Generally, I think almost all stocks are "played with" (dark pools, naked shorting, algorithmic "runs on stocks" created, buying and selling within the same account or two accounts held by the same person, etc.). But in this case, there just is not that much left to play with. I know there are some that are willing to play for pennies per share on large volume--but both the risk and the reward here are outsized and could be trumped by a single positive or negative announcement. Downside players are probably not going to try and win the last 59 cents. Upside players will likely view it as a speculative long shot and just throw a little mad money at it on an all-or-none bet.
The SEHC acquisition and the Sequestration (which will not likely be overturned or amended until at least after the November 2014 Congressional Election, but more likely the Presidential Election in 2016) has effectively put the company in jeopardy. Tailored cuts or postponement of Sequestration's blunt impact have little impetus to get done. The Sequestration is legally mandated to run through 2021. Unless the new Energy Secy. pushes very hard for additional clean-up and leak remediation at Hanford, the government spending taps are likely going to remain closed indefinitely. IMO PESI's only hope is to move quickly to further downsize in a draconian fashion. I think they need to halve head count.
How many stocks do you know that decline to the 50 cents range that ever come back? All the insiders could be looking at a complete wipe-out on their equity investment. Guess that is why they did not reduce their base compensation. IMO nobody at this company should be making $200K+. In fact, the BOD and Compensation Committee should be clawing back compensation. They are simply raking off the last few dollars before the end game is at hand.
As i noted in a prior post, tax loss selling season pretty much coincides with their deadline for having to effect a Reverse Split, if the stock does not close at $1.00 per share or higher for 10 consecutive days before Dec. 2. Tax loss selling could be robust as many shareholders viewing it in terms of pennies per share could just blow it out to offset gains on an otherwise strong year, and strong four years for stocks. I really think they should just go ahead and to the R/S now, otherwise tax loss selling could result in a stock worth $0.25 to $0.50 per share and a wicked reverse split ratio. There appears to be no movement I can find in any press on Hanford, Los Alamos, really any large projects at all. I don't think the new Energy Secy. moves on the Hanford leak situation until next year at the earliest. I suspect he could first want to commission a study on the extent of the problems there, together w/both private and public solutions. Then of course he will probably want time to study the study. The government just doesn't have money to do anything, so I think some work could fall PESI's way, but I think it will take time before that happens. They need to cut costs further IMO, even more drastically than they already have.
you'll note I said SEEMS TO BE no outside interest. It was an educated inference I drew from the management commentary that they had looked at the situation, and all options, and failed to come up w/anything. Perhaps that is something of a moving target as the stock price continues to decline and the company gets cheaper. Even if an interest does ultimately eventuate, there is no assurance any value would necessarily accrue to equity holders; it may or may not. What is most assuredly clear is that the company cannot handle too many quarters like the last one. Of course the stock price tells you that.
roughly paraphrased from an answer to a question on the last CC. Go to the transcript or replay the call. It came during the Q&A, in response to a question (by the analyst from Heartland Advisers I think) about the benefit of remaining public or what the company might be doing to look at alternatives. As I recall, Centofanti said they had looked hard at all the options (which I assume included both internal and external possibilities) and really came up with nothing.
BTW you are right about base salaries. Despite what they may have hinted at on the last CC, the company has NOT lowered the base salaries for its executive officers. It has kept them flat per the last SEC filing just about a week ago. With the tremendous hit they have been taking personally on the stock price, they may have felt it would be unfair to further penalize themselves w/regard to base compensation. IMO that point is open for debate. I think they need to invoke draconian measures to save the company, including a severe cut in compensation. If they do not, they could well end up holding stock worth very little in an end game situation.
It's a difficult swap because of the lack of liquidity in HRT, but BEAT is the clear winner in mobile cardiac telemetry and that battle is now over. One company has clear visibility going forward, the other is a work-out or turnaround situation.
Yes rabbit, that is exactly what we need. The problem is, at 62 cents per share even the heavily-invested institutional holders usually tend to just let it go its course and resign themselves to fate, given the position is one of many in a well-diversified portfolio that is probably otherwise performing pretty well this year and the last few years. Add to that a CEO that is seemingly in denial as to just how dire the situation is. From their own disclosure they have looked at various alternatives and there seems to be no outside interest. Price is truth, and the truth is this is like Stage 4 cancer. They still have a shot. They have a Lance Armstrong-like shot. The odds, however, are not in their favor.
except that money in the system (and a lot of it has been printed) is like water and has to flow somewhere. Where is it going to go---- to the bond market at 2%, to CDs at 1%, to commodities falling faster than you can say "Bob's your uncle"?, to Emerging Market equities? to Europe equities? under the mattress? to illiquid intangibles like art and real-estate w/the latter now getting pinched by mortgage rates climbing above 4%? Will it remain on corporate Balance Sheets earning 0% w/huge pension obligations looming (and many companies still assuming annual internal rates of return at 7-8% to meet those obligations?)
