Take Cover——Wall Street Is Breaking Out The Bubblies

Let’s see. Google’s record market cap gain on Friday was actually a squeaker. At $66.9 billion it easily passed in one day the entire $50 billion market cap of Caterpillar’s global heavy machinery and engine franchise built up over a century. But only by a hair did it best Cisco’s $66.0 billion gain on April 17, 2000.

But perish the thought that Friday’s fireworks had any resemblance to the shooting star act of Cisco and hundreds of other tech high-flyers 15 years ago or the epic bloodbath that commenced shortly thereafter.

Then again, something was going on with the GOOG beyond the fundamentals. Notwithstanding that Google is one of the most fantastic value creating enterprises on the planet, there was nothing in Friday’s earnings report for Q2 that warranted a 16% re-rating of its market cap.

Indeed, the $345 million or 9.6% gain in net income from the prior quarter was not much of a talisman. Fully 75% of the gain was accounted for by a lower tax rate (from 22.1% to 20.7%) and a cutback of what had been ballooning GA expenses (from 8.8% of sales to 8.2%). Aside from these benefits at the margins of what is a $70 billion sales machine, net income grew at an unremarkable 2.9% over prior quarter and 7.4% over prior year.


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