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Stanley Barton

 
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  • Natural Disasters Aren't The Only Threats To Universal Insurance Holdings [View article]
    Thanks for the article.

    I am long both UVE and HCI and think that both are undervalued in today's market by several standards. For example, both have single digit PE's, and double-digit EPS growth projections. The sales to book a little over 2 is hardly what I consider "pricey." It should be noted that revenue figures are net of reinsurance premiums. The concern I have always had about HCI is that its reinsurance was thin compared to UVE. The market undervalues these companies because of the hurricane threat, but the reinsurance policies of these two greatly reduce that concern for me. As for revenue declining, UVE wrote 48% more policies in the latest quarter year over year, although it has the goal of reducing exposure in Florida and expanding in less disaster-prone states. The result is lower average premium, but less risk and future reduction in reinsurance costs. Incidentally, I also hold CRD.A (Crawford & Company) in my portfolios, as it stands to benefit from hurricanes and other disasters.

    Regarding the investment portfolio, my original investment in UVE was because the financial growth and stability of this one's operations were disguised by huge investment losses resulting from the management going all-in on precious metal stocks at their peak. While I doubted the intelligence and gambler-mentality of the management for this decision, I suspected that once these investment losses were turned around, the quarterly comps would show huge improvements, which is happening.

    In summary, the low valuation, stock buy-backs, tailwinds from improved investment portfolio, reduction in risk exposure, probable dividend hikes and buy out potential make UVE a reasonable and conservative investment candidate in my estimation.
    Jun 22, 2014. 10:49 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Care.com: Didn't We See This Movie Already In 1999-2000? [View article]
    Good combination of common sense and creative writing style.

    I thoroughly enjoyed reading your article.

    Mind if I borrow some of your picturesque phrases ("cash bonfire," veneer of puffery," etc.) that may come in handy in describing the IPO wave that is about to inundate the market?
    Jun 21, 2014. 11:19 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • This Might Be The Cheapest Investment In Apparel [View article]
    Actually CHKE is the cheapest...single digit PE with yesterdays earnings announcement and double digit growth.
    Jun 11, 2014. 09:34 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tax Sale Bargain: NetSol Technologies [View article]
    thaze

    I read the report, and it is disappointing considering that I expected this quarter to start showing ASCENT revenues. It appears that the demand for this product is not there. Could be a temporary delay, as the emerging markets and auto leasing have slowed, but at any rate, it is bad for NTWK, given its investment in the new version. Unless in the report on May 12 there is more palpable news about the pipeline than in this report, I assume that NTWK will need to try to go back to pushing the legacy products...the report pretty much indicates this. As for the stock, I am expecting it to drop, but if the company announced two new contracts in the same month for ASCENT it could take off. Given the market attitude about these little tech stocks, there are better places to put money right now.

    Stan
    May 8, 2014. 11:12 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Cherokee, Inc.: On The Royalty Growth Path [View article]
    galacianova

    I've been bogged down on special projects. I have had to work on a huge report for a real estate developer client, and it has taken all my free time. I got this article on Cherokee out, as I felt like there was a timeliness issue. Thanks for the reminder...actually that upddate is always my most popular article, so I need to get that done. I have not been trading out of anything in the dividend portfolio lately, as I am in it for the long-term and stocks are fundamentally OK.

    Stan
    May 1, 2014. 03:59 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Cherokee, Inc.: On The Royalty Growth Path [View article]
    CT Programmer

    I cannot speak for the analyst. I do know that sometimes an analyst will update projections for one year and subsequent years will reflect a non-updated number. Also, when the company has an acquisition, there are one-time costs associated with that deal, and I think it is likely that there will be a major acquisition in the next year or two. However, I am expecting about 7 - 12% growth in subsequent years, if there are no major acquisitions. This is based on the growth factors indicated in the article.

    I use the GAAP earnings to be more conservative, that is the difference.

    Thanks for reading my article.

    Stan
    Apr 30, 2014. 10:13 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tax Sale Bargain: NetSol Technologies [View article]
    njaved

    No news from NTWK, and a lot is riding on the next earnings announcement. I was not overwhelmed by the last one, but I did not expect much either. They have had enough time to market their new version, and, as I mentioned, the first quarter of the calendar year is a good time for new and renewal software licenses. I am holding this one, but not buying more right now. I still think that the management would not be gambling on so many new hires and other growth initiatives if they did not have good visibility into the prospects for ASCENT software.

    Hope this helps,

    Stan
    Apr 24, 2014. 10:12 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Wendy's Remodeling Program Is A Worthwhile Investment [View article]
    If you like Wendy's you should love MHGU, a Wendy's franchisee with about 120 restaurants. It is building and remodeling locations, with a subsidy from Wendy's and sells for about 12 times trailing earnings, with guidance for 50% revenue and income growth. It trades pretty thinly, but one day the value will come through. It is the cheapest publicly-traded restaurant stock.
    Apr 18, 2014. 11:10 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Invest In Restaurant Tablet Transformations With NTN Buzztime [View article]
    Annual report indicates about twice as many terminations as installations in 2013...that is one reason for decreasing revenue. Also, looks like company capitalizes R & D costs...label it as "investments." If expensed, the loss would be about $2 million, not the reported $.4 million. May be the next big thing...but have my doubts that they are winning the battle over competition.

    What is better about the BEOND than competitors' product?

    I like pure play aspect, and short-term maybe they can make the next earnings report show real revenue and profit growth on BWW installations. Guess I better go to BWW and check out the tablet.
    Apr 3, 2014. 04:04 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A Glimpse At Our Small Cap Biotechnology Portfolio [View article]
    sheldond,

    Thanks for reading the article.

    I have been blessed to have had interesting opportunities in my investing career. I am not sure that going forward the old-school approach is going to be as successful, as talking heads on television seem to convince the investing public of many ideas that counter simple economics. Nonetheless, as Darrell Royal (Legendary U. of Texas coach) used to say..."you gotta dance with the one that brung ya."

    Best of luck

    Stan
    Mar 15, 2014. 09:52 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Breaking Down Abstral Sales For Galena Biopharma [View article]
    Thanks for the article,

    However, I think we are all just guessing at the Abstral number right now. Nonetheless, I will take a wild stab, based on the 5% market share comment.

    GALE has indicated they consider the market share to be $400M annually, so I think that 5% equals $20MM or about $1.6MM per month. Here is my wild guess at gross sales:

    September $1.3MM (annnounced)
    October 1.4MM
    November 1.5MM
    December 1.6MM (5% market share)

    This is $4.5MM for the quarter, but GALE reports NET revenue (after discounts, royalty, etc.) so I am thinking about 70% of GROSS is about $3MM, or high end of company projection for the quarter.

    However, using this logic and extrapolating, GALE would exit 2014 with a market share of 18% and $27MM in net revenues. At 70% margin (per September sales data), the cash flow is $19mm for 2014, or about a half year of cash burn. I think this is conservative, as margins normally increase with volume and discounts are reduced after market share is taken. This also means that GALE would be cash flow positive in Q1 2015. If Neuvax and all other initiatives were totally cancelled, GALE would be earning about $.50 per share in 2015 on Abstral alone.

    Just my thoughts.
    Feb 23, 2014. 07:53 PM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A Glimpse At Our Small Cap Biotechnology Portfolio [View article]
    Charles M.

    Every time a stock drops drastically, like DVAX after the FDA letter, a number of law firms launch "investigations" and sometimes actually pursue a case. Having been the plaintiff in some of these class-action cases, I can tell you that the shareholder rarely gets anything out of these, as the suits are either dropped or settled with the lawyers getting the settlement funds. I am not a lawyer, nor have I reviewed the cases, but from my experience, my guess is that these may cost DVAX $1-2MM to manage and settle. Not a huge issue, considering DVAX spends about $12MM on R&D each quarter. As a layman, I think it may be difficult for the law firms to prove that DVAX should have known that the FDA would not approve the submission, since it was a very close vote on safety and overwhelming approval of efficacy...but I guess it is a possibility. I think the clinical results and takeover possibilities will drive the stock price more than the lawsuits.

    Thanks for reading the article.

    Stan
    Feb 17, 2014. 06:29 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Ambarella Looks Like A Short [View article]
    BREAKING NEWS

    Today GoPro announced plans for a public offering. Big capital influx to GoPro = expanded product offerings and aggressive marketing of cameras = exponential increases in business for AMBA.

    The squeeze is on
    Feb 7, 2014. 01:17 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 15% Bump As Truett-Hurst Swings Into Profitability [View article]
    Thanks for the update.

    I was pleasantly surprised to see the strong sales growth. Frankly, I bought in some time ago because I considered THST to be "hidden value stock." Today it sells at $6 and has more than $3/share in cash, more than $2/share of wine in the cellar, and the 26 acres in Sonoma Valley on the books at only about $100k per acre. There is a $3.2MM (<$0.46 per share) mortgage on the land, that is due in 2022. Other debt is insignificant.

    I am happy to start looking at this one as a "Defensive" growth stock.
    Feb 7, 2014. 10:50 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Ambarella Looks Like A Short [View article]
    Lightened up after Google announcement...an unexpected blip.

    Noticed when momentum started bringing it back SA started pumping this article. Momentum is too powerful in this one...right or wrong, it will not stay down.

    FURTHERMORE..at upcoming earnings day...30% revenue growth, PE 25, about $5 per share in cash, no debt.

    PE would be about 15 actually if AMBA did not plow so much cash back into R&D to stay ahead of competition. The reference to competition is to placate shareholders who may prefer not so much R&D...gotta think a squeeze is inevitable.

    Just my opinion.
    Feb 5, 2014. 03:00 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
COMMENTS STATS
197 Comments
149 Likes