Merrill Lynch is one more sham outfit, and my father spent his career with them, starting on Wall Street. The shot gun marriage with BofA makes for an interesting read. Merrill would have gone under without this unholy alliance, along with billions of taxpayer dollars, and BofA shareholders ultimately paid the price.
What is curious here is that Merrill loved ZNGA for a period of weeks, an upgrade shortly to be revised to a downgrade. Is there any substantial difference between Merrill and Golden Sacks? The whole market is about short term trading strategies, and that should be disturbing. ZNGA perfectly illustrates this trend.
Summary: Complacency abounds in our financial markets. Negative real returns on cash have funneled billions to equities without proper risk perspective. Earnings matter. Hint: ZNGA
To this day I will still never understand why people hang on to every word that analysts say. Analysts have a typical herd mentality. Case in point, majority of them were still pumping AAPL at 700 and didn't actually change their rating on it until it got to the 450 - 500 mark - and then all of a sudden analysts from everywhere came out and lowered their price targets - so where were they for the previous 200 - 250 dollar drop? And the reverse is true as well. Bank of America changed their rating on ZNGA from neutral to buy in February after it had already risen 40% in 3 months. Bottom line is that analysts are often publicly late to the game so why believe anything they have to say?