This blog post originally appeared on RealMoney Silver on Dec. 9 at 7:36 a.m. EST.
Wall Street apologists (a.k.a., sell-side research analysts) were out in full force defending
when the company reduced fourth-quarter 2008 profit guidance after the close yesterday.
Their generally bullish analysis/recommendations and support of Danaher, as the share price of the company's common stock has dropped by 40% over the course of the last three months, is a constant reminder of how little value-added research emanates from Wall Street's corner. Despite the imposition of changes eight years ago by former Attorney General Spitzer, analysts still remain blinded by company relationships, preferring to take the role of cheerleaders in the process of conducting maintenance research rather than exhibiting truly independent and original analysis.
By now, I am no longer surprised by the almost value-destructive Wall Street analyst community, which has had little foresight of the uncertain economic futures for so many companies. So many of my short positions have been almost universally praised by analysts -- including
, and so on -- until the earnings reports profoundly disappointed.
I would be surprised, however, if, over the course of the next few months, a major Wall Street brokerage
jettison its unprofitable research department and staff.
It would be no loss.
Doug Kass is the author of The Edge, a blog on
that features real-time shorting opportunities on the market.
Know What You Own:
At the time of publication, Doug Kass was short Danaher, Fastenal, Henry Schein and Patterson Companies as bearish dental industry plays. Another stock in the dental industry is
. For more on the value of knowing what you own, visit TheStreet.com's
At the time of publication, Kass and/or his funds were short Danaher, Fastenal, Henry Schein, Patterson Companies, Best Buy and Lamar Advertising, although holdings can change at any time.
Doug Kass is founder and president of Seabreeze Partners Management, Inc., and the general partner and investment manager of Seabreeze Partners Short LP and Seabreeze Partners Short Offshore Fund, Ltd.