Aaron Task tuned in to "Live 8" this weekend. When the music was over, he had a stock idea.
Subbing for Jim Cramer on the
"Real Money" radio show, Task discussed how he was forced to turn off MTV because the video jockeys kept talking over the music. Frustrated, Task logged on to AOLmusic.com's live feed of the show and had a great, uninterrupted concert experience, as well as a newfound respect for AOL parent
"Time Warner is undervalued because people don't have a value for AOL, which they are getting essentially for free when they buy the stock," says Task,
co-executive editor. "AOL should be a boon for Time Warner."
contributor and Task's guest, didn't share the enthusiasm. Willard said he would not buy Time Warner shares because the company's core business is old media, which is dragging.
Would Willard buy AOL if it were spun out? Probably, but not enthusiastically.
"AOL's dial-up business is still in a secular decline," says Willard. "The problem is that they don't own the pipes they are trying to transmit over. Without owning the pipe itself, their content gets pirated."
To prove his point, Willard pointed out that songs from "Live 8" originally broadcast on AOLmusic.com were being shown illicitly on peer-to-peer sites almost 10 minutes after the concert kicked off.
So how would Willard invest in this space?
"The guys that own the content are at risk and will have to come up with new models to make money," says Willard. "But guys like
will be content aggregators and they will benefit."
Willard reiterated his long-held bullish stance on
, which he's liked since the shares were down at $7. He says the concerns over iPod saturation, which have tamed the stock recently, are overblown. Furthermore, he says consumers are using their positive iPod experiences as a reason to try Apple products.
"The iPod is the de facto standard and people are now trying Apple computers simply because they had a positive experience with their iPod," Willard says.
Willard is most bullish on equipment providers currently. He says the core business of landline calling is in secular decline, but stocks like
As a pure play in the rise of VoIP, Willard likes networking equipment manufacturer
. Ancillary plays in the VoIP space include
When a caller from Chicago asked about
, one of Cramer's favorite picks, Willard compared the telecom equipment maker with
as an example of an "old school company with lots of pension costs."
But he was not entirely negative, because he pointed out that Lucent is doing a lot of things right in the wireless arena. Willard said he has a tiny position in Lucent.
Task added his two cents that Lucent won't really take off until the company does a reverse split to increase share price so institutional investors can start buying it.
Finally, a caller asked Task if he should take profits from his energy mutual funds, which have grown substantially.
Task replied yes, reminding the caller that bulls make money, bears make money and pigs, well, they get slaughtered. Task said a better idea would be to take some profits and balance out his portfolio, perhaps in an area that has lagged.
Aaron L. Task is the co-executive editor of TheStreet.com. In keeping with TSC's editorial policy, he doesn't own or short individual stocks, although he owns stock in TheStreet.com. He also doesn't invest in hedge funds or other private investment partnerships. He invites you to send your feedback to