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Sean Weston  

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  • Some Thoughts On Berkshire Hathaway's New Shareholder Letter [View article]
    It would be pre-tax, the figures Buffet concentrates on in his shareholder letter for intrinsic value calculation.

    Berkshire has a $117B market value common stock portfolio, with a $55B cost. So there could be some heavy taxes with realizing gains. But with Berkshire focusing more on operating earnings instead of its investment portfolio, you could expect more stock for business swaps, like we saw last year with Procter & Gamble stock being exchanged for Duracell etc, saving big on the taxes.

    Keep in mind this approach also assumes that volatile underwriting results, which have been and should continue to be on average pretty substantial gains for the company, and which fuel investment income, is instead zero. Nuances like this are what lead only to estimates, not precise figures being given.
    Mar 3, 2015. 08:20 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Buffett talks to CNBC after annual letter [View news story]
    Yeah, he explicitly commented that the roadmap was particularly attractive, and was a major reason why he bought the business. Because they say what they're going to do and then do it. Except, unlike in 2010, they failed big time with the 2015 version.
    Mar 2, 2015. 09:57 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The Dangers Of Growth Rate Predictions By Management [View article]
    The $20 in EPS figure was the most widely talked about number, but the road map went into revenues etc as well.
    Nov 26, 2014. 10:44 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Abenomics Death Spiral [View article]
    Speaking of reassessing assumptions, wasn't decoupling, the market crash, hyperinflation, gold at $10,000 etc supposed to have happened by now, Mr. Schiff?
    Nov 19, 2014. 03:39 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Paying Under 2 Times EBITDA For An Industry Leader [View article]
    I think Buffett got a great deal with Duracell, just like he did with Phillips 66 and The Washington Post/ Graham Holdings. However, I'd be careful relying too much on EBITDA for the deal. Buffett himself hates that figure, and said that 'trumpeting EBITDA is a particularly pernicious practice" back in 2002.
    Nov 14, 2014. 08:02 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Sears Holdings: The Disaster Will Not Abate [View article]
    I'm assuming, since explaining yourself is beneath you, that you hold the same angry pov you did when Seeking Alpha announced the news.

    It's correct that in the case of default, Eddie does not get to explicitly walk away with $500 million in properties. However, as was pointed out to you then, there is too much ambiguity in which properties Lampert gets, and the valuing of these properties is also something with ambiguity behind it. Why should we expect someone whose love of "the virtue of selfishness" guides his operations to not attempt to come out as ahead as is feasible in this?

    As for assets and paying off debt/equity holders, there are disputes between what is being reportedly done with their stores and what Sears is claiming, so this lack of transparency isn't going to yield concrete numbers.
    Nov 14, 2014. 03:43 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Sears Holdings: The Disaster Will Not Abate [View article]
    Everyone makes mistakes, no one is omnipotent. Even Warren Buffett, who I have a lot of respect for, makes mistakes, with Tesco being his latest one which he has admitted.

    Lampert and Berkowitz(who does have a great track record, without a doubt) are the two big names behind the stock. There really aren't too many more supporting it.
    Nov 14, 2014. 03:05 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Did Warren Buffett Make A Mistake On The Direction Of Oil Prices? [View article]
    Definitely not. UNP serves as a pretty accurate proxy for BNSF. Their performance has been outstanding recently. Lower oil could hurt coal, agriculture etc shipments, but reduced fuel costs will make up the difference. Other sources of revenue for the rail should be largely unaffected, and still experience strong growth. I would hardly call BNSF simply a wager on higher oil prices.

    As for trucking, they are so far beneath the rails with cost efficiency, this is not going to make much of a difference. They are still going to be far inferior.
    Nov 4, 2014. 11:44 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Berkshire Hathaway: The Buy For When You Get An Itchy Trigger Finger [View article]
    That's actually what I do. I try to invest at regular intervals, and if nothing catches my eye, I purchase Berkshire. Its stock tends to track its underlying fundamentals really well, and not get out of whack along with whatever the general market is doing.
    Sep 16, 2014. 03:06 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is IBM Overvalued? [View article]
    Price to Book is irrelevant with a company like IBM.
    Jul 18, 2014. 05:50 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • IBM beats estimates, reiterates full-year guidance [View news story]
    Good news. I think the days of IBM below $200 will be coming to an end very shortly.
    Jul 17, 2014. 04:44 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • IBM Running Out Of Easy Ways To Keep The Shareholders Satisfied [View article]
    Net income wasn't $1 billion less than a year earlier. It was down 1%.

    Net income in billions:
    Jul 2, 2014. 02:08 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Starbucks: Promising Growth Trends Slightly Offset By Potential Volatility In Coffee Prices [View article]
    That's true db. The problems facing Starbucks are not unique in that, as you say, food/beverage providers all are pressured by volatility in their commodity prices.
    Many of the others have the benefit of having multiple sources available in their pipeline, which helps diversify away from a reliance on one commodity/area, though. Starbucks has their eggs in a lot less baskets. I agree, Starbucks has an excellent management team.
    May 30, 2014. 11:09 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Continues To Crash In 2014 While Buffett Prospers [View article]
    The price of gold prior to 2000 was not relatively stable. It had lost 60% of its value during the last 20 years, which was a period of more inflation than 2000-2010, in which gold skyrocketed. Gold is not reflecting anything regarding the valuation of currencies. Its movement is arbitrary and haphazard.
    May 4, 2014. 12:44 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Continues To Crash In 2014 While Buffett Prospers [View article]
    What happens when 2016 comes and goes and this doesn't happen? I've found the gold bugs are much like Harold Camping. They make their doomsday predictions and they turn out wrong. The solution is the date of doom just keeps getting pushed forward and forward.
    May 2, 2014. 11:43 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment