Kindred’s Kaleidoscope: Predictable Financial Wisdom taken for what it’s worth

I recently read a report on Acacia Research Corporation (ACTG) as being leading patent-licensing firm in the USA.  Like many stocks today, the estimated value jumps about like a frog.  Such jumping varies from a high say of $40+ to a low of $20+ with a closing on 2/13 of $27+ over the course of 2012.  The prospective investor needs to be wary since pending actions such as Palm patent infringements in its Smartphone action against Apple could affect both stock values depending upon how Palm and Apple handle the legal aspects of the suit.  Either could win or have a settlement both agree to and where, for the investor, enters that illusive hairy and scary– PREDICTABILITY.

Financial strength of a balance sheet is very predictable for well-run auto manufacturers concerning safety and growth potential. One such automaker emerging with a world reputation is global automaker Volkswagen AG (VLKAY).  It has a stable with names like VW, Audi, Bentley, Bugatti as well as other brands.  What makes it attractive is its sales growth in emerging markets and ability to manufacture various models and brands from the same assembly line.

Gagging delays in hybrid electric vehicles is no God-send for consumers who relish instant gratification in almost anything they desire.  Cadillac ELR for example offers an estimated 300 miles on electricity and full tank of gas. But the catch is that the estimated time to charge the batteries will be 4.5 hours using a 240-volt outlet (if one is found available). It will be interesting to see the public acceptance of a $50,000+ car less the fed tax credit of $7500. It sounds like another governmental scheme that ends up in a boondoggle of sorts.

Insanity continues in the GM race for superior wheels on the highway. Take for example the elite American Sports car, Chevrolet Corvette, that is coming out in 2014 and has the legendary handle Stingray said to be lighter and far more powerful than its predecessor.  Its 6.2 – liter 450-hp V8 is capable of accelerating to over 60 mph in less than 4 seconds. Sounds like a tire tread wasteful burner!  I doubt if many families want to let their kids in a car like that!! Once again it is not a family car but for the elite of America starting with a price of $50,000 and up.  Being light weight could cause rollovers if you consider the potential zip in the engine.  With traffic conditions and speed limits as posted, I perceive it could be a boon for traffic cops and state troopers not to mention hospitals and undertakers.

GM is coming out with a new high fuel-economy diesel SUV boasting a 240-hp 3-liter diesel V6 expected to deliver 21 mpg city and 30 highway. Not much of a savings because diesel is a lot more expensive and stinks more too from its exhaust. At least anytime I’ve driven behind diesel the smell gets in the car through my heater when its running in the winter.  No price tag as yet.  Not to sound too negative and down on GM, the Chevrolet Malibu and other sedan or sporty cars have a good reputation for dependability.

The biggest problem with GM is accepting a government bail-out that is still to be repaid to American tax payers.

Interesting is the fleet of autos having the Ford label.  They deserve a tribute for not accepting a government bail-out and, in the American character, recovered and seems to be doing fine with it fleet of economical vehicles.  Problem I always saw wrong with Ford products was RUST.  It might be due to the type of paint used.

Chrysler and Dodge have long been well-thought of for their engineering expertise with mixed reviews on their performance.

I personally view the Korean auto Kia to probably be the most updated and improved car since its inception.  There has been a vast improvement in the Kia since it was introduced to the American marketplace.  Most foreign automakers have provided quality through the years that siphoned off the sales of domestic brands.  Quality of Japanese vehicle brands have long been a leader with the American public.

Nature has played a role in the rapid revival of the auto industry.  The floods, accidents on the highways, and just plain worn out vehicles have hastened a revival of the Detroit auto industry and spurred continued financial security for numerous auto assembly plants located in other major cities that have attracted successfully foreign investments.

The opinions and reporting herein is the Kindred’s sharp eye for analysis for which I credit my astuteness in the continued life and play of a chess player’s expressing hopefully a clear and vivid picture of American Life in this political arena called Washington, DC, pitiful as it is but blind to most.


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