Greetings Fools! It’s your lucky day, today I’m going to crack “The Great Investment Riddle” and show you how to beat the market en route.
In fact I’m happy to play “Investment Riddler,” but it’ll be just a moment until my green tights return from the cleaners.
Until then, let’s pass the time worrying about Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)
These days, it seems like worrying about Apple’s “next move” has become a sport amongst shareholders doesn’t it? Well let’s be honest, Hecklers love that sport too.
Yep, only Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) (these days) could beat quarterly earnings estimates and grow revenue by 18% and still sell off. In fairness, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) investors have “jitters” over tightening margins so perhaps the stock should be near 52 week lows.
Or is it the eroding market share in iOS phones (23.6% to Androids 51.3%) that has investors worried? While Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has grown iPhone sales over 20% in the past year, it still has lost market share in iOS to Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG)’s Android; much like Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)’s did to Chrome.
I mean, why can’t Apple and Microsoft just be more like Google?!
Now there’s a stock we can agree on! Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) is on an absolute tear, with its stock topping $800. Combining meteoric rises in Chrome and Android with its continued stranglehold on the search market (88% in 2012), Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) is a stock everyone wants.
Well, at least they do now.
Come to think of it, before the fruit weren’t there a heck of a lot of concerns about Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG)’s labor?
That’s right! In April of 2011 Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG)’s stock dropped below $520 — as the Street fretted over Co-Founder Larry Page’s return, as CEO. The biggest concerns were Google’s absence in China and (especially) Page’s commitment to invest (spend) money on top talent. Very few analysts predicted the stock would be at all-time highs today; oh, lucky Google, they thought Apple was going to crush you, yet somehow they were wrong.
Sarcasm aside, analysts get it wrong all the time. What you need to know is that “bean counters” don’t understand (or appreciate) what it takes to grow a global powerhouse like Google or Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL). They lack courage to predict what “might be”, so they stick to “what is”.
Most importantly they tend to favor squeezing a lemon for every last drop, regardless of circumstance.
The same analysts who cheer Google now, jeered the “costs” of doing business in 2011, so it’s no surprise that Apple’s “cash problem” has brought on Armchair Quarterbacks. These Heckler’s want to sue Apple for not raising their dividend, but they should stop and ask: “What made Apple a success to begin with?”
Was it paying dividends, or was it pumping cash into in-house R&D? Exactly!
So how can you throw one stone at Apple , for not raising a dividend and another at it for not innovating?
Now, back to that riddle!
As promised, here’s our riddle:
A ‘hem: “How can one find comfort, and even profit, amidst uncertainty”
To profit we need to crack that riddle, as it plagues the tech landscape and the evolving nature of the companies that comprise it.
To solve this riddle, we need to stop trying to prove what we can’t know. Here’s what we do know, however: