This is a game of three thing.
Right now AT&T and Verizon Wireless enjoy a virtual duopoly in mobile telephony. Not only do they control 70% of the market between them but they've got the profitable end of the business lined up. Most of their subscribers are on two or more »
The thesis of this series is that “the cloud” has passed the peak of its hype cycle. Assumptions about it are falling to Earth – falling below reality – but will adjust from here and move up at the same pace as the business.
A few months ago, a Macquarie financial analyst named Peter Kind issued a report for the Edison Electric Institute predicting dire consequences if renewable energy succeeds in gaining a toehold in the market.
Since California is the first major state to be achieving grid parity, the point at which solar energy becomes price competitive more »
Since then she has nearly doubled the value of the company, selling a big piece of its Asian assets, demanding that everyone actually show up for work, and buying a host of small mobile companies, like the highly-publicized purchase of Summly from more »
According to the famed Gartner HypeCycle, the cloud hangover has begun.
The HypeCycle , which Gartner has been hyping since the mid-1990s (meaning it's well past its own hype cycle) describes the bipolar way in which analysts view new technologies. That is, their perceived value peaks well before anything like real value comes about.
This means trouble for most cloud stocks, in the near term. But these falls in price more »
Technology writers have tweaked the Japanese word kereitsu over the years to mean a collection of small companies following in the wake of a bigger one.
Thus, Apple has a kereitsu, companies that make Apple software, add-on products, or that supply it with parts and manufacturing services.
Unlike a Japanese kereitsu, which is based in part on interlocking ownership of stocks and directorships, you can leave an American kereitsu. And more »
Most retailing trends of the last decade can be summed up quite simply.
Shopping is no longer entertainment.
Shopping used to be entertainment, back before the Web was spun. Men and women would enter a store with a rough idea of want or need. The store, through displays, design and other merchandising tricks, would meet the need. The entertained shopper left with something in a bag.
This is no longer more »
In the oil patch, you play the next opportunity, not the last one.
Back in 2009, that was natural gas. Supply was exploding with the rise of fracking, and those with supply were the place to be.
Back in 2010, that was oil. Supply again was exploding and that was the place to be.
In 2011, the action shifted to the refiners. Those who abandoned exploration companies and went with more »
One of the best places to be fully invested these days is pharmaceuticals.
Over the last year the biggest drug makers, like Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, and Novartis (NYSE: NVS), which trades as an ADR here, are all up sharply. Novartis is up over 30%.
But to hear the company's PR tell it, the company is about to go down hard. The company is upset that it lost an appeal more »
They're the three giants of American retailing, Wal-Mart to Costco to Amazon.Com.
They all promise the same thing, the same thing retailers have promised since retailing was invented. They promise savings. But they each deliver it in different ways, Wal-Mart through Supercenters, Costco through warehouses, Amazon through online delivery.
The question is, where should your money go now?
Wal-Mart targets both rivals
Investors who want to get in on the fracking boom had a bandleader in Aubrey McClendon.
The founder of Chesapeake Energy (NYSE: CHK) believed from the start that fracking – cracking shale deep underground with sand and water under high pressure – could unlock vast oil and gas riches. And history has proven him right.
But the bandleader is not always the right man to lead the band, and if you followed more »
Near the end of Oracle's (NASDAQ: ORCL) conference call last week, co-president Mark Hurd was asked about the company's ambitions in the telecom space, following its acquisition last month of Acme Packet for $2.1 billion.
“Phone companies have two IT systems,” he said, “One that manages the business, one that manages the network. This was an opportunity to get into the network side of the business.” On more »
For most of last year the Foolish play for banking investors was to buy small, regional banks. This included banks like Prosperity Bank of Texas, or Regions Financial of Alabama.
But in the last few months the play has reversed. Now the way to make money is to buy the big banks, the money center banks. And the more allegedly corrupt the bank, the better your money will do.
The more »
A friend turned my head toward a little British company called IQE (LSE: IQE), which he thinks could be the next ARM Holdings (NASDAQ: ARMH).
If he's right, it's a powerful opportunity. But like ARM, IQE will have to fight through a big competitor to get where it wants to go.
ARM Beat Intel
Regardless of where they stand, management takes big risks with shareholders' money when it wades into politics. You're bound to alienate one customer base or the other, so the best thing to do, usually, is to shut up.
But CEOs are people too. People have opinions, and the right to voice them. So they do. The question is how should shareholders react, not just to the opinions, but to more »
Many are using the resignation of ARM CEO Warren East, as reported by The Guardian, as an excuse to pound the table for a grand Intel counter-attack, as in this Motley Fool piece from Mark Hibben, written just last week.
I'm more »
Every company goes through eras of growth and consolidation. It's rare that a company will go the other way around.
A decade ago we saw the two companies that defined the 1990s, Intel (NASDAQ: INTC) and Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT), go into this consolidation phase. Investors slowly accepted this reality, taking the price-earnings multiples on both stocks down to around 10.
Both companies have owners who are certain that the more »
Note: a previous version of this article made a few misstatements that have been corrected below.
But every trend ends, and some actually reverse.
Since hiring ex-Google executive Marissa Mayer last July, Yahoo has been on a more »
This should be a good time to hold some solar, but most stocks in the sector are down, and the major ETFs covering the space, TAN (NYSEMKT: TAN) and KWT (NYSEMKT: KWT), are both down 35% year-over-year.
What's wrong with solar stocks? Nothing, per se. The sector continues to grow, costs continue dropping across the board, and more locations are passing through grid parity or convergence, the point at more »
In a high-flying market you can usually find an Icarus or two – companies that rise too far, too fast, and fall hard when the party stops. What we saw with Apple last year can happen again.
In the current bull market, two great candidates are Amazon.com (NASDAQ: AMZN) and Netflix (NASDAQ: NFLX). Both now sell at prices that have nothing to do with earnings. Both offer something many people more »