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SSNLF vs. ETF Alternatives
Monday, Sep 305:54 PMDRAM prices remain high, NAND pricing mixed
Monday, Sep 305:54 PM| Comment!
- Susquehanna's Mehdi Hosseini reports spot prices for 2GB 1333MHz. DDR3 PC DRAM chips remain 45% above contract prices in the wake of a giant Sep.4 fire at an SK Hynix (HXSCL.OB) plant that knocked out a large chunk of global DRAM output. Contract prices are up 5% in Q3, adding to large YTD gains.
- NAND flash contract prices are down 3% on the quarter, but spot prices for most NAND types are now well above contract prices. The Hynix fire has been expected to boost NAND prices by shifting NAND production towards DRAM.
- In spite of the figures, Hosseini rates Micron (MU) a Hold. However, he has Buy ratings on fellow memory makers Hynix, SanDisk (SNDK), and Samsung (SSNLF.PK, SSNGY.OB).
- On Friday, Stifel joined the Micron PT-raising bandwagon ($24 from $20). The firm was encouraged a talk with Micron's IR chief focused on "structural changes to the memory industry" brought about by consolidation, rather than "tactical issues" such as ASPs and cyclical trends.
- Previous: Micron receives another PT hike as DRAM prices soar
Monday, Sep 301:26 PMApple, Google top list of most valuable brands
Monday, Sep 301:26 PM| 17 Comments
- Apple (AAPL) and Google (GOOG) passed Coca-Cola to take the top two spots in Interbrand's annual ranking of the world's most valuable brands. 2013 marks the first time in the history of the 13-year-old survey Coke wasn't ranked #1. (PR)
- Interbrand estimates Apple's brand value rose 28% Y/Y to $98.3B, and Google's 34% to $93.3B. Four other tech names made the top-10: IBM (#4, +4% to $78.8B), Microsoft (MSFT - #5, +3% to $60B), Samsung (SSNLF.PK, SSNGY.OB - #8, +20% to $39.6B), and Intel (INTC - #9, -5% to $37.3B).
- Though it only came in at #19, Amazon's (AMZN) brand value is estimated to have risen 27% to $23.6B. Likewise, Interbrands thinks EBAY's brand value rose 20% to $13.2B, leading its ranking to rise 8 spots to #28.
Monday, Sep 301:06 PMTSMC to reportedly handle majority of Apple A8 CPU production
Monday, Sep 301:06 PM| Comment!
- South Korea's Hankyung reports TSMC (TSM -0.1%) will manufacture 60%-70% of Apple's next-gen A8 CPUs, and Samsung (SSNLF.PK, SSNGY.OB) the remaining 30%-40%.
- The WSJ reported in July TSMC will begin manufacturing some A-series CPUs in 2014, but added Samsung will remain the primary supplier through year's end (this could still be the case even if TSMC handles a majority of A7 output).
- The A8 is expected to use a cutting-edge 20nm manufacturing process. Both TSMC and Samsung are looking to ramp 20nm production in early 2014.
- Apple's A7, which is found in the iPhone 5S and should (in some form) go into the 5th-gen iPad, is made by Samsung using a 28nm process.
Thursday, Sep 266:34 PMReports: Intel TV project in trouble, talks held with Amazon and Samsung
Thursday, Sep 266:34 PM| 19 Comments
- With Intel (INTC) at risk of missing a year-end target for launching its Web-based pay-TV service thanks to stalled licensing talks, Bloomberg reports the chip giant is "seeking partnerships to jumpstart the project." In particular, a partner "with a base of Internet subscribers or rights to films and television shows."
- AllThingsD reports something similar, while adding "it’s possible the project will be scrapped" if a partner isn't found. Intel is said to be talking with Amazon (AMZN) and Samsung (SSNLF.PK, SSNGY.OB) about a possible deal.
- Bloomberg's sources claim the project has slowed since Brian Krzanich, who is more interested in Intel's mobile chip progress, became CEO.
- Intel has bought startups to strengthen its TV efforts, and has promised novel features such as a cloud DVR service that stores every item of programming for 3 days. But reaching content deals with media giants has reportedly been tough, thanks partly to the objections of pay-TV incumbents such as Time Warner Cable.
Thursday, Sep 261:39 PMChina Mobile poster leak suggests iPhone launch on tap
Thursday, Sep 261:39 PM| 30 Comments
- A Chinese-language site (translation) has leaked an image for a China Mobile (CHL +0.5%) poster advertising the iPhone 5S and 5C (AAPL +0.6%). The posters make note of the 5S/5C's support for CHL's TD-LTE 4G network.
- One source tells the site sales could start in November, following testing in September/October.
- The WSJ reported on Sep. 6 Apple is getting ready to ship iPhones to China Mobile, and Chinese regulators recently gave the iPhone a green light to run on CHL's network (unofficially, many of the carrier's subs already use iPhones, courtesy of grey-market purchases).
- IDC estimates the iPhone only had a 5% share of the Chinese smartphone market in Q2, thanks in part to its premium pricing in a market where per capita GDP (in absolute dollars) is a little above $6K. Samsung (SSNLF.PK, SSNGY.OB) is assigned an 18.3% share, and local Android vendors Lenovo (LNVGY.PK), Coolpad, ZTE (ZTCOY.PK), and Huawei shares of 12.6%, 11%, 8.8%, and 8.7%, respectively.
- Also: IDC thinks smartphones with 5"+ displays will account for nearly 20% of 2013 Chinese sales, and 50% of 2017 sales. Apple, which has faced growing calls to offer a larger iPhone, is reportedly thinking of offering phones with displays ranging from 4.8"-6".
Thursday, Sep 269:40 AMAll eyes on Wal-Mart and its suppliers
Thursday, Sep 269:40 AM| Comment!
- The problem at Wal-Mart (WMT +0.2%) is simply a mismatch between sales and inventory buildup, according to a follow-up from Bloomberg after yesterday's story created a broad ripple in the retail sector.
- Even if orders aren't being cut across the board as the company steadfastly maintains, in some discretionary-product areas there is likely to be a drop.
- WMT suppliers to watch: PG, PEP, TSN, KRFT, SSNLF.PK, JAH, HBI, Li & Fung, MAT.
Wednesday, Sep 2512:58 PMSamsung launching enterprise app platform, curved display phone
Wednesday, Sep 2512:58 PM| 3 Comments
- The Samsung Solutions Exchange (SSNLF.PK, SSNGY.OB), announced this morning, represents the electronics giant's biggest effort yet to grow its enterprise mobile clout, and in doing so become a little less dependent on Google.
- The exchange serves as an app store for enterprise-specific apps, provides access to Samsung's enterprise SDK and 1K+ APIs, and acts as a meeting place for developers and businesses. It complements Samsung's SAFE initiative, which provides the company's Android hardware with a variety of security, device management, and data-syncing features.
- Though Android's smartphone unit share is now over 5x that of the iPhone's, iOS has been faring better in the enterprise, thanks to both demographics and Android security concerns.
- Separately, Samsung announces it will launch a phone with a curved display next month in South Korea. Details are currently light, but there's a good chance the phone will use Universal Display's (OLED +1.1%) flexible OLED tech.
- Also: Samsung says it has developed image sensor tech that significantly improves the light sensitivity and color fidelity of its CMOS image sensors. The technology, known as Isocell, will be used in an 8MP sensor set to be mass-produced in Q4.
- Isocell could make Samsung a tougher competitor to OmniVision (OVTI +0.9%). However, Samsung's rivals might not be crazy about depending on the company for their image sensor needs.
Monday, Sep 232:37 PMMicron receives another PT hike as DRAM prices soar
Monday, Sep 232:37 PM| 4 Comments
- Wedbush's Betsy Van Hees, who is lifting her Micron (MU -1.6%) PT to $23 from $16: "While checks indicate demand for handsets, PCs and tablets have modestly improved since Aug, any prior concerns we had for near-term memory supply outstripping demand have been eradicated following the fire at SK Hynix's (HXSCL.OB) DRAM fab in China..."
- RBC upped its Micron PT two weeks ago on account of the fire, noting it puts 30% SK Hynix's 2013 DRAM production "at immediate risk." Susquehanna upgraded shares to Neutral, estimating the fire will lower OEM/channel DRAM inventories by 2-3 weeks. Hynix expects to be back to full capacity somewhere in November.
- DRAM prices, which were already up strongly in 2013 going into September, have been soaring since the fire broke out on Sep. 4; DRAMeXchange estimates spot prices for 2Gb DDR3 chips are up 42%, benefiting both Micron and Samsung (SSNLF.PK, SSNGY.OB).
- SanDisk (SNDK -0.5%) benefits to the extent tight DRAM capacity/surging prices lead manufacturers to reallocate NAND production lines to DRAM.
- Micron is selling off today, but remains up 12% since news of the fire first broke.
Tuesday, Sep 171:32 PMChanos remains bearish on China and those that supply it
Tuesday, Sep 171:32 PM| 1 Comment
- Don't draw any conclusions against the sale of his entire stake in JPMorgan (JPM), Jim Chanos tells Bloomberg. It was a hedge against his shorting of a number of Chinese banks (ETF: CHIX). He reminds he's still long Citigroup (C) against the Chinese shorts. "Our business is still shorting ... China has been a bright spot."
- Having said that, Chanos is finding himself enamored of a tech stock he originally purchased as a hedge: Samsung (SSNLF.PK, SSNGY.OB).
- Back in China, Chanos says the country's credit system has "gone crazy" - new debt is growing at 30-40% of GDP per year vs. about 10% nominal GDP growth (and Chanos doesn't buy the GDP numbers). Other than Chinese banks, Chanos remains short CAT along with a number of others which benefitted from the global materials boom. Two names he mentions are Australia's Fortescue (FSUMF.PK) and VALE.
- China ETFs: FXI, GXC, PGJ, YAO, FCHI, PEK, CAF, YXI, XPP, FXP, MCHI, YINN, YANG, TCHI, CHXF, KFYP.
Tuesday, Sep 1712:47 PMSamsung sells off on forex concerns
Tuesday, Sep 1712:47 PM| Comment!
- Samsung (SSNLF.PK, SSNGY.OB) fell 2.7% in Seoul on worries plunging emerging markets currencies will take a toll on its home appliance and TV sales.
- The Indian rupee, Russian ruble, Brazilian real, and Indonesian rupiah have all fallen hard this summer. Reuters has reported emerging markets nations are planning an intervention.
- Samsung shares have already been pressured this year by weaker-than-expected Galaxy S4 sales, and broader concerns about a smartphone mix shift towards cheaper/lower-margin Android hardware.
Thursday, Sep 125:01 AMTablets to overtake PCs in Q4
Thursday, Sep 125:01 AM| 2 Comments
- Shipments of tablet computers will outstrip those of PCs for the first time in Q4, research firm IDC predicts, saying that tablet deliveries will reach 84.1M units and PC shipments 83.1M.
- Those benefiting from the trend include Apple (AAPL), Amazon (AMZN) and Samsung (SSNLF.PK), while those suffering include HP (HPQ), Microsoft (MSFT) and Dell (DELL).
- The total market for Internet-connected devices of desktops, laptops, smartphones and tablets is projected to climb 28% to $622.4B in 2013 and then to $735.1B in 2015. (PR)
Saturday, Sep 79:00 AMLenovo in attack mode on mobile
Saturday, Sep 79:00 AM| 20 Comments
- With PC's now in "protect" mode, the "attack" part of Lenovo (LNVGY.PK) CEO Yang Yuanqing's "Protect and Attack" strategy has shifted to tablets and smartphones. Yang has reorganized the company to address "attack markets" head-on, and believes even gorillas Apple (AAPL) and Samsung (SSNLF.PK, SSNGY.OB) aren't invincible.
- "We know the playbook; we've done it on PCs," says Gerry Smith who has seen it up close as a former Dell exec, and now heads Lenovo's Americas group. "We can attack on scale. We'll attack on cost efficiency and speed. We can attack these guys from the bottom, and put a lot of pressure on them from a product portfolio, pricing, time-to-market perspective."
- Lenovo produced 11.4M smartphones and 1.5M tablets in FQ1, a triple and a quadruple, respectively, from a year earlier. The company this week launched a new flagship premium phone, the Vibe X, and plans a number of other new products before year's end.
- "What P/E would investors pay for a 'Chinese Apple,'" asks bullish portfolio manager James Weir. He notes the company continues to gain market share in flat PC markets, but the potential for "rerating" is in mobile. "If Lenovo can keep growing this, they can earn the right to be rated with Apple and Samsung as a sexy consumer electronics player, not just a PC box seller."
- SA Pro's Stephen Simpson is of a similar mind about Lenovo's opportunity in mobile.
Thursday, Sep 52:50 PMMicron, SanDisk rally on new Hynix fire reports, surging memory prices
Thursday, Sep 52:50 PM| 2 Comments
- Countering comments made by SK Hynix (HXSCL.OB) yesterday, Wedge Partners says the fire that broke out at Hynix's Chinese memory fab will cause at least a 2-month production delay, and that Hynix has suspended price negotiations with clients.
- The remarks come as DRAM spot prices jump 20% on account of the fire, and reports emerge several top memory manufacturers have joined Hynix in putting shipments on hold.
- There could be major downstream ramifications: TrendForce thinks 11M notebook shipments and 10M smartphone shipments will be affected within a month if "main production procedures are halted." The firm estimates it will take 6 months for all of the damage to be fixed.
- Prior to the fire, DRAM and NAND prices had been slumping this summer after rallying earlier this year.
- Micron (MU +3%) and SanDisk (SNDK +1.9%) are adding to yesterday's gains. DRAM/NAND giant Samsung (SSNLF.PK, SSNGY.OB) rose 1.9% overnight in Seoul, while Hynix fell 1.8%.
Thursday, Sep 59:44 AMBattery makers could benefit from bigger productions runs from Tesla Motors
Thursday, Sep 59:44 AM| 12 Comments
- Tesla Motors (TSLA +0.1%) will have an outsized impact on the global battery industry if the automaker keeps pace with its production forecast, according to VentureBeat.
- As a result of Tesla's aggressive production ramp-up, Panasonic (PC +2.5%) has expanded capacity and Samsung (SSNLF.PK, SSNGY.OB) is negotiating to produce batteries for Tesla.
Wednesday, Sep 42:38 PMSamsung Galaxy Note 3, new Note 10.1 launched
Wednesday, Sep 42:38 PM| 3 Comments
- As expected, Samsung's (SSNLF.PK, SSNGY.OB) Galaxy Note 3 phablet has a mammoth 5.7" 1080p display. It also features a 13MP camera that can record 4K video, a split-screen feature called Multi Window (can run different apps or the same one), an improved S Pen stylus, new handwriting apps, and a menu of stylus-related actions (called Air Command) that pops up whenever the stylus is pulled out. (live blog)
- As with the S4, Qualcomm (QCOM +0.9%) will be powering a large chunk of shipped units, no doubt thanks to its 4G baseband edge. While the 3G-only version of the Note 3 uses Samsung's (1.9GHz.., 8-core) Exynos Octa CPU, 4G models will use a (2.3GHZ., quad-core) Qualcomm Snapdragon 800.
- Though featuring a bigger display than the Note II, the Note 3 is a bit lighter. The phone will hit all major U.S. carriers in October. Samsung is looking to both profit from burgeoning phablet demand, and keep competitors such as Sony, Huawei, LG, and (soon) Nokia/Microsoft at bay.
- Also launched: a new Note 10.1 tablet featuring a high-res display (2560x1600), an 8MP camera, a revamped S Pen, and many of the apps/UI tricks found in the Note 3. Though Samsung's tablet share has grown to 18% (per IDC), the iPad still dominates the high-end segment, thanks in part to its edge with regards to tablet-specific apps.
- Samsung is doing what it can to differentiate via unique software/services in spite of its heavy dependence on Google. The S4 came packed with proprietary Samsung tools, but sales have nonetheless fallen short of (high) targets.
- Previous: Samsung launches $299 Gear smartwatch
Wednesday, Sep 42:03 PMSamsung launches $299 Gear smartwatch
Wednesday, Sep 42:03 PM| 14 Comments
- Samsung's (SSNLF.PK, SSNGY.OB) anticipated Galaxy Gear has a 1.63" AMOLED display with a 320x320 resolution, an 800MHz. CPU, a 1.9MP camera (supports video recording), a speaker, and two microphones. Also included: a pedometer, a low-power Bluetooth radio for taking calls and otherwise communicating with a paired smartphone, and 4GB of storage. (live blog)
- Many of these details were leaked in previous reports.
- 70 apps are initially supported, including some from well-known developers such as Pocket and Evernote. Samsung fitness/health apps are included, as is the company's Samsung's S Voice voice-recognition platform. Samsung promises a day of battery life under normal use (is that enough?).
- The Verge calls the Gear "a smartwatch like no other," but is critical of "the speed and intuitiveness of the user interface," as well as the device's speaker (not loud enough) and price. Engadget: "As we've come to expect with many first-generation devices, the Gear has quite a few shortcomings, some of which likely have yet to come to light."
- Aside from the aforementioned issues, Samsung has to contend with a growing preference among younger consumers to forgo wearing watches in favor of using their phones to check the time. On the other hand, Samsung and rivals might be able to credibly argue smartwatches offer a faster/more convenient way to take pictures, pull up e-mails, check sports scores, and carry out other basic tasks.
- The Gear goes on sale in the U.S. in early October. For now, it only works with devices running Android 4.3.
- View all 3 replies
gabi1:: i've read the same article and wondred the same question ...
JABATOCA:: Impossible, no way.,
- View all 4 replies
sunderlove:: what is your short position @pianist?
Thepianist:: @sunderlove I dont have any.
- View all 8 replies
Buffet_or_Broke:: I don't think we'll get an announcement until the conference call in April.
cervajo:: It could be speacially is the earning and 3q outlook aren´t so good
- View all 11 replies
Yabkong:: . According to him, Nokia can come back again because the phone for a sign which everyone wants.
Yabkong:: Also in emerging markets such as India, Nokia's smartphone range is a success.
- View all 2 replies
Dr. Kris:: Samsung is so cool. But am wondering if cross-eyed people (focally challenged?) will have problems with it.
Boaz Berkowitz:: Good question!