down (Average Net Increase +35.9%) [View article]
    HRBN is very cheap in relation to its fundamentals as are many China small cap and micro-cap companies including SORL and WATG. HRBN's sales and earnings have been good with sales and EPS going from $23.6 million/$0.66 in 2005, to $40.4 million/$1.01 in 2006, $65.4 million/$0.91 in 2007, $120.8 million/$1.20 in 2008, $223.2 million/$0.94 in 2009 and $427.5 million/$2.76 in the 12 months ended 09-30-2010 and analysts are estimating sales of $500.7 million for 2011 with EPS of $3.05.

    In 2010 the stock traded in a range from a low of $14.95 to a high of $26 ... thus the current price ($18.08) is much closer to the low end of the range. I don't own HRBN currently but it is on my watch list because I believe the stock is cheap based on its fundamentals. Also, there is the possibility the company may be taken private and the price mentioned is $24.

    Since October 2010 we have been a net seller of stocks and our current cash and equivalents position is just under 30% of our total assets, which is a very high percentage for us. However, we have been buying both SORL and WATG around their current prices (approximately $7.50).

    Hope this helps.

    Best.

    Joe
    Jan 26, 2011. 12:09 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • China Education Alliance: A Fantastic Investment Opportunity Courtesy of Short Sellers [View article]
    It seems to me CEU could help themselves to restore credibility by replacing their current auditors with one of the more prominent international accounting firms (for example PricewaterhouseCoopers Zhong Tian CPA's).
    Jan 22, 2011. 11:17 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Nanometrics: Moving Up a Little Faster Than It Should? [View article]
    Hi Robert,

    I find China companies very interesting but limit their exposure in my fund to around 5% of our total net assets. Even having a CPA background does not make me feel comfortable that I would be immune from the actions of a company engaged in fraudulent accounting. That being said I also believe there are great opportunities in China and many growth companies sell at value prices. For individual investors I suggest they look into mutual funds that have offices and analysts working in Asia, which diminishes some of the risk of being invested in just a few individual China companies (anyone of which could blowup). Some good funds include DFRSX, MAPTX, MCHFX, MSMLX, MAPIX, MPACX, MACSX.

    With regards to your NANO trade it does not seem to me that you have a good risk/reward ratio.

    Best,

    Joe
    Jan 18, 2011. 02:35 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • My 2010 Results: 8 Up and 2 Down (Average Net Increase +35.9%) [View article]
    Hi TLF,

    It's had a big move in the last 52 weeks (range $4.80 to $16.97) and they also had a secondary offering at $12.00 to raise additional cash, presumably for acquisitions (both future as well as ones already consummated). In general China stocks have been under a lot of scrutiny lately because of questions concerning the accounting of various China companies and possibilities of fraud. The total market value of all China stocks in our fund is equal to 4.97% of our total net assets and I try to keep China stocks around that overall percentage. We are still long PUDA.

    Good Luck.

    Joe
    Jan 18, 2011. 02:10 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Nanometrics: Moving Up a Little Faster Than It Should? [View article]
    I am curious. When did you short NANO and at what price?
    Jan 17, 2011. 09:45 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
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