NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Although I noted the other day on Twitter that I would take time off during Christmas week, it probably won't look that way to readers of TheStreet and followers of my Twitter page.
Thirty-six hour days, brother (or soul sister). Packing it all in. No time to rest because this isn't even a job. I write about companies and stocks, primarily in my three favorite spaces: tech, media and retail. Everyday feels like a day off when you do this!
But it's not all coming up roses. I have some issues to run by Santa Claus.
Give Us Less From Wall Street Analysts
A majority of the financial media relies way too much on Wall Street analysts. Every other guest on
is an analyst. Most multimedia sites, including
, call on these guys for reaction daily.
I have a newsflash for you: Lots of investors are sick of analysts. They don't trust them. They don't value what they have to say because, generally, they don't say anything of value.
That's not to say we should banish all appearances and opinions from big or boutique firms. Not at all.
First, plenty of good Wall Street analysts exist. Guys like Brian Sozzi (who contributes to
) Tony Wible at Janney Montgomery and Richard Tullo of Albert Fried and Co. immediately come to mind.
But "good" is subjective. You might love guys whom I dislike and vice versa. This faction deserves inclusion in the conversation; we just need to knock back their profiles.
For starters, read
Several firms -- two in particular -- completely blew it on
. It wasn't just that they were wrong. It's no sin to be wrong; it's merely human. It's the way they went about being wrong. I explain in the above-linked articles.
The second article (
) points out that things just got worse when a financial reporter turned to these very firms, seconds after these cats performed pathetically, to get insight on -- of all stocks -- AAPL! I can't make this stuff up.
Pull up a bar stool. I can talk your ear off with stories like this.
Around this time last year over at
, I chronicled stories of analysts from major firms missing big on
only to fall off the face of the Earth thereafter:
... has anybody heard from Ingrid Chung at Goldman Sachs? ... After Netflix's disastrous Q2 and weak Q3 guidance in July, Chung waxed bullishly, not only reiterating a buy rating and her $330 price target, but raising EPS estimates from 2011 through 2013.
Before you read this next sentence, call some family, friends or co-workers over to your computer screen, because there's nothing like sharing a laugh with others around the holidays. For 2012, Chung predicted Netflix would post EPS of $7.69.
Why does this happen? Are these analysts
? Maybe. Or do they have ulterior motives?
We don't know. That's the problem. Many sell-side analysts are not straightforward propositions. The clock ticks on their usefulness.
Somebody Do Something Other Than a Smartphone or Tablet
I would give up the iPad I bought myself for Christmas if this came true. We need innovation in tech. Not a bunch of Apple copycats and ankle biters.
Everybody just has to do a smartphone now. At
, Meg Whitman basically says
recently released it's own no-purpose-serving tablet. And, of course, there's underachieving
determined to start
It's the stuff yawns and abject failure is made of. Somebody. Please. Do something different! Is the iPod -- and its evolution -- the last real true innovation we can touch that we'll ever see?
Somebody Execute a Gutsy Turnaround
Plenty of companies require wholesale transformations. Best Buy. HP.
. All examples of companies in need of massive metamorphoses, yet they float a mix of
maintenance and feigned attempts at feeble change.
The last real turnaround with guts that I recall took place at
. Several years ago, CEO Patrick Doyle took an enormous chance and trashed Domino's publicly. Then, in less than a year, Domino's not only improved the product drastically and rebuilt the brand, it turned itself into a tech company of sorts with an excellent online/mobile ordering system and a fantastic iPad app.
Tech companies, interestingly, can learn from a pizza company. If it's really that far gone, we might need more than help from Santa.
My Holiday gift to you: one of my favorite
videos, chronicling the Domino's Pizza turnaround.
-- Written by Rocco Pendola in Santa Monica, Calif.
Rocco Pendola is
Director of Social Media. Pendola's daily contributions to
frequently appear on
and at various top online properties, such as