The Wide-Ranging Thoughts of Dan Niles

We always turn up the sound and back up the TIVO when we see  Dan Niles on financial television.   He has a well-deserved reputation for great knowledge of what is happening in technology, especially semiconductors. He
combines this information with superior analytical skills.

We were treated to several of these conclusions in his CNBC interview today with Maria Bartiromo.  Niles continues his bullish stance on technology for the remainder of
2009, while allowing for some pullbacks.  In
particular, he suggests that we look for companies that have already guided down significantly on revenues — 50% or so — since these are the firms that will now be guiding higher.  Watch out for those that did not reduce earnings forecasts enough.

The interview then continued with a list of his biggest concerns. He
offered opinions about how much further home prices would decline, the
amount of "toxic assets" remaining to written down and long-term debt

Everyone is  familiar with these issues, but there was nothing special in the
analysis.  It is a story that one can read anywhere.  Does it make a difference that Dan Niles believes this everyday story?

Perhaps.  To the average listener he sounded just as much
an expert on housing as he did on technology.

Six months ago we had an article featuring the famous picture
of Ted Williams and a strike zone filled with baseballs. It showed his
batting average when he stayed in what he called his "happy zone" and
what happened when he did not.

(Full disclosure — we are long INTC in personal and client accounts).

With the start of the baseball season, fans might enjoy a look at this, but the article is
more about how to parse information. Everyone is entitled to an
opinion, but why listen if the expert is reaching for a pitch in the dirt?

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