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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
  • 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 $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
  • 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
  • The Coming Market Impact Of Apple's 64-Bit A7 [View article]
    >>Apple headed in a completely different direction that offers revenue growth and increased margins. Contrary to belief, $300 phones are a dead end.<<
    Careful, that is like yelling fire in a theater! For the last two months we have lived on a steady diet of, "Apple doesn't know what they are doing; they need a $300 phone to survive." Interesting article. To me the ability to create the A6 and A7 on an annual cadence is pretty amazing. Intel uses tick-tock, and Apple is doing a tick and a tock every year while increasing performance in the 100% range! Wow. MSFT updates Windows every couple of years, yet Apple is updating IOS and OSX once a year. Wow again. When I see articles on websites complaining about Apple's lack of innovation because of the plastic phones, I get tickled.
    Oct 2 05:28 PM | 17 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What Should Apple Investors Really Expect Over The Next 3 Years? [View article]
    You make some interesting points. I think Mr. Market has gone insane on Apple. A quick look at the WSJ shows us the TTM PE for the S&P 500 is a little under 18, and the Nas 100 is 16+.
    Apple's current 10.4 PE is irrationally low imo. If the S&P collapsed to such a valuation, we would be looking at 2009 numbers on today's earnings! So, why should Apple get such a deep discount--.60 cents on the dollar to the average S&P company? I think your numbers are a reasonable what if, but even with those numbers there is way too much cash flow to justify such a low price for the shares. Mr. Market is pricing in disaster for Apple. Not crediting the cash at all, even using the ~16.5PE number of the Nas 100, Mr. Market is saying Apple's earnings should fall to below $30 a share! They made almost $14/sh last qtr! I think they will manage another $16 over the next three qtrs cumulatively. Apple at the same16 PE TTM as the rest of the Nas 100 is just over $700! That gives zero credit for the cash. The market had it right in September, and when China Mobile, or the next wave of products are announced we should head back there. Unless, of course, Apple is imploding and they won't offer anything competitive and profitable going forward. It is possible, but I doubt it.
    Feb 7 07:29 AM | 17 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple urges shareholders vote against Icahn buyback proposal [View news story]
    Apple seems pretty ungrateful to me. AAPL was floundering *after* the buyback--down below $400 a couple of times. The executive team and Board just seemed helpless and impotent to create value--Mr. Cook was even quoted as saying they didn't care about the stock price!!! Icahn stepped up, made a number of bold buy calls and AAPL took off. He led the cavalry charge that saved Apple's stock in '13. Some on WS feel Apple views the stock simply as their own private compensation system and they aren't shareholder friendly. Even Board members have been given tens of millions of dollars in stock--hundreds of millions in aggregate, which many of them have completely dumped. What Icahn is proposing is that Apple become more shareholder friendly. They say they need flexibility and they have over 100 Bn in cash, much of it earning next to nothing. I think they should put one of Icahn's financial experts on the Board and listen to him. I hope the shareholders will vote with Icahn. Apple's stock will likely keep climbing. WS respects Icahn's team. If he sells, Apple could head back down into the $400s.
    Dec 27 06:30 PM | 16 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What Matters About Apple [View article]
    Finally, somebody gets it *and* they can present it in an article well! Thx! We take the accruals and we can reduce the share count, then we can increase the dividend by the same percentage at no extra cost to Apple. This is why the past accruals are so important in seeing Apple's cheap valuation! Even if they just keep doing what they have been doing, we are likely looking at about $300 Bn in the next five years (150+30/yr), and that is very moderate growth. Simply reducing the share count by 50% over the next 5 years means they will be earning $70-$80 a share in '18! Now, suppose they bring out new products and categories. This is one of the best articles I have seen on why Apple is a great long term buy! Somewhere along the way investors will figure this out and expand the multiple. 75X today's Nasdaq 100 PE is a stock price of about 1600.
    Dec 24 09:28 AM | 16 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple rallies; U.S. iPad demand strong over Thanksgiving/Black Friday [View news story]
    Most of the really good analysts were calling for 2-4MM iPad mini Rs this whole qtr. The only thing is, Apple offered it weeks sooner than expected and, so far, the availability has been better than last year! Digitimes said a few days ago that, based on suppliers' chipset orders, they thought Apple made 4MM in November alone! I have said all along that I think Apple stands better than an obscure chance of selling >30 million iPads this qtr! Couple that with the WSJ report that a Foxconn exec told them they were running 300K people in mfring the 5S alone, and at an astounding rate of 45MM phones a qtr, and it leads me to believe Apple is going to have to raise guidance next month. That would likely be more than 60MM phones if the WSJ source is correct. This report says that IOS users outnumbered Android users yesterday in online shopping by a factor of 9-2!! Wow.
    Nov 29 12:06 PM | 15 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's 64 Bit A7 - What It Really Means [View article]
    Actually, I think the most impressive comparison is normalized battery life. This has gotten no press. Probably because the press isn't smart enough to understand it!! Take the battery life for given tests in minutes from Anandtech and divide it by the battery size in watt hours and you get minutes per watt hour of battery--a true apples-to-apples comparison of efficiency. For instance, the iPhone 5S is almost 300% more efficient than the Galaxy S4 on LTE web surfing!! It is way more efficient than the MotoX. It is like comparing a 4 cylinder engine that wins in the 0-60 test with a big V-8, yet the 4 banger gets almost 3X better gas mileage! So, not only do they outperform, they are actually doing it far, far more efficiently. This has big implications for iPad vs competition, too. The bigger screens do draw more power, but Apple is still winning in the efficiency department by a large margin.
    Oct 16 12:03 PM | 15 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Can't Apple's Stock Gain Momentum? [View article]
    Apple needs to stop making billions and start paying people to buy their iPads and iPhones (like Google and AMZN), and they need to start buying old PCs for $200 (like MSFT), and they need to grow profitless revenues aggressively (like AMZN). Oh, and they need to stop paying the huge dividend to subsidize money losing products (GOOG and AMZN) They need to stop the buyback and sell new shares (like P). I think they could get to $1000 in a few weeks...
    Sep 17 01:44 PM | 15 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 3 Apple iPhone Killers [View article]
    Matthew, you are funny! I believe it is actually $8 a month now isn't it? Let me help you with the math. $8 a month is $192 for a two year contract, or about 2X the cost of Apple care! You may think paying a small monthly charge is cheaper, but you have to use a calculator and compare the totals. Also, what kind of phone do you want to compare because TMOB charges up to a $175 deductible for an expensive phone on accidental damage! So, while you may think paying 192+175 is cheaper than 99+49, $367 is a lot more out of your pocket than ~$150. Your comments on the 5C are odd, too. Remember, Apple was production limited on the iP 4 early this year! That phone is 3.5 yrs old now and was selling for about the amount the 5C is likely to sell for, but the 5C will likely be similar to the 5, which would make it one of the top phones available at any price. I don't think Apple will be able to make enough of them.
    Sep 6 10:12 AM | 15 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • More on Amazon's (AMZN) Q4: The company swung back from its Q3 loss as North America sales rose 23% Y/Y to $12.175B and International sales gained 21% to reach $9.093B. Growth in the company's Electronics segment outpaced Media segment sales. Free cash flow decreased 81% to $395M for the trailing twelve month period compared to a year ago with real estate outlays factoring in. For Q1, the company sees $15.0B-$16.6B in revenue and expects profit to fall in a range of -$285M to $65M. A conference call is scheduled for 5:00 EST. AMZN changes direction, now  +3.2% AH. (PR[View news story]
    Cracks me up! They miss revs; they miss profits; they miss on guidance; they are making no money, and even the profitless revs are up just over 20%. Stock rallies up almost 10%! Bezos could announce that he has decided to give away free cars to get the revenue from selling customers new mats and this stock would rally! Congrats longs.
    Jan 29 04:35 PM | 15 Likes Like |Link to Comment