Quarterly stock reviews

April 9, 2015

Every member of our investment club is asked to monitor one stock in the club’s portfolio.  We report the company’s progress and market performance following each filing of a quarterly earnings report (found in SEC Form 10-Q and/or news media).  Failure to do so could result in a loss of profit!

My assignment is the Oracle Corporation, a company that I voted against purchasing.  After we bought shares, I suggested that we place a stop order to “sell” if Oracle’s stock price went down.  But the club voted against my recommendation in the belief that Oracle is a classic buy-and-hold investment.  Now I’m beginning to accept the idea of holding Oracle for the long run.

Oracle’s industry challenges my understanding.  Oracle is a market-leading company that specializes in providing “enterprise” services to over 400,000 customers.  It’s “legacy service” is provided on-site.  Never mind trying to understand “enterprise” and “legacy service”, Oracle is now threatened by innovation and price wars.  Oracle must meet these threats or lose business.  That’s where the fun comes in.  Analysts report that Oracle, EMC, Salesforce.com, Amazon, Google, Microsoft, IBM, and Hewlett-Packard are locked in a battle for market shares of innovative cloud-based services.  The competitors are offering public and/or private clouds; how will they earn a profit from these offerings?  And what are the cloud spaces known as PaaS, SaaS, and IaaS?  My education is just starting.

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