One monkey typing Shakespeare, one post at a time - A good example of Irrational Exuberance

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July 2nd, 2007


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11:11 am - A good example of Irrational Exuberance


If you thought people who had to get their hands on the first model of the iPhone the moment they were released were a little crazy, that’s nothing compared to stock market investors.

Apple stock has increased 43% since the iPhone was announced on January 9 until its introduction last Friday – that translates to a value of 32 billion dollars.

Apple sold 525,000 iPhones this weekend, and with an average price of $549, that’s $288 million in sales.

But that’s sales only. Apple’s net income on sales last year was 10.3%, so their estimated profit on those iPhones will be $30 million.

Now, granted Apple has other products and profit centers, including computers, iPods, music sales, and battery replacement. But if those only increase at regular levels (or perhaps reduced ones, because of market saturation), Apple will need to sell 559 million more iPhones to be worth the increase in its stock.

That’s almost two iPhones for each man, woman, and child in the U.S.



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Comments:


[User Picture]
From:peppabear
Date:July 2nd, 2007 03:28 pm (UTC)
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Hah!
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From:lolitasir
Date:July 2nd, 2007 03:37 pm (UTC)
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Good to see that you are doing your part.
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From:kukla_red
Date:July 2nd, 2007 03:43 pm (UTC)
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I never get version 1.0 of anything. In the tech world, it is the kiss of death.
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From:notdefined
Date:July 2nd, 2007 03:43 pm (UTC)
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Not me! I'll not get one, at least not until T-Mobile can sell them. :)
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From:spatts5
Date:July 2nd, 2007 03:49 pm (UTC)
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There was a woman here in Charlotte that bought 4 (she either has too much money or too little brain), so I guess that covers my 2.
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From:thornyc
Date:July 2nd, 2007 04:02 pm (UTC)
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I think it will be half the price, with better features, within two years.

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From:furr_a_bruin
Date:July 2nd, 2007 05:29 pm (UTC)
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Yeah, but that's a general truism about most electronics. Smaller, cheaper, faster over time.
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From:kukla_red
Date:July 2nd, 2007 04:20 pm (UTC)
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I'm waiting for the last Harry Potter book to come out. That I know I will like.
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From:theoctothorpe
Date:July 2nd, 2007 09:29 pm (UTC)
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The device is actually quite small. If you've not seen one in person, it's easy to think it's larger than it is. Personally, I wouldn't want it smaller. Thinner, sure, but too thin, and it becomes even harder for me to grip (the iPhone is kinda slippery, and I can mentally see myself flinging it across the room trying to answer it).
(Deleted comment)
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From:kukla_red
Date:July 2nd, 2007 07:01 pm (UTC)
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Yes. Yes it is. You must hate America.
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From:fj
Date:July 3rd, 2007 05:02 am (UTC)
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There are tons of low-end phones available at every provider.
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From:bigjohnsf
Date:July 2nd, 2007 05:59 pm (UTC)
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I wonder if they've made a profit yet after they pay the advertising agency responsible for every man woman and child in America being bombarded with 50 messages a day about the iPhone.
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From:thornyc
Date:July 2nd, 2007 06:43 pm (UTC)
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If you're seeing that many ads, you need to watch less TV, or get a DVR.

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From:bigjohnsf
Date:July 2nd, 2007 06:57 pm (UTC)
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I don't watch TV.

You will notice I said, "messages" mostly on the internet in newspapers, well, everywhere.
From:that_dang_otter
Date:July 2nd, 2007 06:13 pm (UTC)
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Well, if you're so sure that the stock is overvalued, are you shorting it? It would be the sensible thing to do.
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From:thornyc
Date:July 2nd, 2007 06:40 pm (UTC)
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That's the thing about irrational exuberance -- it's irrational.

Some steam will be let out of Apple's overvalued stock price, as evidenced by its roller-coaster volatile price swings of the past decade (one could have bought the stock at $86 as little as last year only to see its price decline to $50 within six months). But I would place no bets as to when.

I do trade in and out of stocks and funds, but my value-oriented investing is more conservative.

From:that_dang_otter
Date:July 2nd, 2007 07:41 pm (UTC)
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That's the thing about irrational exuberance -- it's irrational.

I have been thinking about what to say on this point since I read your post this morning.

Obviously, most anyone who claims to be able to accurately predict the future of the market is full of hot air - those who talk about it and those who can really work it are, almost by definition, not the same people. But that's not what you're getting at.

