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  • The Bank of Greece says four of the country's core banks need a €27.5B capital boost, while the capital needs for all Greek commercial banks were estimated in May 2012 at €40.5B. The strategic assessment identified the four “core banks”, as the following: National Bank of Greece (NBG -0.2%), Eurobank (EGFEY.PK), Alpha Bank (ALBKY.PK), Piraeus Bank (BPIRY.PK), which are all eligible for recapitalization using program funds. [View news story]
    This show not "good". It is tedious and, oh, such a fraud.
    Dec 27, 2012. 04:21 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Wal-Mart (WMT) might be joining the same-day delivery battle: hungry to gain ground against Amazon (AMZN), the retail giant is testing a same-day service that relies on its stores, costs users $10, and features a 4-hour window. Google, eBay, and many small online retailers are also experimenting with same-day, in spite of the logistics and cost challenges. Amazon remains coy about the extent of its ambitions. "How much time are you saving by not going to the store? People want it now, they want it fast," says an eBay spokeswoman. [View news story]
    I somewhat (respectfully) disagree.

    It's one thing to deliver a pizza -- itself a repeatable process, involving no more than a handful of "skus". Its quite something else to pull inventory from shelves, potentially among tens of thousands of skus, and to do it with any kind of QA/QC and to do that and DELIVER it by vehicle within 4 hours, and to do it at any kind of scale.

    This is going nowhere. Press reports notwithstanding, it cannot be done cost and price effectively at any kind of scale for it to be material. And if it is not material ... then why do it at all?
    Dec 27, 2012. 04:19 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Early results suggest a weak holiday season for retailers, with MasterCard's SpendingPulse reporting sales just 0.7% higher than a year ago. "It's a lost season," says the group's Michael McNamera. Not too surprising, major discounting was common in the days leading up to the holiday, and even greater bargains are expected after. [View news story]
    Ya. Right. "New economic and financial system." A-ha.
    Dec 26, 2012. 02:23 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Early results suggest a weak holiday season for retailers, with MasterCard's SpendingPulse reporting sales just 0.7% higher than a year ago. "It's a lost season," says the group's Michael McNamera. Not too surprising, major discounting was common in the days leading up to the holiday, and even greater bargains are expected after. [View news story]
    OK, but it's still an overreaction to call it a "loss". Besides, it's also much more complicated than looking at the industry overall, projecting out a 0.7% increase (prone to significant revision), and not cherrypicking clear winners and losers, who skew the numbers either way. Sears and JC Penney no doubt SUCKED, but Macy's and Walmart probably rocked. Finally, these businesses continue to suck costs out of their models, and the e-commerce transactions are probably offsetting weaknesses at stores (broadly).
    Dec 26, 2012. 09:59 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The GOP says the White House is demanding $1.6T in tax increases up front as part of any budget deal, reports the WSJ. The White House also wants the payroll tax credit to continue and a "permanent" increase in the debt limit. [View news story]
    And the GOP will talk tough ... and completely "cave" on everyone of the Democratic demands.

    There are NO leaders in Washington. Just short-sighted, looking out for themselves egomaniacs and their enablers and the "special interests" (from every imaginable corner of spending).

    Whatever happened to "temporarily raising the deficit"?

    Why wasn't that ENOUGH?

    Isn't the government PIE *large enough* already?

    Won't SOMEONE find some efficiencies within EXISTING spending, versus demanding MORE TO SPEND?

    The answers are simple: NO.

    And there is NO accountability, either. Nothing.
    Nov 29, 2012. 05:10 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Groupon (GRPN) -3.3% AH after a company spokesman tells Bloomberg Andrew Mason won't be replaced as CEO over the near-term. Between today's AH move and Tuesday's, the Street has made its feelings on the matter pretty clear. Groupon held a board meeting today. (Mason's remarks[View news story]
    Know anyone who *still owns* GRPN from the IPO?