In a deflationary environment, I completely agree 1% or 2% annual return looks great (generating a real return of perhaps 5-6% annually depending on one's view of how deep the deflation goes). Short of that, U.S. equities would seem to be the only game in town. Europe is likely facing a decade-long workout solution, and China may be facing both a housing crisis and a decade-long rate of decline in their growth rate. Bottom line--where else do you go w/the money?
so if one is asset rich and living off cash in the bank, or living off proceeds from matched capital gain and loss sales which generate no net income, or living off muni-bond interest---then you can qualify for the health care tax subsidy, right? I mean if you sold stock worth $500,000 every year with gains and losses matched (generating $0 of income) you qualify for the largest health care subsidy available under the program, because it is only income tested not means tested. It will probably never be means tested--could you imagine ferreting out and testing all the assets of every American? Income test is simple--you just go to the filed 1040 tax form held by the IRS. It's a loophole in the plan that will allow every wealthy American to either get the maximum subsidy, or pay a minor fine if they forego the insurance altogether--since the fine amount is also based on income level not asset level.
and retain compliance. All these companies (subject to R/S) make the same mistake of waiting and hoping to pull a rabbit out of the hat just before the eleventh hour (Dec. 2nd in PESI's case). But the market smells blood and almost always forces the split. The vultures tend to keep their foot on the neck of the company to make the split a fait accompli. So in turn the stock price meanders and remains stuck in neutral for six months until the time limit to regain compliance is exhausted. Unfortunately, in the case of PESI, that occurs right in the middle of tax loss selling season, so even before a R/S can be enacted the price could be forced down to really unbelievably low levels that could require a hypothetical 1-for-20 or even 1-for-40 reverse split. So I say, best to enact the R/S now. In fact they should have done it six months ago.
Of course I fully expect them to wait until Dec. 2nd and hope for a big contract in the interim. But the new Energy Secy. seems to be in no hurry to deal w/the Hanford leak situation, and it may not even be addressed until 2014. He's new to the job and will likely take some time to study the situation and various alternatives, including building a government facility to deal with the leaks (which he will likely reject because of the cost). The most likely case is they can keep the company operating cash flow neutral to a slight positive, but positive EPS will be pretty hard to achieve w/the clamps remaining on government spending. Under that scenario it is very hard to see the share price reaching par.
on the heels of the prior day's 2 MM share block purge. You could just feel the panic going into the close yesterday. Where's the news? whats going on? why is it dropping like a rock? I'm guessing just one more piece of really good news (like the Hitachi announcement) and you'll never be able to get in the stock w/o paying a dear price. If you owned a ton, like one poster said he did, it could be very hard to re-establish that position. It's called getting whipsawed. And if you had a short term gain you realized, it's called getting taxed at ordinary income rates instead of preferred long term capital gains rates (not that one should let the tax tail wag the dog, but I'm just saying). Hey, it's speculative, it's gonna be a little volatile, and probably shouldn't be a huge part of the portfolio to begin with. But if you want to swing for the fences, why bunt?
Doubt very much it was BOJ or it would have opened lower w/the rest of the market. More likely the GNMK news. Even if not directly related to NSPH, it shows how quickly even the inkling of a competitive threat in diagnostics and potential loss of market share can undo a stock. The quicker NSPH gets its product placed, the better.
If it were me, I'd pursue one of those big three companies and propose a 51% vs. 49% joint venture. For a large upfront payment I'd offer exclusive rights to the Predictor technology, but i would also demand a per patient royalty, and the exclusivity would apply only to defibrillator decision-making and usage. I would retain the rights to all other non-defibrillator applications. But then, that's just the way I tend to think.
Wireless cardiac (arrhythmia) telemetry was always an intriguing idea. But it was an idea that needed to be hit quickly w/critical mass, huge funding, economies of scale and a VC or pharma partner or j.v. from the start. You can't bootstrap growth on your own as a very small company w/o going bankrupt IMO. Now it looks like HRT has something w/ Predictor. But will they make the same mistake trying to bootstrap growth w/small incremental non-exclusive contracts ? They need top hit the market big via a joint venture or outright sale of the technology to someone like Nihon, St. Jude or Medtronic who would pay dearly to lock up a competitive advantage. They need to be thinking several 10s of millions of dollars in an outright sale, not $500K one-off non-exclusive contracts (numbers are hypothetical, for example only to illustrate the orders of magnitude involved). If you have a technology that is proprietary, saves lives, that no one else has--you can't "Mickey-Mouse around", or test the market w/a toe in the water. You have to strike hard, strike quickly, strike definitively.