Apple greater than Exxon? We kill for oil. iPad meh. $aapl $XOM #ipad

Image representing iPhone as depicted in Crunc...

Image via CrunchBase

Apple (Nasdaq:AAPL) market cap is challenging Exxon’s. (NYSE:XOM) Many are declaring a new world order. We go to war over oil. We allow our young people to die in strange lands for oil. We refuse to conserve oil. We want to drive not push our cars. iPad or iPhone if they malfunction meh live goes on. Usually something with Android.

Careful about conclusions based on comparative market caps.

Disclosure: George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective. I have no positions in any stocks mentioned in this post. I have no plans to initiate new positions within the next 72 hours.

Will Apple annoy #iPad users to fight off #Kindle #Tablet $AAPL $AMZN

Cover of "Kindle Wireless Reading Device,...

Cover via Amazon

Seems everyone has a special secret insight into the Kindle tablet from Amazon (Nasdaq:AMZN) and how it will kick Apple’s (Nasdaq:AAPL) iPad around the block. Pretty good publicity for an unlaunched product. The price point buzz is critical. Everyone assumes Kindle will come in way lower than Apple. Everyone says Amazon has huge cash reserves and will try to bleed Apple. Everyone knows Apple has lots of cash and can take some attrition warfare.

But look at it from an iPad users stand point. You lay out some serious cash and a compelling competitor rides onto the field. Apple drops its price to counter. How many iPad purchasers will be rebated and how angry do they have to become to get the rebate. What will this do to the iPad and Apple Brands

Once Kindle forces the price down who will win the upgrade war of new and wonderful features. Amazon and Kindle have a winning track record in the marketplace. Apple has dominated because it takes an early lead and does not lose it. Apple will see the lead shrink and it is not used to fist fight.

So will they annoy the iPad customer and drop prices once Kindle has some traction or will they strike pre-emptively and signal respect for Kindle Tablet. 

Disclosure: George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective. I am anxiously awaiting the Kindle tablet before I make my final personal decision. I do not own positions in stocks mentioned in this post. I do not have any plans to initiate any new positions within the next 72 hours.

Apple’s next lawsuit App’s must pay 30% or close $AAPL #apps

Apple Inc.

Apple (Nasdaq:AAPL) put its foot down and into its mouth by demanding that App’s selling stuff on iPad and iPhone must pay Apple 30%. Cha Ching said the lawyers and watch the million dollar fees go round and round. 30% is a lot and what business would not love to eliminate or reduce it.

Meanwhile other systems may be able to offer cheaper deals and the consumer will learn to shop around and get a better deal elsewhere.

Perhaps we are seeing the beginning of Apple Hubris and another  tilt away from the Apple ecosystem?

Disclosure: George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective. I hold no positions in stocks mentioned in this post. I have no plans to initiate new positions within the next 72 hours. I am greedy and would appreciate lower prices for anything I buy on-line. Well why not?

Apple $AAPL Hyper Speed Risks

Image representing Apple as depicted in CrunchBase

Image via CrunchBase

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) reported some outstanding results and confirmed they are the leaders in anything they touch. Apple is in the enviable position of selling out all available inventory. Why do they have no inventory? Are they caught unawares of what the true demand for their product is? Not likely they are adept at branding and marketing. Do they have supply chain problems? Can they increase the capacity in their supply chain? Will competitors try to slow Apple by demanding the supply chains pay attention to non Apple products? Watch for lawsuits and back room blackmail. Will Apple see margins erode as a red-hot product experiences the inevitable consequences of the laws of supply and demand?

More importantly as Apple whips its supply chain will they be able to maintain quality and avoid brand damaging recalls in the very near future.

Then look at the other side of the coin. When the supply chain catches up to the demand and inventory is reasonably available will that mean demand has tapered off and Apple has a marketing problem.

Lots of risk when managing fever and the madness of crowds.

Disclosure: “George Gutowski” writes from a “Caveat Emptor Perspective”. I hold no positions in stocks mentioned in this post. I have no plans to initiate new positions within the next 72 hours.

Apple Steve Jobs Resurrection Compliance Issues

Image representing Apple as depicted in CrunchBase

Image via CrunchBase

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) resurrected Steve Jobs and delighted the cult. The stock pops the moment he walks on the stage. To me this begs the disclosure responsibilities. Apple and the board now play Steve Jobs health situation to generate PR spin. Will he or wouldn’t he be at this meeting or that conference.

I wish Steve Jobs all the best in the health category. I am disappointed that he and the board work his health to add buzz to product announcements. By extension if as and when Steve Jobs is no longer able to answer the bell what will investors do.

This is a strange case of behavioural finance which may have some very harsh lessons. Steve Jobs needs to wean himself off the adulation addiction. He has a strong bench. He knows he is iconic with products. How many icons have also allowed their bench to flourish.

Shareholders wealth is more important than iconic public relations.

Disclosure: “George Gutowski” writes from a “caveat emptor perspective”. I hold no positions in stocks mentioned in this post. I have no plans to initiate new positions within the next 72 hours.

Apple Hoards Cash

Image representing Steve Jobs as depicted in C...

Image via CrunchBase

 

Apple (AAPL) announced Q4 results. The buzz over iPad, iPhone and product margins overwhelms a fundamental issue. Capital efficiency. Apple has some $50 billion on the balance sheet. That is roughly equal to 20% of its current north of $300 @ share market cap. When compared to either Citigroup (C),Wells Fargo (WFC) or Bank of America (BAC) their cash stash is approximately 40% of the relative market caps.

If banks get political heat for not lending why does Apple not get the same political heat for not investing. Perhaps politicians still have not figured it out yet.

Apple is reporting half the cash balance as long-term securities. No reporting on what the investment strategy is. For $50 billion in cash we need Steve Jobs to explain the cash strategy and not make guest appearances on his own conference call just to bash one specific competitor: Research in Motion (RIMM). By the way Apple cash balance is equal to twice the market cap for RIM. So what are you afraid of?

Disclosure: George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective. I hold no positions in stocks mentioned in this post.