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Easy There, Quick Draw McGraw
Posted at 11:31 a.m. EDT on Friday, Nov. 8
This business is humbling. Don't be humbled even more than you should be.
That's the takeaway of some horrendous after-hours trading that we just saw last night, a night that should serve as a constant reminder of how you simply must wait and hear the conference calls of every stock before you pull the trigger. Making money isn't about who is the fastest, it's about who is the most thoughtful.
Last night, within just a few minutes of trading, we got reports from
(GRPN - Get Report)
(PCLN - Get Report)
, two red-hot Internet plays that had already been under pressure in the wake of the non-Twitter rout in everything social, mobile and cloud. Priceline fell 50 points even as the company reported a fantastic quarter as the guidance was perceived as being incredibly weak. Groupon dropped a $1 off a $9.90 basis as traders took one look at the quarter and decided that the bloom of the two new CEOs was off the rose and it was time to skedaddle.
At the same time,
(DIS - Get Report)
announced a quarter that looked terrific on the surface, but traders dumped the stock down to $64, off a couple of bucks, on what looked to be weaker ESPN numbers. Given that ESPN is one of the best growth engines for the company, which was the kiss of death for the stock, which has been on a tear because of ESPN as well as theme parks and some extremely powerful movie franchises.
If there were NFL coaches in this game, they would have thrown the red flag and the refs would be right in the booth taking a look at the replays of the trading in these fine companies. In our business, that's the equivalent of reading the headlines, studying the release, but the most importantly -- and as I always say -- listening to the conference calls.