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  • Amazon Stores Are Unlikely To Benefit Shareholders  [View article]
    isz, in their latest quarterly they did turn profitable for the first time, meaningfully, in a gazillion years. Did you notice how the stock price reacted. that's a blueprint for things to come. The more visible amazon's profits (and long-term margins) get, the less space is left for fluff and make-believe fantasy numbers. Amazon has to grow profits 10 times from current levels before the stock price can be seen as fundamentally justified.
    Feb 7, 2016. 03:13 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Amazon Stores Are Unlikely To Benefit Shareholders  [View article]
    isz: the stock did return 1000%, but the underlying business didn't return anything, for all intents and purposes. So the same negligible profits are now bought at 10 times their former price. If that isn't bubble-like I don't know what is
    Feb 7, 2016. 03:10 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Russia Calls Saudi Arabia's Oil Supply Cut Bluff - Saudis Fold  [View article]
    thanks, alexander I highly appreciate it, when people can and do differentiate. I am sometimes guilty of not doing it enough m(at least not expressing it enough) but I often feel the posts would then become way too long so I usually focus just on certain key aspects. Of course that sometimes makes the posts less balanced.
    Feb 7, 2016. 02:58 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Russia Calls Saudi Arabia's Oil Supply Cut Bluff - Saudis Fold  [View article]
    Alexander, i never said the USA like ISIS. They certainly didn't lieke bin laden and his Mujaheddin either, yet they financed, trained and armed them against the Soviet Union. They were useful tools. Until they got out of control (which is the official narrative and I have doubts about that 'out of control' thingy). The same is now going on with ISIS, al-nusra and the Syrian Al-Qaida. Have you noticed that Al-Qaida has now been characterized by the US foreign policy as 'moderate rebels'? That's the same Al-Qaida, that went to #1 enemy status after 9/11. But now it's fighting the much more important enemy of the USA (Assad/Russia), so it suddenly got upgraded to the moderately good guys camp from the very evil ones even though NOTHING else chamged in Al-qaida's aims and methods. Do you seriously believe that 1 year intense airstrikes by the world's sole military superpower could not make the slightes dent in ISIS' expansion? Really? We are not even talking about complicated terrain (like in Afghanistan) here, but mostly about plain desert with some minor hills. Conclusion: These were neither intense airstrikes nor was there any serious effort to go after ISIS, because it became pretty clear that the other rebel groups were unable to overthrow Assad.

    As for the refugee crisis: the USA has no problem with that, quite to the contrary. It imposes a significant burden on Europe and keeps it busy and distracted. The Europeans in turn have become nothing more than vassalls of washington, especially Germany. Mrs Merkel is acting like Obama's lapdog on each and every occasion, severely harming Germany's politial military and economic interests by doing so). Think the confrontation with Russia over Ukraine. Think the non-action against NSA spying on german government and citizen. In the same vein, NATO is doing 100% what Washington decides; there is no European policy anymore within NATO; it's just a bunch of vasalls doing what their masters in washington demand from them, even if it runs counter to core european interests (what it does when it comes to refugees and the EU-russia relationship).

    As for bringing the Iranians down: You are aware that the sanctions just got lifted which would allow Iran to openly sell oil? And - what a strange conincidence - exactly by that time oil hits the lowest prices in decades! (Surely not because a few hundredthousand barrels/day from Iran would alter the global supply-demand picture in any meaningful way)
    As for Obama: he obviously authorized Nyland and the CIA to get the "maidan revolution" in Ukraine going (there was an interesting documentary about the true character of the people behind this coup on canal plus in france a few days back, btw) The events were clearly meant as a direct attack on a core sphere of Russian influence - just a few hundred kilometres away from Moscow. Afterwards a whole bunch of sanctions was imposed on ever sillier reasonings. At the same time Obama , kerry , Clinton and others used ever harsher terms against Putin and Russia making him appear the ultimate evil of this world.and stepping up rhetoric of "russian invasion threats" whereas Russia completely lacks the military capabilities to really invade any place that is more than a few hundred kilomteres away from its soil. And would have nothing to gain at all from such action, anyway. And even though NATO already spends about 10 times as much on weapons as Russia, the calls get ever louder to spend much morebecause of the alledged Russian threat which is nothing but a strawman. I live where such an invasion would arrive pretty fast and I have ZERO fear of that ever happening.
    Imho Obama is simply incapable of doing any rational,long-term oriented foreign policy. However, what he clearly has done is to let the relations with Russia deteriorate sharply; he has expanded the drone killing programme and agreed to virtually everything the neocons and the arms producer demanded, except new large scale foreign intervention. As for his Nobel peace price, nobody in the world knows for what he got it - his contributions to world peace are non-existent to this day.
    Feb 7, 2016. 01:51 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tesla's Gigafactory Size Revisited  [View article]
    its not your nor my nor anybody's business to 'advise' surfer on his private finances as long as he doesn't explicitly asks for it (which he certainly won't)
    Feb 7, 2016. 01:43 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tesla's Gigafactory Size Revisited  [View article]
    chitown, the remarkable thing about most tresla bulls is that they chose to ignore even those cash burn warnings by their guru and instead kept harping on imaginary reinvested profits and some free cash flow used for future growth, that simply wasn't there and still isn't there.
    Feb 7, 2016. 01:41 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Tesla's Gigafactory Size Revisited  [View article]
    you have it wrong, aqueel. FB , GOOG may be capital intensive in the beginning but their capex will come down big over time. For car makers or airplane manufacturers: not so much. fb and goog will need to maintain and upgrade their infrastructure from time to time, sure. But that will be next to nothing compared to any automaker that will have to upgrade its plants from time to time and build fresh ones repeatedly . capex to revenue is also quite misleading. Fb, goog, Msft do generate a ton of cash flow and profits relative to their capex. automakers: not so much.
    Feb 7, 2016. 01:38 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Tesla's Gigafactory Size Revisited  [View article]
    don't forget that for every s and x sold tesla has to produce sooner or later at least another battery pack, possibly two for replacement purposes. those cars will not be running for their entire life on the first battery pack
    Feb 7, 2016. 12:47 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Amazon's Q4: An E-Commerce Enabler Rather Than A Retailer  [View article]
    The thing is, even by those wildly optimistic assumptions the stock remains highly expensive. There are two issue I see here.
    First is cloud revenues and margins. That's a hell of a competetive market already and cloud services will get commoditized even more. Those profit margins from cloud services will come down, they won't go up anymore. Volume will still grow handsomely though - I think amazn is well positioned there.
    The second issue: Amazon sported/sports an outlandish p/E ratio because there has been little visibility so far about the final path of their profit margins and business plans.So people can simply extrapolate revenue growth 10 years out, throw some wild guesses of long-term profit margins around and can arrive at basically any number. I am sure there are scenarios where the stock looks like a bargain even at $700/share. However, it seems some visibility is starting to creep in and the author's article (that I enjoyed reading,thank you!) also contributes to that. Now, guess what: once there is more visibility, there is less and less space for wildly optimistic assumptions and outlandish dreams and here we go: AMZN posts some decent earnings and cash flow for the first time in a gazillion years and the market sends it down. Yes. Absolutely understandeable since it starts to sink in that the stock is priced already for perfection.

    A final observation: third party sales are something that offer a pretty mixed experience, from a customer's point of view. I could well imagine that once they overtake amazon's own retal volume in a significant manner, the overall shopping experience of customers will suffer. Let's face it: amazon is better and gets way higher ratings for its own retailing than the third party guys where lots of things can and do go wrong - things, that are most of the time pretty much outside amazon's influence. This may affect amazon's reputation in an unfavorable manner over the long term, as that segment is gaining an ever bigger share of amazon's overall sales.
    Feb 7, 2016. 12:03 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tesla's Gigafactory Size Revisited  [View article]
    surferbroadband wrote: "We are going where no man has gone before.

    Now where did I hear that phrase?"

