Seeking Alpha

Capt Herlock

Capt Herlock
Send Message
View as an RSS Feed
View Capt Herlock's Comments BY TICKER:
Latest  |  Highest rated
  • The $1 Million Perpetual Income Portfolio: ETF Edition [View article]
    Too much emphasis on Real Estate, not enough on Utilities. I'd switch the allocations. ETF's carry low fees, but do have them. This portfolio allocation in a basket of 25-30 carefully picked individual equities would offer the most efficient growth in returns and offers plenty of diversification. If ETF's must be used, probably best to just pick the index fund for each sector allocation, whatever maximizes returns after taxes, and forget it.
    Mar 16, 2014. 01:21 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Norfolk Southern Corp. declares $0.54 dividend [View news story]
    Alcohol and press releases clearly don't mix.
    Jan 21, 2014. 05:39 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Bill Gross's Dreadful Analysis Of The U.S. Economy's 'Wounded Heart' [View article]
    The job of the employer is to accomplish the task at hand as economically and efficiently as possible. The job of the worker is to be greedy enough to know when he/she is being exploited and to do whatever is necessary/possible to change their individual value proposition.
    Jun 11, 2013. 04:50 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Caterpillar Shares Could Drop To $50 And Still Be Fairly Valued [View article]
    As long as they maintain the dividend I would be adding to the position in my DRIP acount like crazy at $50. That would be a no brainer I think.
    Apr 14, 2013. 05:38 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The U.S. Housing Bubble Is Back [View article]
    The absolute worst person to consult as to what's going on in the housing market is a realtor. Remember, it's ALWAYS a good time to buy - otherwise, those agents have to draw welfare.

    I'm wondering if perhaps a lot of cash holding folks that have been on the sidelines are finally coming to the conclusion that the current generational low interest rates are going to be coming to an end soon, and are wading out into the market only to find that supply is still tight because there are still so many people underwater who can't move + the banks are still sitting a lot of foreclosed shadow inventory that they are reluctant to put out into the market quickly. I recently did a real estate search on Zillow based a certain set of criteria for the market west of the DC area (west of the ridiculous Loudon and Fairfax county markets), and came up with around 4,800 listings in 12 counties (that's a pretty tight supply in that area), of which 108 were active foreclosure sales and 698 were pre-foreclosures that had been in the process for some time but which the banks had not yet taken title to or put on the market. In the last 2 months (Jan and Feb) we've looked at 3 foreclosure properties which all went to contract and all have since come back on the market due to the buyers not being able to arrange financing. I am also seeing a lot of new properties going on the market at what I consider really inflated prices and then see the sellers taking big price cuts to spur interest if it doesn't get any hits over a short period of time. You've got $675K listings coming down to $650, then $625, then $599 in very short periods of time as the sellers try to do price discovery in a market that has very little in the way of comparables over the past 3-4 years, and who have real estate agents who have no clue what a properties fair market value is in the current environment.

    That doesn't seem like a healthy market to me, but does seem to make the water ripe for a statistical anomaly in the current sales and pricing trends.
    Mar 19, 2013. 12:25 PM | 9 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple: Last Year I Said Sell -- Buy Now? [View article]
    AMZN being the only real company of the four you mentioned. CRM, LNKD, and FB are just Wall Street subsidized new tech bubble noise. AMZN at least has built out a real world distribution infrastructure that cannot easily be replicated by anyone - not because of the money it would cost, but the time it would take to implement it. That gives them a real advantage.

    What marketplace advantage does APPL really have other than their fans? The trouble with AAPL is that when you look forward you have to guess-timate future revenue streams from their already existing products, and new revenue streams from 'who the heck knows?'. Competitors and technological advances will steadily erode their existing revenue streams, and news ones have to be valued on faith, which was why the stock ever reached $700 to begin with. Why the heck would anyone ever value the future of a tech company with 5 or 6 product types more than a company with billions in infrastructure mining the worlds most value resource (XOM for example) I'll never know, but that's the market for you. As a fellow fan boy, I know how fast the tide can change if someone comes out with something better, or something about as good but much cheaper. I think a lot of you are valuing AAPL's 'fanboy' pipeline way too high. A lot of those folks will bail the minute something better come along, and it will. It already happened to APPL once before a couple of decades ago when they lost their mojo (Jobs) and almost went under. Anyone who claims they know were AAPL will be in 5 or 10 years is just whistling in the wind. On the other hand, you can be pretty sure AMZN will still be dominating in that time range. Of course, because of that AMZN's stock price is stupid expensive for a retailer, so there is no help for us there either.

    Perhaps a good entry point on AAPL should be a price where it's paying out a 3.5-4% dividend yield. At current yield that would be somwhere around $280-$340. That way you are being compensated with a slightly over market cash flow for the extra risk, and if they manage to come out with the next great thing 2 or 3 more times you would be rewarded. If not, pressure will build to pay out a higher percentage of that cash horde to investors to keep the stock attractive, and you might end up with a nice dividend aristocrat after a few years. If you are lucky.
    Mar 13, 2013. 04:26 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Amazon Is Killing Retail [View article]
    Shaun is the kinda guy who thinks he know all about the restaurant business because he knows how to sit down and order the meal and then pay the bill.

    They most certainly do sell below cost, and often. Amazon measures profitability in aggregate, not on a per item basis. They will even undercut other retailers who are already selling items below cost. There was a great article in the WSJ a few days ago about this exact problem being experienced by 3rd party sellers (like us) on Amazon. Don't you get the WSJ on your iPad? Well, since you don't, just google 'monopoly' and you'll get the picture...
    Jul 10, 2012. 05:59 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Amazon Is Killing Retail [View article]
    Now that sir, is just a dumb comment. Please get back on your iPhone and text someone.
    Jul 10, 2012. 05:50 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • How Facebook's IPO Exemplifies The Injustice In The Financial Markets [View article]
    Thanks for that Dara, you are absolutely right.
    Jun 7, 2012. 02:31 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Facebook (FB -4%) heads into the close below $26, as the company's high multiples continue giving investors pause. The decline comes even though S&P's Scott Kessler is upgrading shares to Hold on valuation grounds. While still having concerns related to monetization, capex, IP, and governance, Kessler argues Facebook's forward PEG ratio has fallen to 1.1, making it reasonably priced relative to peers (ed: but that PEG will rise if Facebook's growth decelerates further). (earlier)  [View news story]
    Give me a P/E ratio of about 12 and we'll talk about it being a 'value stock' rather than just another internet bubble value trap.
    Jun 5, 2012. 08:00 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 6 Basic Materials Stocks Raking In Profits Without Amassing Debt [View article]
    I'm pretty sure the GNI trust is liquidating in 2015 per terms of the original 99 year contract.
    May 16, 2012. 01:03 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Obama Trying To Kill Dividend Investing? [View article]
    It's comments like this that really make me miss the thumbs down button. Have people around here gone completely nuts?
    Mar 6, 2012. 10:03 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Proposed Dividend Tax Is As Uninformed As It Is Naive [View article]
    Starving for money? Good grief, let the government starve. It's too easy to agree with tax increases that aren't on you, and supporting a tax increase like this is reprehensibly stupid. Low dividend tax rates allow small and medium businesses like C-Corps to make annual payouts to their shareholders (i.e. their owners, in many cases family business owners) at lower than nominal tax rates. Sure, many of these folks make more than $250K. So what? That's a good thing people - it's their money.
    Mar 1, 2012. 02:47 PM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple: How The iTV Will Revolutionize The Television Industry [View article]
    iTV = Yawn....

    Apple has done fine in spaces where it can create a market and dominate it, but not so much in mature areas already crowded with players. Seriously, how many ways do we really need to watch TV?
    Dec 30, 2011. 11:32 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 8 Reasons Will Rocket After Earnings Today [View article]
    AMZN is chained to the fate of every ultra large retailer - terrible operating margins and extremely high overhead in their core businesses. Catalogers have operating costs, like shipping, that continuously increase. AMZN might one day grow into a couple hundred Billion in annual sales - but at their razor thin operating margins even at that it's only worth half the current stock price.

    But what about Digital Delivery? Even if Amazon digitally delivered every song, book, and movie they currently sell it still doesn't add up to much in the total growth scheme, and the bigger they get the less impact digital will have on their bottom line. No one can download a patio set or a BBQ grill, and Amazon has already exploited all the best product lines for a mail order type business. They may end up as the Walmart of internet retail in a few years, but whether they will actually be able to make any money on it and still maintain that level of market share is dubious at best.
    Oct 25, 2011. 06:29 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment