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  • Are Apple's Margin Risks Overblown? [View article]
    I disagree with the general feeling that margins are dropping a lot.

    The phone subsidies are still in place on the iPhone 5. The buy in on the 4s is reduced but it still has a subsidy. The iPad mini comes in at lower cost but the margin is at least 40% for the cheapest $259 unit and goes up from there as you add flash memory and a phone line.

    There are almost 40 million 3GS's and 4's coming off contract in the next 3-4 months. Another 54 million in the 6 months after that. Given Apple's 88% retention rate and new markets evolving around the world I can see the iPhones doing very well for the near future.

    Add the enterprise markets, which have been beta testing the use of apple products for years, and things will be just fine.

    Long AAPL
    Mar 8 10:50 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • On cue, Apple's (AAPL -2.8%) sell-side fans are defending it following reports of iPhone component order cuts due to weaker-than-expected demand. UBS, one of the first to report of production cuts, says it detects no change to iPhone orders since December, though it worries shares could be pressured near-term. Wells Fargo notes Apple's 65M-unit iPhone 5 display order (per The Nikkei) was "an unrealistic number to begin with." JPMorgan says it only forecast 25M calendar Q1 iPhone 5 builds regardless. Notable Calls: "This sure feels like capitulation, doesn't it?" [View news story]
    The new connector? seriously? I bought adapters for $5 each to use my old 30 pin cables. If people are switching to an inferior eco system because of a connector, then good riddance
    Jan 14 01:10 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Mobile Ads Growing Rapidly: Apple Leads In Monetizing Content [View article]
    Very interesting to see the actual numbers.

    I have wondered for awhile why everyone worries about Facebook and how it will monetize mobile, but never make the connection that Apple really controls where people go and what they see with their apps. Google knew this years ago and developed Android so they would have that control and the revenue.

    Facebook has stayed friendly with Apple and their mobile revenue has shown impressive growth.

    Long AAPL
    Nov 22 03:11 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Quick take on Office Mobile: Microsoft (MSFT) may have decided any revenue produced by iOS/Android downloads, which would have to be priced around $10-$15/app to be competitive, would be pocket change compared with the billions generated by PC Office sales. Hence Microsoft decides its top priority is to support its Office subscription push - a push that will get stronger with Office 2013. But the strategy risks hurting Microsoft's iPad presence at a time when the iPad is making huge corporate inroads[View news story]
    I have no reason to question your conclusions on priority, but I do have trouble believing a company the size of MSFT couldn't utilize resources for both markets.
    As to other comments...iPads are being used on a widespread basis. The testing has been ongoing for 2 years and implementation is big. American & Delta gave them to all pilots, my wife's company is giving them to all 12000 sales people. AT&T has them out with all service personnel. Walk through a retail store and look at what the reps for vendors are using. 2500 school districts want them for every kid, etc.
    Long MSFT and AAPL.
    Nov 7 02:00 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple Back-Up Caused By Supply Chain, But Is Demand Shifting? [View article]
    Good article. I think there may be a bit to much worry about market share. If you look at how big the market for smartphones and tablets is expected to become in the next few quarters, it becomes easy to see extremely high volumes of iPhones and iPads even if Apples market share decreases.

    Anecdotally, I see a lot of people at sporting events with Android phones. When I speak with them it turns out to be their first smart phone. Texting and photos are their main uses for it. I'm sure they will gravitate to use more of the capabilities but it was simply time for an upgrade and they went with the cheapest phone. I also believe that as these phone contracts expire many of these Android users may migrate to iOS. We already know, from many satisfaction surveys, that current iPhone users will upgrade to the new iPhones.

    On the other hand iPhone users account for most of the mobile internet traffic or data usage. One of the reasons is because it easy to use, just like all Apple stuff. As the maps app, and Siri mature I can see a large loss of mobile traffic to Google products. I would be cautious about Google's future stock price but feel very good about AAPL and added to my position at the open for $644.
    Oct 8 11:12 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Corning's Results Suggest No Sapphire iPhone - This Year [View article]
    Lots of interesting info here, thanks.

    Corning has been in an enviable position since GG became available. They can't supply as much as they could sell. Anecdotally, I know Honeywell has approached them on a project and were rebuffed because there was not enough to go around. Corning had a significant backlog. So it might be possible that others have stepped in to soak up the product Apple does't want.

    Apple will continue to use GG on the 4s, 5 and 5s even if the 6 does go to Saphire. I don't have any solid info one way or the other, just putting in my 2 cents.
    Jul 29 03:52 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Growth All Around As AT&T Gets Ready To Release Second Quarter Results [View article]
    I think it is across the board down. VZ and VOD are both down more than T
    Jul 8 03:18 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Walgreen Is After Global Drugstore Domination - Is That Good For Investors? [View article]
    Walgreen does do home delivery. I just ordered some stuff, got points on my account and received delivery a couple days later. Worked pretty much like Amazon and I got free shipping.

    I bought a large position(for me) in WAG right after they announced the Boots deal. I am very pleased.
    Jun 3 03:09 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Adios DirecTV: New Buyback Champ Is AutoZone [View article]
    I think i recall sometime in the 90's Autozone worked out a deal with its suppliers that they would pay them for the merchandise on the store shelves only after it sells. So regardless of how long it may sit there it does not get paid for.

    With an average annual run rate of about $1.75 million per store, the $74000 number represents about 12 days sales. Excellent cash flow for AZO, not so much for the suppliers.

    Long AZO...wish I had more
    May 29 03:53 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Buy Target While It's In The Penalty Box [View article]
    I like your investment philosophy. Buying good companies while the news is negative can and does work. My particular winners lately include Boeing while the 787 problems persisted, Walgreens after the express scripts breakup and the Boots partnership during a time when the pundits said the Eurozone was taboo.

    Target has never been one of my favorites. Their stores are nice, clean and bright. I have no idea how someone could do their primary grocery shopping there. The store near me has a grocery area less than half the size of the walmart super center just down the road. I am mostly a Walmart and sam's shopper, and have been for years. I have also enjoyed nice gains with WMT stock.

    Although stories abound across the Internet, my experience with them has not been one of dirty, messy stores with parking lots full of broken down vehicles ferrying the scum of the earth. I drive a new SUV and I see many nice vehicles at WMT, same with Sam's. But I digress.

    TGT may be a good buy if it continues to slide. In my case I have enough retail in my portfolio and probably won't buy any.

    Long WMT, WAG, SHW, HD, VBA,
    Jan 22 07:11 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Microsoft Gets A Rating From Tim Cook [View article]
    I really don't understand the "Global Tablet Market Share" chart. It shows 6 quarters where share numbers start with a total of 95% and then drop to only 58%.

    So, does this mean that somebody else has 42% of the market? Or is it fragmented into many smaller manufacturers?
    Oct 24 06:57 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • 4 Regional Banks With Long Dividend Growth Histories [View article]
    Good article. I have been a holder of CBSH for over 20 years and continue to be very happy with it.

    One question. In your payout percentage of income, did you take into account they had a one time special div in december of 2012 in anticipation of the tax hike. This dividend was $1.50 a share.
    May 28 11:42 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple $395: Time To Give Up And Abandon Ship? [View article]
    I didn't read complete article, but I have a comment to your first observation about Mgt.
    TC and other Execs did not do anything when the stock was going through a parabolic rise. They have done nothing as it fell....seems consistent to me.
    Apr 20 04:16 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Deutsche's U.S. team follows up on an overnight note from the firm's Japanese unit about iPhone production cuts by declaring Apple's (AAPL -2%) stock "has digested this supply chain issue and likely has lower unit production already priced in." Notable Calls is encouraged by this due to the track record of the analyst in question (presumably Chris Whitmore). Apple has bounced a little off its session lows. Cirrus Logic (CRUS -3.8%) and Skyworks (SWKS -2.9%) are faring worse. [View news story]
    If I understand this, we will see reduced orders for the iPhone 5 in the next quarter which starts in March. So maybe this info punctuates the real possibility of an iPhone 6 hitting in that time frame. New orders going for that product instead.
    Jan 4 12:27 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple Chart Flashes Bubble Crash Warning [View article]
    I would like to see some clarification on the oft stated "margin compression".
    Where is it? The Mini is at historic GP numbers. iPhone 4 and 4s? Still getting subsidy, parts are cheaper. So it compresses from 75% GP to a more normal 50% at lower sales numbers. I just don't see it.
    I guess if you say it enough times, fiction become reality.
    Dec 11 11:23 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment