Down side to picking up the pennies on the railroad track is that at some point you will be run over. Much better to own the train in my opinion.
It's odd. This trade is so crowded that all it would take is one player to cover to cause a squeeze. You could make far more money covering and going long at this point than continuing the short. When too many are on one side of the trade--and the short interest is absurdly high--is when things get really ugly and insanely profitable at the turn. But the herd mentality is strong. If you stare at the ceiling, pretty soon everyone who passes by will stare at it too assuming there's something to see. Do it long enough, and people will even swear there's something there to see.
At the same time, someone who bought this a month ago, walks away for the quarter, then comes back will be fine. It's only following it daily that makes it stressful. The company is doing fine and moving in the right direction. It will be here in six months operating profitably regardless of how much the stock bounces around. There's really nothing to see, but a bunch of people staring at it anyway.
The shorts are confident they can walk this down to where they can flush out enough shares to cover profitably. That would have to be a LOT of shares. I think Ohtaegun's right on this. If they can get it below $5, they may achieve their objective. Textbook manipulation no longer tied to fundamentals.
Someone with deep pockets needs to have the confidence to take the other side and make a major purchase now...or they'll be able to several dollars cheaper, but a lot of small investors will be wiped out.
Duh, wasn't thinking: Q4 is already closed. I think the CLCC impairment is already factored in the Q4 estimates. Does anyone know off hand how X accounted for their subsidiary bankruptcy the quarter they did it?
Sorry, but I don't understand anything from that. If they sold BL at a loss, they'd account for the loss in the quarter they sold it. But if they bankrupt a subsidiary....no idea. Do you make a best guess at recovery and impair that? Could be looking at anything from an additional 1.1 billion impairment Q4 to 100 million.
I suspect BoA required them to cut the dividend in order to bankrupt BL. I believe (but can't confirm) that BL assets were used as security. To remove those from the revolver covenant, BoA required them to reduce the div to no more than .01 a quarter.
Big question still is: how much impairment will there be this quarter? Earnings could beat expectations (no impairment) or be negative (large impairment). As the WFC analyst put it, the situation is "unclear."
If you're a fund manager, you know that you're not likely to pick individual companies and guess the future right better than anyone else, but you have a historical bias that suggests you will make more money buying undervalued stocks, holding them, and lending them out, than holding them and not lending them out, by shorting them, or by buying their bonds. Lending makes a nice hedge if you can't predict the future.
If you've got extra-special tea leaves, by all means have an extra cup. Just don't except other people to blindly put their money in your hands when the quarter shows you holding one of the worst performing stocks.
I'm anticipating the stock will be at current levels or go down until the CC. Dividend elimination forces income funds to sell, so there will be a lot of sell pressure there. On the other hand, given what we know, there's at least an even chance the company will exceed earnings, which suggests some of the funds will hold off until close to their 60- or 90-day limit to sell. They could also sell directly to the shorts, and we could see covering without moving the price much. Almost anything is possible in the short term.
In the medium term, if someone with enough capital decided to screw the shorts, we could see a squeeze and this go up tenfold. That's unlikely though if the major banks are on the short side, since almost everyone big enough to pull it off would also need the banks to help them pull it off. More likely is some more tests of the bottom--I'd be astonished if it dropped below $4--followed by lots of fluctuation between $6 and $10 as it gradually rises.
Longer term, I'd rather own more of this than more of Berkshire, since I suspect Cliffs will outperform Berkshire at today's prices over the next two years. Beyond that I wouldn't bet against WB.
If I had the cash, I'd be buying as many of the bonds as I could before trying to take it over. If you could get say half the debt at 30% off and the common at $9 it would be compelling. If you also had an extra $2 billion to make BL2 happen, you could make a LOT of money for the next 20 years.
I expect shorting it through Friday will make you more money than going long. Beyond that, I wouldn't want to be short.
That's my two cents, with which you can buy...absolutely nothing.
What this stock really needs is a couple of dull but profitable quarters. Predictability is highly valued.
Yahoo headline: New Mr. Ruble Is Dr. Doom of Russian Banks
Bloomberg headline: New Mr. Ruble Is Mr. Fixit of Russian Banks
Alas, no more local lumber yards in my area. Rise of VNQ chased them all away, and even when DRV collapsed, they didn't return. Closest is 30+ miles one way, and even if I shorted XOM, that's a long way to drive for 50 bolts. Also odd: HD/LOW often have better prices than EBAY, except for stainless, even in moderate quantity. And can you even find a single publicly traded fastener company any more? Even the OTCQX is out of stock.
HD is out of 3/8x3 bolts AGAIN. Now I have to drive by LOW to pick up more.
(Essentially, as long as either: their assets exceed their liabilities (capital surplus) OR they reported an earned surplus in the previous yearly statement, they can pay a dividend.)
There are very good reasons for them to choose not to pay a dividend in the future, but compelling reasons for them to do so. If you're uncomfortable, take a look at their 2020 bonds, which would be a nice alternative.
Did you actually bother to read the statutes? Especially the nature of capital surplus, earned surplus, the ability to move one to the other and vice versa? If not, and you're actually long, spend a few hours doing so you know what you actually own. If you're short, come up with another trick, 'cause this one's played out.