Friday, March 30, 2012

GDT::Portfolio 1Q'12 Review

The first quarter of 02012 has come to an end and that means it is time to review the GDT::Portfolio.

Top 10 holdings are: iRobot #1; Google #2; Cray #3; Red Hat #4; Geeknet #5; Illumina #6; Yahoo! #7; Bruker #8; Nanosphere #9; Hanger #10. The portfolio would be a significantly stronger if Geeknet was #1. In addition, as much as I like Hanger, its #10 position is a signal that the GDT::Portfolio is running in place. The same could be said for Yahoo! and Red Hat.

Positions 11-20 are: Level 3 Communications #11 (good); US Airways #12 (should be lower); Trimble Navigation #13 (should be lower); Spire #14 (needs to be at least #10); Stewart Enterprises #15 (again, one of my favorites, but it should be lower); #16 (needs to be in the bottom five); Aastrom Biosciences #17 (needs to be in top 12); LookSmart #18 (needs to be in top 15); iParty #19 (okay at this spot); Comcast #20 (should be lower).

The bottom dozen: NeuroMetrix #21 (needs to be in top 12); KTOS Security #22 (should be higher); Mace Security #23 (should be higher); Axion Power #24 (okay); Altair Nanotechnologies #25 (needs to be in top 15); AT&T #26 (lower); Capstone Therapeutics #27 (needs to be in top 20, but position is going to liquidated before the end of the year); Digital Angel #28 (needs to be in top 20, but position is going to be liquidated before the end of the year); StemCells #29 (needs to be top 15); Lucent Technologies #30 (should be higher); Isotechnika #31 (should be in top 25); Adamis Pharmaceuticals #32 (position being liquidated).

DISCLAIMER: A posting like this might make it seem like the GDT::Portfolio is worth lots of money, but it doesn't. Don't get me wrong; it would be hurt if it went to $0.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Illumina Needs to Say no, nO, NO!

It's 5:47am MST on 02012.03.29 and the markets open in 45 minutes. I take a peek at the GDT::Portfolio and in pre-market trading the ILMN (Illumina) volume is 2+ million shares. There's news... Is it good news or bad news... Close eyes and scroll down to see the headlines... The headline is: "Roche Raises Hostile Bid for Illumina to $6.7 Billion"... Still, I need to spend some time deciding if this good news or bad news.

Illumina (ILMN) closed yesterday (02012.03.28) at $49.88. 52-week range: $25.57 - $79.40. Roche's initial offer was $44.50 and their new offer is $51. I don't want sell our ILMN shares at $51 because I think they are worth more than that; therefore, this is potentially bad news because other investors might disagree with my opinion and be happy cashing out at $51. I continue to believe Roche is trying to buy Illumina on the cheap.

Red Hat is a FLOSS Success Story

Red Hat (RHT) had a solid FY 02012. The company reported 4Q'12 results after the markets closed yesterday and in pre-market trading RHT shares up ~9% at $56.02. RHT is at its highest price since the early summer of 02000. I liked the following headline by "Red Hat Becomes Open Source's First $1 Billion Baby".

The following are some notes from Red Hat's 4Q'12 press releases.

Red Hat plans to hire 1000 people this year.

Red Hat announced a $300 million share buyback program.

RHT is at its highest price since early summer of 02000.

[quote] "Red Hat experienced impressive breadth and depth of demand for our technologies this quarter whether by geography or by industry vertical."

[quote] We were all shocked at how well RHEL did." (RHEL is enterprise Linux software.)

[quote] "We've got a broad range of technologies that customers want because it is a better technology than they currently have, it is less expensive than what they currently have. It is the next generation of technologies."

Red Hat continues to be a FLOSS (Free/Libre Open Source Software) success story.

[update::02012.03.29 at 1:55pm MST] RHT ended today at $61.43, up 19+%. The intra-day high was a new 52-week high of $61.71. Volume was 9.6x trailing-3-month average. AP reported: "Red Hat shares hadn't topped $61 since March 2000, also the height of the dot-com boom."

