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  • ConocoPhillips: A Significant Shift Of Capital Toward High-Margin Development Programs [View article]
    Comparisons with XOM, CVX aside why shouldn't I worry about COP's exposure to Tar Sands. Production costs/barrel far exceed the "conventional" range. As crude prices drop, and that seems to be a given by economic predictors, how will COP as a whole remain profitable as forecast?
    Sep 4, 2014. 11:52 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Buy Dunkin' Brands Near Its 52-Week Low [View article]
    There's a reason it's at a 52 week low. Poor performance at the top. Surveillance down to the franchise level is inadequate, in my view. They sell two good things, coffee and muffins. Both are custom made in the cafe. The rest, including the signature doughnuts, are made off premises and stale most of the time. Then there's the "sandwiches" . . . . .

    Chief competitor for coffee is McDonald's. It's a buck verses $1.75+ in most DNKN outlets. My suggestion . . . avoid this one. You may not like or ever visited a Starbucks. That's where to put your $$. . . at least that's where a managed account has theirs. As always,don't take my word for it! Investors need to perform their own due diligence.
    Sep 3, 2014. 05:05 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Understanding TECO Energy's Operations, Acquisitions And Possible Divestitures [View article]
    Good analysis. Thanks for your work here. TE is a land locked utility. Nowhere to grow, expand, and enhance revenues or profits. A Utility to avoid. There are simply too many better opportunities in this space.
    Aug 31, 2014. 05:17 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Who Is Taking Wal-Mart's Customers And Why? [View article]
    Really great comment. Very solid arguments on a number of key operational metrics. While not an " WMT regular", I've noticed certain brands and/or item types are not readily available on a number of occasions. Something is in the slot but its a different brand or size one usually buys. This suggests their mass buying program purchases for price not product availability necessitating the customer take what's there whether they like it or not.

    Beyond that, the check out experience, while improved, remains a significant detriment to customer satisfaction. Here's the point you pay for everything you've labored into your basket and the line is long, slow, and manned by clerk who obviously is tired from working two jobs.
    Aug 31, 2014. 05:13 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Microsoft Withdrawing Mainstream Support For Windows 7 Is A Bad Idea [View article]
    <Microsoft will no longer continue developing new service packs or adding new features to Windows 7 after Jan. 13, 2015.>

    All this confirms MSFT sucks. To me , they are starting to look and smell like Kodak, et al. Loosing touch with their constituents/loyal customers.
    Aug 30, 2014. 02:21 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Ending oil export ban would mean cheaper gasoline, Conoco exec says [View news story]
    The benefits outlined by Helen Currie are utter nonsense as is the Feds blessing to export "partially" refined product. The U.S. crude and natural gas assets are almost totally unrelated to the world supply and demand. We should care less about world refinery conditions or a "re-allocation" of crude. That's the worlds problem and not ours to solve.

    The US is approaching a self-sustaining energy status. If all US crude, refined product, and natural gas were restricted, domestic gasoline would drop to less than $2/gallon. Since gasoline is technically a specific by-product of crude refining (about 45% is Gasoline, 10% Kerosene/jet fuel, 30% Fuel oil/Diesel, 7% unusable residue, and the balance is Naphtha, Coke, Asphalt, etc,), restricting crude and gasoline export would result in the building of state of the art refineries creating thousands of construction jobs ranging from the initial build to distribution pipelines. All exports of energy related material would be subject to export tax the rate being continually established to assure low gasoline prices. Price supports (in this case a ceiling) would be administrated in a similar fashion to crop supports and Federal Reserve interest rate controls, for example. Low energy cost means lower cost of living for all Americans, much needed job creation, and not be distracted by the Keystone Pipeline and other projects ultimately in the best interest of governments outside of our own.

