Thursday, March 09, 2006

Open Question to SEC about Berkshire Hathaway

In the context of Reg FD I am under the belief that when there is a material event there must be fair disclosure, hence REG FD. If a major publicly traded company appoints a new President Reg FD should kick in and the new individual should be announced. Berkshire Hathaway appears to have selected a new President. Board approval has been received. The investing public is being specifically excluded from knowing who this individual is. Is this a violation of securities laws and regulation?

NYSE (NYX) Takes Care of its Own

NYSE is now public. That’s very good because now we get to ask some questions. On the web site they indicate they have 47.5 million shares outstanding. In yesterdays SEC filing NYSE allocates 12.5 million shares to the employee stock option plan at the price of $65.50 @ share. That’s one big whopping amount of shares. Something like 25% or better. Big really big.

John Madsen out of Control

This article just posted on (authored by Mark Fass) identifies how some on Wall Street are out of control. The judge mercifully did not name the defendant's employer. Specifically the defendant John Madsen punches someone in a taxi and then argues that a conviction would harm his career. It appears that the judge was not impressed with the argument.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Walmart Sneaks it Out (NYSE:WMT)

Wal-Mart sneaks it out. On March 7 Wal-Mart sends an end of day SEC alert announcing the new Board of Directors Compensation plan. Unlike their retail strategy they are not going cheap. So far no press release. For a company who knows how to market and sell stuff this announcement is taking the quiet route. Corporate governance can make and break companies. Being more forth coming would show confidence. Sneaking around the technicalities indicates fear and weakness.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

General Motors (NYSE:GM) Chosen Words

Excerpt comments from Mr. Suzuki “….its just that GM needs help right now…” Not too out of context.

Altera (Nasdaq:ALTR) drops its CFO.

Nathan Parkinson SVP & CFO aged 47 just retired from Altera. No new plans announced. No successor in place. Ouch that’s a bad one. Just thought I would leave now. Information deficit on all accounts.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Warren Buffet Creates Event Risk

Warren Buffet (Berkshire Hathaway NYSE:BRK.A) announces that there is a successor but will not say who it is. Warren would you invest in a company that is about to have a new leader but you are not allowed to know. Arrogance? Hubris? What is this? Some religious leaders lose perspective and demand discipline without information. Warren Buffet you would not invest in yourself on this basis. What is the rationale for holding back? Markets hate uncertainty. What are your reasons? I cannot think of a useful one! You are creating an event risk waiting to explode. By hiding or obscuring the succession plans you unnecessarily create volatility.

Weekend Follies (March 4-5, 2005)

This weekend we have seven culprits who announce critical information at oddball hours over the weekend. Good or bad I am always skeptical on timing issues. Two NYSE companies Schering Plough (SGP), Goldcorp (GG). Three AMEX Queenstake Resources (QEE), Silver Wheaton (SLW), Wesco Financial (WSC) and the rest on Nasdaq Mercer International (MERC), Methanex Corp (MEOH),