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GOOG Off As Confidence Shrinks
Stocks are selling off in response to news that the Consumer Confidence Index for August came in at a two-year low, and just released Case-Shiller numbers confirmed the housing double dip. Shares of GOOG opened in the negative and are currently wavering at the flatline. Catalysts include Brad Bender’s (Display Product Management) participation at the Citigroup Tech Conference at 2:55 p.m. ET next Thursday, September 8; continued Android momentum in the smartphone and tablet markets worldwide; Motorola acquisition approval and integration; regaining ground in China in search and pushing forward in mobile; any signs of life for Google TV (including Motorola); the roll-out of Google Music and social network Google+; and progress in other newer initiatives (location-based services, mapping, gaming, Chromebooks, etc.). The stock trades at approximately 11.4x Enterprise Value / EBIT, inexpensive relative to historical trading levels.
Google TV Headed To Europe (CNet)
Google TV is coming to Europe in 2012 according to chairman Eric Schmidt. That news comes despite the fact that Google TV has been a complete failure in the U.S. so far. Google’s acquisition of Motorola could also help. Motorola currently sells set top boxes to a lot of cable TV providers. Google has a built-in channel if it can convince the cable companies it doesn’t want to commoditize their business. Schmidt’s message to the TV industry was basically adapt or die.
Google Likened To Goldman Sachs When It Comes To Regulation, Or Lack There Of
Is Google fast becoming the Goldman Sachs of the tech world? Both companies have strong ties to their respective regulatory bodies. Goldman has a revolving door leading to the U.S. Treasury and Google is close to the FCC that agency head Julius Genachowski. Google heavily influenced the FCC’s push for “net neutrality,” baring Internet providers from controlling Google search traffic. If you’re an investor in a company subject to heavy regulation or potential fines, it’s important to pay attention to legal developments. Not to mention our government is nearly bankrupt and it’s nearly an election year.
Low-Priced Amazon Tablet Could Give Android A Boost (Forrester)
Amazon may sell as many as 5 million tablet computers in the fourth quarter, according to Forrester Research. That would make the largest Internet retailer the top competitor to Apple. Analysts say a reasonably-priced tablet from Amazon could disrupt Apple’s product strategy and kick app development for Android tablets into high gear.
Is Google+ Losing Steam? (DreamGrow)
Social marketing company DreamGrow posted some stats from Alexa that show a steep drop-off in Google+ traffic as a percentage of overall Google traffic. At the beginning of August, 2.89% of all Google.com traffic coming into Alexa’s tracking system was coming from Google+. Now, it’s only 1.84%. That’s a drop of nearly one-third in less than a month. But Google still has a lot of tricks up its sleeve like letting businesses set up their own Google+ pages could help spur adoption.