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Kirk Kerkorian Fording Ahead


Offer to buy 20 million shares impacts stock.


Hello from New York, where I promise to try very hard not to mention the heat, the soul-crushing, debilitating, tar-melting, utterly overwhelming heat. But I make no promises about the humidity.

Imagine you had Patrick Ewing jog in a steam bath for 90 minutes, wearing nothing but his shoes and socks. Then, imagine he took his socks off while still in the steam room and immediately put one sock on all the way over your head, as if it were a sleeping bag and you were a fearful camper. That's roughly what it feels like to go outside right now.

Here's what I'm doing when not helpfully trying to describe the heat for the folks in more friendly climates:

  • Pier 1 (PIR) is clawing its way back after yesterday's brutal reaction to Pier's decision to buy Cost Plus (CPWM). A lot of folks feel burned by PIR, which has enough on its hands (economy, wicker-ness) without gathering another struggling chain.

  • Today's value-adding research award goes to the six research firms downgrading Lehman (LEH) today, after the company announced a massive loss hugely dilutive secondary offering. Summing up the research: Lehman has some challenges.

  • Kirk Kerkorian's tender offer to buy 20-million shares of Ford (F) at $8.50 is being described as "popular." With F trading at a low 6-handle, more than one billion shares were offered to Kirk and crew. How aggressive were F longs hitting the bid? Picture the Orange Juice longs looking to bail at the end of Trading Places, then add slightly less than one billion more people.

  • Disney (DIS) trading strong today. In addition to merchandise strength there's also the huge ratings ABC/ ESPN is scoring with the NBA Finals and the Belmont. It doesn't matter if you find the results of these things disappointing, just that you watch.

  • Did the video unveiling of the iPhone by Apple (AAPL) yesterday strike anyone else as a little silly, given that the phone looks exactly like the existing version? Apple is coming back a bit but check the price action in iPhone partners AT&T (T) and Synchronoss (SNCR) today. As a rule, when Apple buddies up with other companies it sticks them with the core.

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Position in DIS

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