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  • 3 Apple iPhone Killers [View article]
    Harry, the mistake you are making, imho, is that you aren't considering all of the variables in the smartphone market. My wife just dropped her iPhone in the drink. Fortunately, we bought applecare; we paid them $50 and a very intelligent young man had her up and running with a new phone in less than a half hour. I would buy an iPhone for the warranty and customer service even if it had less features. My personal experience with several Android phones wasn't good. They looked good; they had great features, but they had big problems. Android has bad stability issues. All of our phones would do uncommanded reboots. The battery life was terrible! We had to keep buying new batteries and they never seemed to do as well as the OEM batteries. Fragmentation caused big problems. The Android gang doesn't make money off of keeping your phone on the latest version, so they generally don't update them. Apple does. Android has terrible malware problems. It is so bad that Samsung has started supplying antivirus software to try to help. The integration of the ecosystem also makes Apple sticky. Finally, Apple has a huge advantage because they engineer from the ground up. From performance to battery life, Apple's engineering produces far better results. Simply comparing phone features doesn't tell half the story, just as comparing HP and engine displacement doesn't really tell the whole story on car buying.
    Sep 6 07:41 AM | 48 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Signs Of An Approaching Bear Market [View article]
    It may be about to turn bear on us; I have no idea, but this will likely be the first bear market that has been ushered in by hundreds of articles from financial pundits. I have seen so many bear market articles in the last few weeks that I suspect Mr. Market is trembling in the corner, and the next move is up...we will see.
    Aug 14 04:28 PM | 33 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple: A Reversal Of Fortune Seems Inevitable [View article]
    OTOH mag, I might look at an opposing viewpoint. The installed base of phones and potential user base have exploded for Apple in the last couple of years. I have seen multiple rumors "from the supply chain" saying Apple has ordered 70-80 MM iP6s for CY 14, which is more like 40-50% growth! One estimate I saw recently was 200MM upgrades alone! You have to look at the upgrade cycle. Also, Apple stock has gone into Saturn 5 mode after new product categories of the past. Rumors are again popping that they have not one, but *multiple* new categories, on the way over the next six months. Michael was making the exact same argument when Apple was selling in the 50s (equiv) a few months ago. I tried to warn him, and he wouldn't give up on his short thesis for any reason or reasoning. Comparing Apple and Blackberry is like saying that what happened to AMD is happening to Intel. They are very different situations. Between the huge cash flow and buy back and the strong overall growth, Apple is still priced like a cheap value stock, yet it has started another strong growth phase. Take a look around at the multiples and you will realize there are few quality NSDQ stocks that are cheaper. GLTA.
    Aug 9 05:23 AM | 33 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • An Intelligent Investor Should Consider REITs [View article]
    Brad, you are my favorite REIT author by a large margin and I'm sure I am not alone. Very useful and profitable info, presented with a mix of humor. Don't let the peanut gallery comments get under your skin. Please keep the great articles coming.
    Jul 18 08:06 AM | 31 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 8 Reasons Why A New Global Financial Crisis Could Be On The Way [View article]
    Or as the saying goes, the generals are busy fighting the last war. This is about the 25th article in August by an educated person predicting or discussing the next crisis/crash/bubble. It could happen, but probably not at this time, just too many folks predicting/discussing it. Probably going to climb that wall of worry, as everything gets better--incomes, employment, personal wealth, etc.
    Aug 23 08:06 PM | 29 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • With Apple Over $100, Time To Sell? [View article]
    Another way of looking at Apple right now is through the lens focused on the cash and the buyback. They have reduced the share count roughly 10% since late '12 (split adjusted) and they will likely take that number to about 20% by the end of next year. I made the argument last year that the price *can't* stay low because Apple's shares will evaporate over the next 10-15 years, just based on cash flow and share reduction. Of course, that won't happen, and either profits will evaporate or the price of the stock will have to go up commensurately. Assuming no growth from '12-next year, the equivalent high will be about $120. The funny thing is that Apple is very cheap right now with current fundamentals compared to its peer group. If Apple was priced the same as the Nasdaq 100 today it would be about $135! But, who doesn't think Apple is one of the best (and should have a price premium) stocks in the Nasdaq 100? If not the best! And that is with the best product pipeline in the modern history of Apple Computer coming in the next few weeks/months!
    Aug 20 08:39 AM | 29 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Clean Energy Fuels' LNG Strategy Is Crumbling [View article]
    Wonderland, all of this sudden negative press appears a little odd to me, but I will certainly listen to what they have to say. I look at insider purchases and sales a lot to find out what the smartest people are doing. One of the smartest "insiders" on natural gas, and unbiased by profit motives, is UPS. UPS has been operating thousands of alternative vehicles for many years, including LNG and CNG. They study details and cost like nobody else. They even brag about ordering which foot the drivers step out of their vans to deliver packages. They also squeeze blood out of turnips to find every penny. The fact that they are one of the most experienced, largest, and smartest operators of both CNG and LNG vehicles, gives them "insider status" in my book. They will take delivery of 700 tractors btw, so you have to wonder why UPS rejected CNG for LNG. The fact that they picked CLNE and LNG over CNG tells me that these authors could be wrong in their cost analysis.
