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Why Icahn's Stake in Take-Two Is Score for Company


He has the power to inspire positive change, as he has at Yahoo.

That was a pretty good pummeling we took yesterday. Let's just hope we finish out the week on a better note. As I'm writing this, the Futures are up, so fingers crossed.

Asian stocks took a hit overnight. The Hang Seng and the Nikkei were off 0.8% and 0.21%, respectively. However, European stocks were showing me some green early on. And here in the US, we're currently trading higher.

Here's what I'm seeing this fine Friday morning:

Take-Two Interactive Software (TTWO):
The video-game publisher was out with its fourth-quarter numbers, but I don't think they're the big story. I suspect the chatter in Friday's session will be about reports of Icahn's more than 11% stake in the New York-based company.

Some thoughts:

I don't feel the numbers were anything to holler about, and neither are the hefty losses that are expected next year. But I think Icahn's reported involvement is.

2. It seems lots of people aren't crazy about him, but I think he has the ability to light fires under management teams and boards, and that he often inspires positive change. I think Yahoo (YHOO) is in better shape since he's become involved.

3. Back in September I indicated that if the stock came down to the single-digits, I might warm to the story. And I have. But I'm not certain we've bottomed out here quite yet.

Research in Motion (RIMM):
Justin Sharon points out this morning in Upgrades & Downgrades: Is RIMM Ready to Run? that Deutsche Bank raised its rating on the stock to Hold.

My two cents:

The earnings and the guidance the other day certainly caught my eye. My interest is also particularly piqued because the stock is still trading in the low $60s, which seems like a decent deal considering where it was just a few months ago.

I'm also finding the company hard to resist based upon the estimates that are out there right now.

Although I'm pretty excited about the stock, it doesn't change my opinion that even though the BlackBerry is one of the greatest communication devices ever, it's also one of the biggest time-stealers in history.

For my last take on Research In Motion, click here.
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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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