The Unsinkable brian cork™

Brian Patrick Cork is living the Authentic Life

nobody “Likes” Facebook other than Mark Zuckerberg

May23

if you can’t be bothered to read this entire post because your tearing your hair-out over Facebook – and Barack Obama, just consider this opening paragraph:

I TOLD you to short Facebook – http://j.mp/JXtQwP. but, NASADAQ “broke” (seriously) /1. so, nobody could. the stock might make sense at $9.  and, now Mark Zuckerberg and his crew are going to choke on their greed and the type of avarice that spawned the hell that Facebook creates daily in everyone’s lives.

but, you’re hooked now, so just keep going…

as you read this, regulators are examining whether Morgan Stanley, the investment bank that shepherded Facebook through its highly publicized stock offering last week, selectively informed clients of an analyst’s negative report about the company before the stock started trading.

the stock debut, originally set for 11 a.m. EDT Friday, was delayed more than half an hour because of “technical problems” at Nasdaq. some brokerages were still sorting out the aftermath today. just so we are clear… the “technical problem” had a lot to do with the fact that insiders were dumping their shares faster than Secret Service agents rearview mirroring their red-skirted girl friends when the lights came on.

I already knew that was both inevitable, and was going to happen. I have over two hundred emails from people grimly advising me that they tried to follow my guidance and short Facebook’s stock. but, NASDAQ won’t allow that, yet. trust me, that’s a whole other story in the realizing. so, watch for that.

in the harsh light of truth, companies going public typically want the momentum and desirable status that comes with stock being so coveted that the price rockets from the launch pad. that might be fair. but…

“I think that the underwriters convinced Facebook to offer too much stock,” said analyst Michael Pachter of Wedbush Securities. “The market didn’t have sufficient appetite for the number of shares offered.”

[pause]

did you know that market trackers have reported that people are much more likely to click on ads at Google than at Facebook, and US auto giant General Motors said the day before the IPO that it would no longer advertise on Facebook because it lacked impact? that evidently inspired an analyst at Morgan Stanley to drop his earnings forecast for Facebook on the eve of the IPO, but nobody let that information out of the bag, and left wanna-be shareholders holding another bag.

[end pause]

to wit…

The Reuters news service reported Tuesday that a Morgan Stanley analyst, Scott Devitt, cut his estimate for Facebook’s revenue this year to $4.85 billion from more than $5 billion earlier. Reuters reported that it was unclear whether Morgan Stanley had told only select clients about the reduced estimate. Reuters reported that the analyst cut his figures for Facebook while the company’s executives, including founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, were shopping the stock to potential investors in the weeks ahead of the IPO, a process known in investing as a “road show”.

The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday night that Facebook’s chief financial officer, David Ebersman, decided shortly before the stock debut to raise the number of shares the company would offer by 25 percent. The Journal, citing people familiar with the planning of the stock offering, also reported that Morgan Stanley had assured Ebersman there was plenty of demand for the stock.

meanwhile, you all knew this was coming (the Greek- like tragedy that is the Facebook IPO, the “Zuckerberg generation” [I made that up, but it will stick], the pending Wall Street Journal expose, etc). but, faithful readers of this Blog know I’m not jumping on a facebook-dissing bandwagon, here, and had already started slapping their collective knees with me back when I wrote the following posts:

Facebook’s contribution to Terrorism.

“in any event, I’m, admittedly, a bit weary of using Facebook as a punching bag. however, I won’t tire of being relentless when it comes to pointing out that Mark Zuckerberg and his Facebook Mafia (this can be stated in something of positive light because it’s a reference to the wealth generated by the Facebook insiders and how they are seeding countless other venture at unprecedented speed) have it within their collective power to use the Facebook platform for good. but, right now, with millions of examples over the course of any given day, it’s being used for a lot of evil, and mostly in the hands of ignorant children.” Source: https://www.unsinkablebriancork.com (http://s.tt/14HTR)

Facebook is on a Mission but not from God.

so, it’s interesting (to me, any way) that Facebook and other forms of religion have similar global strategies.

why Facebook might be a great bad story.

“but, Zuckerberg, and the people around him, know this is a problem. and, every day makes it bigger and uglier.” Source: https://www.unsinkablebriancork.com (share this quote)

the distortion field of social media and marketing and it’s impact on marketing.

“…have you noticed that most photographs have him staring soullessly into the camera?” Source: https://www.unsinkablebriancork.com (http://s.tt/14fz8)

Facebook is dead to Me.

“Zuckerberg has made billions of dollars, and I’m sure he feels great about that. but, I hope one day he understands what he has unleashed upon a culture that was unprepared for his platform to be used as a weapon of mass destruction.” Source: https://www.unsinkablebriancork.com (http://s.tt/14I49)

the SEC had already said on Friday that it was looking into problems surrounding the IPO. on Tuesday, the agency’s chairman, Mary Schapiro, said: “I think there is a lot of reason to have confidence in our markets and in the integrity of how they operate, but there are issues that we need to look at specifically with respect to Facebook.”

by Monday, the top securities regulator for Massachusetts, William Galvin, said he had subpoenaed Morgan Stanley. Galvin said his office is investigating whether Morgan Stanley divulged to only some clients that one of its analysts had cut his revenue estimates for Facebook before the stock hit the market on Friday.

on Tuesday, Robert Greifeld, the CEO of the Nasdaq Stock Market, acknowledged to shareholders of Nasdaq’s parent company that “clearly we had mistakes within the Facebook listing.”

a spokesman for Facebook Inc., which is based in Menlo Park, Calif., said late Tuesday that the company had no comment.

but, I’m guessing Mark Zuckerberg isn’t going to “like” any of this.

right about the time the IPO was being unleashed upon the masses, the Facebook/ Morgan Stanley/ Goldman Sachs/ Satan PR machine kicked-in. we saw short-stories quoting Zuckerberg saying things to the effect, “I don’t care about shareholders, I care about the company and it’s vision”. but, he left-out the bit about his owning fifty-seven percent of the companies stock. so, that simply means he is an insider that cares about himself. we also learned that he married his long-time sweetheart partner co-conspirator from college. but, unfortunately he managed to time that like an estate planning event, which it was. so much for true love American greedy style. I sincerely hope his little marriage gets off to a better start than the colossal IPO. but, then she knew him when he ripped-off his early partners, and she knows him better as he steam-rolled his shareholders.

isn’t there a law in this land that says a wife doesn’t have to testify against her husband?

so…

while Facebook has fallen well below its IPO price, valuation metrics still show the stock is still pretty expensive.

at roughly thirty six dollars ($36), Facebook shares are trading at fifty-seven (57) times projected earnings for the next 12 months. I got this information from FactSet Research (and, forget about the trailing 12-month earnings PE; that’s at 73.50.) this is a much richer valuation than other tech titans that actually create things of value, suggesting the stock price remains too high relative to projected earnings, and could (probably) fall further. price-to-earnings (P/E) ratios are calculated by taking a stock’s price and dividing it by the company’s earnings per share. for instance, Google (why not?) trades at a forward P/E multiple of 14, meaning one Facebook share is more than four times as expensive as a share of Google. Apple’s forward P/E is 11.6, and Microsoft is 10.8. Cisco Systems trades at a forward P/E of 9 and Dell is at 7.1. but, I’ll tell you to buy Apple, Cisco, even Microsoft. but, again, I think Facebook is probably worth a look once it hits nine dollars ($9) a share.

I want to be reasonably fair… thusly, it’s probably worth noting a high P/E multiple doesn’t necessarily mean the (or any) stock is destined to decline. Amazon has a forward-year P/E ratio of 182. I’m thinking that aggressive spending has crimped the online retailer’s profits, but investors have found the company’s strong sales growth appealing enough to keep bidding the stock higher. the stock is up 25% this year.

Salesforce.com is another stock that has had a rich multiple for years. the stock trades at eighty-nine (89) times forward earnings, yet shares are up forty three percent (43%) this year. mind you, companies that invest in Salesforce don’t actually use it. most people in sales refer to it as “salesfarce”. but, risk-averse sales managers think they are supposed to buy it, so they do. that works for shareholders even while it might not bode well for corporate America.

I’m no hypocrite. and, I do see the world differently, and from unique angles, compared to most (that’s why I get to be a Cultural Architect, and you don’t). I see Facebook for what it is. it’s easily described as a platform for cheating spouses and cyber-bullying. it’s a company where engineers develop products that we don’t need. people just want them because they feed our vices. so, why should anyone really be surprised that Zuckerberg and a bunch of Wall Street hooligans that are probably in their early to mid thirties used the company to punk the zombie-like thundering herds that think wealth-building is attached to an easy-button?

peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

brian patrick cork

1/ consider this… Monday shares briefly climbed above $42 before skittering back down and finishing at $38.23 with the help of underwriting banks that essentially put a floor under the stock by buying back shares when they dipped to the opening price. that means Morgan Stanley stepped-in and bought a lot of the shares that people were dumping. they played a key role in over-touting the opening price and are paying another price.

“It’s hard to know what would have happened if the banks hadn’t stepped in,” said Lou Kerner of the Social Internet Fund, raising questions about what will happen to Facebook’s share price when the Nasdaq reopens on Monday.

well… I’m guessing Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs probably got in around $10 to $12. so, that is the real bottom, and likely where the stock was heading if someone had not ‘broken” the system and created artificial buying.

brian cork is a Smarty pants

April25

Apple is not only rocking your world…

…it’s shaking China like Rottweiler with a rubber ducky.

okay… so that image makes little sense. but, it’s dramatic, and fun.

and, I TOLD you, all of you, collectively, this was going to happen. so, that gives it “foretold” status.

I’m talking about this,

Apple Profit Rises on Higher iPhone and iPad Sales

here’s another link (right, → HERE) just in case you can’t sort out that offered above.

I do, in fact, discuss Apple a lot on this Blog. but, that’s because I’m passionate about the company, it’s products, the people (that make and use those brilliant products) around the company, the way it changes our lives, comprehensively, the manner in which it kicks Google’s (silly Android, anyway) and Microsoft’s asses, and the way we can all build wealth because all of that is good. … as in, using your super powers for good, good.

to wit, I gave you a heads-up around that article above when I posted, Apple’s Siri will definitely speak Chinese.

meanwhile, there was some serious profit-taking in the last week that dropped the stock almost one hundred points leading up to Apple reporting it’s numbers at the bell yesterday. just so we are clear, that was financial services insiders taking profits and shorting the stock to create room to buy it back-up  again.

Jon Coriel emailed me Monday saying, “I wish I has listened to you five years ago when you told me to buy Apple. I could have retired by now”.

can you imagine what those people that listened to me back in 2000 are doing, today (remember that 2000 figure as you continue to read this post)?

…what ever. but, Jon is correct.

so… here’s another chest-thumping prediction… I’m still saying that I believe Apple is a $1000 stock – unless it splits before that. but, if it does split, it will still go to the equivalent of $1000, which means it will be a $2000 stock by today’s standard.

don’t take my word for it. just ask over a BILLION (1.324 billion as of Monday) Chinese that understand just how profoundly Apple products are changing the world. how many more people are there in China than we have here in just the United States? is it double? more? well… its actually about three times our own population, just so you know. is it possible Apple could hit the same percentages in China it has in North America?

for it’s best perspective, just go back and pick-up Thomas Friedman’s The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-First Century (and, → here, for a different look) and you just might have that perfect epiphany. Do it!

peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

brian patrick cork

 

why other people should buy Facebook

February6

I’m no fan of Google, most of the time.

but, I know they’ll get better, some how.

perhaps I’ll take that position because I’m an optimist, albeit a Prudent one, mind you. and, a gentleman.

as a contrarian though I can see alternative ways to help Facebook do good, despite their intentions. just read further. do it!

to be fair, John Haydon evidently thinks quite highly of certain tools found on Facebook, if you’re using it as a business page, some how. we’ll follow Mr. Haydon awhile, and sort him out.

however,  that said, I’m steadfast against Facebook. ironically, Google’s Chrome (that’s a browser) has a tool that helps you track how much time you waste on Facebook. I love that. none of my people (in my companies) care about Facebook, and a lot of people hire us to help them make even better decisions. there’s symmetry of purpose, in that.

but, I don’t like it that two of the goodly men I coach in business are in the midst of divorces and Facebook was arguably the ignition-point for each. one fellow rediscovered his ex-college sweetheart, and the other’s wife found a new man on a Triathlon Facebook page for her club. is that tit-for-tat?

just in case you go rooting around on the internet, (Yahoo is still often better than Google, but Bing is kind of awesome) you’ll note that I have a Facebook page. but, just so we are clear, my staff set it up and then we decided to never accept friends on it. I’m a rather unusually disciplined person, but Joanne simply asked that we not allow for any temptations. that’s good enough for me. but, it’s also the tip-of-the-iceburg for a lot of other people.

in any event, one of my brokers (yes, I use them) called today laughing about Facebook. he’ll certainly be able to get shares for us but won’t be recommending them to his people.

“they are for them other folks that are needed to for cannon fodder”, says he.

so… If Facebook says its worth $100 Billion dollars that means it will have to have sales of 27 x sales (currently $1B) and 100 x earnings. for perspective you need to know that Apple is currently at 3.3 x sales and 10 x earnings, and they actually do some good in the world. and, shares in the company will likely help families put kids through college (indeed, they’re helping me put other people’s kids through college) also… I’m willing to bet, and I am as a loyal shareholder and consumer, in fact doing just that, people will want and own iPhones than waste time on Facebook.

so… let other people buy Facebook. the same type that buy into Facebook, I’ll wager. I’ll short you later and put more kids through college.

peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

brian patrick cork

trading sense for Dollars

August26

so…

recently the German stock market, also known as the DAX, fell sharply at two hundred fifty points that really only equaled less than two percent (2%), quickly recovering from four percent (4%), in a matter of minutes – and, seemingly without cause or reason (they can be different especially if there is a purpose). read more about that, here.

global indexes followed also – all seeming without legitimate explanation. oddly this happened right on the heels of Warren Buffet investing five billion ($5B) dollars into the shame-drenched Bank of America. more about that, here.

NOTE: I’m evaluating Mr. Buffet right now. he essentially bails out Bank of America for their bad behavior. this is the same fellow that says certain people in this country need to pay more taxes. but, this man has a perspective shared by few others. I can’t say today it’s (that unique view) good or bad. but, his perspective is different than almost everyone else’s. and, both things equal bandaids and less so long-term solutions (although Bank of America appears to be bailed a lot with the word taxes being involved – directly, or indirectly). maybe Bank of America needs to be run-to-ground with its executives being held in the spot-light, and we should consider paying less taxes and focus more on responsible spending. seriously… how do most of you run your own households?

QUESTION: many of the Bank of America executives received HUGE bonuses in the last couple of years. how many of them invest with Mr. Buffet?

…I’m just asking.

last week, our own New York Stock Exchange took a precipitous dump after generally good market news. although the media failed to elaborate, we know this ostensibly occurred due to “algorithms” and certain trading protocols driven by murky economic data that may-or-may-not be self-serving (to someone).

this means a computer (or, something like it) measures activity, somewhere and somehow then makes a cold calculation to buy or sell certain stocks or interests in commodities.

have you bothered to notice that most of the shenanigans occur during “after hours” trading?

so… who actually approved algorithmic and after hours trading? and, how is it monitored to keep things fair? oh… and, who defines what is fair?

what few people (the hell with “pundits” like the self-serving cultural terrorists idiots on MSNBC) will actually talk about is that these algorithms create buying opportunities for certain types of people that most of you don’t know and also don’t care about you, collectively.

consider this… stocks like Apple (AAPL) seem immune, for the most part, to predatory speculation, like that. people can still buy that stock and reasonably expect it to help them plan for the future. I believe it could be worth one thousand dollars ($1,000)a share afore too long. but that stock is in the spotlight for many other reasons. for Gods’ sake, the company has over seventy eight billion ($78B) in cash reserves. they could bail-out this country because they actually understand how to run something successfully, unlike our own government. so, it’s behavior tracks to reality, whereas stocks driven by algorithms react to insidious stimulation by people commonly referred to as, “they” or “them”.

keep thinking about this and remember, one day, I brought it up.

peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

brian patrick cork

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What’s All This About?

"What am I looking at?", you might wonder.

Lots of stuff.

Meanwhile, here, I discuss events, people and things in our world - and, my (hardly simplistic, albeit inarticulate) views around them.

You'll also learn things about, well, things, like people you need to know about, and information about companies you can't find anywhere else.

So, while I harangue the public in my not so gentle way, you will discover that I am fascinated by all things arcane, curious about those whom appear religious, love music, dabble in politics, loathe the media, value education, still think I am an athlete, and might offer a recipe.

All the while, striving mightily, and daily, to remain a prudent and optimistic gentleman - and, authentic.

brian cork by John Campbell





photos by John Campbell

 

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