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Aetna Inc. Message Board

  • cacao_bajo cacao_bajo Apr 8, 1999 8:58 PM Flag

    Now we are getting somewhere!

    Does anybody know what's the real problem with
    this stock? Obviously, I'm not asking the board or the
    management (do they ever visit this bb?) because they have
    long demonstrated their inability to manage this
    Company. Someone said once that Aetna is a sleeping giant.
    I say it's a chained colossus. I can't wait to hear
    the excuses at the imminent shareholders meeting.
    Your thoughts, please. I am determined (and many folks
    around me) to sell at a loss and NEVER invest in this
    poor performer.

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    • Just thought that you might like to know: The
      reference to AET as "The Sleeping Giant" goes back to the
      late 1950s. The reference was to a great and
      well-respected company that had
      greater potential. It did
      awaken and established itself as a company that attained
      prominence and respect. It was loved by its agents and
      policyholders as a company that "was there" for them in claim
      situations. AET was a company that employees and agents were
      proud to represent-and growth resulted. Of course, it
      was still a small company as measured in terms of
      today's dollar. A dollar in 1960 would buy what roughly
      cost $6 today. Seems to me that AET has gone from a
      "Sleeping Giant" to a "Stumbling Giant that is
      In the late 80s or early 90s, Mr. Compton introduced
      QFR (Quick-Flexible and Right-these were some keys to
      success). It got to be something of a joke around AET. And
      then millions were spent on training employees on AMP
      (Aetna Management Process) a system that was more
      process than management (my view.) I'm not venting-just
      providing a bit of history to the "Sleeping Giant"
      reference in 889. If I'm wrong in my views, I'd be willing
      fly to Hartford and apologize in person. Time will
      tell. I welcome financial results that will change my
      views. But, as a loyal long-time stockholder and
      observer, AET stock must hit $150 to justify my loyalty and
      restore my confidence as a stockholder. But, unlike some,
      I give AET high marks for ethics and claim service.
      Will someone prove my views wrong? I hope so!

    • You might like to read my several messages
      regarding AET's
      stock-performance (or lack of ) history.
      I, too, want to know the problem. You certainly
      don't detect it in all of the positive rhetoric in the
      1998 annual report. This is getting really old, year
      after year, after year. I place the responsibility
      squarely on the shoulders of the do-nothing board who let
      Mr. Lynn (former chairman) and Mr. Compton have their
      way with our money. Maybe Mr. Huber can turn things
      around, but it is not evident to me that he can; just
      another "big spender" as I see things now. It's almost
      with shame that I admit to being a long-term AET
      shareholder. A classic case of misplaced loyalty and trust.
      I'll tell you about the upcoming annual meeting. Lots
      of nothing other than legal formalities. Then Mr.
      Huber will spar with the idiotic two or three gadflies
      that will show up. Lots of employee and stockholder
      time will be wasted. I hope I am wrong-that would be a
      pleasure. I would love to have to eat my words and issue an
      apology for my views. I doubt if AET monitors this MB. If
      so, they pay no attention (arrogance blinds). Sure
      would like to hear (oops, make that see) something
      positive that would build credibility and confidence on
      Wall Street. Any other views?

      • 1 Reply to TxAggie60_60
      • Aetna had every opportunity to own the
        industry... but the real problems started with Compton.... He
        began by treating the employees like liabilities... I
        speak from experience I worked there for 18 years... I
        saw small raises, because others weren't being
        compensated as highly (I'd thought that my past compensation
        was based on performance not what they paid others).
        That was followed up by quarterly meetings where the
        unit as a whole was repeatably told, "you think you
        can do better, then leave... you're lucky to have a
        job". I don't care if management thinks that way, but
        don't rub it in my face...
        I chose to leave, as did
        many of the best... and they were right
        you can do
        better... Unfortunately the same message seems to be
        directed at the customers now... You need customers to
        succeed and buying them back as they leave is the wrong
        way to grow the ranks... Huber has done some work
        turning around the employee situation, but his recent
        blunder with the CA case was a step in the wrong
        direction (he recognized that at least)...
        Based on
        earnings the price of the stock seems about right in a
        market where almost everything seems overpriced...

        As I have said before, the opportunity in this stock
        is in trading... I bought back my July 70 puts
        monday for 1 5/8's having sold them at $4.... and sold
        off a good bit of my stock at 82+ thru 84 5/16....
        started buying back at 80 and change... but not with the
        intention of holding... good luck

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