Archive for January, 2013

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Caution Abounds, But Guidance for 2013 Almost Certain To Be Wrong

As we move through earnings season this year, the dominant theme is caution and concern about the shape of the global economy.  There is little if any heroic guidance, and where we are seeing companies support strong year on year

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January 30, 2013 – Amazon: In Jeff Bezos We Trust

Amazon’s years of investment have built the scale, skills, customer base and infrastructure needed to conquer new retail categories and geographies, establish a world-class IT platform in the process. Store-free operations and systems driven logistics give it lower costs and

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Quick Thoughts: Apple and Netflix – a Taste of Things to Come?

–       Apple’s disappointment fuels the bear case of increasing competition and tightening margins – consensus estimates will continue to fall.  47.8m iPhones + 22.9m iPads = Not Enough. –       Broader product lines and faster update cycles will be pitched as

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Quick Thoughts: Google and IBM – Some Surprises are Better than Others

–       Despite a lot of moving parts, Google’s 4Q12 was really strong – ex MOT sales up 19.5% YoY, EPS up 20.7%. MOT was a big drag – revs were off $260M vs. 3Q and losses hit EPS by more

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SSR Index of Current-Quarter Healthcare Demand Growth, Final 4Q12 Estimate – Expecting a Flu-Related Spike

Our established model of health services demand growth projects 2.8% y/y growth during 4Q12, the product of 0.9% growth in unit demand, and 1.9% price growth. However we are not convinced that the unusually severe flu season has been yet

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January 16, 2013 – Facebook: Stuck in the Friend Zone

  Facebook has a LOT of users, a LOT of unique information about them, and a large scale, sophisticated data processing infrastructure, with “big data” capability second only to Google.  FB has a good start in applying those assets, taking

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Flu Effects on US Health Demand

We estimate that 4Q12 saw roughly 28 more flu-related hospital admissions per 100,000 population than 4Q11; this implies a +/- 1 percent flu-related gain in health services demand yoy The ultimate duration and severity of the current season cannot be

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The Incredibly Slow (But Very Nearly Certain) Death of AWP

We’ve long held that use of the Average Wholesale Price (AWP) benchmark in commercial drug benefit contracts has enabled outsized generic dispensing margins in the drug trades (PBMs, drug retail, drug wholesale); and, that the replacement of AWP by either

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China Exports Rising – How Happy Should We Be?

The market seemed to like the news that China’s exports had increased dramatically in December.  But should we be that excited or should we be concerned? In all of our recent work, including our 13 picks for 2013 piece we

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Quick Thoughts: Facebook’s Annual January “Surprise” Announcement

– Facebook shares are up 22% YTD, with 10% coming since last week’s invitation to Tuesday’s mystery event.  Speculation is rampant, amongst expectations that 4Q will build on the strong 3Q. – Some rumors are almost certainly fantasy – an

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