    I'd like to LOL in their faces (and I'm not normally so mean spirited).
    Nov 29, 2012. 05:07 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • More on H-P/Autonomy: The WSJ reports its talks with ex-Autonomy employees, partners, and attorneys "paint a picture of a hard-driving sales culture" that used aggressive accounting to keep license revenue growing. Up-front (as opposed to deferred) revenue recognition and deals in which Autonomy agreed to buy product/services from a "customer" were common. An H-P source expresses confidence some of Autonomy's accounting was improper regardless of whether U.S. or international rules are applied. [View news story]
    The Big 4 accounting firms -- and the entire profession -- should be viewed in disgrace.

    But then, what's new here?

    It's like feigning surprise that the Bank of England just hired ... (wait for it) ... another Goldman Sachs alum to be its next chief.

    We exist in a world of liars, cheats, and scandalous behavior ... and we turn a willful, blind eye to it everyday, because it suits us to do so. Our media and celebrities deliver to us what we're content to consume.
    Nov 27, 2012. 12:39 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Disney (DIS -5.3%) continues to trade lower as a host of analysts lower their expectations for the company primarily due to fears advertising revenue could be under pressure. Comments from execs on yesterday's earnings call (transcript) highlighted the idea the company is transitioning from an investment phase (Lucasfilm, Cars Land, Disneyland) into a growth mode. Reading between the lines of analyst comments, Disney investors may have to play a waiting game for those investments to pay dividends and for the economy to turn around to help drive revenue higher. [View news story]
    Best comment of the day.
    Nov 9, 2012. 04:34 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Disney (DIS -5.3%) continues to trade lower as a host of analysts lower their expectations for the company primarily due to fears advertising revenue could be under pressure. Comments from execs on yesterday's earnings call (transcript) highlighted the idea the company is transitioning from an investment phase (Lucasfilm, Cars Land, Disneyland) into a growth mode. Reading between the lines of analyst comments, Disney investors may have to play a waiting game for those investments to pay dividends and for the economy to turn around to help drive revenue higher. [View news story]
    Yes, neither ticket nor in-park food pricing seem to be deterring visitors, indicating (regrettably, particularly for this Florida resident) that there's slack in price optimization, at least during "peak periods".
    Nov 9, 2012. 01:12 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • This isn't Andy Warhol's Campbell's Soup anymore: Campbell Soup (CPB +0.7%) plans to reinvent itself with new digital marketing and social media campaigns aimed at widely promoting its large number of new products to younger audiences. To that end, the company hired Michael Senackerib as its new Chief Marketing Officer in a move SA author Scott Eymer says could be a "game-changer." [View news story]
    "Game changer". What horseshit.

    "New digital marketing and social media ..."

    A-ha.
    Nov 6, 2012. 03:09 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What does Google have up its sleeve with its self-driving car concept that's drawing quite a buzz after a test run in Silicon Valley came off smoothly? If tech writers reading the tea leaves are correct, the company might be delving into same-day delivery for online purchases. If driverless Google cars start delivering packages on a broad scale, UPS and FedEx (FDX) are sure to take a bit of notice - but the real target of Google's dreamy plan could be online juggernaut Amazon (AMZN). [View news story]
    ... nice discussion. But I am unconvinced. Driverless cars, en masse, on our roadways driving side-by-side with human driven cars? Not very likely within next 5 years.

    And it won't be technology that makes it not possible ... it will be MOTOROLA sucking away Google's spare change, and the (unmonetized) shift to mobile undermining Google AdWords cash cow. There you go right there.
    Oct 29, 2012. 03:41 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • What does Google have up its sleeve with its self-driving car concept that's drawing quite a buzz after a test run in Silicon Valley came off smoothly? If tech writers reading the tea leaves are correct, the company might be delving into same-day delivery for online purchases. If driverless Google cars start delivering packages on a broad scale, UPS and FedEx (FDX) are sure to take a bit of notice - but the real target of Google's dreamy plan could be online juggernaut Amazon (AMZN). [View news story]
    Why is Google testing self-driving cars? WHY NOT, that's why. They are PRINTING MONEY through AdWords, which allows the team of Page, Brin and Schmidt -- who control the thing -- to do really ANYTHING THEY WANT.

    Self-driving cars may be really cool, and maybe there's a Nobel Prize or something in their future ... but HOW IS THIS CORE TO GOOGLE'S MISSION IN SEARCH AND WEB activities?

    It's NOT. "Same-day delivery"? Oh, really SeekingAlpha.com? That's the "method behind the madness"?

    The whole thing is LUNACY. If HP was doing this right now, Meg Whitman would be CRUCIFIED. But, FastCompany and AllThingdsD think it's "cool", so lot's and lot's of happy talk.

    Meanwhile, it's a waste of FOCUS away from contextually related areas that Google SHOULD BE focused upon instead.
    Oct 29, 2012. 01:50 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • More on Nike-Lance Armstrong: The former world-class athlete's resignation from the Lance Armstrong Foundation could bolster the chances that Nike (NKE +0.3%) sticks with its Livestrong brand of clothing and shoes. More than just a sideshow for Nike, the flareup over Armstrong's doping has forced the company to strongly deny an accusation it bribed an exec with a governing cycling body $500K to cover up a positive drug test. [View news story]
    Pure hate? How about just PURE REVULSION?

    Keep your "hate" proclamations to yourself. Why do you feel the need to excuse Lance Armstrong's behavior?

    I'm very glad that he has now been STRIPPED of his 7 Tour de France titles. But not because I hate him. BECAUSE IT WAS SIMPLY THE RIGHT OUTCOME.

    He cheated. He lied. He obscured. Even if every other rider did the same thing, it changes nothing.

    He's likely been chemical doping for so long, in fact, I'd argue that it contributed to his cancer. (There, I said it. Label it "hate", if you want. It doesn't change anything).

    I wish we could see "clawback" on Lance's endorsement income for the past 15 years, and his siphoning payment from his not-for-profit. It's ALL ILL GOTTEN GAINS. He wouldn't be "anybody" -- in the context that we know him -- if he hadn't cheated over his ENTIRE PROFESSIONAL CYCLING CAREER. But then, maybe at least he'd have his humanity ... now, he has nothing but the money. And that won't clear his name or buy him dignity.

    And THAT'S the way it should be.
    Oct 23, 2012. 10:20 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • More on Nike-Lance Armstrong: The former world-class athlete's resignation from the Lance Armstrong Foundation could bolster the chances that Nike (NKE +0.3%) sticks with its Livestrong brand of clothing and shoes. More than just a sideshow for Nike, the flareup over Armstrong's doping has forced the company to strongly deny an accusation it bribed an exec with a governing cycling body $500K to cover up a positive drug test. [View news story]
    Lance isn't the only person accused here, although you go out of your way to apologize for his egregious, decade(s?) long conduct.

    Lance lied to the world, his sponsors, his fans, cancer victims everywhere. His non-profit doesn't actually fund cancer RESEARCH, but pork-laden advocacy, and since it doesn't reveal its finances, there's no idea how much it paid it's (now former) "Chairman" for his involvement with it.

    The only persons here who VIOLATED rules were Lance Armstrong and his fellow dopers.

    Strike that. You VIOLATE "rules" of accountability and common sense with your arguments. Perhaps you know Lance, or you're a "true believer", but you're also AN APOLOGIST. "It's not Lance's fault ... it's a witchhunt!" That's pathetic, and you're pandering to a "famous person" who hasn't earned your pander.
    Oct 19, 2012. 05:43 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • More on Nike-Lance Armstrong: The former world-class athlete's resignation from the Lance Armstrong Foundation could bolster the chances that Nike (NKE +0.3%) sticks with its Livestrong brand of clothing and shoes. More than just a sideshow for Nike, the flareup over Armstrong's doping has forced the company to strongly deny an accusation it bribed an exec with a governing cycling body $500K to cover up a positive drug test. [View news story]
    Or justice -- versus the strawman term "vendetta" -- being served, however delayed. And it doesn't matter that it's not in a court room; this private organization has it's own rules, and Lance has been governed (and judged within) them.
    Oct 19, 2012. 11:24 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
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