Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Cray Expects To Be "Solidly Profitable" For 02012

Cray (CRAY) reported 4Q'11 results after the markets closed yesterday (02012.02.27). Cray.com::Company Reports Operating Profit for 2011 and Reiterates Strong Guidance for 2012 CRAY closed yesterday at $7.88. 52-week range: $4.96 - $8.10.

The "strong" guidance could help CRAY hit a new 52-week high when the market opens today (02012.02.28). Predicting Cray's business results is always difficult and almost every press release contains the phrase "While a wide range of results remains possible for ..."

[update::02012.02.28] It didn't happen until the end of the day, but CRAY did hit a new 52-week of $8.21 before closing at $8.20.

Monday, February 27, 2012

I Won't Sell Any Illumina Shares at $44.50

Illumina issued a statement concerning Roche extending its unsolicited tender offer to acquire all outstanding shares of Illumina for $44.50 in cash per common share.
"The extension by Roche was expected. An extremely low number of shares have been tendered, consistent with our view – and that of our stockholders – that Roche’s offer does not reflect Illumina’s unique leadership position, business performance and future prospects. We remain focused on continuing to develop breakthrough products that expand existing markets and create new ones. The potential of our industry is enormous, with major new markets emerging in medical diagnostics, reproductive health and cancer management."
ILMN closed last Friday (02012.02.24) at $51.22. 52-week range: $25.57 - $79.40

Friday, February 24, 2012

Level 3 Communications; Geeknet; Aastrom Biosciences

Level 3 Communications (LVLT) spiked yesterday (02012.02.23) thanks to an upgrade by some investment firm. LVLT closed yesterday at $23.51, up 12.6% for the day. Volume was 7+ million vs. trailing-3-month avg. of 1.8 million. 52-week range: $16.51 - $40.05. Despite the 12.6% jump in price, LVLT is still well below its 52-week high. Morgan Stanley upped their LVLT target price to $31, but my target price is stuck at $52.20.

Geeknet (GKNT) hit a new 52-week low of $13.90 two days ago on 02012.02.22. GKNT closed yesterday (02012.02.23) at $14.63, which means our Geeknet investment is underwater. Where's the government bailout line?

Aastrom Biosciences (ASTM) hit a new 52-week low of $1.75 yesterday (02012.02.23). ASTM has been a frustrating investment and it is current underwater. The temptation to add to our position is strong and I might act on that temptation if ASTM falls to $1.50.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Bruker Reports 4Q'11 Results

If I followed the "invest in what know" adage, I would have never hAD bought any Bruker (BRKR) shares. The following was copied from Bruker's 4Q'11 press release.
"Bruker is very well positioned to capitalize on strong demand tailwinds from a number of important secular trends, including accelerating shifts to post-genomic research and epigenetics, functional and imaging proteomics, structural biology, biologic drugs, a paradigm shift in clinical microbiology, protein and metabolite molecular diagnostics, fast and quantitative microscopy, 450 mm semiconductor FABs, shrinking semicon and nanotech feature sizes, and further adoption of superconductivity-enabled products in research, healthcare and energy/grid applications."

The following was also copied from Bruker's 4Q'11 press release.

"For the fourth quarter of 2011, Bruker’s cash flow from operations was $92.1 million, and free cash flow was $76.1 million. As of December 31, 2011, Bruker had cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash of $248.2 million and net debt of $54.9 million. As of December 31, 2011, Bruker’s Intangible Asset Ratio (IAR) was 13.8% and total debt leverage ratio was 1.2x."

~48% of BRKR shares are closely held. And, according to Bruker's "Key Statistics" page on Finance.Yahoo.com, institutions and mutual funds own 99% of BRKR's float.

Yesterday (02012.02.21) BRKR closed at $15.79. 52-week range: $11.48 - $21.65. BRKR was #8 in the GDT::Portfolio when the markets closed yesterday.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Nanosphere Continues to Burn Cash

Nanosphere (NPSH) reported 4Q'11 results prior to the market open today (02012.02.16).

Nanosphere Announces Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2011 Results

Cash flow in the fourth quarter and third quarter of 2011 was negative $7.6 million. Cash at December 31, 2011 was $39.3 million.

There are approximately 37,800,000 NSPH shares. Cash per share is ~$1.04.

"We shipped 30 systems to new customers during the fourth quarter demonstrating an inflection point has been reached in our business. The investments we have made in menu expansion, particularly in the microbiology market segment, have generated significant customer interest and demand." -- William Moffitt, Nanosphere's president/CEO

"Inflection point" means 02012 is an important year for Nanosphere.

On 02012.02.03 (i.e. two weeks ago), NSPH hit an intra-day high of $2.13. Yesterday (02012.02.15) it closed at $1.79. 52-week range: $0.89 - $3.89

If Only I Were a Quant

I just got done reading Nanosecond Trading Could Make Markets Go Haywire. It was a crappy way to start the day, but at least it's Thursday. Here is a quoted quote. "We now live in a world dominated by a global financial market of which we have virtually no sound theoretical understanding.” -- automated trading researcher John Cartlidge

Eight days ago (2/8/02012) the following was one of my Facebook postings.

I just went through my Timeline to find this Facebook update from eight days ago (2/8/02012)... Interesting Moore's Law observation from Martin Ford's book "Lights in the Tunnel". The computers on Wall Street that help cause the 02007 economic meltdown had doubled in power by the time Martin wrote his book in 02009. It has been two years since Martin documented that observation and that means the power of Wall Street computers have doubled again.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

No Yahoo! for Yahoo!; Make or Break Year for NeuroMetrix?

The frustrations of being a Yahoo! (YHOO) shareholder never let up. Yesterday (02012.02.14) Yahoo! announced that it had terminated talks about "selling" its Asian "holdings." YHOO closed down 4.6% for the day at $15.37. Volume was 88.6 million vs. trailing-3-month avg. of 20.1 million. Yahoo! remains a Silicon Valley Peyton Place.

NeuroMetrix (NURO) reported 4Q'11 results prior to the market opening today (02012.02.15). The company has significantly diluted the holdings of existing shareholders to raise cash to grow its medical device business to "diagnosis and treat the neurological complications of diabetes." From the 4Q'11 press release: "NeuroMetrix reported net cash consumption of $1.4 million in the fourth quarter of 2011 and ended the period with cash resources of $10.3 million." Earlier this month NeuroMetrix raised $7.5 million by floating more stock. NURO closed yesterday at $0.91. 52-week range: $0.89 - $3.78.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Awaiting Geeknet's 4Q'11 Report

Geeknet (GKNT) reports 4Q'11 results today (02012.02.14) prior to the market opening. In a nutshell, the GDT::Portfolio needs geeks to buy crap from ThinkGeek and I don't like this dependency. SourceForge was a great creation and I've been a happy Slashdot user for over a decade, but I'm not sure Geeknet will profitize world geekification. I've been hoping Geeknet would be taken private, but... borrowing from the old rock band Styx... if only I could "find myself a crystal ball." GKNT closed yesterday (02012.02.13) at $17.93. 52-week range: $14.82 - $30.50

How about this... the report came out while I was typing this.

Geek.net::Geeknet Announces Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2011 Financial Results

I read the press release and it's a crap shoot as to how the market will respond.

Some notes...

cash per share: $5.84 (with $0 debt)
PSR (price sales ratio): 1.05 (based upon $119,466,00 yearly revenues; 6,319,000 GKNT shares; $17.93 share price)

GKNT is thin with an approximate float is 4,750,000 shares.

I'll update this posting when the market closes today (02012.02.14).

Monday, February 13, 2012

AAPL Hits $500; Apple's Market Value Nearing $500B

Moment in time... On 2/13/02012 Apple Inc.'s stock hit $500 for the first time ever. Apple's market value will be $500 billion when AAPL shares hit ~$526.93. A few years ago I predicted Google Inc. would be the first trillion dollar company. I am standing by that prediction even though right now Google's market value is ~$287,360,000,000 less than Apple's.

I wrote the following on 12/20/02005... Does $1,000,000,000,000 buy Google? Given the adjusted Google share price calculated in this Basic Arithmetic Bit I'd have to answer "no" because it might take more than $1 trillion to buy Google.

Google and Apple probably should both be trillion dollar companies right now, but a decade+ of extreme sociopolitical dysfunction has gotten in the way.

AAPL is not a GDT::Portfolio stock. Right now, at 8:10am MST on 02012.02.13, GOOG is the GDT::Portfolio's #1 stock.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Something Happening With Spire (SPIR)?

Spire (SPIR) closed two days ago (02012.02.08) at $1.04. Yesterday (02012.02.09) SPIR hit an intra-day high of $1.32 (up ~26.9%), but it closed down a penny at $1.03. Today (02012.02.10) SPIR has hit an intra-day high of $1.50 (up ~45.6%). Right now at 11:00am MST on 02012.02.10 SPIR is at $1.29, up ~25.5%. Trading volume increased yesterday and the increase is larger today. SPIR's float is ~5.9 million shares and thin float can result in extreme volatility.

iRobot Shares Crash

iRobot (IRBT) closed today (02012.02.09) at $25.17, down 34.3% for the day. [34.3% is not a typo] Volume was 7.16 million vs. a trailing-3-month avg. of 0.29 million (i.e. almost 25-times avg.). I guess my good-till-cancel order to sell some of our IRBT shares at $42 isn't going to hit anytime soon.

IRBT has a float of ~25 million; therefore, ~28% of the float was traded on this huge down day.

IRBT dropped to #2 in the GDT::Portfolio with GOOG (Google) taking over the #1 position. Our IRBT investment remains well above water, but today really hurt the overall health of the GDT::Portfolio.

SeekingAlpha.com::iRobot's CEO Discusses Q4 2011 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

I'm glad iRobot mentioned the following in their earnings call: "Our intellectual property is very strong and a key barrier to others considering entry into our markets. With more than 100 US patents and more than 150 additional pending US patent applications, we have a formidable market-leading position." Pending patents might not become patents. In addition, it can cost a lot of money to defend patents.

"Our robots are part of the future," said iRobot CEO Colin Angle. I'm hoping Colin is right.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Level 3 Grows; Yahoo! Shakes Up Board

Level 3 Communications (LVLT) reported 4Q'11 results prior to the market opening yesterday (02012.02.08). The company's press release started with the following guidance: "Company Expects Adjusted EBITDA Growth of 20 to 25 Percent in 2012." Level 3 free cash flow of $103 million for 4Q'11. It appears investors agreed with this assessment: "Having just passed the milestone of 100 days since closing the Global Crossing acquisition, we are pleased with the progress we have made in coming together as one company," said Jeff Storey, President and COO of Level 3." LVLT closed yesterday (02012.02.08) at $21.31. 52-week range: $16.51 - $40.05

Back on 02011.04.11 I accidently bought some LVLT at $26.10. I opted to hold onto the shares because I like Level 3 is a provider of Internet pipes (and manhole covers). Right now it appears as though I won't be writing another "The Case of the Accidental Double" anytime soon.

Yahoo! (YHOO) announced major changes to it Board after the market closed two days on 02012.02.07. I thought investors wanted this to happen, but YHOO closed yesterday at $15.78. 52-week range: $11.09 - $18.84

[update::02012.02.09] Reuters reported early this morning (02012.02.09) that trading in Alibaba shares had been halted. Reuters also reported that Yahoo!'s "stake in Alibaba Group could be worth up to $13 billion." That's approximately $10.48 per YHOO share.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

NeuroMetrix to Float More Stock; Bought More NURO

D'oh! It's happened again... existing shareholders take hit as a company floats more stock at a huge discount to the current stock price. This time it's NeuroMetrix.
NeuroMetrix, Inc. (Nasdaq: NURO - News) today announced that it has priced a public offering of up to 10,500,000 Units at a price per Unit of $1.00, for aggregate gross proceeds of up to $10,500,000, pursuant to its previously filed Registration Statement on Form S-1 (Reg. No. 333-178165). Each Unit consists of one share of common stock and one warrant to purchase one half share of common stock, exercisable at a price of $1.15 per share. The warrants may be exercised at any time after six months from the date of the closing and will expire after five years.

NURO closed yesterday (02012.02.07) at $1.15. Three months ago to the day NURO hit an intra-day high of $2.02. I added to our NURO holdings on 02011.12.30 at $1.20.

Stocks::Stuffer posting on Friday, 02011.12.30... Bought More NeuroMetrix (NURO). I ended the posting with the following (quoting self): "I would have liked to bought more, but cash was a limiting factor." Thank goodness I was low on cash; otherwise, I would have bought more NURO shares at $1.20 only to see an almost immediate 20% loss.

D'oh! I couldn't resist. I added to our NURO holdlings today (02012.02.08) buying more NURO shares at $0.94.

Illumina Says Roche's Offer is "Grossly Inadequate"

Illumina’s Board Unanimously Rejects Roche’s Unsolicited Tender Offer as Inadequate

I'm not tendering any of our remaining ILMN shares. Illumina says, "the $44.50 per share cash offer is grossly inadequate in multiple respects, dramatically undervalues Illumina and is contrary to the best interests of Illumina’s stockholders."

ILMN closed yesterday (02012.02.07) at $51.80. 52-week range: $25.57 - $79.40

Anticipating iRobot's 4Q'11 Results

iRobot (IRBT), our number one holding, reports quarterly results after the market closes today (02012.02.08). Yesterday IRBT closed at $36.86, $2.14 (or 5.8%) below its all-time high (and 52-week high) of $39.00. iRobot when public on 02005.11.09 at $29.51. IRBT ended 02011 at $29.95 and is up almost 23.5% YTD. IRBT reached its all-time of $39.00 on 02011.04.26. A few days ago I entered an good-till-cancel order to sell some IRBT at $42.

Monday, February 6, 2012

NASDAQ Hits 11 Year High; High SIR Portfolio Stocks

Friday, 3 Feb 02012: I read that the NASDAQ closed at an eleven year high of 2,908.13. [DJIA closed at 12,869.95 and S&P 500 closed at 1,345.34.] The NASDAQ's all-time high was 5,132.52 hit on 10 Mar 02000. In other words, the NASDAQ is still ~43.3% below its all-time high.

There are a handful of GDT::Portfolio stocks that have high SIRs (Short Interest Ratios) on 6 Feb 02012.

ASTM (Aastrom Biosciences) at $2.01 as a SIR of 14.5
GKNT (Geeknet) at $17.94 has SIR of 13.5
IRBT (iRobot) at $36.82 has SIR of 13.9
KTOS (Kratos) at $7.52 has SIR of 14.7
STEI (Stewart Enterprises) at $6.60 has SIR of 21.8

GDT::Portfolio positions for high SIR holdings: IRBT #1, GKNT #3, STEI #15, ASTM #17, KTOS #19

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Hanger Orthopedics Changing Its Name To Hanger

Hanger Orthopedic (HGR) has been in the GDT::Portfolio since its inception on 2000.12.22. The GDT::Portfolio was started with three "seeds" and HGR was one of them. On 02012.02.04 HGR was #10 in the portfolio.

Yesterday (02012.02.03) Hanger announced it was dropping "Orthopedics" from its corporate name. In addition, the company is changing the name of its clinics from Hanger Prosthetics & Orthotics to Hanger Clinic. These name changes make sense to me and I fully support them as the company "positions itself for [the] future."

Hanger unveils new brand identity; positions itself for future

HGR closed on 02012.02.03 at $21.19. 52-week range: $14.57 - $28.47

Friday, February 3, 2012

Trimble Navigation Hits a New 52-Week High

Trimble Navigation (TRMB) hit a new 52-week high today (02012.02.03) after reporting 4Q'11 results. I wish we owned more TRMB shares, but right now we must be content with what we have. All of our TRMB shares were acquired when Trimble Navigation acquired @Road (ARDI) back in 02007. Our ARDI shares were bought during 02004-02005.

TRMB closed yesterday (02012.02.02) at $48.14. Today it opened at $52.20. 30 minutes into trading the volume had just exceeded the trailing-3-month average.

The following is from Trimble.com: "Trimble provides positioning solutions enabling professionals in engineering and construction, surveying, agriculture, fleet management and field service to be more productive by revolutionizing their work processes."

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Nanosphere Up; Amazon and Axion Down

Our Nanosphere (NSPH) investment is still underwater, but the NSPH shares that we bought last year on 9/29 have doubled from $1 to $2. I don't have any plans to sell any NSPH shares, but plans are made to broken.

Amazon.com (AMZN) reported 4Q'11 results yesterday (02012.01.31) and today AZMN is at $175.45, down almost 10% for the day. I am a fan of how Amazon.com reports quarterly results: They start with operating and free cash flows; followed by number of shares outstanding; followed by revenues; followed by net income. AMZN is a small holding in the GDT::Portfolio and the plan is to never sell another AMZN share.

Axion Power Intl. (AXPW.OB) reported that they plan are going to "sell an aggregate of not more than 28,571,429 shares of common stock, par value $0.0001 per share (the "Shares"), at a price per share of $0.35." D'oh! AXPW.OB closed yesterday (02012.01.31) at $0.62. Today AXPW.OB is down almost 25%. Axion is a development stage battery/energy company.