Facebook Shoots It’s Foot Off. Probably will sell you the picture. $FB #instagram

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...

Image via CrunchBase

So Facebook (Nasdaq:FB) will now be selling your pictures without notice or compensation. Apparently you cannot opt out. I hope Facebook has set aside some money for lawsuits.

Facebook is proving itself to be the biggest financial honey trap since the Borgia Cardinals and Popes ran the Vatican. Here is how the rebellion will come about. Lawsuits. The litigation and tort community is just salivating at the teeth. Lawsuit after lawsuit will pile up. Vexing Facebook which has yet to prove itself profitable.

The lawsuits will damage the brand as users become enraged and abandon. Corporations who may be using imagery will suddenly face the prospect of losing control. Not happy. I`m personally waiting for the misuse of Mark Zuckerberg photo`s. Someone will come up with something devious. you just know they will.

In the meantime if you posted some family photo`s. Mark and the boys can make a few bucks from it. Globally you just know there will be jurisdictions that will not allow it.

Win, lose or draw this will be a tar baby for Facebook.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective. Follow him on twitter@financialskepti or his evil twin brother who writes Wall Street Murder Thrillers at twitter@georgegutowski

Kohl’s Directors Conducting Life Boat Drills. All Rats Leave Early! $KSS

Kohl's at the Gateway Shopping Center in north...

Kohl’s at the Gateway Shopping Center in northeast Portland, Oregon. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Kohl’s Corporation (NYSE:KSS) entered the prime Christmas Selling season with several key insiders selling their shares. All retailers are highly sensitive to reports of Christmas Sales. This is like the super bowl for pro football. You  have to be great and there is no tomorrow,

Check out these massive insider sales transactions

  1. Long-service director William Kellogg, who as a former CEO and Chairman at Kohl led a MBO of the company in 1986, hit the sell button for 1.5 million shares in early November valued at almost $82 million, 600,000 shares in September valued at more than $32 million, and 900,000 shares in August valued at over $46 million.
  2. Similarly, long-service director and former COO John Herma sold about 740,000 shares at the beginning of November for more than $40 million, about 260,000 shares in September worth over $14 million, and 500,000 shares in August worth nearly $26 million.
  3. Prior to these transactions, Mr. Kellogg had made no sales since 2009 while Mr. Herma had made no sales since 2011. Moreover, their transactions were generally made on the same days.

Coincidence. I’ve long given up on the tooth fairy. In a retailer by Aug/Sep your Christmas Game Plan is already set. You’re into execution mode. So when the big guns are selling you do not need fundamental analysis.

The stock ran up from around $43 late June to $55 first week of Nov. Then the bad news all started to come out. Sales are off dramatically and the stock has dropped. The olde dogs saw it coming and sold out. Surprisingly the money flow still clocks in at 1.23. Not a good set up.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective. Follow him on twitter@financialskepti and follow his evil twin brother who writes wall street murder thrillers at twitter@georgegutowski

Rolls Royce Bad Ethics or Reality Based Marketing $RYCEY

Rolls Royce is clearing out some dirty laundry. You see apparently like between 1996 to 2002 which is at least ten years ago some naughty things happened in Indonesia and they are only now getting around to discussing the matter with the British Serious Fraud Office. Bribes were paid in cash and a blue Rolls Royce to President Suharto’s son who eventually served time in jail.

The allegations came out when a Rolls Royce functionary was forced into early retirement after he spoke up about some strange spending on his bosses expense account in Indonesia. So the person decided to retaliate after he opened up the corporate kimono; specifically his bosses kimono. ,

The whole affair smacks of a pissing match with more unsavory details to follow. Personally I’m predicting a ménage à trois with cross gender nuances. So you have to ask your self why after ten years does someone get pissed off. Ten year is a long time to stew over something.

Then and only then do you go public. Oh really so you rock the boat ten years after. Rolls Royce is smarter than that and had waited for the rumble. They report themselves, take the upper hand and position you as the bad guy.

I for one am not against a few bribes here and there. The bribe kept many workers employed and much food on the table. Their cultures will not play ball with christian-judeo values. Cash will. We will have a lot of investigation, smoke and mirrors. Rolls Royce will promise to upgrade governance and compliance. sins of ten years will fade. No one will care. The technology that was installed as a result of this bribe is rapidly becoming obsolete and needs upgrading.

If Rolls Royce can do what it takes in third world developing economies the shareholder will do well. The shrill regulator will be long forgotten.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective. Follow him on twitter@financialskepti and his evil twin who writes Wall St murder thrillers at twitter@georgegutowski

Wrapping Paper Sales Confirm Retail Sales. Do Your Own Channel Checks. $XRT, $M, $JPM, $COST, $SHLD, $TGT, $WMT

US Retail Sales 1992–2010

US Retail Sales 1992–2010 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If the retailers had good Christmas trade they are selling lots of wrapping paper, bows and ribbons. If the sales are bad the wrapping paper is not moving. Do your own channel checks. Go to retailers and see how wrapping paper sales seem to be. If the clerk is not busy the shareholders are in a pickle.

A week before Christmas this is the sure-fire way to forecast sales.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective. He has bought bags and tissue paper because he cannot wrap to save his life. follow him on twitter@financialskepti and his evil twin that writes Wall Street Murder Mysteries at twitter@georgegutowski

Signs of Black Swans

I love reading posts from GMI ratings (GMI.com). They recently published a post on Black Marks on Black Swans: 16 Subtle Signs of Stocks Teetering on the Cliff

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective. Follow him on twitter@financialskepti or his evil twin who writes financial murder thriller at twitter@georgegutowski

 Here is the essence of the post:
16 Signs of High Black Swan Risk
Accounting Governance/High Risk Events
Asset Turnover Compensation: CEO /CFO Total Comp
Cost of Goods Sold/Revenue Compensation: Incentive/Total Comp, CEO & CFO
Goodwill/Total Assets Divestitures
Intangible Assets/Assets Mergers-Acquisitions
Leverage Ratio: Debt/Equity Officer Changes
Accounts Receivable/Sales Officer: Chairman is also CEO
Depreciation Expenses/PPE Share Repurchases
Operating Revenue/Operating Expense Restructuring

Can on Observant Muslim Regulate US Financial Insitutions. Sharia Law Implications? $XLF

Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) was the first Muslim ever to be elected to Congress. He also serves on the House Financial Services Committee.

How does he observe his faith which teaches interest is wrong and regulate Financial Institutions whose business model revolves around interest rates.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective. He likes to earn interest not pay it. Follow him on twitter@financialskeptic and his evil twin on twitter@georgegutowski

Mayan Calender Y2K Redux Girl Friends Past!

As the millennium changed from 1999 to 2000 my girlfriend and I were out for a swanky New Years Eve soiree. On a credit card. We hedged our bets and were within walking distance of our nest for the night. {We made good nest}

B0th of us were professionals (something to do with money) we that heard of Y2K hysteria and were wondering. We had a good time. The bill was large. Several weeks later American Express confirmed we had a good time. Y2K did not affect my credit card. My girlfriend confirmed she had a good time also. I am confident she has shared this with her new husband. Really quite convinced.

So this Mayan thing! Not seeing anybody serious at the present. But I expect American Express to be in character and confirm whatever it was that I did. I cycle mid January.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective. I like to have a good time on New Years Eve and other eves as well. Follow him on twitter@financialskepti or his evil twin at twitter@georgegutowski Mayan calendar bring it on.