Facebook abandons #Socialmedia. Goes Olde School $FB, $TWTR, $GOOG, $YHOO, $MSFT, $LNKD

Facebook (Nasdaq:FB) launches mandatory video ads. That’s olde school television. you know when your watching a reasonably interesting show and suddenly these ads come on. Madison Ave Madmen call that Interruption Marketing. similar to tele-marketing which has annoyed tens of millions.

So where is the promise of social marketing. You know engaging the follower with relevant compelling offerings which have a high sell through rate. This is like watching the Swedish Bikini cheerleading team during a commercial break exhorting you to drink a particular beer while you are ignoring your girlfriend as you watch a very important football game. Very important to be emphasized.

Facebook will become no more powerful than network TV. Which right now is not very powerful at all.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective

Perfect Way to Screw Up Facebook Ads $FB, $GOOG, $TWTR, $LNKD, $YHOO,

Facebook (Nasdaq:FB) is poised to launch video ads for a reputed $2 million a day to reach everyone between 18-54. If they hang onto the business they will gross $730 million. hopefully without annoying the users.

Despite the fact it is free I’m pretty sure I don’t want to see the ads. So what if you go into your profile and change some of your settings. Age comes to mind. Tell em you’re over 55. This demographic apparently does not watch video’s. Change other aspects that makes it difficult for them to figure you out.

The ads will play automatically so watch for creative resistance from an ungrateful public who do not care to pay the bills for billionaire and multi-millionaire geeks working at Facebook.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective.

Volcker Rule – Pigs at Trough or Good Risk Management $XLF, $C, $BAC, $JPM, $WFC, $AIG, $GS, $MS #Volckerrule

The much debated Volcker Rule will be voted on by a series of regulatory agencies. essentially the rule in most part is a form of return to the old Glass Steagall system. Wall Street will still be allowed to take risks  But banks reliant on depositor funds and ultimately relying on Federal Government Deposit Insurance will no longer have the right to blow their financial brains out at the expense of depositors and the US tax payer.

Wall Street is still allowed to take risks and blow their brains out. Just use your own money or risk capital that knowingly accepts the risks and rewards.

US Chamber of Commerce and banking industry want to retain the lucrative side of hedging and risk which the Volcker rule wishes to separate. This allows them to absorb loses and stay in business. Take for example JPMorgan and the London Whale which apparently is a complete surprise to Jamie Dimon and the board of directors. If that was a private equity fund it may have gone bankrupt. In any event there would have been some very close questioning and not some shareholder dithering over who to vote for board director. Funds would have been withdrawn and vigorous lawsuits would have been launched.

The mood of the country is that of mistrust. Main street does not trust Wall Street. Tea Party supporters will find that while some voters mistrust government spending they do not want to back risk loving Wall Street Banks. The two dots do not connect.

You want to take risk. Go ahead. Just play with your own money. If you want to invest in risk invest directly. Blue Chip banks do not reward shareholders for the risks undertaken in hedges, prop trading and derivatives.

Perhaps management just does not want to be held accountable. The markets are volatile and its harder than it looks.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective.

Universal Display Corp Board less than impressive. $OLED

Much controversy about Universal Display Corporation. Huge shouting match of the loud and rude variety is underway.

The company offers the promise of exciting breakthroughs in lighting technology. Apologies to scientists for a pedestrian explanation but if it pans out its a big thing.

When companies go into warp speed and reach the next level they typically beef up the board and load in excellent talent with experience and gravitas.

The current board composition is unimpressive. The independent directors do not bring a wealth of experience to the table. A snap shot of a few independent leads to these comments:

Leonard Becker age 89 is a real estate wheeler-dealer. Other than buying lighting for his real estate projects what is he bringing to the table.

Elizabeth Gemmill age 67 has a history of non-profit boards. Very noble but this is a business. I want to see the money.

C Keith Hartley age 70 is a Wall Street wheeler-dealer. But there is no history of connections that can be leveraged. Sort of looks good to have a Wall Streeter on the board. But not enough catalyst to propel the company forward.

Lawrence Lacerte age 60 who has a background as a wheeler-dealer in tech and internet ventures.

None of the four independent directors has ever played at the level Universal Display is at or claims its going to. Time for a governance rethink. If you do not see this board changing soon you will know that management is comfortable with a captures board who does not ask tough questions.

In short they will not be able to go to the next level.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective.

Universal Display Needs New Catalyst or the Fat Lady is Going to Sing $OLED

Universal Display Corp is the subject of a rather loud and rude shouting match between Bulls and Bears. Much commentary is emotional and I mean emotional. Lots of traders are locked in deep; very deep. The emotional attachment is too strong and will only acerbate volatility in the near future.

The Bears claim the emperor wears no clothes and this will all collapse sooner rather than later. They point to an SEC investigation of accounting for payments from Samsung. We’ll see.

The Bulls claim the technology is fantastic and we are going to the moon.

The forward PE is astronomical at around 31. So what’s left. A huge takeover offer at a big premium should have already happened if the technology is so great.

The short interest has dropped by about 4.46%. The overall short level is a snick over 8 million shares. The ratio of short to public float sits at 23.96%. The nascent bullishness of a big short position is dropping but still not out of the danger range for the shorts.

While the company is making positive announcements nothing has succeeded in moving the stock north of $40. If the company cannot serve up some event-driven circumstance the stock will have a hard time justifying higher valuations. Excitement will wither and the stock will drift then drop down.

RSI looks like a car driving over a cliff.

Looks like the shorts and bears will prevail unless management can sting them somehow. Given the scrutiny management needs to come up with something very very good.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective.

Amazon Drones May Crash and Burn while Google Robot Trucks Deliver $AMZN, $GOOG, $TSLA, $FDX, $UPS, $DPSGY, $SAMS

Amazon.com Inc as we all know pulled a great publicity stunt and announced delivery by drone coming soon just a soon as technology and regulators allow it. A little bit too Star Trekkie for me. Consider this:

A customer lives in a high-rise condo. How do you deliver to a specific condo?

A customer has been receiving products at work because someone is always in the accept. how do you deliver to a high-rise office.

Just how many of these things will we need. Right now a delivery truck can easily take care of 200 customers during a day. Trucks are loaded at night and drivers roll in the early morning deploying as the urban traffic patterns allow. Consumer deliveries at night are not feasible.

Half hour delivery or its free is tough. Just ask any pizza operator. Or watch a pizza delivery guy in traffic ahead of you. It’s dangerous.

What about urban guerilla warfare. How many geeks and techs will hack the airwaves and pirate the shipments. If the mob can high-jack a tractor-trailer of goods the mob will learn how to high jack drones. Not to mention bored but brilliant teenagers who will just try to shoot them down.

I’m putting my money on Google with its driver-less cars. Add in some Tesla green tech and you have trucks that can deliver. The drones will be robots that can bring from truck to doorway.

Oh and there’s always the terrorists who will deliver a small but lethal package right to the Whitehouse and god only knows where else. Free shipping it beats high jacking jumbo jets and all that airport security stuff.

If you thought Apple Inc, Samsung and Google had global patent lawsuits going FedEx, UPS and DHL will not sit back and let Amazon take this one over.

#Xbox and #PS4 dogfight will exhaust each other. Situation ripe for a massive disruption. $SNE, $MFST, $AAPL, $GOOG,

Sony and Microsoft have launched their gladiator proxies in the forms of Xbox and PS4. Sales since launch seem to be even on a global basis. Brand loyalty is strong. No signs of any major defections. The product narratives are holding.

Consider this. Race fans will recognize the set up. Two strong horses running neck and neck fighting for every inch. The adrenaline surges, surges and then surges some more. One cannot let the other get ahead or its all over.

Usually the two horses cannot pace themselves and a third stalking horse comes out of nowhere, sweeps around in the last turn and makes a mad dash for the finish line leaving the two favourites eating dust.

The two are playing the same game. Corporate thinking is so us vs. them who really understand the landscape.

Possible disruptors could be Apple. The iPhone and iPad were pretty good. The app store has wide distribution. Google is just desperate the make Android work. The Chinese would love to take a run at this as well.

So sit back and watch the race. The harder the more likely they will fail.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective.

Universal Display Corp $OLED Short Raid Underway? Asensio Not a believer.

Universal Display Corporation UDC (Nasdaq:OLED) has caught the ire of Asensio. Asensio is known as the King of the Shorts who does his homework before he takes the kill shot. Trigger has been pulled.

Universal Display is engaged in research of Organic Light Emitting Diodes or OLED and has major contracts/relationships with Samsung and Philips.

Asensio has called the arrangements into question and by way of executive summary has concluded the emperor wears no clothes.

Just take a look at the short position history. Several months ago there were approximately 10 million shares short. The position has been covered down to about 8 million. Days to cover fluctuates widely because the underlying trading volume fluctuates wildly.

Q3 results are a surprise loss and management does seem to be tap dancing around some of the issues. Oh while you’re thinking about things it has a 76 PE ratio. so pardon the short community for acting like sharks with blood on the water.

Management could clear this up very easily with an analyst call and or and analyst day and just explain everything. But somehow they do not see the need for clearer communication.

Canaccord Capital who have a pretty savvy reputation have issued a research report calling UDC into question.

Oh and the SEC is investigating UDC’s treatment of Samsung revenues. Always comforting to see the SEC poking around because the story is not believable.

The set  up seems to be cataclysmic in the making. when this resolves it will result in a major move. If its nothing a 75 PE ratio will be called into question at best. If the emperor has no clothes the shorts win and the stock crashes and crashes.

Sort of like watching a heavy weight bout for about eight rounds. Then one fighter starts to buckle and goes down. All 15 rounds never get fought.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective.