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  • Amazon: Will The Real AWS Margins Please Stand Up  [View article]
    Nice job.

    If the reader follows your logic, they get to step1 of the valuation. AWS' operating income is non-GAAP because the company does not expense the stock based comp dollars which should be allocated to AWS.

    But the problem when you did your valuation is you based it on Operating Income and Operating Income is before the expenses of both the corporate income tax and the growing net interest expense.

    So let me put this another way. Amazon had GAAP earnings of $596 million in 2015. And it would be nice if we knew how much of that figure belonged to AWS. But other than satisfying a curiosity, does it really matter? Because if AWS earned more than the $596 million, then the rest of the company ran at a loss and you wouldn't be able to split them apart anyway.
    Feb 8, 2016. 04:52 PM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • General Growth CEO walks back Amazon comment (updated)  [View news story]

    I wonder if there was other news causing Barnes and Noble stock to drop over 9%?
    Feb 3, 2016. 05:12 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Chevron Reports First Losses In This Cycle  [View article]
    You did a really nice job with the article. I am long CVX.

    I use a Yahoo finance tool to track stocks vs. their 52 week high and low prices...among other metrics. As you said, with the price of oil dropping so dramatically since August, it makes little sense to me also that Chevron is trading significantly above its 52 week low.

    I might however be a bit more bullish than you. I believe the dividend is pretty important to Chevron's core. I read the long conference call transcript. I read many, many transcripts, yet I was very impressed with the Chevron call. Everyone who writes or comments on Seeking Alpha probably thinks thy have some skill. I just can't imagine how bright someone has to be, and how well they have to know their business, to give the answers to those questions on the fly. Plus I think Chevron is not a simple business.

    So again great job on the article. I hold the shares in my IRA so selling and buying back at a lower price is an easy option. Somehow I believe you may be correct. But, maybe for stubborn reasons, I am going to hold.
    Jan 31, 2016. 11:05 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Piper calls Amazon estimates low ahead of earnings; new Android effort reported  [View news story]

    Very impressive. Amazon earned 45 cents in Q4/2014 and is estimated to earn $1.63 last quarter and Munster thinks it will be more. We find out on Thursday.
    Jan 25, 2016. 02:57 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Best Buy: Investors Are Once Again Overreacting  [View article]
    We don't have a Costco near our home, but we have a Best Buy. I am an avid Best Buy customer as well as a stock holder.

    My sister and her family reside in Frederick, MD, and are huge Costco shoppers. They have two homes (one at Delaware shore). It seems every time I visit either home, they have somewhere a new bigger TV purchased at Costco.

    My guess is Costco is taking market share from Best Buy. I don't know if Best Buy price matches Costco? I do not own Costco stock as it is a little pricey for me and dividend is low. But I definitely should have bought Costco stock when my sister first started shopping there in 2000.

    I just looked up Best Buy price match policy, it appears they do match warehouse stores like Costco. I may buy some more Best Buy this morning.
    Jan 25, 2016. 09:07 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Amazon Crash Could Be Last Chance To Get In  [View article]
    Hi Dana

    So why are Amazon's earnings estimates all over the map, when the major competitors I metioned have estimates in a tight range?
    Jan 6, 2016. 11:35 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Amazon Crash Could Be Last Chance To Get In  [View article]
    Regarding your $1.62 earnings estimate (Yahoo finance, has more analysts and had $1.65), I checked the "range" of estimates. The low estimate is 60 cents and the high estimate is $3.28; so the high estimate is 447% higher.. ($3.28-$.60)/$.60.

    This range seemed unusually broad to me so I looked at 9 of Amazon's large competitors in retail, hardware and the cloud (WMT, TGT, AAPL, BBY, IBM, GOOG, MSFT, ORCL, M). All 9 had a high end of the earnings range less than 50% higher than the low end...a vast difference to Amazon's 447%. The earnings ranges for Amazon and these competitors were just as out of whack for the next quarter and the next year.

    Here is the link on Yahoo finance


    And as a last aside, I did not see where the company announced your February 4, earnings release date.
    Jan 6, 2016. 11:11 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Amazon 2016 Outlook: Ready For Prime Time  [View article]

    Bruce Wilds

    I read your 15 points. Thank you for posting the link.

    I might not agree that Amazon is on net a "job killer". The company does use robots. But the company provides employment to workers that walk around warehouses filling the orders and a huge amount of labor is provided to the drivers (Fedex, UPS, etc) who deliver the orders. This labor would not exist if the customer drove to a store to purchase the item.
    Dec 31, 2015. 07:17 AM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Salesforce.com: The Large-Cap Tech Name To Own  [View article]

    It seems to me the company should charge enough for their products to earn a GAAP profit.
    Nov 30, 2015. 02:09 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Salesforce.com: The Large-Cap Tech Name To Own  [View article]
    Nov 30, 2015. 02:07 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Amazon: Prime Ecosystem Expansion  [View article]
    Profit is coming.

    Amazon earned 45 cents in Q4 of 2014. Company estimated to earn $1.61 this Q4. The best Q4 ever was 91 cents is 2010.

    The investments in the business worked. Those saying the company was a Ponzi scheme were wrong as no one would have predicted this dramatic earnings growth.
    Nov 26, 2015. 08:04 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Even With Higher Margins, Amazon Wouldn't Be Cheap  [View article]
    <<<Of course, it isn't Amazon's retail business that really has people excited. That honor belongs to Amazon Web Services, the cloud business. That business is growing rapidly, on pace for about $7 billion in sales this year at a margin of about 25%.>>>

    Talk about funny numbers. The $7 billion of revenue is correct but the 25% is imagined. The company reveals for AWS the Operating Income (which is before taxes and interest) and it is non-GAAP to boot. The GAAP stock based comp expense is ignored.

    The company as a whole only earned around $320 million last year, 70 cents times 468 million shares. So it seems unlikely they could have netted 25% on $7 billion of AWS revenue.
    Nov 6, 2015. 03:52 PM | 10 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Even With Higher Margins, Amazon Wouldn't Be Cheap  [View article]

    I think Amazon's biggest problem in the short run is the $1.60 earnings estimate for this quarter. How does this company go from earning 45 cents in Q4/2014 to a $1.60?

    My guess is at the current price of about $650, a stock split will happen. So if they do an 8 to 1 split, the $1.60 becomes 20 cents and then earning a dime will not look too bad.

    Lots of funny numbers!
    Nov 6, 2015. 03:34 PM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Chevron's Earnings Were Crucial For The Entire Energy Sector - Here's Why  [View article]

    Here is the link to GS talking about $20 oil.

    Nov 1, 2015. 10:19 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Amazon's Headline Numbers Don't Begin To Tell The AWS Story  [View article]

    I wonder how many people understand that Amazon's Operating Income is before the GAAP expense, stock based compensation so it becomes non-GAAP Operating Income. And then Operating Income is before the net interest expense (growing with the debt) and income tax.

    I guess there is no reason to get into the financials too closely any more.
    Oct 28, 2015. 08:34 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment