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Peter Larson  

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  • Can Seeking Alpha Bears Short Their Way To Profitability In One Of The Greatest Bull Markets Of All Time? A 5-Year Meta Analysis [View article]
    Not if you structure your trade and portfolio properly.
    Mar 17, 2015. 04:02 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Now Is A Terrible Time To Buy On Margin [View article]

    Buying on margin means you pay interest on the investment.

    While it is a good bet that the market will "go up" at some point in your future, it is NOT likely to appreciate faster from today's levels than interest will accrue on your margin.

    Additionally, the strategy you are advocating is what gamblers call a "Martingale bet". These strategies do not work and they often leave the practitioner bankrupt.

    If you want to size a bet/ risky investment properly, use the Kelly criterion.
    Mar 17, 2015. 02:48 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Amazon Conspiracy Isn't [View article]

    Stop conceding that it isn't going broke. Amazon already IS broke.

    We are just waiting on the tax authorities to declare it.

    Note 11- Amazon owes $1.5 billion in back taxes for 2005 and 2006 alone. In the last annual report they finally admitted they also owe the IRS back taxes for ALL subsequent years as well.

    $1.5 billion is more than Amazon actually made in 2005 and 2006. I bet dollars to donuts the unpaid taxes exceeded profit in the eight years since as well. At a minimum, they owe something like $1.5 billion x 5, which is more than they have in working capital even after the last round of loans.

    That's in the US. Internationally they are being pursued back as far as 2003. The FIRST year they made a (very thin) profit!

    I seriously doubt that Amazon has EVER been profitable except through tax fraud. When the bill comes, they will be forced to restate earnings, and the $1.9 billion in retained earnings will be more than wiped out.

    Amazon took out $6 billion in loans last year, which they will use to pay most of the tax bill. But they still aren't profitable even with the ongoing tax underpayment. Who will underwrite another loan to an unprofitable company with a recent tax accounting scandal, negative retained earnings (probably in the billions), and NO history of profits, ever?

    Bezos could have easily solved this at any point in the last two-three years by issuing stock and using the proceeds to acknowledge and pay the bills. But he hasn't done that and in the process shown us he won't do that. He chose to cash out his own stock at an inflated price over keeping the company solvent. That tune won't change until it's too late.

    That being said- if you have to owe an absurd amount of money to some entity, you could do worse than world government's. A bailout is just as likely as bankruptcy.
    Feb 25, 2015. 09:01 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The Amazon Conspiracy Isn't [View article]
    We can say shit?

    Cool shit.
    Feb 25, 2015. 08:44 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Will Probably Be Rated Junk [View article]
    "Though I don't think it ever happened before with such a large, beloved and visible company."


    Have you looked at ANY historical bubble? They all went on and on.
    Feb 12, 2015. 04:28 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Will Probably Be Rated Junk [View article]
    Why can't we invest in Oxygen?
    Feb 12, 2015. 04:19 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Will Probably Be Rated Junk [View article]
    And that cash on the balance sheet is likely already owed in back transfer taxes. Which may finally be due before the third quarter.

    Did you see how they went from "we may owe 1.5 billion from 2005 and 2006" to "we may owe 1.5 billion from 2005 and 2006... and also we owe money for every year since" in the last notes?
    Feb 12, 2015. 03:37 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Amazon: Take The Money And Run [View article]
    I would never hire Gary.

    But I do wish him well.
    Feb 3, 2015. 11:56 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Amazon: Take The Money And Run [View article]
    Based on a number of metrics, Amazon is now a bankruptcy candidate.

    And I don't think it's just metrics.
    Feb 2, 2015. 08:06 PM | 9 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Before And After's Amazing Quarter And The Great Improvement [View article]
    I recall a week or two ago seeing an analyst projecting that Amazon would beat expectations.

    Huh? YOU'RE the analyst, if you think the number will be slightly higher why not just raise it?

    We should start putting out articles about how we expect Amazon to make $3 billion in profit next quarter, but think they will miss.
    Feb 2, 2015. 02:44 PM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Barnes & Noble Revenue Down, Nook Deal With Microsoft Ends, Investors Flee [View article]
    They've been reticent to say what they will do with cash flow now.

    For one thing, they may be obligated to buy out Pearson Nook shares under terms matching Microsoft's over the next 15 days.

    After that, they will probably hold on to any cash until after the spinoff, to ensure both Nook and Barnes and Noble have sufficient balance sheets to keep all interested parties and debtholders satisfied at the time of the spinoff.

    They may do a dividend and/or buyback in conjuction with the spinoff. That's a Liberty favorite.
    Dec 5, 2014. 04:41 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why I Hate Apple [View article]
    Didn't read the article, but I've always wanted to use that headline.
    Dec 5, 2014. 01:24 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Barnes & Noble's Nook Has No Niche [View article]
    "The chorus of nay-sayers probably scared many investors out of BKS shares at the worst possible time."

    Ah but WallStreet,

    When other investors are scared off, that is an opportunity for us, no?

    Most of the money I have made in BKS, I have made by understanding that Riggio orchestrates PR for the benefit of his own portfolio. Perhaps unintentionally at times, but he is more than happy to let the stock drop on unclarified misperceptions so that he can buy more at a lower price.

    Case in point: Microsoft's $238 million loss on the Nook unit is Barnes and Noble's $238 million gain.
    Dec 5, 2014. 12:40 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Barnes & Noble's Nook Has No Niche [View article]

    This is an immature reaction to a snide, but accurate comment.

    I've written multiple articles on this stock at SA, and when I (and others) do we put a lot of effort into understanding the ins and outs of the business. As well as coming up with unique and (hopefully) meaningful insights into the company strategy.

    Your article went on for quite long, and did not contain much more than verbose opinions on general knowledge, and in some cases inaccurate knowledge.

    For example, you stated that the Nook would not be carried in the Barnes and Noble stores. Management has not stated that or even implied that. They have on multiple occasions that there would continue to be a strong working relationship between nook and retail under any scenario.

    But more troubling is that you have replied to Debunker, using 321 words, rather defensively and still without adding anything new. This is frustrating for our readers and I would ask that you not do so. And I would certainly ask that you not tell them to click on articles (since the next article might be mine ;)

    Thank You,
    Peter Larson

    PS: I am generally bullish, and you are bearish. That is fine. This isn't about that, this is about the tone of your reply.
    Dec 5, 2014. 12:35 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Microsoft selling Nook stake to B&N, terminating agreement [View news story]
    I don't think the Nook agreement was ever part of any strategy at Microsoft.

    They were going to lose in patent court, so they paid Barnes and Noble off.

    Barnes and Noble made $185 million selling nothing.
    Dec 4, 2014. 01:01 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment