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Baron Partners Retail Message Board

steveredlish 173 posts  |  Last Activity: Sep 25, 2009 8:21 PM Member since: Dec 14, 2006
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  • steveredlish by steveredlish Sep 25, 2009 8:21 PM Flag

    Since I sold some puts I have taken more interest in SHLD than just reading this message board. I haven't shopped a Sears in years but went to a Super K-Mart today as well as a Sears and a Sears Grand. I was actually looking for a microwave and an LP Weber Grill. Had no idea that Weber has the screws down tight on all of their models. (HD, Lowes, Menards,Ace) Same price everywhere -except I found a couple of local places that would throw in a grill cover. Sears had one model of the Weber and virtually nothing besides Kenmore in the way of microwaves. Virtually all of their grills are also Kenmore. I had a salesman who wanted to help. I asked who made their Kenmores. He had a list of four vendors that made Weber knockoffs. Point is Sears can't or doesn't want to compete with other retailers that sell national brands. They have become the A&P of household appliances. If you don't want their brand don't go there.

    As a long term strategy that means Sears brands better have brand name recognition. They did have that with Craftsman but not anymore. Craftsman doesn't command any premium in more expensive tools. Ryobi and Dewalt are now the name brands. Craftsman is now the name of a hammer you might expect to buy at CVS.

    In any event, If Eddie is planning on selling off what were national brand names, he is screwed. He doesn't hve the product or the loyalty that used to come with the Sears name.

    Sure, Wall Street is still mesmerized by this guy, but then again those guys never shop at Sears - and I am pretty sure their wives aren't going to Sears to buy cosmetics in one of there "test stores".

  • Reply to

    Earnings, Best case/Worst case

    by kresl98 Sep 22, 2009 4:46 PM
    steveredlish steveredlish Sep 22, 2009 9:44 PM Flag

    Wish I did. this bord has really dried up.

    My fear is that in the last conference call they said that the full impact of increased interest wouldn't be felt until this quarter.

    I am hoping that NOI won't be negative and that there will actually be some unrealized appreciation.

    As ugly as this has all been for me, I am a little above water if I net AGNC's appreciation against ACAS losses.

  • steveredlish steveredlish Sep 22, 2009 9:29 PM Flag

    He now owns 55% of the fourth largest retailer in the country.

    Could be but I sure don't know how you measure it. I just looked at a couple of stores within a few miles of my home. In terms of revenue and market cap, WAG is bigger, HD is bigger, TGT is bigger, CVS is bigger and they all actually make money.

    By the way there is a Sears Grand next to a TGT and across the street from a WMT and a HD. Guess who isn't doing any business.

    I do like Sears for advice. I am looking at buying a lawn tractor. The HD guys don't seem to know alot and they are hard to find. However, they do carry name brands that will still have a warranty after Sears shuts down. On the other hand, the three Sears guys that were thrilled to have a customer told me alot about what I should be looking for when buying a tractor. I hope they can find a job with HD when their store closes. Tough not to buy one of their tractors at 40% off but I want that three year warranty and can't chance that I will have to have a bankruptcy judge enforce it.

  • Reply to

    A reatiler needs to sell product or he dies!

    by rvp5 Sep 21, 2009 11:19 AM
    steveredlish steveredlish Sep 22, 2009 9:03 PM Flag

    No I wouldn't shop at Sears or K-mart for three reasons. Selection, price and convenience.

  • Reply to

    A reatiler needs to sell product or he dies!

    by rvp5 Sep 21, 2009 11:19 AM
    steveredlish steveredlish Sep 22, 2009 8:26 PM Flag

    I have never seen a board with so few supporters of the Company. Nine out of ten messages are negative. I haven't seen a positive report from a financial institution. It would be good to hear more from those that like SHLD that have some insight that us doubters should consider.

    It seems to me that those with the biggest financial stake are pretty well respected - at least on Wall Street. Then again Wall Street has lost some respect in the last year.

  • steveredlish steveredlish Sep 22, 2009 8:09 PM Flag

    I think we can agree that Eddie is probably not an idiot. what we can't figure out is how he is going to beat this dead horse hard enough to run again.

    Maybe one or more of you finance guys could explain how he can dismantle this retail nightmare and wind up in the green. Please no cash flow nonsense. A retailer that has no hope of generating operating income is worth little.

  • steveredlish by steveredlish Sep 20, 2009 9:39 PM Flag

    So why do you suppose that William Kunkler was named to Sears BOD. Google it. Bing it. He is supposedly a real estate expert. That would make sense if you were trying to figure out how to get at least 50 cents on the dollar for the crap you had on your balance sheet.
    Google and Bing it in detail and his poltiical contributions might give you an upset stomach . Wish I was smart enough to find out if any of his relatives were entrenched in the SEC. got a bad feeling that they are as secure as the T-Rex in the field Museum he so fondly supports.

    Great museum. I thank him for all his efforts in this really worthwhile public endeavor. It will far outlast his stupid acceptance to be a member of the board of SHLD.

  • Reply to

    Fairholme fund

    by steveredlish Sep 18, 2009 7:30 PM
    steveredlish steveredlish Sep 20, 2009 8:44 PM Flag

    Fair question. This fund has had remarkable results. I am sure you are aware of all the studies that essentially show that a fund that has a great track record is no more likely to repeat it than a fund that has had rleatively poor performance. In a nuthsell what these studies have shown is that x% of fund managers will flip heads 5 times in a row even though the odds of doing that are less than 6%. In an up market that would be greater in a down market less. so these guys from Fairholme have way outperformed expectations. Is it good managment or just that some percent of the population will look like magicians and others like fools. I have no idea where fairholme falls within the probability range but I do know that SHLD is bad investment.

    I also know that for the average investor, this is not a level playing ground. I am short this stock but it is such a small % of my portfolio that if I close out my position when it hits 85, I will be more unhappy because I was right than because of the money I lost.
    SHLD is toast. We just don't know when to take the butter out of the refrigerator

  • steveredlish steveredlish Sep 19, 2009 9:26 PM Flag

    Frankly, I like to hear about experiences like this - even the good ones. One thing about investing in retailers is that you normally can go to a local store and see if you like the concept, management, pricing and service. You can also tell if they are busy, slow or dead. True the local store may be an anomoly, but a sample of one is better than nothing.

    In the case of Sears, there just aren't any good stories. I personally know of a vendor that has them on credit watch - meaning no more shipments without paying the overdue invoice.

    Her story fits with most of the observations on this board. sears isn't spending any money they don't have to - especially on service.

    Still, SHLD is the craziest stock. There are obviously people that just believe in Eddie despite his numbers and most analysts opinions. Who knows, maybe he and the SEC will have the last laugh but until then the average investor would be well served to remember that if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck ....

  • Reply to

    Affirmative Action being enforced?

    by dems_power_destiny Sep 19, 2009 7:29 AM
    steveredlish steveredlish Sep 19, 2009 8:21 PM Flag

    Are you kidding me? What self respecting black guy would give up his decent job at KFC to take a crap job at Sears?

  • Reply to

    Fairholme fund

    by steveredlish Sep 18, 2009 7:30 PM
    steveredlish steveredlish Sep 18, 2009 8:02 PM Flag

    My mistake. I see that Bruce Berkowitz has been instrumental in this fund for a long time - and done very well.

    I also see that his investment philosophy is to invest in companies with exceptional management and generate substantial free cash flow or "are cheaply priced".

    Since SHLD is poorly managed and uses any cash flow for stock repurchases, he must think the stock is cheap.

    Hey, you don't have to be right 100% of the time. Sears is still a piece of junk beut Fairholem may be ok.

  • steveredlish by steveredlish Sep 18, 2009 7:30 PM Flag

    I have been trying to figure out the price action on SHLD for a couple of weeks and it totally baffles me. the company is probably the worst large retailer in the US but its stock won't fold.

    The logical thing to think would be that ESL or Fairholme are propping it up. Nothing wrong with that in the sense that they have every right to buy and sell as they choose.

    I can tell you this that I wouldn't invest a dollar with Fairholme unless Bernie Madoff promised I would get at least 12% a year on my money.

    One of the things I believe in is to know something about the people managing a fund. Much as I tried I could not find such information about Fairholme. I learned they manage alot of money. I see what their top ten holdings are. I learned that Morningstar has them ranked at the very top. Pretty mysterious company for managing that much money. It's kind of a trust me - heres our record - don't miss the boat kind of operation.

  • steveredlish by steveredlish Sep 13, 2009 5:15 PM Flag

    I have bought some really bad investments - most of which I still own. Fortunately, I have been lucky enough to acquire enough of offsetting postions to feel ok about my results since Septmeber of 2008. I don't write often on the mesage boards although I read most messagess about stocks I own every night.

    This aboard is unique in the sense that the overwhelming number of messages are negative. Most boards have loyal buyers and an equal number of shorters. That scares the hell out of me. It is clear that SHLD is headed for Rite Aid status but who knows what Eddie has up his sleeve. We do know that the SEC will never protect the small investor in any kind of proactive way.

    I would be a huge short seller except that I have no trust that the SEC would uncover fraud before it was too late.

  • Reply to

    Decent analysis of Eddie and Sears.

    by genetics4rfuture Sep 10, 2009 3:19 PM
    steveredlish steveredlish Sep 10, 2009 4:31 PM Flag

    Great post. We all have opinions. I guess I liked the post because it agrees with my opinion. Yet, it is refreshing to hear from a "professional" with no long or short position in SHLD. Thank you. If you find more either pro or con I would like the link.

  • Reply to

    downgraded to $47 at UBS at up big

    by kingofusa1st Sep 9, 2009 10:43 AM
    steveredlish steveredlish Sep 9, 2009 6:57 PM Flag

    that could happen. If anyone knows how to manipulate stock prices it would be Eddie. His problem is that he needs to be able to make a silk purse out of a sows ear. He actually has people with lots of Wall Street experience that think that he not only can but will do that.

    Most of the rest of us have to invest on the basis of "if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck , it is most likely a duck."

    Us duck investors have a problem too. If the guy is as crooked as he is retail dumb, he'll be a step ahead of the SEC and we will all get screwed.

  • Reply to

    Great Short

    by steveredlish Sep 6, 2009 8:24 PM
    steveredlish steveredlish Sep 8, 2009 10:43 PM Flag

    Actually, I have a neighbor that is a sales rep. Kohls and Sears and K-Mart are among her clients. She essentially said that the K-Mart business is dead and Sears is worse. According to her, they aren't even smart enough to gain efficiences by merging their purchasing staffs. Sears is taking nothing in the way of markdowns which makes their invetory number real suspect. If you look at their accouts payable relative to inventory it is clear that they are leaning on vendors for terms that are at best unusual. Thier book value for property plant and equipment has to be way overvalued. Who want's a failed Sear's mall with a failed Sears as it's anchor? Goodwill? Intangible assets? What the hell do they actually own of value besides the Craftsman brand?

    They are so desperate they are trying cosmetics departments again. Are you kidding me. Is your wife or girlfriend going to Sears because they need lip liner or mascara. Don't think so.

    In a nutshell, Sears doesn't have even a kernal of the retail market they can build on. All they have is Eddie who probably has more on his mind with a hedgefund that is probably in worse shape.

  • Reply to

    We Don't Want To Be Acquired!!!

    by bass45365 Sep 6, 2009 12:48 PM
    steveredlish steveredlish Sep 6, 2009 8:44 PM Flag

    Cold fusion once made the cover of time magazine. This is all smoke and no fire. going to be lots of whinning soon.

  • steveredlish by steveredlish Sep 6, 2009 8:24 PM Flag

    Selling this POS short is as close to stealing as you can get without going to jail. The only support for SHLD is from Wall Streeters that still believe in Eddie. These are the same nut jobs that believed in the ratings the S&P, Fitch and that other turd gave to CDOs. I think the last thing that Bernie Madoff told his wife was to sell her ten shares of SHLD. He might have said it was the only investment that would have a worse return than his.

  • Reply to

    BAC/ MERRILL "Valuation" Downgrade is a JOKE

    by stockmeister3 Aug 28, 2009 2:28 PM
    steveredlish steveredlish Aug 29, 2009 4:48 PM Flag

    Good point. I haven't traded the premarket news but it sure seems like an early sell on a downgrade followed by a mid afternoon buy wouold work well. As far as anything that comes from "professional analysts" like from BAC, I ignore it. some of these morons thought the DOW was undervalued at 14,000, the rest are still looking for jobs.

  • steveredlish by steveredlish Aug 29, 2009 4:36 PM Flag

    Timing is everything and CSA was on the wrong end since the Erdman fiasco. Tables have finally turned and this stock is going to be a nice addition to value investors.

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