    Should anyone suggest this sounds like it comes from a liberal, union loving, left leaning democrat, forget it. This is a moderate registered life long Republican who has been a free enterprise investor most of his live. I drive a high priced vehicle, buy premium gasoline, and personally not financially affected by the pump price. Dividends and price gains from XOM, COP, etc. pays for all that and then some. However, I'm sick and tired seeing U.S. consumers, yes those literally driving our economy, getting shafted at the gas pump. I'm also sick and tired reading dribble from industry economists derived from what they learned from in text books and not reality.
    Aug 25, 2014. 03:11 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Hewlett-Packard Stock Is Still A Good Investment Opportunity [View article]
    < HP will continue to benefit from the increasing demand for PCs and share gaining in this market.>

    Increasing demand? Really.

    HP's market is almost entirely PC's and Printers. Both are in decline demand wise. Buyers are (have, in fact) moved from these old platforms to mobile devices. Just like the USPS mail traffic decline, anything printed on paper has become a relic.
    Aug 24, 2014. 10:27 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • 6 Ultra Utilities Dogs Generate 6.2% To 11.7% August Upsides [View article]
    <PPL Corporation will spin off its power generation business . . . combine that with Riverstone to form Talen Energy Corporation, an independent publicly traded company expected to be listed on the New York Stock Exchange. Talen Energy would be the third-largest investor-owned IPP (independent power producer) in the nation>

    Any comment regards the quality of the spun off power plants?
    Aug 24, 2014. 10:21 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • General Electric And Synchrony Financial After The IPO [View article]
    So where does this SYF "spin-off" leave GE Capital and retirees holding GE Interest Plus accounts?
    Aug 24, 2014. 08:36 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Are ESPN's Best Days Behind It? [View article]
    What's worse than watching your favorite team lose . . . having to watch it on ESPN. It's like listening to a sports talk show (and a lousy one at that) with a game going on in the background. Some of my friends are fortunate to be in range of a radio broadcast, mute the TV, and listen to the radio commentary. There are some exceptions when no more than two guys are in the booth. Three is definitely a crowd.
    Aug 22, 2014. 10:13 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Time To Sell Both AT&T And Verizon, Dog Fight In Sight [View article]
    Short term (6-12 mos) I agree with your assessment. Sold relatively large positions in both telcos earlier this month. I think the real question is how long can Sprint, et al discount without essentially running out of cash?
    Aug 19, 2014. 10:10 AM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Market Value Of Vail Resorts In Light Of Cognitive Dissonance About Climate Change And Drought [View article]
    Interesting article. Thanks for your work here. I'm familiar with Vail, CO but not the vast corporate entity of Vail Associates. Your maps suggests mid-central Colorado is not significantly impacted by the "drought". Hence my question, how much of MTN's business is outside this area and therefore what's the potential impact? 10%, 25%?
    Aug 19, 2014. 10:05 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Panera's New CFO Works Fine, But Their App Needs Work [View article]
    Difficult to see how PNRA can fast food a custom made sandwich and maintain the needed niche in this market. In addition, the all important cafe physical layout including order taking, prep, and take out may require elaborate and expensive CapEx. That aside, the franchised cafes in my locale are struggling, in my view, maintaining quality with the existing menu let alone facility shortcomings to perform with an altered operational environment.
    Aug 19, 2014. 09:51 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Starbucks Undervalued? [View article]
    Agree - any reference to DNKN when discussing SBUX is an immediate credibility signal, in my opinion. Commonality in the sale of coffee is like comparing a line of shoes found in Sacks Fifth Avenue to WalMart. The commodity look like shoes, smell like shoes, and fit (albeit to a variable degree) ones feet like shoes. The customer base comparison is like night and day . . . not even in the same ballpark.
    Aug 19, 2014. 08:05 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Big Problems Within Procter & Gamble's Long-Term Future [View article]
    Excellent article and interesting rebuttal comments. Thanks for your work here. In my view, PG is very good example for those considering or currently investing in a retail product. One can gauge how the company is doing where "the rubber hits the road". Check out your local supermarket. PG's products have been routinely "on sale" for many months. Discounting in an ever growing effort to move the merchandise. A bad sign in any analysts play book, or clearly should be.
    Aug 16, 2014. 10:44 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment