Manchester United Hail Mary IPO Differs from Facebook $MANU $FB

Manchester United's crest

Manchester United’s crest (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Manchester United (NYSE:MANU) differs from Facebook in some highly significant ways. Facebook was a fairy tale which still might come true some time this millennium. Manchester United is a football team (soccer for the Yanks) playing to established metrics. Oh yeah the big metric is Malcolm Glazer’s need to reduce debt and get his ass out of a sling.

So you see sports fans the two IPO’s are very different. There will always be rabid sports fans, soccer hooligans and very over paid soccer stars that make North American athletes look like welfare cases.

It all comes down to valuation and the PE ratio. Facebook was somewhere around a 60 forward PE which of course is ridiculous. Manchester United is based on both A & B shares a 95 PE. Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) has fled the deal once they realized it needed to be done in North America.

Somehow I do not believe there will be an order imbalance. NYSE will not be stressed by a deal which just may be DOA.

Will Malcolm Glazer’s empire start to wobble without this deal going through?

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective.


All the Kings Horses and All the Kings Men Put JP Morgan Together Again $JPM #XLF

English: Category:JPMorgan Chase

English: Category:JPMorgan Chase (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

JP Morgan (NYSE:JPM) announced a wide-ranging executive shuffle. Very predictable after the trading scandal as Jamie Dimon tries to squeegee mop out problems. Jamie Dimon did say he has plans to stay for a while which means his political career has crashed and burned. Succession planning considerations are fine but how come all of a sudden it’s so front and center.

Lets not be naïve large financial institutions do re-arrange the executive suite periodically. After the trading debacle this was very predictable. But it does have deep roots in the trading debacle. Announced during mid summer when quite frankly more than one investor is away on holiday and well after the annual meeting to avoid a back lash the deck chairs have been re-arranged.

Before the trading scandal Jamie Dimon and most observers would have said JP Morgan is a great franchise and is well-managed. The trading scandal blows up and now we are reorganized.

Ladies and Gentlemen. It is not who sits in what chair and whose star is rising or falling. It all depends on how well the controls work and how well senior officers are applying themselves to managing risk. Why is this group better or worse than the last group?

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective.

Facebook Claims Early Days of Monetization. Show Me The Money Problems Exist. $FB

Facebook logo

Facebook logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Facebook (Nasdaq:FB) finally came out with their first quarterly conference call. Much of the commentary was very high level and almost every management comment concludes “its early days and cannot forecast as yet.” This waffling does not justify a 60 forward PE.

No data on customer metrics. How much money does user have? Marketing is getting client to pay for something. Data provided is geographic but in a global marketplace it’s all about reaching clients that match the marketers product lines. The global bar charts are superficial.

The executives still emphasize the evangelization of Facebook. The comment is made Facebook advertisers need to learn how to use Facebook. The second comment is that they want to take large companies and make them social. Then I remember General Motors giving up on Facebook not that long ago. There seems to be a dynamic tension which is not being resolved. Automobile marketing is such a huge share of marketing Facebook may need to learn something about the end-user dynamics and not just keep saying social social social.

Mark Zuckerberg waffled on an excellent question when he was asked how Facebook would leverage video and e-commerce. The suggestion being if a user is liking something there is an obvious e-commerce opportunity. Zuckerberg talked around the point and discussed who does what platform. Sounded like his thoughts and Facebook thoughts are dare we say it very early stage.

Many of the analysts asked questions about the mechanics of socialization. No one could really drive through to the all important monetization. If a business cannot show you how they will make money then you have a poor business.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective.

Facebook Can You Stand It. It’s About Mobile or Go Home $FB

Mark Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Facebook

Mark Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Facebook (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Facebook (Nasdaq:FB) will release much-anticipated numbers later today. Two problems. You have to justify a forward PE ratio of 60. Then you need to prove you are a monetized player in mobile not desk top. The two points will intertwine. Chances are the mobile strategy would already be on the street. PE’s of 60 on the forward are never sustainable except in sugar-plum dreams.

High noon for Zuckerberg and the hoodie.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective.

Apple Plays Dividend Hang Time. Traders Can Now Use Ex-Div Timeline $AAPL

Apple Inc.

Apple Inc. (Photo credit: marcopako )

Apple (Nasdaq:AAPL) released the worlds smallest earnings release in relation to the global scale of Apple. In about one page plus financials the earnings release explained one of the largest enterprises that bestrides the planet. Basically you have to listen to the conference call and then read the transcript very carefully.

Now that Apple is a dividend paying stock please note the dividend hang time. In the release they announce the Board of Directors has approved a quarterly dividend of $2.65 @ share. The dividend is payable on Thursday Aug 16, 2012 to shareholders of record Monday Aug 13, 2012. The dividend was declared today Tuesday July 24, 2012 a full twenty (20) days in advance of the record date.

