Wal-Mart, Apple Lose Their Mojo
When the mighty fall.
Greetings from New York, where my affair with Apple (AAPL) was brief and mildly profitable - but not quite as satisfying as it should have been.
Much like the All-Star team sitting on the board of the New York Stock Exchange, Apple's board of directors has proved itself to be virtually incapable of effective decision-making. "A private matter"? "An easily treatable hormone imbalance"? Bank execs showed an obvious disregard for risk - but there's something much more offensive about executives proving themselves to be fools, as opposed to passing the same judgment on the investing public.
Bottom line, I took my gains from the Apple I bought last night and considered myself lucky to have done so. Here's what else I'm watching and doing as I kill time between Squawk and Fast Money:
- Does the logic behind solving Citi (C) et al. by separating them into "Good Banks" and "Bad Banks" escape anyone besides me? Is the idea really that we're going to make me and my fellow 300-odd million taxpayers buy both General Motors (GM) and the worst parts of a bunch of banks with no justifiable reason to exist?
- Yup, my Wal-Mart (WMT) is gone. Too many things going wrong there of late for me to give it the benefit of the doubt. As with every "investment" position I take (which consists solely of McDonald's (MCD) at the moment), I've traded around the name by selling rips and adding on dips. But investing is a strategy, not a suicide pact. Wal-Mart has lost its mojo. If and when it proves me wrong on that point, I can always buy it back.
- Legal types love to threaten the Fast Money gang in a vague way when we do things like suggest companies needing billions of dollars a day to stay alive effectively have no equity value. Or that hedging fuel more than 100% the going rate is a "questionable" business strategy.
While I respect a good legal threat as much as the next guy: If a corporation feels the need to keep a staff of lawyers on the payroll on the off chance a television pundit exercises his First Amendment rights, there may be some priority adjustments to be made.
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