Suddenly trapped in 2 separate death spirals: most overvalued tech market in history, and now a priced-in slowdown in corporate tech spending worldwide.
It's been all downhill for a solid year except for a brief moment of hope last year when I finally got out of this POS and sold for good. And still people are looking at the value inherent in CBR, the products, the company, etc. Wake up guys. It's not about the company - it's about the tape. Investors have listened to the brokerages' BS about "buy and hold" for so long that they've forgotten their senses. If there's a fire in your house you GET OUT. You don't look at the long term benefits of it. Long term tech investors in these emerging technologies have been taken out back and SHOT DEAD. (If you just lost 50% this year you were lucky.) For every one that's hit the jackpot (and those jackpots are dwindling daily), there's been 10 that have ended up like CBR.
Also, I don't see any institutional people trading from a buy and hold frame of reference. How they feel about the company is one thing, what the tape tells them about buying it is another. And they have been SELLING en masse, into ANY kind of rally: the same guys that gave you the outrageous buy recommendations earlier this year, are cleaning investors clocks now because their firms are all NET SHORT. That's why they keep coming out with these downgrades when the techs are down - to drive them down further and thus make more money off the lemmings they've trained for 7 years to go long on any dip. It's like shooting fish in a barrel. Easy pickins. Today was a perfect example: all the techs that nearly doubled in the last 4 days on people hoping a new tech trend has begun, got clobbered for 15-20%. There haven't been 5 consecutive up days on the NAZ in 4 months that I can remember. If there are 3 or 4 up days, all the sellers come in to take the profits they've got, and short the same stocks they had bought, just when it looks like its safe for you to go back in the water and buy them again. Long termers wait for a trend change - as soon as the trend change seems established - the institutional shorts clobber it for all its worth, break it, and ride it to new lows.
It is estimated that 2.5 Trillion dollars has been lost in the last 9 months by U.S. buy and holders, and fools buying the latest dip. How many failed rallies have there been: 50? 60? and yet people keep hoping "This has GOT to be the bottom."
You know when it will be the bottom? When there is NO ONE LEFT STANDING TO BUY. When no one will be willing to buy anything tech. When there will be no more 7-10% one-day rallies, and people finally give up. Then all the big houses will entice people back into the game a little bit at a time, and quietly begin accumulating new money again. It's precisely what's called "sector rotation". Just look at the energy, medical/HMO and drug stocks this year - all at 52 week highs. What a crock: corporate people in those companies make money by stealing from Americans and overcharging them. And yet they are the Wall Street darlings this year. But just watch what happens to them NEXT year.
If you look at what I am saying, and remove any displeasure for the way I present myself, you'll see that what you've experienced with stocks like CBR is the criminal intent of a Wall Street Oligarchy bent on defrauding small investors and stealing their savings. Hell, they even steal from each other! What they say is an advertising ploy and a hustle - what they actually do is prey on the weak and defenseless (just look at tech companies right now) and play an endless game of pump and dump.
Bull markets are all pump, bears are all dump. But they only let you play one way, while they play BOTH ways. And when they are done destroying this market, they will need to pump it up again or there won't be any game anymore, now will there?
The whole goal of investing in stocks is not about investing at all: it's about playing the game, and playing it to win. To buy when stocks go up, and sell when they go down, and don't stick around long enough for someone to change their mind. I rarely even hold stocks overnight anymore, because you never know what you've got when you wake up in the morning. Could be cut in half like FFIV and about 500 other tech stocks in the last 4 months. Shorting for the last 4 months has been almost EFFORTLESS. There's only about 4 or 5 up days a month, and they're sudden explosive spikes that make shorting even easier, because the stocks stick their necks out so far as people chase them.
You may say that shorts have no respect, but in fact we do. We respect pythons in the jungle and tread carefully when near them. But when there's only 5 lions and 600 defenseless sheep, we eat, and eat big. And when the bulls are running in Pamplona we run with them too, we don't 'short' them, we run with them. The true successful trader is somewhat of a jackal, a survival jack-of-all-trades, so to speak.
If a person is willing to change their minds, and trade small, and make profitability instead of one-shot homeruns their priority, you can do very very well in this kind of market. Freed from the idea of being right or wrong or holding to wishes or beliefs, you can simply respond to what's in front of you. And what's in front of you here is a tech wreck with no end in sight, YET. If you take out all 1999-Y2K and draw a line through all the NAZ tops prior to 1999-Y2K , you get 2700 at the top, and 1800 at the bottom, and that still preserves the bull trend from 1990. Will it bottom there? I don't know, but the symmetry on the chart seems to indicate it could eventually hit near the 1998 lows, and that's a long way down from here.
I sold CBR at 39 almost 2 years ago, and sweated doing it because I thought that I was throwing away a long time value holding. However, the only value in investing is your money - nothing else. Once a year or so I stop in on CBR to see how much money people have lost with it that year, and encourage people to get out. If INTC can't make money, why should CBR?
Thanks for your discertation on Ciber and tech stocks. This industry group suffers from a reactive versus proactive management philosphy, in short they would not know an opportunity if it was running over them in a bulldozer. Like you I got out of Ciber but at a loss to offset soem gains elsewhere. I wish I could forecast some goodness for this sector but maybe 2001 numbers will look OK when compared to 2000. I have no advice to offer however my dollars in the bond market that everyone was laughing at in March look pretty good now. I still say the only hope here in M&A.