Game Day Grab Bag
"Oh so pretty and witty and gay!"
That said, I want to get as many televised reps as possible before next launching my bid for Emmitt Smith's Dancing With the Stars title. I need to take my dancing reps where I can get 'em in a world where shows can be on the top-center of the NY Times Business Section one day and relegated to the financial television graveyard of time-slots the next.
"I think I can express my bullishness most clearly through the mute
eloquence of dance, Dylan"
Today's the day of the long-awaited release of Sony's (SNE) PS3 game console. With only 400,000 units hitting the United States, gamers lined up at stores for days, in some cases, to get their shot at being the first on their block to own one of the $600 players.
The merchants themselves have been free to choose the manner in which they handle the scarcity without alienating customers the way they did under similar circumstances to the bungled roll-out of Microsoft's (MSFT) Xbox360 last year. The results have been both chaotic and near-tragic in some instances.
By way of example, in the most mis-guided promotional effort since Herb Tarlek dropped turkeys from a helicopter in Cincinnati, a Wal-Mart (WMT) in Milwaukee decided to stage a parking lot footrace. Over 50 customers lined up with the 10 available PS3's going to the first shoppers to reach the brick wall next to the plate-glass store entrance.
In something of an upset, the inevitable serious Injury occurred not from a headlong dash into a brick wall but rather from one of the participants getting shoved into a metal light pole on the front curb. No PS3 for the victim; just a dislocated jaw and the ability to watch himself get face-planted on the Internet for the rest of his life. You can't buy memories like that, people.
Speaking of Getting Poled...
Gap (GPS) reported last night and it was just about as ugly as my put-holding self could have hoped for. Weak on the bottom and top-lines, a guide-down for 4Q and no departure of the CEO.
By way of sharing (over-sharing in the sense that I'm still in the market on these things), my put position is in the November 20 puts, which expire today. Going into the release I had sold more than half of the paper to book enough gain to be playing with "the House's Money" on the rest. I unloaded another chunk earlier this morning as part of a sell-the-catalyst discipline.
Which leaves me long some puts uncomfortably near a Big Round Strike Price on expiration day. It's a very small position but I bring it to the Minyanship's attention to watch one of the games that gets played every expiration: the pinning of stocks to strike prices.
Now, my feeling is that the Gap should be lower on last night's news. There really is nothing to like about the company here, save the buyout rumors which are somewhat implausible in light of the founding-family's huge position. The fundamentals are a train wreck and continue to get worse. The company talks "Turnaround" but they are only talking about slowing declines, not an actual directional change towards improvement.
So... will the stock go to the low 19's where it "should" or will it get jammed to 20, giving the dark-forces a victory on my small remaining position? Stay tuned, Minyans...
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