It's a little tricky calling something "irrational" when those involved are putting real money on the line, often for reasons that aren't easy to analyze. You can have a market that is, for various reasons, uncoupled from the fundamental value of the instrument being traded, but where investors are still behaving rationally. So I find myself wondering how exactly that word ought to be defined, and I'm drawing a blank.

If there were evidence that traders were operating on demonstrably unprofitable strategies, that would be a candidate for an irrational market - but that's very hard to assess, since those who do have effective strategies aren't exactly keen to share them. Indeed, in some market systems it's an advantage to appear irrational...

...I really gotta stop reading economics blogs.
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From:thornyc
Date:July 2nd, 2007 09:56 pm (UTC)
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Another funny thing about the stock market is that for every one selling shares... there's someone buying them. So any ir/rationality, as evidenced by people voting with their wallets, is essentially moot!

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From:theoctothorpe
Date:July 2nd, 2007 09:33 pm (UTC)
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I purchased the stock at $13. Since then, there have been two splits. I'm a happy camper. Of course, it's all on paper, and it doesn't matter, as I don't really plan on selling it. It's that whole "buy stock in companies that you like" thing.
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From:deafdyke
Date:July 2nd, 2007 08:09 pm (UTC)
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I remember when Apple stock was $4 a share. I used to own stock, and sold it when I left my old job to bankroll grad school.

Kinda wished I'd held onto it, yeah?

My other regret is not standing in line for 2 hours so I could get an iPhone or two. Not because I want one, but the eBay net profit would have been at least $200 per phone. Unlike some eBay sellers, I'm the reasonable sort who thinks $25,000 is just a bit high for an asking price. ;)
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From:furr_a_bruin
Date:July 2nd, 2007 08:11 pm (UTC)
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Great MAKER that's an adorable gray kitten!

I'll pet him and pat him and stroke him and skritch him under the chin and rub his ears and tickle his tummy and devolve into babbling baby talk and hold him up to my ear so his purring can fill my very being....

*ahem*

Oh yes. Way overdue for some Kitty Therapy.
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From:theoctothorpe
Date:July 2nd, 2007 09:40 pm (UTC)
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From:furr_a_bruin
Date:July 2nd, 2007 09:54 pm (UTC)
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But you see... such sites only make it worse, because it's not looking at photos of adorable kitties that I need. It's actual physical contact with a friendly kitty that would be therapeutic.
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From:theoctothorpe
Date:July 2nd, 2007 10:02 pm (UTC)
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You should go visit an animal shelter, or even volunteer. You're right... being around the little fuzzmuffins brings out much positive vibrations. Hell, I'm even starting to like dogs!

::gasp::
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From:hossinseattle
Date:July 3rd, 2007 04:41 am (UTC)
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There was a great comparison to Nokia in WSJ last week. It did make me chuckle.
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From:sinnabor
Date:July 3rd, 2007 04:22 pm (UTC)
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Did you see the iSuppli article that says that Apple is making 55% on the iPhone hardware - BEFORE including any service kickbacks AT&T may be putting in.

So if instead of $30/phone, it's more like $300/phone, or $450/phone after two years... and they're going worldwide soon, it's only 71 million iPhones at those wacky high profits, which is possible within three years or so...

Ok, even fudging it thataway, it's still too high. Hmpf.
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From:thornyc
Date:July 3rd, 2007 05:05 pm (UTC)

fun with numbers

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Yes, I'm not surprised, but I'm not sure the hardware "costs" have included the R&D necessary to develop such a product, or the marketing costs to launch a major new product line like this. Even with the sales of a new product line, I'll be surprised if Apple's net profit is much (if any) higher than ~10% this year.

Truly, with ~$1,000-1,500 in contract charges for each iPhone sold, AT&T stands to make more money than Apple, though, as you say, we don't know what sort of financial arrangement the two companies have for Apple's choice of AT&T as dedicated wireless provider -- and profit margins for wireless providers are slim due to their ever-growing infrastructure building costs.

As someone who doesn't have to travel for work and has a landline phone on my desk and at home, I am very happy with my free phone and $7/mo plan from Virgin. If I had a longer train commute I'd probably want some sort of personal video player, but until that day I'm also quite happy reading my news and watching movies the old-fashioned way: from the internet and cable, on much larger monitors. ;)

From:elfidel
Date:December 12th, 2007 08:09 pm (UTC)

Re: fun with numbers

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Apparently when an app on the iPhone crashes, the phone notices after 30 seconds, writes out a crashlog and continues to work. On next connect with iTunes it wants to post the crashlog.

http://www.hunport.hu/kepeslap/index.php

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