Change at the top. It can be viewed as either a good thing or a bad thing in corporate American and in football. The good part is that an organization is trying to improve its leadership and find someone that is the right fit for what they are trying to accomplish. The bad news is that they have to do that in the first place and are replacing someone who is not working out. Typically the team or organization is underperforming expectations. As most football fans probably know, the Oakland Raiders fired head coach Lane Kiffin, who had just a 5-15 record with the Silver and Black in less than two seasons. There was obviously bad blood there. In a press conference announcing the decision, owner Al Davis called Kiffin a "flat-out liar" and said he was guilty of "disgracing the organization." Regardless of the other stuff, it ultimately boils down to success. During his short time in Oakland, the team did not win. Kiffin has said he believes the team is on the verge of turning the corner, but he will not be at the helm when it happens. Rams head coach Scott Linehan in St. Louis was also recently shown the door and a number of other coaches around the league are on the hot seat. This is the business part of the game. It is the same for coaches, players, general managers and even trainers. The only people that get to stay is the big boss. The owners own the team and can do what they please. Al Davis wants to "just win, baby" as most owners do.
That's what I want, too. I want my stocks to win for me. The market is rallying back a bit today and I like Caterpillar ( CAT). The company makes and sells construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, and industrial gas turbines all over the world. This is a very solid company that has taken a pounding lately. In fact, it hit a 52-week low of $51.91 yesterday. It has gained nearly 4% today in midday trading, but this company is still undervalued. It shed 33% of its value in the last year. Its forward price-to-earnings ratio is just 8.27 -- very undervalued. It's got a return on equity of a hefty 45%. It's an industry leader and is trading at a fraction of its former self. This is a company that is good for the long haul. Keep moving the chains.