    Reminds me of the old captain kirk star trek.series introduction. I was shocked, shocked, when I found out one day that this was just a TV series and that they had never really been on all these interesting planets. After knowing that, it was more fun to watch though, as I then knew that Kirk and Spock were not really in danger anymore...
    Feb 7, 2016. 11:06 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tesla's Gigafactory Size Revisited  [View article]
    surfer owns a hundred shares or so and dreams of getting filthy rich on them. That mindset will lead him to ride them all the way back down to where they started from (if that happens - which nobody can know for sure, obviously). While I honestly do wish him best of luck with those tesla common (I have no axe to grind), I see no scenario that is even remotely realistic in which said shares are going to see their price rise by a factor of 5-10 from current levels. Given the inevitable dilution, even if everything suddenly went according to Musk's stated plans, the stock will at best grow into it's current valuation over the next 10 years. Apart from periodic, unsustainable speculative burts higher, this stock is dead capital at best and worthless crap at worst. Not exactly an appealing investment, methinks...
    Feb 7, 2016. 11:02 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Russia Calls Saudi Arabia's Oil Supply Cut Bluff - Saudis Fold  [View article]
    wow, balghanim, in just brief 6 lines so many prejudice and outright stupid stuff regarding Russia. Ever talked to a native Russian? Ever been there? Or ever read some stuff on Russia other than CNN and D.C.'s propaganda and lies?
    I tell you from multi year (and quite recent also) first hand experience that you have no idea what the Russian population is capable of pulling off, when they feel their country under attack. Which it is undeniably the case right now - even if (not yet) militarily. As for corruption, look no further than to washington d.c. - it would be hard to tell these days which administration/ bureaucracy is more corrupt - the Russian or the American. as for the always angry and never smile part - well, I guess such uneducated, totally idotic sterotypes pass for "knowledge" these days.
    Yes, Russia's economy is way too dpendend on oil/gas but they have made substantial progress diversifying away from that, though they will still need at least another decade or two to get these imbalances in order. You may sniff at their civilian vehicles and planes. their military ones are meanwhile often quite superior to the stuff the U.S. produces - and way more robust for all sorts of climatic conditions. Contrary to the US the russians already have a 5th gen airfighter flying and combating. meanwhile the U.S. has been throwing a couple hundred BILLION $$ at producing the new F35 and still have little to show for it. The pentagon itself admits that the aircraft at this point simply isn't combat-ready. Wanna guess how many billions of this money ended up in private accounts of lobbyists and other cronies? And while it may have escaped you, russia ist catching up very fast in missile and drone capabilities as their campaign in syria demonstrated.
    The funny thing is that russia is often so quickly dismissed as a global power by many people and yet at the same time these very people go instantly into an almost hysteric overdrive with their "Russia threatens us" meme...
    Feb 7, 2016. 10:00 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Tesla's Gigafactory Size Revisited  [View article]
    @joeinslw: "we are wondering why the CEO has to put 5.5 Billion of his own bucks into Tesla?"

    Where did you read that he put 5 bn of his own money into tesla? Musk owns about 26 % of tesla motors - atke that he bought for barely a billion $ initially, if not even way less than that. This stake in Tesla motors now accounts for about 65% of his personal welath (estimated at about $12 bn). So rather than putting 5 bn into tesla, he is making billions off the rising stock price (about $7bn at last count) - of course only if he cashes out in time before the stock comes down to Earth.
    Feb 7, 2016. 09:23 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tesla's Gigafactory Size Revisited  [View article]
    At least they can then recycle that "supply constrained" excuse again when the Gen III production falls way short of their projections and promises.
    From a 2018 imaginary tesla press release: "We cudda, wudda have built and sold 3 times as many Gen III by now, but you know, we hadn't enough battery packs available since we started to ramp up the giggle factory only a few short days ago."
    Feb 7, 2016. 09:17 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Russia Calls Saudi Arabia's Oil Supply Cut Bluff - Saudis Fold  [View article]
    Gabor, you got it totally backwards. first, Russia has always only acted defensively - and they actually lack offensive military capacities. Contrary to the US who has structured their military forces in such a way as to invade any place on Earth, Russia's militaryx is structured to defend the homeland. It cannot send significant forces more than a 1000 km away from its own borders. It has basically no aircratf carriers and of course just a handful of military outposts while the U.S. has bases allover the world. Projecting a Russian invasion in Saudi Arabia is way over the top.
    Second, the Saudis do what they do for purely reopolitical reasons. They want to curb Iran's growing influence (which is another unintended consequence of U.S. military meddling in the region). And they want to force Russia to stop supporting Assad in Syria. ISIS is basically a saudi-financed and equipped wahabi terror squad that shall remove assad and secure Saudi (wahabi) influence over Syria.
    The U.S. in turn hopes to destabilize Russia (and to a lesser extent Iran) with these low oil prices. The wolfowitz doctrine is alive and well: never allow any poer on the planet get stron enough to challenge US American world hegemony. Russia is the only force capable to at least block certain US American actions. (China is catching up fast but will need another decade or so after which it will be way more formidable an opponent to US world dominance than Russia).
    The interesting question will be of course, whether the House of saud will feel interior revolt before Putin will. It's a toin coss, imho. While the saudis have the better financial resources and the support and backing of the US, the Russian population is well more used to and willing to accept economic hardships for a prolonged period of time. In turn, the house of saud already rlies heavily on handing out ever more money and gifts just to keep the important stratas of society from revolting.
    Feb 7, 2016. 08:47 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment