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  • Did American Airlines And US Airways Get A Green Light To Merge?  [View article]
    Have to agree with you there.

    No other way the players can survive.
    Nov 5, 2013. 05:03 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Kessler: Twitter aims to remake advertising  [View news story]
    Why bother including a link to a paid site?

    Those who have a subscription to the WSJ online portal already read it.

    Those who don't, can't get there from here.

    Thanks for the summary though.
    Nov 3, 2013. 09:57 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Dimon's Deal At Risk Of Collapse And Cohen's SAC To Plead To Fraud  [View article]
    And what's to keep JPM from passing the fines on to customers in the form of 'adjusted' fees and expenses?

    Somehow I think that JPM's customers will end up paying the preponderance of the fines.

    And if history serves, the smaller customers will bear the brunt of the higher fees.
    Nov 3, 2013. 02:56 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple Does Something Amazing  [View article]

    For someone without a technical background, I thought you did an excellent job of outlining the performance parameters of each type of design, the limitations and design tradeoffs that inevitably affect chip engineering, and the results produced by the various design decisions employed by AAPL, SSNLF, INTC, NVDA and their competitors.

    It also points up the backstory behind AAPL's epic brand loyalty, and shows that it's more than just the 'ecosystem' that drives AAPL buyers, but an almost unfathomable edge in performance, which is palpable but nearly subconscious.

    Thanks again,

    Nov 3, 2013. 01:18 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Best Buy Is Worth At Least $50 Per Share  [View article]
    That's funny.

    Some of them look like they haven't needed to buy their first razor.

    What would be nice is to see BBY grow its EPS organically (same store sales and internet) rather than by cutting expenses.

    There is only a limited amount of earnings growth realizable by cutting costs. Sooner or later you need to motivate people to buy more.

    As the author states, the same store sales declines have slowed. But I am waiting to see same store sales increases---which haven't taken place for 6 quarters, at least.

    Disclosure: Long BBY through its ESPP.
    Oct 31, 2013. 06:12 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple launches iPad Air, makes more software free  [View news story]
    And MSFT devices that keep getting heavier
    Oct 22, 2013. 03:10 PM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple reportedly ups 5S output by 75%, cuts 5C output by 35%  [View news story]
    Rick, you need to figure out the difference between lose (opposite of gain) and loose (opposite of tight).
    Oct 19, 2013. 10:20 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why I Am Considering Buying J.C. Penney  [View article]
    So was Circuit City.
    Oct 19, 2013. 02:07 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Disney In Good Financial Condition?  [View article]
    Well put, and an excellent point about goodwill.

    Companies who don't systematically invest in their brand to promote the value of goodwill can see that value become 'badwill' in short order.

    And since goodwill is an intangible asset, any drop in its value is felt immediately by stockholders.

    As you stated, it's a credit to DIS that its goodwill produces real revenues and cash flow.

    Which seems destined to rise in the years to come.
    Oct 15, 2013. 09:51 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Costco: Expansion The Difference Maker  [View article]
    A recent article in The Motley Fool stated that the company's membership fees represented 2% of revenue, but 77% of operating profits:

    I agree with you that determining its success in signing up new members would be beneficial.

    I suppose one way to track that statistic would be to see how that relationship moves over time. If membership fees remain stable at the 2% level and maintain their relationship to operating profits, then it would suggest that COST is signing up new members at least as readily as in the past.

    On the other hand, if its profit contribution falls, it may indicate penetration into new markets is less rosy than anticipated.

    To me, CapEx doesn't mean much in the retail world. Even if COST capitalizes its operating leases (don't know whether they do), the primary metrics are operating efficiency and ROIC, which are quite healthy.

    Overall though, it's hard not to like the company.
    Oct 15, 2013. 03:55 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Housing affordability hits 4-year low  [View news story]
    shouldn't the headline read 'home affordability at an all time high'?
    Oct 14, 2013. 03:00 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Disney In Good Financial Condition?  [View article]
    And as far as the hater who started this thread, perhaps he had an
    "unhappy" experience at the "Happiest Place on Earth."
    Oct 12, 2013. 03:33 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Disney In Good Financial Condition?  [View article]
    Good article, and full of clear explanations for the major areas of DIS's balance sheet.

    I believe more articles like yours would be helpful on SA to assist new investors, or people who are newly exposed to financial statements and how to read them.

    Too often, it seems that contributors take the position that everyone who is a SA member is a 'savvy investor.'

    As noted by two of the previous posters, this is hardly the case. Many people join SA to learn more about investing, not necessarily to parrot their knowledge about investing.

    Great job!


    Disclosure: Small long position in BBY through its ESPP. DIS investor through 401(k) with my current employer (one of the funds I invest in has DIS as one of its components).

    25 year career as financial and credit analyst for a variety of community, regional, and national banks.
    Oct 12, 2013. 02:12 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • J. C. Penney Bonds: Penny Wise Or Pound Foolish?  [View article]
    Agree. The Gulf disaster mentioned by Zeus2012 looks more and more like a 'Black Swan' event, which, to the company's credit, spurred myriad improvements in well monitoring, engineering upgrades, and a renewed emphasis on safer offshore oil production.

    I have not followed BP in depth, but it seems to me that the likelihood of a spill on the magnitude of the prior one is lower than ever, not only for BP, but for other companies with significant offshore drilling interests.

    It is reasonable to think that competitors adopted some of the same upgrades for their production facilities.

    Thanks again for the commentary!
    Oct 6, 2013. 05:46 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • J. C. Penney Bonds: Penny Wise Or Pound Foolish?  [View article]
    I disagree with your analysis.

    The Z score was developed to predict bankruptcy probability based on the operating metrics of small manufacturing companies that have raw materials, WIP, and finished goods inventory.

    These companies also sell on credit and have significant accounts receivable and payable balances in relationship to the rest of their balance sheets.

    The characteristics of manufacturing entities are vastly different from those of a broad line retailer that recognizes the preponderance of its sales upon product delivery, has no raw materials or WIP inventory, and has a sales cycle materially shorter than that of a manufacturing firm.

    The Z score is helpful to predict bankruptcy likelihood for manufacturers. In my opinion, it is not a viable bankruptcy predictor for non-manufacturing firms.

    Disclosure: Commercial loan underwriter and credit analyst for a variety of financial institutions spanning a 25+ year career, reviewing the financial and operating metrics of virtually all types of companies ranging from small (<$1 million revenue) to large (>$25 billion revenue) firms.
    Oct 6, 2013. 12:50 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment