The 5 Dumbest Things on Wall Street This Week: April 13
1. Dunn And Over
There's something silly going on surrounding the sudden departure of Best Buy (BBY) big wig Brian Dunn. We don't know exactly what it is yet, but trust you us, when a CEO steps down as a result of "personal conduct" issues you can rest assured it will eventually hurtle down our very dumb alley.
The good news for shareholders, we suppose, is that Dunn's shenanigans were "unrelated to the company's operations or financial controls", according to Best Buy's external spokeswoman.So at the very least Best Buy investors concerned with the fact that Dunn jumped ship prior to the end of an audit committee investigation can rest a little bit easier. Or at least as easy as investors who have seen the value of their stock sliced in half over the past 5 years can rest. And since we don't know precisely what Brian Dunn did, we won't even wager a guess and risk the disappointment that the real story doesn't match up to the juicy stuff now circulating through Wall Street's rumor mill. (Ah, bless you Mark Hurd for making CEO resignations sexy again.) All that said, we do know what Dunn didn't do, and that is successfully run his company during his three-year tenure in the top spot. Once the electronics retailer to beat, Best Buy has rapidly devolved into what many gadget shoppers refer to as "Amazon's (AMZN) Showroom." And when Dunn tried to fight back against the Internet retail juggernaut, he failed miserably as evidenced by the company's catastrophic performance last holiday season when it proved unable to deliver gifts ordered online before Christmas morning. Most recently, Best Buy posted fourth-quarter results that missed Wall Street's revenue forecast. It also announced the closure of 50 of its U.S. stores in fiscal 2013 as part of a plan to cut $800 million in costs by fiscal 2015. Put it all together and its quite clear that Dunn should have cut himself out of the picture a long time ago. "I have enjoyed every one of my 28 years with this company, and I leave it today in position for a strong future," said Dunn in a press release. That's all well and good Brian. But until we hear the whole story, we don't think you're done just yet. Written by Gregg Greenberg in New York.
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