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Macke's Movers: Sprint's Wireless Alliance


Partners stand to win; provider not so much.


Greetings from New York where the weather is as perfect as Disney's (DIS) quarter from this shareholder's perspective. The company executed on every metric, improved the profitability of theme parks even as the Street fretted about the recession and didn't spend a second whining about the economy. I play a hyper-active trader-guy on television (and, to be fair, it's a reality-based character) but I run a decent portion of my investment book for the long-term. I don't want to manage my Disney position, I want Disney to manage its business so I can concern myself with other things. Mission accomplished, Mr. Iger.

Here's some other stuff I'm semi-fretting over to fill the void given to me by the Mouse House:

  • Take-Two (TTWO) posted $500 million in sales in Week One for Grand Theft Auto IV. One week. Half a billion. 80% margins. It's a very, very tough moment for Electronic Arts (ERTS) to try to get TTWO shareholders to agree to sell TTWO for $2 billion.

  • Sprint (S) is leaping higher, then lower, on the announcement of an absurdly large and complicated alliance to bring WiMax pretty much everywhere on Earth. Who wins? Well, given Sprint's history, I'd have to guess everyone investing in this thing except Sprint. That list includes: Intel (INTC) (which I'm long), Google (GOOG) and Comcast (CMCSA), among others.

  • DirecTV (DTV), a long-forgotten player in a world now dominated by "pipes into homes," put up what looks like its best quarter in ages. Take from it what you will but I still think DTV would be doing better if the company stuck with the TiVo (TIVO) partnership.

  • There's a surprising level of abuse being heaped on Microsoft (MSFT) and Steve Ballmer in the wake of the Yahoo (YHOO) deal collapse, including a NY Times assertion that Ballmer was a fool to not simply "pay up a couple more dollars". Suffice it to say, I'm happy to be long the company that doesn't throw additional billions into auctions where no other bidders exist.

  • Add Papa John's (PZZA) to your list of evidence that casual dining stocks bottomed when no one was looking. People lie, stocks don't (as my friend Prof. Adami says).
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Position in INTC, DIS, MSFT.

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