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Richard Glenn

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  • Herbalife: Nailing Pyramids To A Tree [View article]
    But what about all the money that prospective supervisors spend on sales leads / dvd's for leads / sales seminars etc. ? Do those get reimbursed? From what I have seen the lion's share of losses that new people suffer trying to break into HLF is being convinced to buy "marketing leads" and "business services" not from buying the product itself. Even if every box of shake mix was eventually returned it would still be a great scam to sell $2 leads for $139, and $1 DVD's for $39. Can people get their dvd money back? How about the $1,000's some spend for leads?
    May 30 09:40 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • American International Group beats by $0.15, misses on revenue [View news story]
    Not a great quarter, but the last thing I want to see an insurer do is chase sales. So if it was a revenue miss for the right reasons (pricing) it could actually be a good sign of discipline.
    May 5 04:47 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • MasterCard Inc.: Read The Fine Print [View article]
    Thank you for putting this together. I have been watching MC for quite a while and hoping for a pullback to buy in. It's an amazing business, and as you point out the two problems are that the stock is on the rich side, and that lots of folks would love to take a slice of their very fat profit margins. The most important number in your article however, is this : 20bp. 20 Basis points is all MC gets paid for it's network. The lion's share of the interchange fees go to the banks. So even if a competitor found a way to cut out MC, the best they could do is go to a merchant and offer a savings of 5 bp? 10? Heck, even if they were willing to work for free all they would save a merchant is 20 bp, and that is on a 150 - 400 bp bill. That sounds like a very tough sell to me, unless they can come up with some way of replicating the huge pool of card holders that MC has.
    Apr 30 09:38 AM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Roaring Twenties Are Back [View article]
    Thanks for the historical summary and food for thought. I always enjoy reading your posts.
    Apr 24 10:18 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Problems Of HFT, Joe Stiglitz Edition [View article]
    Felix, thanks for keeping this topic front and center. All this focus on HFT front running and the billions skimmed misses the most troubling aspect of the rise of HFT: the exchanges and big banks are now designing the system to be as complex as possible to give their best customers (HFT firms) the greatest number of opportunities to steal from the little guy. In doing so they are raising the chance of a systemwide collapse -- the flash crash was just a preview. We would never think of allowing a private company to engage in an activity that endangered the electricity grid to that they could make a few bucks, so why on earth should we allow a handful of HFT firms to endanger the capital markets? Even more so when their activity has no benefit to the market overall?
    Apr 16 03:56 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Google: Early Thoughts On The Split [View article]
    There is no way for class C to become more diluted. No vote is as low as it gets. Years from now you could see some angling to control the A shares after the founders are dead and gone, but Sergey and Larry are quite young and will be with us for decades. Also, can you imagine in their old age that they wouldn't ensure that their hand picked successor remained firmly in control after they were gone? Fat chance.
    My bet is liquidity will carry the day, and at the end of the year GOOGL and GOOG will trade within 1% of each other. There will be no payout to GOOG holders.
    Apr 14 12:21 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Google: Early Thoughts On The Split [View article]
    I have to disagree with you here. The founders basically stole something of great potential value from their fellow shareholders (the ability to control a multi-billion dollar company), but they did it in a brilliant way. The reality is that right now even if you have voting shares your vote doesn't matter (not enough of you to trump the supervoting shares that the founders own), and now that no new GOOGL shares will ever be issued that balance will never change. GOOGL shares have a vote in name only.
    Moving forward, however, holders of GOOGL shareholders will find their shares to be the red headed stepchild of the Google world for one simple reason: Liquidity. As more and more GOOG shares are issued -- and Google loves to issue shares to workers and to buy companies -- the daily trading volume in GOOG will steadily increase while GOOGL stays dormant, or even falls. All of the action will be in the GOOG shares, so if you are a new buyer, which would you rather have? A meaningless vote, or an easier time trading your stock? I'm guessing that over time more and more folks will value liquidity and that will keep the two classes very close to even. Who knows, the GOOG shares may even trade at a premium in a couple of years.
    Apr 14 11:18 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Micron Technology: Convertible Disaster [View article]
    Thanks for digging into this. My first thought was that they just need to start a nice juicy dividend, say 4%. That would turn this into a negative carry trade very quickly. However, I suspect that with the high implied volatility of the options that there are convert holders that are leaning against the position selling options rather than shorting stock. At the end of the day management just needs to buy these turkeys back.
    Apr 13 10:51 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • How MannKind Shows Depth Of The Diabetes Market [View article]
    I really wish SA had an ignore author button. This article is so. . . bad. Just click bait perhaps?
    Apr 3 09:44 AM | 15 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Micron's 2014 Insider Trading: An Analysis [View article]
    RSA, Thanks again for all of your work in the trenches of the SEC filings. In answer to your question about why someone would exercise options early, how about this:
    Exercising options is a taxable event, even if you plan on just keeping the shares. If you were pretty sure that the stock was going to soar in the next couple of years, AND you planned on keeping your shares for the long term, then it would be better to exercise them now and pay a small tax bill rather than exercise them in a couple of years when the stock is at $60 and pay a massive tax bill. Of course, when you sold the shares way down the road you would owe the tax eventually, but until then you get to compound it free of charge.
    A little thin, I know, but I can't think of any other reason for it.
    Mar 30 03:43 PM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Google Is A Great Stock To Hold Forever [View article]
    I saw that, but it leaves unanswered how they will determine who is considered a shareholder for the purposes of the special payment. I would think that they would have to select a date -- like you do with dividends -- and state that owners of stock on that date are eligible. I'm just wondering what date they are using. Does anyone have a link to the actual settlement? It could have significant investment implications.
    Mar 25 10:05 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Google Is A Great Stock To Hold Forever [View article]
    Extra credit question: What is the "ex dividend" date to determine who owns the new class C shares, and is therefore eligible for the special payment under the class action settlement if the C shares lag the A shares by more than 1%? If I own shares on the day of the split and sell the day after, can I still collect in a year? If I buy C shares one week before the year long period is over, do I qualify for the payment? Or, do I have to hold shares through the split and for the entire year to qualify? I have looked all over, but cannot find the exact terms of the settlement. A gold star for anyone who knows the answer to this one :)
    Mar 25 03:29 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Return Like A Stock, Risk Like A Bond: 15.5% CAGR With 17% Drawdown [View article]
    Thanks for sharing your idea. There is a lot of literature that validates trend following in various forms as a potential source of alpha. I would worry, however, that the time period you studied is just about perfect for a trend following system, as it was a long bull market punctuated by two sharp pull backs (2000 and 2008). Have you tried it on a long choppy period? Something like '63 to '81? If the system can put up outsized returns in a choppy market like that, then you really have something.
    Feb 24 07:48 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Intel: The End Of Moore's Law [View article]
    Thanks for a very thought provoking article Russ. Just one question: How have the foundries kept in the game past 130 nm? Did they steal INTC IP to follow them down?
    Also, never underestimate the power of corporations to make uneconomic investments -- even if the writing is on the wall (or spreadsheet) TSMC may find the cash to keep building fabs. This would turn the bleeding edge into commodityland and drive down those juicy margins for everyone. Just a thought.
    Feb 24 09:36 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • J.C. Penney: Behold A Pale Horse [View article]
    A great read. Thanks.
    Jan 8 09:34 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment