my world, and what a pretty world it isn't, especially on damp East Coast days like today when there is nothing -- absolutely
nothing! -- going on. (At least nothing I want to bore you with. The dog days of summer are coming ... and they're here!) What am I so grumpy about? Thought you'd never ask, and I don't want to sound petty (again!) so I won't go into telling you how the
Palm Beach Post this morning acted like it was the first to reveal the
(CYBR) story in a piece that didn't mention that
This just in: This morning, Gateway (GTW) held a conference call hosted by Banc of America Securities. On the call, Gateway CFO John Todd said corporate demand is not great. (Not great, then why does Intel (INTC - Get Report) keep saying that it can't keep up with demand? But I digress... ) Todd said corporate business hasn't picked up year over year. (That's despite the widespread belief that corporate biz would rebound after a so-called Y2K lockdown. Yet here it is May; are we still talking Y2K? Maybe the short-sellers who had been warning that PCs have simply become too powerful for their own good, and that the market is simply glutted, were on to something. But I digress...) Todd also said Gateway doesn't expect there to be a DRAM shortage in the second half of the year, as some pundits and companies have been saying, and that there isn't one now. ... So, let's get this straight: Gateway says demand is weak. Intel has been saying it can't keep up with demand. And Advanced Micro Devices' (AMD - Get Report) business is booming. Gateway doesn't expect there to be a DRAM shortage, but Micron (MU - Get Report) does. PC makers were crying about a Y2K slowdown and business hasn't yet picked up. Once more, one plus one equaling everything but two. Anybody? (The good news is that Gateway didn't pre-announce a lousy quarter, as some on Wall Street had expected.)
Peppering Salton: PaineWebber analyst Jim Goll, a huge, huge fan of Salton (SFP), issued a report today suggesting that come next year, the George Foreman Grill company will either do a stock buyback or start paying dividends. And Salton will pay for it, he says, with the $82 million of free cash flow he believes the company will have by then. That's quite a leap of faith, considering that last year's free cash flow was a negative $100 million and it was $6 million in the first three fiscal quarters of this year. What's more, it's virtually impossible to say what the economy will look like that far out. Oh, and one other thing, as it applies to the chance of a dividend: I guess that means the company will have paid off $125 million in junk bonds -- the same junk bonds that carry restrictions regarding the payment of a dividend.
Taxi talk: This morning's