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SSR Index of Current-Quarter Healthcare Demand Growth: Interim 1Q14 Estimates

  We expect 3.4% (nominal) y/y growth in US health services demand during 1Q14, the product of 2.4% growth in demand intensity and 1.0% growth in price. Intensity growth reflects a 10bp improvement over actual 4Q13 growth of 2.3%, but

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Quick Thoughts: Appeals Court Ruling on Debit will Galvanize MCX

Late Friday, an Appeals Court overturned a July-ruling from the District Court that the Durbin cap on debit interchange be lowered and that debit cards be activated for unaffiliated networks to handle signature-authenticated transactions (as opposed to the Federal Reserve

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Quick Thoughts: BAC/COF – Rising Net Interest Margins and Payout Ratios

Bank stocks have rallied sharply as the market interpreted comments on Wednesday by Fed Chairman Yellen that short rates would increase earlier than previously discounted. We continue to see BAC (up 4% over last two days) as the best play

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After The Storm Clouds Clear – What to Buy On A Dip

We expect many of the companies in our coverage universe to miss first quarter estimates – either choosing to guide down proactively over the next few weeks or simply coming up short when they announce.  This will provide some incremental

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Barclays: At the Nadir

Barclays has lost 20% of its value since the beginning of the year as a result of two factors which will have no enduring impact: (i) a 10% increase in the 2013 bonus pool; and (ii) disappointing year-to-date results for

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Regional Banks: The Dynamics of Net Interest Margins at Selected US Banks

The role of CMA, MTB, and KEY as favored “asset sensitive” plays on rising rates leaves them over-valued relative to our regression model, and particularly to BAC and COF. Ironically, over the last 12-months BAC and COF were the only

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European Chemicals – The Saber Rattling Starts – At Last

INEOS CEO sees the European chemical industry at risk of failure within 10 years The issue is relative energy costs – something we have written about and a conclusion that we share Non-US companies are investing in the US to

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14 for 14 Portfolio Update – February and YTD Performance

This year, for better or worse, we have decided to update our portfolio performance on a monthly basis.  As a reminder we began the year by recommending 14 larger cap long ideas and 14 names that we would be more

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The Trouble with Hospital Pricing

As employees’ health insurance has shifted to high deductible forms, they’ve become personally responsible for larger and larger percentages of hospitals’ billed charges. And, as the average self-pay (i.e. deductible, co-pay, or co-insurance) collectible from an insured person has risen,

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Mach 2, 2014 – SaaS: After the Levee Breaks – Competition in Software

Web-scale cloud platforms, leveraging massive consumer applications, have dramatic cost and performance advantages over private data centers, stemming from their scale, scope, superior design, and world-class computer science skills. These advantages, which already allow the top cloud operators to deliver

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