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  • Now At $50, Where Will Microsoft Shares Go From Here? [View article]
    An elaborate analysis, indeed. Good info, no doubt. But where do we find the metric for sentiment - for any stock? If MSFT continues it's rise in "popularity" and cool factor, we could easily see it double. If Win 10 has some big mis-steps or something else clouds the future (sorry), it could swiftly fall back below $40. I just think this is more art and luck than science. Personally, I am long with MSFT... for the long haul.
    Nov 15, 2014. 10:07 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Microsoft beats by $0.05, beats on revenue [View news story]
    The sleeping dragon awakes?
    Oct 23, 2014. 09:18 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Microsoft: Buy, Sell, Or Hold? [View article]
    Nice assessment of MSFT. If I had entered at 36 perhaps I would have grabbed my 27% gain as well. However, I will Hold as suggested. It's an interesting story. I normally don't do this, but I am hanging on because I believe (think) there is another story about to unfold in the next 18-24 months. And if companies like NFLX and AMZN can explode in price just because of technology, market share and general popularity, how about a cash cow that has an incredible franchise (or 2) that pays a nifty dividend and actually may be on the verge of some serious new adventures?
    Calling all lemmings..Calling all lemmings...
    As to the Surface...I essentially agree. I do have a good friend who uses one and loves it. He manages a large city. He can effectively carry his "office" (pardon the pun) from department to department. Based on functionality and convenience, in that environment, it's a winner.
    But I don't need or want a single device that does everything fairly well. I use a desktop (powerful and fast) or a laptop for productivity. I use a tablet to read news, emails, shop. The Surface may be cool, but it's an expensive form of compromise.
    Oct 23, 2014. 02:43 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • We've Raised Our Fair Value Estimate Of Microsoft Significantly [View article]
    ewmpsi: I was going to post something, but you did it for me. Thanks. But seriously, there are two market indicators that are essential to every strategy: Lemmings and Zombies. All the stats in the world can't overcome the emotional impact of crowd behavior whether they are dead or soon to be dead. I believe both are moving to the cliff as we speak. After that, it will time to buy.
    Oct 14, 2014. 06:30 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Here's Why Ross Stores Is So Good At Making Money [View article]
    You mentioned inventory turn over...but I didn't see the stat. And I wonder how fast Ross pays it's suppliers. I suspect it's quickly - which would endear them to the suppliers...some traditional stores drag their feet. I suspect most vendors love it when Ross buyers walk in. They solve problems. They turn mistakes into cash.

    If Ross turns are truly fast, they may be emulating the Costco model: sell the stuff just before paying for it or just shortly thereafter. It's like using the banks money almost at no cost.
    Oct 2, 2014. 09:47 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Ross Stores Is A Solid Investment [View article]
    I don't disagree with your conclusions. But I have 2 thoughts.
    First you state:"Ross Stores' gross profit margin (GPM) for the recently ended quarter was 28.8% compared to the industry norm of 48.54%." A GM% in the 20's or low 30's is that of a discount operation. A GM% in the high 40's is that of a standard department store with a hefty private label participation to boost initial markups. A better comparison of GM% would pit Ross against the likes of Kohls, Marshalls, etc.
    Second, I suspect that one of Ross's big strengths is turnover. What is the annual T/O number for Ross vs it's peers (not dept stores)? And you could also provide GMROI stats that would merge the the two metrics. I bet that would make me buy some ROST real soon!
    Sep 22, 2014. 12:00 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Anatomy Of A Lucky Buy: The Greenblatt Model, Ross Stores, And A Moment Of Opportunity [View article]
    Good story. Good technique. Your research and patience are admirable. I am a veteran of apparel retailing. As one who knows the business quite well, I am impressed that your analysis led you to a great operation. ROST can do well in any economy, but there is comfort in knowing that during economic downturns Ross will be very popular to those with pinched incomes. I like Ross because of it's fast turns minimizing the effect of "bad buys" (we all make them). It also means it encourages shoppers to visit frequently - new goods arriving daily. As I walk the classic department stores, I so often stare at mountains of aging product - kiss of death.

    Thanks for a great article. I am waiting for my entry point. If money were burning a hole in my pocket, I would buy it now. But this market is rich and I am keeping a little powder dry for the next rout. I'll try to be as patient as you!
    Sep 15, 2014. 01:48 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Update: Microsoft's Upcoming Windows 9 Could Boost Windows Adoption [View article]
    If history is an indicator, 9 will be greeted with some relief and enthusiasm. After all, this is the company that gave us "Vista". How many people simply did not buy devices because of Vista and 8? Many millions, I suspect. So if you go with the every other OS launch disaster pattern theory, 9 will be fine. I am starting to worry about 10 already :) I am long MSFT despite the fact that the company is so irritating.
    Aug 22, 2014. 08:40 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Whole Food Markets: Going Organic [View article]
    I have put $50,000 in safe deposit box that will be automatically opened and invested if ever Wegmans has an IPO.

    As a former big box and dept store merchant, I worship at the altar of Wegmans. I am actually afraid to walk in. I feel as if two things will happen: First I will spend infinitely more than I had planned. Example: I want to buy 40 pounds of olives because...well, just look at them all - they are gorgeous! Second I will discover so many happy, motivated employees and of course, inspired merchandising excellence. And I will return home and babble to my wife endlessly (Billy, shut up!) about how wonderful the operation is. State of the Art Grocery Retail.
    Aug 1, 2014. 08:36 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Sell Microsoft Until $40 Amid Nokia Problems [View article]
    Timezone: agreed. And as far as the the price goes, it's all psychological. If the impression becomes that MSFT will be a new darling, folks will pile on. Oh, it's already happening. Ratios, smatios. Charts? Graphs? All useless gimmicks that help analysts convince themselves of what they have already decided is true. The big story here is that MSFT was a despised old tech company. After we got tired of hating it, she became an underdog. Our culture loves to root for an underdog - just give us a couple a new CEO who thinks that computing actually involves more than a desktop computer with a hard drive. Yahoo. I am long MSFT. It's like a sleeping dragon that is waking up. Nice dividend too.
    Jul 23, 2014. 07:04 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Microsoft: Worth More Than $37.07 Per Share [View article]
    You have balanced the discussion. Good job and very good points. But I still maintain the price of anything is just what someone is willing to pay. When enough people get excited about MSFT in a way that they have with Amazon, Apple, Google, etc....all the ratios and value concepts are meaningless. What is the right P/E ratio for any company? Some average over a period of time? What time? A good time or a mixed time? Industry specific? It's just a number. Just.

    It's tulips. It will always be like tulips. Until it isn't and the emperor is naked. That being said with absolutely no statistical support, I put the real value of MSFT at $55. Why? Because that still sounds cheap. Random. Supply/demand. I am long MSFT.
    Jun 23, 2014. 09:34 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Microsoft: Worth $37.07 Per Share [View article]
    Good job on a detailed analysis. But stock prices are more heavily influenced by mob psychology - the lemming factor, if you will. Stock pickers are looking at a ridiculously cash rich company that pays a decent dividend. Add in a new leader (finally) who looks outside of his office at the world as it really is and applies open get exciting possibilities.

    The only problem I see with MSFT is it's history of insular thinking and self destructive tendencies. Perhaps those days are over? I'm betting they are. I see $55 once more lemmings pile on. After all, if ratios and stats had anything to do with stock prices, how would we explain Amazon, Netflix, etc., etc? Calling all lemmings!
    Jun 21, 2014. 07:46 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Google Cloud Is No Real Threat To Microsoft [View article]
    Thanks for the insightful and fact filled article. I am a new investor in MSFT and am accumulating. And why not? As you said, it's a cash cow that treats it's shareholders right (decent dividends that grow) and it may be poised for a reinvention layered upon it's ridiculously profitable legacy business. I think this sleeping dragon is awakening.
    Apr 20, 2014. 07:09 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • How Do Microsoft's Dividends Currently Stack Up? [View article]
    Your piece is comforting for the dividend investor. However, with interest rates to inevitably rise and the recent chatter about a rotation from dividend payers to growth stocks, please write another article about the expanded revenue possibilities for MSFT.

    I bought the stock recently not for its dividend (which is nice) but because MSFT is a sleeping dragon with enormous power and resources. I think it is waking up after decades of rest. Maybe the "bus drivers" on the board are finally going to do something really new. This could be fun to watch and profit from.

    And everyone loves an underdog...especially one who can pummel the competition. Think "Transformers".
    Apr 9, 2014. 08:30 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Microsoft: The Change Is Taking Hold [View article]
    Good observations, John. I would like to see another type of signal from Nadella. It would be some real efforts at becoming customer/consumer centric. It will take a lot of effort to offset the horrors of Vista and Windows 8.

    My suggestion would be to put someone in charge of product development who advocates for the average person. Almost no one needs most of the features of Office. But everyone needs "word" and some need a spreadsheet. Simple products that work intuitively and don't attempt to split the atom are in order for the mobile environment. "Office Light" or an unbundled Word - make it easy!

    I am long MSFT. It's one of the few individual stocks we own.
    Apr 3, 2014. 08:18 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment