I noted that both Forbes and a few posters listed the ex-div date as 2/14. I looked back at the earnings notes and the EXC Investor page and the ex-div date is listed as 2/19. Am I missing something here? Thanks.
At the close today, the aggregated open interest of the Feb 26 through 35 strike price saw 31,007 contracts on the call side with 39,632 on the put side. The heaviest concentration around the 30 - naturally.
Focusing on today's action only, a whopping 14,241 calls were purchased vs. 7,398 puts for the same strikes mentioned above.
What does it all mean? I have no idea. Do the purchasers of the 14,241 calls know something or are they playing the recent momentum?
I will say this, based on ConEd's performance, mediocre or poor results combined with a 25% or more dividend cut could very well be cause for a sharp sell off. I would imagine this is exactly what those 39,632 put holders are praying for.
We will know much more early tomorrow morning.
I completely agree and have put my money where my words are. This small pullback can be attributed to cautious analysts comments and little if anything else. I expect GS to be the benefactor of an expanding multiple. Let's not forget, these guys know how to make money and will continue to do so. The fact that they reduced their costs through compensation reductions is a signal that they "get it" which likely means they will not be in the cross hairs when, if, the politicians turn their attention back to the banking industry. I see $160+ before the end of May. We are in a good place, just need to weather the storm here. The clouds are clearing as I write....I hope.
If Mgmt eliminates the uncertainty around its dividend, reports respectable earnings from each business unit and really shows progress in slowing (or eliminating) the pace of "one-time" charges I think this stock goes higher - that is a pretty low bar for EXC to hurdle in my opinion.
As for the dividend, I'm not concerned whether they keep the same rate or reduce it, certainty is most important. EXC pays a higher dividend than any of their peers so a reduction is in order. This Mgmt team has had a tough year and I think they are up to the task of getting things back on track starting with this earnings call.
If not, heaven help the guys at the top of the org chart.
April 30 calls look cheap at .60-.65 with open interest peaking at the 32 strike price. This could work out nicely if Mgmt comes through.
I think this stock is headed to ~63 before Jan 31st. If at anytime the S&P rises to 1500-1550 it may run to ~67 or more. Take a look at how this stock has done in January alone over the past 5 years. It has been remarkably consistent in good times and bad.
Disclosure: I am holding Feb13 57.50 calls.
If this report leads to lower equity prices they will be short lived and represent a buying opportunity. A close look at the fundamentals shows the company is performing well. With the CEO anticipating record production in 2013 I think the future look really good. I'm a buyer on any weakness.
If this reaches the teen's you can bet WB will soon be shaking hands with the Gov's from PA, MD and ILL. I suppose that utility customers can look forward to yet another $100 credit! Would that be the most unbelievable thing you've ever seen or heard of?
Long ago, shortly after the Public Utility Company Holding Act was repealed, many of the pundits predicted that one day the US would be dominated by four or five mega utilities. Southern, Mid American and a few select others could make that come true.
If the Gvmt taxes dividends to the max the equity value of Utility stocks could drop like a rock. Combine that with more reports and commentaries like the past two quarterlies and more investors might decide to look for greener pastures.
I guess we will just have to stay tuned.
I for one am shocked at how far this has fallen but I have no interest in attempting to catch this falling knife - yet.
You can bet your bottom dollar that Warren Buffett and his Mid American Utility Group are watching the stocks price action closely. That will be good, in the very short term, for Shareholders. Not so good for some other stakeholders. It is possible, especially if Congress and Obama send us over the fiscal cliff with or without a bungee cord, that Mid American makes an offer. Remember, Mayo and the CEG BOD previously accepted an offer during a period of high financial stress. Although the current EXC situation does not compare with CEG's financial fall, Mid American via Buffett has the cash and would love to put it to work in another predictably profitable organization - utility. Buffett and his group are masters of expense management - sounds like they might love this opportunity.
Duly noted. It is with high anticipation that I await this mornings earnings call.
I recently closed out my position because of this fear. Compounding the issue is my belief that this Mgmt Team does not perform very well on earnigs calls causing the stock to take a hit after every call.
I will tell you this...if they don't meet or exceed expectations, if they can't project beyond 6 months, if they have more CDO type losses, if the recent acquisition isn't explanined to the satisfaction of the analysts this stock is headed south in a hurry.
The risk that this Mgmt Team will blow the earnings call was too great in my estimation. Hence I sold before the call.
Good luck and I truly hope my gut instincts are wrong.