    Feb 8 06:51 PM | 24 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's CC: iPad sales, margins, M&A, cash balances discussed [View news story]
    Sammy, AAPL is selling for about half the PE of the Nasdaq 100! Apple is cheap. If you back out $20+ a share for the cash, Apple is one of the cheapest stocks out there. With a whole bunch of new products due out in the next three+ months, it is a steal imo.
    Jul 22 06:51 PM | 23 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • American Realty Capital Properties: Rapid Growth At A Cheap Price [View article]
    We can't kid ourselves. The stock is likely down because they just dumped 120MM shares at a big discount to recent stock prices. It was over 20% higher this year, and about 50% higher a year ago. ARCP's stock price is deeply depressed and very unstable for a REIT, and the mgmt team is diluting like no tomorrow. Reducing share count, while increasing earnings, makes the stock go up, btw.
    May 23 09:27 PM | 23 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Margin Debt Peaks May Indicate End Of Cyclical Bull Market [View article]
    How about some critical thinking here, folks: a couple of problems I have, he didn't adequately address interest rates and their effect on margin debt imho. Sophisticated investors might be expected to borrow more when they have to pay little in interest. In many of the examples provided, interest rates were much higher, so margin might indicate more speculation and less sophistication! Certainly, adding leverage at low rates is considered smart business by companies. Also, when dealing with percentage changes rather than actual numbers, we might be misled. Do we really think a couple of hundred billion is going to crash or goose the market? It is a tiny speck on the total market cap. It may be an outlier, or a proxy, but a couple of hundred billion over 5 years isn't going to do much. Interesting read, though.
    Aug 19 07:31 PM | 21 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple $700: Don't Get Burned Again [View article]
    The problems with the Nexus 7 are significant. It has good specs, but it is buggy, as Android always seems to be, and it is heavily subsidized by Google's cash. Meaning, companies don't produce profitless products. The unintended consequence for Google is that they are killing the Android tablet market. Why produce a tablet you make no money on? Why would any customer buy a $375, buggy Android tablet when they can get a better $229, buggy tablet from Google? Only Amazon can compete. They heavily subsidize their tablets, too. But, regular companies won't go there, and Google is killing its own partners. Also, specs appeal to geeks, but regular customers care more about stability, apps, integration, overall design and customer support. That is why Apple does better than the tech geek sites think they should...customers could care less about a geekbench score.
    Aug 19 08:40 AM | 20 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A Long-Term Threat To Apple [View article]
    And the WSJ along with others say Apple has ordered 70-80MM iP6s this year, or about a 40%-50% jump. It sounds like Apple disagrees with Fitch and is willing to bet billions and billions of dollars that they are right and Fitch is completely wrong. I expect China to consume an obscene amount of iP6s. BTW, anywhere close to those numbers would produce a monster of a holiday quarter, the likes of which haven't been seen.
    Aug 13 04:10 PM | 19 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple Headed To $700 In 2014, What's Next For The Market [View article]
    All of the talk about China Mobile and Icahn has actually obscured the real story people should be watching: valuation. The market has been on a tear while Apple's stock is still down over 20% in the last year+. The mauling of AAPL has left it at a huge discount to all of the major averages. So, we are all looking for investments and bonds, REITs, and commodities are scary, while regular stocks are so expensive they are approaching scary. There just aren't many cheap companies out there that have any kind of a growth story at all--Apple is a rare gem at the moment imho.
    Dec 6 11:28 AM | 19 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Apple's Secret Hedge Fund Prepping For A Dividend Boost? [View article]
    I think the Board needs a wake-up from Siri! The immediate question I have is, what is the rate of return for this fund, and how much better would 60B of this have been deployed if they had been buying back the stock for the last four years? They could have removed 200 million shares at an average cost of $300! Since they wouldn't be paying the dividend on those shares, they would not be paying out 10.60X200mm, or 2.12 billion a year--likely more than they are making on the whole fund. Why they don't see this is beyond reason! What could they not buy with 76B in cash? If they want to buy Intel, or some other monster, they could just do it with stock! The stock would be much, much higher if there were only 741mm shares outstanding!
    Feb 6 10:02 AM | 18 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple: Don't Follow The Herd [View article]
    Let's draw back and take a look at the big picture. The S&P 500 is valued in the 12-14 PE range for '13 estimates (very roughly). Assuming Apple makes about $50 a share that valuation would be $600-700 right now for AAPL. However, Apple is outgrowing most of the other 499 companies by a very large margin. Apple also has over $100 billion in net cash, and they are adding 20-30 billion a year *after* paying their dividend and meeting their obligations. Focusing on this or that product may not be a reason to buy, but buying because the Apple engineering team has produced blockbuster hit after blockbuster hit is a very good reason to invest. The selloff has reached the insane level imho. A good comparison might be QCOM. With QCOM's current valuation AAPL would be selling for very close to $700. Apple is growing faster and has a lot more cash. An AMZN valuation would put AAPL in the thousands.
    Jan 1 07:23 AM | 18 Likes Like |Link to Comment
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