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  • Baltic Morning News

     

    Olympic Casino reports Q4. The Baltic's largest casino operator Olympic Entertainment Group reported Q4/06 yesterday. Sales increased 75.6% yoy to EUR 32.49m. Operating profit came in at EUR 7.9m (EUR 5.87m in Q4/05), corresponding to a margin of 24.5% (31.7% in Q4/05 and 32.4% in Q3/06). Net margin came down as well to 21.7% (30.2% in Q4/05 and 30.5% in Q3/06). The sharp drop in margins was the biggest disappointment for us. 1/3 of the margin drop can be attributed to bigger than expected personnel expenses (partly due to year end bonuses), 1/3 to higher than expected depreciation (slot machine depreciation rates were changed in Lithuania) and 1/3 to higher income tax costs (from Latvia). We believe the sharp drop in margins was not expected (although the personnel cost side can more or less be considered as a one off item).

    Sanitas posts solid margins in January. The Lithuanian pharmaceutical manufacturer Sanitas increased its sales by 365% y-o-y in January to LTL 24.9m (previously reported). The January gross profit came in at LTL 12.021m, corresponding to a margin of 65%. In January, the company made a pre-tax profit of LTL 4.925m, equal to a margin of 21% vs. 14.1% a year ago.

    Estonia's average salary exceeded EEK 10,000. According to Statistics Estonia, the average salary in Q4 was EEK 10,212 (EUR 653m), equal to a y-o-y growth of 17.5%. The highest monthly average salary was in financial intermediation (EEK 15,822), followed by that of in public administration and defense (EEK 13,354) and in real estate (EEK 11,856). The lowest salary was in hotels and restaurants (EEK 6,521) and in agricultural sector (EEK 7,259).

    Latvian interest rates double. Although the panic around the devaluation of Latvian lats is calming down, the interbank interest rates in Latvia have doubled in a week and the three month rate reached 8.95% yesterday. The representatives of the biggest banks have said they do not believe in devaluation and the Latvian central bank has also confirmed that there will be no devaluation. Also, the stock market has not reacted to the speculations. However, we will keep watching the situation closely.

    Citigroup to invest in Estonia. Bloomberg wrote yesterday that Citigroup planned to raise USD 3.5b for a fund to invest in companies in emerging markets such as India, China, and Estonia. The new fund will be called Citigroup Venture Capital International Growth Partnership II. Although it will not affect Estonian stock market directly, it still gives quite a good indication of how investors look towards Estonia.

  • UBS upgrades Whole Foods (WFMI 45.70) to Buy from Neutral

    Morgan Stanley upgrades National Semi (NSM 23.65) to Overweight from Equal Weight

    Citigroup upgrades Analog Devices (ADI 33.32) to Buy from Hold

    Banc of America cuts their CME Q1 EPS est to $3.17 from $3.33 (consensus $3.32), and cuts their 2007 EPS est to $14.75 from $15.35 (consensus $14.66) due to current volume trends and a more cautious view on the timing of expense saves from the BOT acquisition. Firm says FX Marketspace next catalyst on horizon, but near-term impact likely to be muted and could be long uphill climb given numerous competing liquidity pools in FX markets and challenging operating environment (which they think could drive heavy price competition).

    Täna eelturul tulemustega väljas K-Swiss (KSWS), mis tõmbas 2007. aasta prognoose tugevalt alla, viidates nõrkusele koduturul ning vajaminevatele investeeringutele braditeadlikkuse tõstmiseks. Kuigi probleemid koduturul on juba mõnda aega teada, kaupleb aktsia täna eelturul üle 10% madalamal. Ettevõttel tuleb rinda pista selliste tegijatega nagu näiteks Nike, Adidas ja Reebok. 2006. aastal moodustas 16% firma käibest müük Foot Lockerile (FL). Ettevõtte jalanõusid turustab ka FINL. Edasimüüjad on tunduvalt suuremad ettevõtted ja suurem osa kaubast tuleb mõlemal tegelikult Nikelt (NKE), mistõttu juhul kui viimane on pigem tugevalt esinenud, see edasimüüjatele negatiivselt ei tohiks mõjuda. Kuid üldiselt tasub kogu sektor radaril hoida, kuna detsembrist/jaanuarist alates on kommenteeritud USA atleetjalatsite turul pigem positiivseid arenguid ning lisaks usutakse NKE turuosa suurenemist. Kui KSWS on NKEle USAs alla jäämas (rahvusvaheline müük on tugev), siis ei ole põhjust turu tervises kahelda, kuid palju head on sisse arvestatud ning negatiivsed märgid võivad kerge üllatusena tulla.

  • Small-Caps Polish Their Allure

    By Rev Shark
    RealMoney.com Contributor
    2/22/2007 9:03 AM EST
    Click here for more stories by Rev Shark

    "Every good thing in the world stands on the razor-edge of danger."

    -- Thornton Wilder

    One of the most difficult things to understand about the stock market is the nature of momentum. As stock prices move steadily higher the danger of a substantial pullback increases as valuations become stretched, but rising prices tend to make market players more confident and more inclined to buy. So while extended markets appear to be quite dangerous, they also inflame the emotions of the mob and provide the ingredients for quick profits.

    The market has been strong for about a week now following dovish comments from Ben Bernanke in his Congressional testimony. Although the DJIA has struggled a bit, the slack has more than been taken up by the small-caps. There has been a marked increase in aggressive speculative action in secondary stocks. Market players are hungry for bigger and faster gains and that is leading them to the smaller stocks that move bigger and faster. That holds a higher level of danger but it also has higher potential payoff.

    The bearishly inclined will surely be muttering about how this increase in speculative action is indicative of an approaching market top. They will argue that when market players are chasing the smaller faster moving stocks it indicates that investors are becoming overconfident and setting up conditions for a sudden reversal when the music stops and everyone tries to fit through the same exit.

    Perhaps that is so but the problem is that it is very easy to underestimate the staying power of a market with strong momentum. Trying to be reasonable when those around you see the potential to make some quick profits is usually not a good approach. We are dealing with mob psychology in a market like this and it really doesn't matter how compelling negative arguments might be. When the mob is running you don't argue with it; you run with it or end up getting trampled.

    That doesn't mean you throw caution to the wind. The prudent thing is to take some profits along the way and make sure you aren't so blinded by the momentum that you aren't prepared for the inevitable pullback that will surely come. Enjoy running with the mob but don't be too trusting.

    We have a strong open this morning following very good action overseas. Overseas markets have lagged the U.S. in recent days but are playing catch-up overnight. The wires are a bit slow, and oil and gold are trading down a bit after a strong move yesterday.
    -----------------------------
    Ülespoole avanevad:

    Gapping up on strong earnings/guidance: VCLK +8.6% (also numerous analyst actions), BRKR +8.8%, WFMI +7.8% (also acquires OATS), ADI +7.2% (up in sympathy LLTC +4.9%, NSM +4.1%, MXIM +3.6%), OSIP +5.0%, FBR +4.2%... M&A: OATS +16.7% (to be acquired by WFMI), MOCC +10.8% (Renova Media to acquire equity interest in MOCC it does not currently own)... Other news: LEXG +10.0% (upgraded to Outperform at Piper), GMR +7.3% (announces $15/share special dividend, also reports Q4 results), CPSL +5.6% (completes private placement), PTT +4.2% (momentum).

    Allapoole avanevad:

    Gapping down on weak earnings/guidance: PGTI -14.2% (also downgraded to Hold at Deutsche), KSWS -13.9%, OII -7.0%, RUTH -5.9%, PDCO -6.7%, EMAG -2.5%, CRM -5.8% (also downgraded to Hold at Hambrecht), ANF -2.5%, PDLI -2.5%... Other news: JUPM -5.3% (confirms it is in discussions with GYI regarding potential sale of co in a cash transaction valued at $9.60/share... JUPM closed at 10.07 last night), GMKT -2.7% (Korean Fair Trade Commission requests documents), SNDK -2.3% (downgraded to Hold at Hambrecht), NRGY -1.9% (increases public offering to 3 mln common units).
  • BCA kommenteerib sub-prime mortgage sektorit ning jääb seisukoha juurde, et kuigi turg on sealseid aktsiaid kõvasti oma vigade eest karistanud, üritaks nad sellest siiski kõrvale hoida, seni kuni näevad olemasolevate majade hindades stabiliseerumist.

    Our U.S. Bond Strategy service recommends avoiding exposure to the sub-prime market until existing home prices have clearly stabilized.

    The price of the lowest ranked home equity ABS index (ABX.HE BBB- series 06-2) reached a new low last week as yet another sub-prime originator closed its doors. Although the market has punished sub-prime lender equity prices as well, there is little sign of a contagion into the broader financial system
  • Iran failed to suspend nuclear activity by Feb 21 deadline, U.N. Nuclear Watchdog - Reuters

    IRAN has set up over 300 centrifuges in plant where 'industrial-scale' uranium enrichment planned, IAEA Report
  • Distillaatide varud kukkusid 5.037 mln barrelit vs oodatud 2.875 mln barrelit kukkumine
    Mootorkütuse varud vähenesid 3.041 mln barrelit vs oodatud 50K barreli vähenemine
    Toornafta varud tõusid 3.694 mln vs oodatud 1.05 mln barreliline tõus.

    Maagaasi varude vähene hoidlates vastas ootustele: -223 bcf-i vs oodatud -225 bcf-ilist langus
  • Dan kirjutab Realmoney's 3-st probleemist, mis tavainvestorile peaksid küll väga tuttavad ette tulema. Tema vastused neile küsimustele on tegelikult täpselt sellised nagu enamus investoreid ka ise õigeks peab, kuid ometi ei juleta neid tavaliselt järgida:

    1)Problem: "I'm making big bets on one or two stocks because if I'm right, I'll make a lot of money, but if I'm wrong, I'll be in real trouble."

    Solution: Stop doing that.

    2)Problem: "When my trade goes against me, I'm afraid to sell for a loss because I might be selling at the bottom, and the stock will take off without me. But sometimes the stock keeps falling to a point that I can't afford to take the loss."

    Solution: First, stop doing that. Second, when your position falls into the basement, you've already taken that loss -- you just aren't ready to admit it. Stop doing that.

    3)Problem: "I keep trading the same stock again and again because I made a lot of money on it once. The problem is that I'm losing money on it now and missing opportunities in other stocks."

    Solution: Stop doing that. Get over yourself, and go find another stock to make money on. Have you ever tried eating the same meal again and again? That usually doesn't work out so well -- and it's really kind of gross to think about. Move on.
  • USA strateegiliste toornafta varude täiendamine, millest varem olen rääkinud, saab alguse aprillis:

    U.S Energy Secretary Bodman says U.S. will begin buying oil to fill SPR in April

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