Saturday, April 16, 2011

"A sudden silence in the financial community with the tragic loss of the very young and eloquent Joseph Battipaglia"

Dow Jones Industrial Average (Down)  12341.83
Joe Battipaglia 1955-2011

I was stunned. It was Thursday night, April 14th, and I was watching the Larry Kudlow show on CNBC like I do every night and Larry made the somber announcement that Joe Battipaglia, one of the steady and  level headed voices on wall street had passed away today. I sat frozen on the couch in disbelief. I felt a blow to the stomach like I had lost a member of my family.
       Joe Battipaglia, 55 years old, and two years younger than me, who was a star guest analyst on CNBC and Fox continuously and leader in the financial industry for decades was gone. I will defer to Neil Cavuto of Fox Business News for a personal remembrance: Remembering-Joe-Battipaglia . Joe grew up in the New York City borough of Queens, the only child of a city sanitation worker and the first in his family to go to college, according to My sincere condolences to his family and especially his children. My father died when I was five, so I know what it is like to experience that grief as a young child. Joe would want us to continue to talk about the thing he loved, business and stocks, so that is what I am going to do.

 LTX-CREDENCE, (Symbol LTXC, $8.57) is a stock that I mentioned last year and own personally.
 Verigy was supposed to purchase LTX Credence but then came along Advantest and they bought out Verigy. The cancellation of the deal will result in LTXC receiving 15 Million dollars that will go right to the bottom line. LTXC already has a low price earnings ratio of 7.4. The company is growing at 16% and is expecting to have 2011 earnings of $1.08 and $1.32 in 2012.  Joe Battipaglia's firm Stifel Nicolaus had  reiterated a buy recommendation on this stock on 12/10/2010 to a $10.00 price. The company has a return on equity of 24.30% with a PE heading towards 6.49 with a 15 million dollar kicker. I wouldn't be surprised if Advantest went after them also as an acquisition target. (I think they will want to get their 15 Mil back.)

There are lot's of bargains out in the NASDAQ stocks right now.

 Ebix Inc. (Symbol EBIX, $22.54) the Atlanta GA. insurance and health care "cloud" CRM and application software company was taken down 25% in price the other week by an anonymous blog of all things. (Probably a disgruntled competitor). The company has a 5 year sales growth rate of  43.68% mostly due to acquisition and a 5 year earnings growth rate of 61.75%. These are the facts. Ebix runs with net profit margins of 44.60%. They have a one year total return of
38.5% and a 3 year total return of 139.0%. These are also facts, indisputable. The company plans on buying back 45 million shares. I would prefer that they continue to use their money instead to acquire other companies, but no harm here. All the major ETF holders in the stock have nice gains on their investment.

I will leave you with 2 links with  Joe Battipaglia from April 2011 from the Larry Kudlow CNBC show.

We will miss you Joe.

Live your life to the fullest everyday and remember Joe in your prayers.


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