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

iRobot Has an Interesting Three Month Chart

iRobot (IRBT) is still languishing after crashing on 02012.02.09 when it closed at $25.17 after a previous day close of $38.30. I thought the following chart was interesting.

I recently say a headline that read "iRobot is the next Apple." That would be nice, but I'm not going to hold my breath waiting for it to happen. At its current market value of $767 million, Apple Inc. could buy iRobot with petty cash.

Red Hat; Bruker; Trimble Navigation

Red Hat (RHT) reports 4Q'12 results today (Wednesday, 02012.03.28). On Monday, before the markets opened, I wrote: "If the markets get off to a good start this week, then it's possible RHT will make a new 52-week high." Yesterday (02012.03.27), RHT hit a new 52-week of $54.01 before closing at $51.90. Today Wired Enterprise ( has a posting titled: "Red Hat Becomes Open Source’s First $1 Billion Baby."

Bruker (BRKR) closed yesterday (02012.03.27) at $15.54. 52-week range: $11.48 - $21.65. Today, reported that some firm named Macquarie "initiated" coverage on Bruker with an 'Outperform' rating. Yesterday Bruker issued a press release having the following title: "Bruker Introduces WineScreener™ - a Cost-Effective, Automated and High Throughput Solution for Wine Quality Control and Safety Checks using High-Resolution FT-NMR".

Trimble Navigation (TRMB) hit a new 52-week high of $55.57 yesterday (02012.03.27) before closing at $55.43.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Stewart Enterprises Ups Its Dividend

Stewart Enterprises (STEI) announced today (02012.03.27) that they are increasing their dividend by 14%. I don't buy stocks for yield, but many people do.
Thomas M. Kitchen, President and CEO, said, "The Board's decision to increase the cash dividend reflects its continued confidence in our solid balance sheet and our ability to consistently generate strong cash flow. This represents a 60% increase in our dividend rate in the last two and one-half years."

STEI closed yesterday (02012.03.26) at $6.21. 52-week range: $4.92 - $8.39. The new dividend at STEI's current price is an approximate yield of 2.58%.

I've blogged before STEI's high SIR (Short Interest Ratio) and right now it's at 35.8.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Red Hat; Illumina; US Airways

Red Hat (RHT) reports 4Q'12 results on 02012.03.28. Here's a quote from "The bulls are looking for Red Hat to reach a 12-year high after its earnings report this week." RHT closed Friday, 02012.03.23, at $51.87. 52-week range: $31.77 - $53.42. If the markets get off to a good start this week, then it's possible RHT will make a new 52-week high.

Illumina (ILMN) is being sued by Columbia University over the possible violation of five patents tied to DNA sequencing. It's a great time to be a genomics lawyer. Investors seem concerned. At 8:00am MST the NASDAQ was up 1.16%, yet ILMN was down 1.26%.

US Airways (LCC) is looking closely at possibly merging with American Airlines. LCC closed Friday, 02012.03.23, at $7.55. 52-week range: $3.96 - $10.35. LCC has been a good investment for us, but I've never really wanted to be a US Airways shareholder.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Looking Dumb w/LookSmart; Spire's a Solar Co.

LookSmart (LOOK) got hammered this week after the company announced 4Q'11 results on 02012.03.20. In a nutshell, an ugly quarter. LOOK closed last week at $1.42 and this week it closed at $1.10 (02012.03.23). About 6% of the float was traded during the last three days of the week just ended. I listened to the conference call and it appears as though the next couple of quarters are going to tough. LOOK closed on 02012.03.23 at $1.10 after hitting a new 52-week low of $1.05. 52-week range: $1.05 - $2.23.

Spire (SPIR) continues to stay in business. I noticed that two weeks ago Spire announced it has sold its semiconductor business for $8.5 million. CEO Roger Little said that the sale will enable Spire to "more aggressively pursue opportunities in its solar and biomedical businesses." Spire received approximately $7.2 million in cash from the sale of the semiconductor business. There are approximately 8.5 million SPIR shares.

Spire (SPIR) reported 4Q'11 results on Thursday, 02012.03.15. CEO Roger Little mentioned that Spire's "solar business" comprised 82% of the company's total revenue in 02011. SPIR closed yesterday (02012.03.23) at $1.29. 52-week range: $0.53 - $4.82.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012 Buys a Robotics Company (AMZN) issued the to Acquire Kiva Systems, Inc. press release on 02012.03.19. Kiva Systems makes industrial robots and is paying $775 million to acquire the Boston-based robotics company. was a Kiva Systems customer (along with Staples, The Gap,
"Amazon has long used automation in its fulfillment centers, and Kiva’s technology is another way to improve productivity by bringing the products directly to employees to pick, pack and stow," said

AMZN, which is a small part of the GDT::Portfolio, closed yesterday (02012.03.20) at $192.33. 52-week range: $160.82 - $246.71.

Kiva Systems approximate revenues are $133 million and the company is profitable. Boston-based iRobot, for comparison purposes, has revenues of approximately $465 million and its current market value is about $740 million. In addition, iRobot has about $184 million in cash and $0 debt. IRBT closed yesterday (02012.03.20) at $27.09.

Comparing Kiva Systems with iRobot might be like comparing Jack with Jill; nonetheless, based upon what is paying for Kiva Systems it appears as though IRBT might be undervalued. Although I know nothing, I can't help but ponder if companies like GE and Boeing have an interest in acquiring a company like iRobot.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Apple; Google, Red Hat

Apple (AAPL), which is not a GDT::Portfolio stock, announced yesterday (02012.03.19) that it is going to be paying a dividend (~1.8% yield). They also announced a $10 billion share buyback. At yesterday's closing price of $601.10, Apple Inc. had an approximate market value of $560.45 billion.

Google (GOOG) is a GDT::Portfolio stock and I say: Dividend no, share buyback yes. GOOG closed yesterday at $633.98. 52-week range: $473.02 - $670.25. Approximate market value: $206.13 billion.

Red Hat (RHT) is within 5% of a new 52-week high. I noticed that last week Morgan Stanley downgraded RHT from 'over weight' to 'equal weight'. Valuation was cited. RHT closed yesterday (02012.03.19) at $51.03. 52-week range: $31.77 - $53.42.

31.77 - 53.42

Monday, March 19, 2012

Illumina is Fighting Off Roche

Illumina (ILMN) closed last Friday (02012.03.16) at $49.93. 52-week range: $25.57 - $79.40.

Today, Monday, 02012.03.19, Illumia issued the following press release: Illumina Files Definitive Proxy Materials and Sends Letter to Stockholders

The press release contained the following in bold, so I've bold it.

In short, this market is at a breakthrough point and it’s an exciting time to be an Illumina stockholder: genetic sequencing is the future of healthcare, and Illumina is at the forefront of this transformation.

I liked some of the following blurb.

"Roche’s blatantly opportunistic hostile offer of $44.50 per share for Illumina [...] was unanimously rejected [by the Board] as grossly inadequate."

I agree! $44.50 is blatantly opportunistic and grossly inadequate.

The Illumina press release also contained the following. (I preserved the bolding.)

"The Board rejected Roche’s offer because it dramatically undervalues Illumina, because it was timed to take advantage of what we believe was a temporary price dip caused by external events, and because it falls far short of the value we believe we can deliver to our stockholders by pursuing our strategic plan."

Sunday, March 18, 2012

NeuroMetrix; Trimble Navigation; Yahoo!

This is my third posting today, but it's because I was gone all of last week. I noticed that DJIA 13,000+ and the S&P 500 is 1400+ and the NASDAQ is 3000+.

NeuroMetrix (NURO) was up on Friday (02012.03.16) on a huge jump in trading volume (1.17 million vs. 0.13 million). NURO closed on 02012.03.16 at $0.78, up 8.33% for the day. 52-week range: $0.66 - $3.78.

Trimble Navigation (TRMB) hit a new 52-week high of $54.75 on 02012.03.16. Our investment in TRMB is minimal, so I don't have any plans on selling any TRMB at it's current price. My first target is $84.

Yahoo! (YHOO) is suing Facebook over patent violations. To Yahoo! I say: Go for it!

iRobot Partners With Texas Instruments

I'm getting caught up after a one week (Spring Break) getaway.

iRobot (IRBT) issued a press release on 02012.03.12 titled: "Texas Instruments and iRobot team up to shape future robotic innovation." TI is a big company and they have OMAP(tm), which is a high performing, ultra-power-efficient system-on-chip that's smaller than a dime.

Three days later on 02012.03.15 iRobot (IRBT) announced it was "introducing the compact Scooba 230 to markets in EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa) and Latin America and is also refreshing the popular Scooba 300 series worldwide."

Also on 02012.03.15, the Wall Street Journal had subscription only article that started with "The Robots Are Coming to Hospitals: A New Breed of Blue-Collar Robots is Handling the Dirty Work, Transporting Linens and Laundry."

Geeknet Gets a Buy Rating; The Value of SourceForge

I'm back from a one week getaway.

Geeknet (GKNT) announced the following: "SourceForge Launches a Directory in Germany for Local Software Downloads." The press release stated: "Localization for our top markets, including Germany, is a clear path for continued improvements in our site experience and opportunities to grow the user base for many open source projects." Makes me wonder... What is SourceForge worth?

This seems fitting... On Pi Day 02012 (02012.03.14) The Benchmark Company initiated coverage on Geeknet (GKNT) with a 'buy' rating. GKNT closed on Pi Day at $15.81 after closing on the previous day at $15.10. Benchmark's target price is $22, which is well below whatever my first target price of $30.94.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Good News From Aastrom Biosciences and iRobot

Aastrom Biosciences (ASTM) "completes $40 million financing" was a fun headline to see today (02012.03.09). ASTM closed yesterday (02012.03.08) at $1.82, dipped to $1.79 today before spiking to $2.72 on the financing news. At one point trading in ASTM was halted. ASTM ended the day at $2.20, up 20.9%. Volume was 3.87 million versus trailing-3-month average of 0.21 million. 52-week range: $1.75-$3.47.

iRobot (IRBT) reported that they have received military order for FirstLook robots. The FirstLook is a "is a small, light and throwable robot." iRobot made the announced earlier in the week. Today, Friday, 02012.03.09, IRBT closed at $26.59, up 4.11% for the day on average volume. 52-week range: $22.46 - $39.00.

NeuroMetrix Gets a Buy Recommendation

I didn't see this until today (02012.03.09), but on 02012.02.27 (a Monday) Dawson James Securities "initiated" coverage on NeuroMetrix (NURO) with a 'buy' rating. NURO closed on Friday, 02012.02.24 at $0.78 and it opened on 02012.02.27 at $0.82. NURO hit an intra-day high of $0.86 on 02012.02.29. Yesterday, 02012.03.08, NURO closed at $0.69 after hitting a new 52-week low of $0.66.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

NASDAQ & Kratos Have a Good Day on 8 March 02012

The NASDAQ was up 1.18% today (02012.03.08) closing at 2970.42. It was a good day for the GDT::Portfolio of 32 stocks with 24 up, 5 unchanged and 3 down.

Kratos Defense & Security Solutions was the only stock worth mentioning. KTOS closed at $6.69 up 12.82% Volume was 4.7x trailing-3-month average.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Is Stewart Enterprises Six Feet Under?

"Forecasting Increased Volatility In Pandora Shares" is a headline that I saw this morning (02012.03.07) at These days the headline can make a good fill in the blank: Forecasting increased volatility in ______ shares.

Stewart Enterprises (STEI) reports 1Q'12 results after the market closes today (02012.03.07). Stewart's FY ends Oct 31st. STEI is one of my favorite holdings even though the stock continues to languish as if the company has no future in the deathcare industry. STEI closed yesterday at $5.60. 52-week range: $5.11-$8.39. Right now, is reporting the SIR (Short Interest Ratio) for STEI is a whopping 35.6. 10% of the shares are closely held and "institutions/mutual funds" own ~96% of the float.

[update::02012.03.08] "While the first quarter did not meet our overall financial expectations, ..." is not the way shareholders want CEOs starting off a press release.

I liked the following items from the 1Q'12 results: "Purchased 1.3 million shares of the Company`s outstanding common stock and paid $3.1 million in dividends. Generated operating and free cash flow of $7.8 million and $3.8 million, respectively." I also liked the following: "Since quarter-end, we have repurchased an additional 0.4 million shares of our common stock for $2.4 million, resulting in a 5 percent decrease in total shares outstanding in the last twelve months." Fewer shares outstanding imply larger pieces of the pie?

STEI closed yesterday 02012.03.08 at $5.65.

[update::02012.03.08] On a day when the NASDAQ was up 1.18%, STEI closed down 2.3% at $5.52. During the day STEI hit a new 52-week of $4.92. Volume was 2.5x trailing-3-month average.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Yahoo! Has a Lost a Computing Guru to Google

Yahoo! (YHOO) has lost Prabhakar Raghavan to Google (GOOG). Dr. Raghaven is a guru in algorithms/computational thinking and data mining (i.e. finding data and turning it into meaningful/reusable information). YHOO and GOOG closed last week (02012.03.02) at $14.72 and $621.25, respectively.

There are numerous news reports that Yahoo! is going to implement a major workforce reduction. I don't want people lose their jobs, but Yahoo! has too may yahoos on the payroll and an adjustment is long over due.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Kenneth Langone Buys More Geeknet (GKNT)

Geeknet (GKNT) closed yesterday (02012.03.02) down 3.3% at $14.41. I've been keeping an eye open for some insider buying. After yesterday's close I checked a found the following.

Between 23 Feb 02012 and 29 Feb 02012, CEO Kenneth Langone bought GKNT shares on five consecutive days. I did some arithmetic and calculated that Langone purchased 18,700 GKNT shares at an average price of $14.91 for a total investment of $278,839. Langone increased his GKNT holdings by almost 9%.

Even at $14.91, GKNT still has a large SIR (Short-Interest-Ratio) of 12.7. In other words, many investors see these shares dropping even further.

Friday, March 2, 2012

The GDT::Portfolio on Future Day 02012

Yesterday (March 1st) was Future Day. The GDT::Portfolio is heavily weighted in the future and this makes being a long-term investor beyond frustrating. In addition, it keeps dependent on OPM (Other People's Money; specifically my employer's $$$).

I recorded the state of the GDT::Portfolio prior to the market opening on Future Day. I don't have time to do a detailed analysis, but here are some notes just for fun.

Let's start with the top 17...

iRobot #1 (robotics). Google #2, but only by $0.35 (21st century informatics). Cray #3 (supercomputing). Geeknet #4 (world geekification). Red Hat #5 (FLOSS [Free/Libre Open Source Software). Illumina #6 (genomics). Yahoo! #7 (21st century informatics). Bruker #8 (scientific equipment). Nanosphere #9 (molecular diagnostics). Hanger #10 (orthotics & prosthetics). Level 3 Communications #11 (network & Internet services). US Airways #12 (travel). LookSmart #13 (Internet-based advertising). Spire #14 (solar). Trimble Navigation #15 (positioning services). Stewart Enterprises (deathcare) #16. (e-commerce) is at #17 and this is bad news for the GDT::Portfolio because it should be at #30.

And now for the bottom 13...

Our two stem cell holdings--Aastrom Biosciences and StemCells Inc.--are at #18 and #30, respectively. Our two battery holdings--Altair Nanotechnologies and Axion Power Intl.--are at #25 and #26, respectively. iParty (party crap, oops... supplies) is at #20. Our telecommunications holdings (which are tiny investments)--Comcast, Alcatel-Lucent and AT&T--are at #19, #27 and #28, respectively. Having Alcatel-Lucent at #27 sucks. Our security holdings--Kratos Defense & Security Solutions & Mace Security Intl.--are at #21 and #23, respectively. Capstone Therapeutics #24 (drugs) and Digital Angel #29 (RFID) are going to be liquidated before 02012 comes to an end.