Apple has become a dividend paying stock. Many investors still have not fully internalized this profound change. The hang time will help keep the stock value up as investors are paid to wait. Any significant dips allow sharp traders to take advantage of ex-dividend valuations.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective.

China Invades Canadian Oil Sands Take Over for Nexen $NXY #oilsands #CNOOC

China National Offshore Oil Corporation

China National Offshore Oil Corporation (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

China National Offshore Oil Company (CNOOC) has made an attractive offer for a premier Canadian independent oil company. Nexen (NYSE:NXY) dangles like a minnow before a whale. Strategically this is a text-book cases study. Except the ramifications are political.

The Canadian Federal government made a foreign takeover of Potash go away  (NYSE:POT) as it kow towed to local concerns.

The US government not that long ago nixed the take-over of Unocal. The strategy was text-book correct except for political concerns. CNOOC has every intention of buying something big and cannot be denied forever.

Oil and politics are interchangeable terminology. The Chinese have some interesting cards. I’d be inclined to negotiate. The Chinese dragon would understand.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective.

Bank of America Toadies to Hedge Funds $BAC #hedgefunds

Photo of Bank of America ATM Machine by Brian ...

Photo of Bank of America ATM Machine by Brian Katt, Framingham Rest Stop, Massachusetts. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) is working hard at toadying to the hedge fund business. They have appointed Elizabeth Hammond as  the head of its capital introduction team in the United States. The business, which is part of Bank of America’s prime brokerage unit, specializes in connecting hedge funds with prospective investors like pension funds and endowments.

Of course Bank of America hopes to generate transaction fees from all the frenetic buying and selling that hedge funds supposedly do.

Now if I was a pension fund, endowment or had some huge money with Bank of America I would be very nervous about this relationship. Whose interest is Bank of America really looking after.

Anyway in the mean time lots of lunches and dinners for Elizabeth Hammond.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective.

Facebook Quarterly Earnings. Do Executives have opening jitter? Is Zuckerberg the Next Jerry Yang? $FB

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...

Image via CrunchBase

Facebook (Nasdaq:FB) with the 60 forward PE is going live with earnings on Thursday. The way they handle the conference call will tell a lot about management maturity. To date they have been the darlings of the tech space. They have been a trend setters that everyone worries about. Their IPO was controversial to say the least.

Now management needs to talk to the boss. The shareholder. While it is doubtful they will report big revenue numbers the market will parse the style and demeanour of the senior executives on the call. How will they deal with news which is not outstanding? How will they contrast the promises from the IPO with the reality of an operating business. Litigations lawyers will be listening closely.

Zuckerberg may or may not be on the call. Yes he is a Billionaire shareholder with enormous executive clout. Chances are he will not be on the call as is typical for many large tech concerns. The disclosure/governance problem will be to decide if Zuckerberg is the right guy and can answer to Facebook or is he the next Jerry Yang and will just sit off to the side in a golden rocking chair.

Zuckerberg does not need the rough ride. My call is he will not put on a public face and just put up the hoodie.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor persepctive.

#BlackSwan Issues $SPX $XLF $VIX $VXX #OWS $QQQ $IAU

Side view of mature adult showing characterist...

Side view of mature adult showing characteristic “S” neck (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Black Swans were once thought to be sedentary, but the species is now known to be highly nomadic. There is no set migratory pattern, but rather opportunistic responses to either rainfall or drought.

When rain does fall in the arid central regions, Black Swans will migrate to these areas to nest and raise their young. However, should dry conditions return before the young have been raised, the adult birds will abandon the nests and their eggs or cygnets and return to wetter areas.

Black Swans are unable to fly for about a month following mating. (This time may vary). During this time they will usually settle on large, open waters for safety.

The species has a large range. No threat of extinction, or significant decline in population has been identified with this numerous and widespread bird.

Black Swans were first seen by Europeans in 1697, when Willem de Vlamingh‘s expedition explored the Swan River, Western Australia.

I would like to thank and attribute to Wikipedia all the above information.

Black Swan’s may be adjusting migratory patterns. Caveat emptor is advised.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective.

Google Governance Quandry Where is Larry Page and Why do they not talk about Him $GOOG $FB

Google 貼牌冰箱(Google Refrigerator)

Google 貼牌冰箱(Google Refrigerator) (Photo credit: Aray Chen)

Google (Nasdaq:GOOG) announced OK earnings. No one will become more of a long term bull as a result of the earnings this Q. but where the Hell is Larry Page. About time they say something and stop the stupid rumours and useless stories. Remember Steve Jobs at Apple (Nasdaq:AAPL) with all the health problems.

Back to business. Google did OK in ad revenue but is not showing any competence in mobile. Not a good sign. This is not a good harbinger for Facebook (Nasdaq:FB) which also is anchored in old desk top mentality but has the problem of a 60 PE on forward earnings.

Steady workmanlike progress will not do it here.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective.