Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Why Apple Uses a Contract Manufacturing Model

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gxTCNP82NmQ
via The Motley Fool

Remembering How Apple Created a Massive Market for Corning’s Gorilla Glass

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KCbaWRS0hpw
via The Motley Fool

How Apple’s Inventory Management is So Lean

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UJHa2O8t6uA
via The Motley Fool

Is Qualcomm Slowly Losing its Grip on the iPhone?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kuFGj8f92uI
via The Motley Fool

How Apple’s A-Chips Come From All Over the World

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0GzNtOoQUkY
via The Motley Fool

Tech: How an iPhone Winds Up in Your Hands *** INDUSTRY FOCUS ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QDUFNky-VsM
via The Motley Fool

Will Zika help or hurt health plans?


Health insurers are starting to think about the impact of the Zika virus, which may arrive in force in the US over the coming months. Actuaries are looking for analogous examples for their models, such as other mosquito born illnesses including dengue fever.

Some insurers aren’t too concerned, according to Healthcare Finance News. Others are looking at reinsurance opportunities and considering premium increases.

Most Zika infections cause only mild illness, so the costs of treatment will be modest or zero much of the time. The real impact is likely to come from the cost of lifelong care for babies born with microcephaly or other problems, which could be millions of dollars per case.

But does that mean Zika will hurt health plans financially? Not necessarily.

For commercial health plans, maternal and newborn care is one of the largest categories of expenses. If a Zika epidemic looms, I would expect women to stop having babies, at least for a while. After all, in El Salvador the government has suggested women not become pregnant for the next two years.

If that happens, insurers will enjoy a windfall from avoided expenses that will show up right away. Meanwhile, the costs of Zika babies will be spread over many years and no doubt much of the cost will be shifted to Medicaid one way or the other.

Zika is a huge threat and we should be doing much more about it as a society. But health plans may not suffer as much as people assume.

Image courtesy of duntaro at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

By healthcare business consultant David E. Williams, president of Health Business Group.


from Health Business Blog https://healthbusinessblog.com/2016/05/31/will-zika-help-or-hurt-health-plans/
via A Health Business Blog

Sunday, May 29, 2016

The Best Way To Invest in Drug Discovery

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zh7Epo8zRA0
via The Motley Fool

The Best Way To Invest in Drug Development

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qn35rrr9vaU
via The Motley Fool

How To Invest in Drug Companies Seeking FDA Approval

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z5Jps4drPbs
via The Motley Fool

Investing Battle: Stocks Vs. Bonds

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D_U3Qv7EQO4
via The Motley Fool

5 Things to Know About Bonds

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dZ4NGkD1-dg
via The Motley Fool

Municipal Bonds Explained

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XmylCN_HePw
via The Motley Fool

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Healthcare: How To Invest In The Life Cycle Of A Drug *** INDUSTRY FOCUS ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n8uvvI_J1O8
via The Motley Fool

Is Chipotle Headed for an Inventory Problem?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c7uqMU6mVBI
via The Motley Fool

Changing Standards for Chipotle: What “Food With Integrity” Looks Like Moving Forward

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eUJHn5dsLvg
via The Motley Fool

How Has Chipotle’s Food Preparation Changed?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YCYR-fTUVZc
via The Motley Fool

Trouble ahead: Obese, diabetic 50 somethings heading for bleak senior years


It’s not too late

Today’s middle-aged adults (50-64) are much fatter and more likely to have diabetes than their predecessors from 15 years ago. Obesity is up 25 percent, diabetes 55 percent and the percentage reporting being in very good or excellent health declined by 9 percent, according to the latest America’s Health Rankings Senior Report from the United Health Foundation.

At the state level, some of the changes were far more dramatic. Prevalence of diabetes among middle-aged Coloradans is up 138 percent, while obesity rates in Arizona are up by 96 percent.

The report warns that today’s middle-aged cohort is on track for an expensive and unhealthy experience when they hit the ranks of seniors by 2030.

The news isn’t all bleak. My home state of Massachusetts is rated the healthiest for seniors in the latest report (overtaking Vermont). Seniors here have become more physically active; many have stopped smoking. On the negative side the rate of flu vaccination dropped in Massachusetts. (Maybe it has something to do with the vaccine’s recent lack of effectiveness — I got the flu vaccine and the flu this past season.)

As usual, this year’s report is chock full of statistics and insights, with a variety of national indicators and state-by-state comparisons. And no surprise, the Southern states remain the unhealthiest –with Louisiana, Oklahoma, Mississippi, Arkansas and West Virginia bringing up the rear.

It’s not too late for middle-aged Americans to improve their health and well-being. Reports like this may spur individuals, governments and private sector players into action. For the sake of seniors-to-be and the country as a whole, I sure hope it happens.

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

By healthcare business consultant David E. Williams, president of Health Business Group.



from Health Business Blog https://healthbusinessblog.com/2016/05/26/trouble-ahead-obese-diabetic-50-somethings-heading-for-bleak-senior-years/
via A Health Business Blog

Chipotle’s Mission Statement and The Far Flung Ingredients In Your Burrito Bowl

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NYmpxnuhYts
via The Motley Fool

How Chipotle Dealt With The Unexpected In Its Supply Chain

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZKaYUt1Ctc0
via The Motley Fool

Chipotle’s Small Suppliers Encounter New Costs of Doing Business

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pcD9tXb4CUI
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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Consumer Goods: From the Farm to Your Dinner Table – The Lifecycle of a Chipotle Burrito

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LmoXO93x84g
via The Motley Fool

Best Quotes: "Do I contradict myself? Very well, then I contradict myself..."

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vzHqDOwTJjw
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Best Quotes: “Stocks Go Down Faster Than They Go Up, But Go Up More Than They Go Down"

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=94ElK7h52Dc
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Best Quotes: Warren Buffett’s 3 I’s of Every Business Cycle

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=resUIggMjDY
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Best Quotes: "I Came Here to Drink Milk and Kick Ass, and I've Just Finished My Milk"

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qQarTjHQW6M
via The Motley Fool

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Beware of “FANG”

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XJUw7s_qYRg
via The Motley Fool

5 More Traits that the Top 3 Stocks of 2015 Shared

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iMfQeDIEdIQ
via The Motley Fool

5 Traits that Run Through the Top 3 S&P Companies of 2015

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hwaqVyIuDdQ
via The Motley Fool

Top 3 Performers of the S&P 500 in 2015

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xBK_gjtLbPI
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What The Top 3 Stocks of 2015 Have In Common *** RULE BREAKER INVESTING ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C4xdiMFn8EE
via The Motley Fool

Financials: The Most Important Financial Chart of the Past Century *** INDUSTRY FOCUS ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jHQH8p5KiUs
via The Motley Fool

Monday, May 23, 2016

Tech: Wearables Update and A Special Guest *** INDUSTRY FOCUS ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B7-qecQBD5g
via The Motley Fool

Canada is looking better and better


O Canada!

In almost every election cycle people talk about moving to Canada if a presidential candidate they despise takes office. In practice few make the move. Things could be a little different this time around if a certain nationalist strongman comes to power.

But there’s something else to fear this year: the Zika virus. According to NIH director Tony Fauci, mosquitoes with Zika are likely to arrive in the US mainland within the next month or two. One species will be all over the South, another will come up the East Coast as far as New England.  Congress is dithering with the President’s request for funds to combat Zika’s spread and is toying with the idea of canceling Ebola funds to partially support the Zika fight. It’s pretty irresponsible.

In the past I would have assumed that Congress would get it’s act together and do the right thing. But after seeing some members unconcerned about preventing a default I no longer take good intentions and common sense for granted.

Zika is serious and its spread could have a big impact on economic growth. In El Salvador, the government has advised women not to get pregnant for the next two years, lest they give birth to babies with severe birth defects. Can you imagine the impact such an advisory would have in the US?

Image courtesy of Vlado at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

By healthcare business consultant David E. Williams, president of Health Business Group.

from Health Business Blog https://healthbusinessblog.com/2016/05/23/canada-is-looking-better-and-better/
via A Health Business Blog

Tribune Publishing Shares Pop After Another Offer from Gannett

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lbIRzA_tNh0
via The Motley Fool

A New Horse to Yahoo’s Game

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JjnHNYGUOqI
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Why Berkshire Hathaway Bought Into Apple

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YNqgDM0cBU8
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A New Batter Steps Up to Yahoo’s Plate *** MARKET FOOLERY ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RrhD7iYBO-E
via The Motley Fool

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Is A Never-Ending Cruise Retirement Right for You?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A1U0Ai2ym8o
via The Motley Fool

3 Peculiar Traits of Wealthy People: Not Caring What Everyone Ever Thinks of Them

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gWXZykzpKjY
via The Motley Fool

3 Peculiar Traits of Wealthy People: Thinking in Different Time Periods Than Everyone Else

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gmo567V3Dko
via The Motley Fool

Listener Question: Should I Diversify My IRA with Real Estate?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n3dGh9R986M
via The Motley Fool

3 Peculiar Traits of Wealthy People: A Hint of Sociopathy

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GlerYZVddlU
via The Motley Fool

Friday, May 20, 2016

Why Royal Dutch Shell Probably Regrets its $70 billion BG Group Acquisition *** INDUSTRY FOCUS ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d-49xbxKdHE
via The Motley Fool

Health Wonk Review is up at Boston Health News

Check out the latest edition of the Health Wonk Review over at Boston Health News. Tinker Ready has a great collection of posts about insurance, HIT, report cards, LGBT health and cancer.

And you won’t want to miss the beautiful collection of photos of the Sant Rafael Pavilion in Barcelona.

from Health Business Blog https://healthbusinessblog.com/2016/05/20/health-wonk-review-is-up-at-boston-health-news-6/
via A Health Business Blog

Thursday, May 19, 2016

The Best Way to Invest in RNAi Drugs

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xs-11SwueEA
via The Motley Fool

Could This Drug Class Change Medicine As We Know It?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0KgZQbmrHjg
via The Motley Fool

Beyond Belviq: The Real Promise in Arena Pharmaceticals’ Pipeline

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZDjIRIqzpEI
via The Motley Fool

What Biotech Investors Need to Know About GPCRs

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lu8NYabVkKg
via The Motley Fool

Healthcare: Drawing Biopharma Concepts With A Crayon *** INDUSTRY FOCUS ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z1bPq8R9PGc
via The Motley Fool

The false link between mental illness and gun violence

It would be nice if we could eliminate mass shootings by improving the mental health system, coaxing (or forcing) potential shooters into treatment before they have a chance to wreak havoc.  As the Washington Post (Most mass shooters aren’t mentally ill. So why push better treatment as the answer?) reports:

“It would be ridiculous to hope that doing something about the mental-health system will stop these mass murders,” said Michael Stone, a forensic psychiatrist at the Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons and author of “The Anatomy of Evil,” which examines the personalities of brutal killers. “It’s really folly.”

This seems pretty obvious, and yet Republican and Democratic leaders, along with the general public and the media seem to think mental illness is the root cause of shooting sprees and that improving the mental health system can fix the problem.

After mass shootings, reporters often jump quickly to mental illness as the cause. Remember after the Sandy Hook shooting when there was speculation that the shooter’s Asperger’s diagnosis was to blame?

Asperger’s? Are you kidding me?

The danger of our fixation on mental illness as the root cause of violence is that we end up stigmatizing people with mental illness –and developmental disorders– while ignoring more direct causes of gun violence, such as ready access to guns.

Mass shootings are rare outside the US. Is there someone who can tell me with a straight face that the difference is due to better mental health systems abroad?

Meanwhile, Australia has seen a major decrease in gun violence over the past 20 years since adopting strong gun control after a mass murder. That seems like a more evidence and logic based response than what we’ve tried here.

By healthcare business consultant David E. Williams, president of Health Business Group.


from Health Business Blog https://healthbusinessblog.com/2016/05/19/the-false-link-between-mental-illness-and-gun-violence/
via A Health Business Blog

How Apple’s Inventory Can Shed Light on the Genius of Tim Cook

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ouVXfT8ij4o
via The Motley Fool

How Urban Outfitters and the Apparel Industry Is Leveraging Inventory to Boost Profitability

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gFeroiRVNGk
via The Motley Fool

Why Inventory Should Matter to Every Consumer and Retail Investor

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BpdPVyyeSDw
via The Motley Fool

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Consumer Goods: How Retailers Manage their Inventory *** INDUSTRY FOCUS ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eLX-MOEuvk8
via The Motley Fool

Déjà Vu: P2P Lenders Didn’t Learn Anything from The Subprime Mortgage Crisis

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tqwHdGsh5q0
via The Motley Fool

As Regulators Circle, Will LendingClub and On Deck Capital Be Able to Comply?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oafoOIhGuN0
via The Motley Fool

Putting LendingClub’s Disastrous Month into Context

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RPI_dJoMirQ
via The Motley Fool

Disrupting the Banking Industry Starts With Embracing This Reality

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=28zTm4qYrB8
via The Motley Fool

Here's How LendingClub Stock Could Go From Bad to Worse

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aSOT3qnSlL8
via The Motley Fool

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Consumer Goods: No, Streaming Isn’t Going to Kill Cable *** INDUSTRY FOCUS ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mA_Rxifkocw
via The Motley Fool

How Bank of America Came to Own Merrill Lynch

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=spTgcsQ60CY
via The Motley Fool

The Fly in Bank of America’s Ointment

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bvz1nXfPYyI
via The Motley Fool

Bank of America’s Capital Punishment

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wXxMRbSHE4Q
via The Motley Fool

Will Bank of America Go Back to Basic Banking?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dx7ZBO_hDf4
via The Motley Fool

The Decline in Bank of America’s Trading Revenue

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ci8bMam6zkQ
via The Motley Fool

Biosimilars are “me-too” drugs, not generics


Time to take off the blinders

Generic drugs are the biggest success story in healthcare cost containment. This great success has fooled policymakers, journalists, health plans and others into thinking that the same model will tame spending on biologic drugs the same way it has for traditional, chemical based products.

The latest example can be found in the Wall Street Journal (Knockoffs of Biotech Drugs Bring Paltry Savings). The article blames the lack of savings on price increases by makers of the original products in the run-up to the introduction of competing products. That is happening, but it doesn’t get to the root cause of the situation.

The traditional generic market is about as close as the healthcare industry gets to economists’ fantasy world of perfect competition where there is no differentiation among products, there are a large number of producers, and buyers understand that the products are all the same. As a result, prices trend toward marginal cost and it is not uncommon to see price reductions of 90 percent or more. Sometimes it’s 99 percent.

Biotech is very different. The “generic” products are not generic at all, rather they are close but not exact copies that cannot be freely substituted for one another. The number of producers will be small because they must go through the expense of clinical trials. And if the companies are smart (they are) they will do their best to make sure buyers realize there are differences among the products. One clue is that the products are referred to as biosimilars not biogenerics.

As I’ve been writing for ten years, this doesn’t sound like the market for generic drugs. Rather it’s much more like the “me-too” phenomenon we saw in the 90s with blockbuster categories such as statins. When Lipitor came in as the fifth statin on the market it didn’t advertise itself as cheaper and undifferentiated. Rather it used clever trial design and sales and marketing tactics to climb to the top of the pile.

Why wouldn’t a biosimilar try the same approach if possible? So far new entrants are pricing themselves a bit lower than the original product but if they can come up with better data from a trial why not make the price higher instead?

If we take off our generics blinders we can come up with ways to control costs while encouraging innovation. Since 2006 (A better idea than biogenerics) I’ve suggested regulating the price of biotech drugs once their patents expire. I still think it’s a good idea.

Image courtesy of iosphere at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

By healthcare business consultant David E. Williams, president of Health Business Group.

from Health Business Blog https://healthbusinessblog.com/2016/05/11/biosimilars-are-me-too-drugs-not-generics/
via A Health Business Blog

Will Bank of America and Merrill Lynch Eventually Go Their Separate Ways? *** INDUSTRY FOCUS ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dNamqFyY7tQ
via The Motley Fool

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

3 Stocks on Our Radar This Week

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bYoKdMMPnhs
via The Motley Fool

Watch Out, Sally Hansen – KFC Is Coming Your Way

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F8mvjoBgegE
via The Motley Fool

Why Halliburton and Baker Hughes are Both Down

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2wbPJQnOgQM
via The Motley Fool

And That’s Why You Don’t Bet Too Much on a Short

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zq9qD740mBI
via The Motley Fool

Why TripAdvisor is Down This Quarter

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m3rVjhN5vGI
via The Motley Fool

How Long-Term Investors Should Look at Guidance

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SA92p-zeWEU
via The Motley Fool

Earnings Highlights for CVS Health and MercadoLibre

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RSk5CR70RG0
via The Motley Fool

Zillow Raises Guidance

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kehrg2MIHNY
via The Motley Fool

Activision-Blizzard Blows Expectations Out of the Water

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qVu5RE2T_iA
via The Motley Fool

Lowered Q2 Guidance for Priceline

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H3WpnKpiO4s
via The Motley Fool

Due diligence in middle market healthcare investing


Due diligence

Private equity firms investing in middle market healthcare deals face serious challenges in commercial due diligence. There are many companies that appear attractive, with $5M+ EBITDA, increasing revenues and enticing stories of how industry dynamics, customer relationships, technology differentiation and management excellence will take them to the next level. In the $3 trillion US healthcare industry, there are numerous billion dollar niches offering strong returns to companies that ride the wave of transformation.

Generalist investors and even healthcare specialists need support when performing due diligence in the middle market. The companies are large enough that their businesses are often complex, but small enough that there is little public information about them. Often the management team and prior investors may not have a good sense of customer demand and competitors. In addition, investors face information asymmetry, making it difficult to discern whether the management team is as confident as they seem or whether they have sensed a peak and are trying to bail out at the top.

The Affordable Care Act has set off a tremendous era of change in the industry, and diligence needs to reflect the latest understanding of how the ecosystem is changing. For example, the shift from fee-for-service to value based payments upends many business models but enables new ones. Provider consolidation can dramatically change buying dynamics as sales move to the enterprise level. The growth of public health insurance exchanges increases health plans’ appetites for cost-saving approaches.

Middle market investors have to be savvy about how they invest resources in diligence, so they often turn to boutique consulting firms that provide high value at a moderate price. In our consulting practice at Health Business Group, some of my favorite work is helping middle market private equity firms and strategic buyers test investment hypotheses and improve clarity about a company’s prospects through commercial due diligence. We interview the company’s customers and competitors, consult with industry analysts, and leverage our internal knowledge base and expert network.

Over the years we’ve worked with private equity firms and strategic acquirers, performing diligence on everything from wound care to medical benefits management to teleradiology to medical cost containment to pharma sales and marketing to healthcare information technology.  Many of these deals have been completed and have resulted in long-term success. But we are unafraid to speak up and advise when a deal does not make sense, even when that’s not what our client wants to hear. Our closest relationships are with clients that we’ve steered away from bad deals.

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

By healthcare business consultant David E. Williams, president of Health Business Group.


from Health Business Blog http://healthbusinessblog.com/2016/05/10/due-diligence-in-middle-market-healthcare-investments/
via A Health Business Blog

What April’s Unemployment Numbers Mean

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7w-CjvTnPHU
via The Motley Fool

Highlights from Tesla’s Earnings Call

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W4-0wjjsovc
via The Motley Fool

Possible Trouble for Whole Foods

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AWTHBAoQFsw
via The Motley Fool

Monday, May 9, 2016

One Stock Pick – Donny's Favorite Australian Company

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CCr80NgzHCA
via The Motley Fool

How a 25-Year Bull Market Changes the Investing Mindset

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xzVQJzanLFY
via The Motley Fool

What American Investors Need to Know About the Australian Market

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kAes0cOB0yQ
via The Motley Fool

A Few Things Investors Should Know About Australia *** MARKET FOOLERY ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3NtDp0ct0DQ
via The Motley Fool

Why Facebook is Planning a Stock Split

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s4LoFWHZEeA
via The Motley Fool

What is a Stock Split and Why Do Companies Do Them?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gyMH8ViyLv8
via The Motley Fool

Why Are We Seeing Fewer Stock Splits?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qDYSQjJuxZs
via The Motley Fool

Friday, May 6, 2016

How Can the New York Times Survive in a Post-Print World?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4N6tF5W7c04
via The Motley Fool

Highlights from GrubHub’s Quarterly Earnings Report

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gxyIrDnkfPE
via The Motley Fool

What Is Apple Thinking?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UcLjv2ZkPfs
via The Motley Fool

Apple Isn't Innovating Anymore, But It’s Still a Fantastic Company to Own *** MARKET FOOLERY ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0018GUeyhDY
via The Motley Fool

When To Sell a Stock - David Gardner, RBI Podcast

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Eft35KIZWw
via The Motley Fool

What Investors Need To Know About Sarepta and Gilead Sciences' "Bad News" *** INDUSTRY FOCUS ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cGvQAGmbciI
via The Motley Fool

Surgeons and truck drivers may soon have something in common


Climbing into the future

Many Americans feel economically insecure.  Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders have latched on to these feelings, and both fault free trade agreements for stripping the country of good, steady jobs. Trade agreements are a convenient scapegoat, but the big threat to jobs is technology, not trade.

Over the past decades, technology has reduced the need for labor in many fields. Robots can perform repetitive, manual work like welding cars. Enterprise software and databases have replaced paralegals and bookkeepers. Computers can answer the phone and provide customer service.

As great as these dislocations have been, much bigger change is on the horizon. For example, there are more than 3 million professional truck drivers in the US; the industry pays pretty well, especially for a job that doesn’t require a college education. But often lost in the discussion of driverless cars is the concept of driverless trucks. It might take 10 or even 20 years, but driverless trucks will eventually be the norm, lowering costs while putting millions of truck drivers out of work. (Driverless cars will throw all the Uber drivers out of work as well.)

Believe it or not, surgeons face a similar threat. Surgeons have long used robotic tools to assist them, but historically the tools relied on surgeons’ manual skills. That’s changing, even for challenging procedures.

A new study demonstrates that robots can be used for soft tissue surgeries, even though these are tricky compared with surgeries on solid structures such as bones.

From Johns Hopkins University:

The researchers developed a robotic surgical system called the Smart Tissue Autonomous Robot, or STAR. It features a 3D imaging system and a near-infrared sensor to spot fluorescent markers along the edges of the tissue to keep the robotic suture needle on track. Unlike other robot-assisted surgical systems, it operates under the surgeon’s supervision, but without hands-on guidance. (emphasis mine)

The researchers compared STAR with expert surgeons using various methods:

“No significant differences in erroneous needle placement were noted among all surgical techniques,” the researchers wrote, “suggesting that STAR was as dexterous as expert surgeons in needle placement.”

The researchers say that the tools won’t replace humans but will “expand human capacity and capability.” How do they know that? I predict that in fact these robotic tools will cut down on the need for human surgeons.

Furthermore, once surgery robots get better than surgeons, robotic surgery will become the standard of care. It will be unethical to use a human surgeon when a safer, better alternative is available.


As a middle-aged management consultant with specialized knowledge and strong relationships, I’m not worried that robots are going to take my livelihood away. But I do worry a lot about the younger generation and wonder what will happen to their career prospects, economic growth, and our society.

Image courtesy of Salvatore Vuono at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

By healthcare business consultant David E. Williams, president of Health Business Group.


from Health Business Blog https://healthbusinessblog.com/2016/05/06/surgeons-and-truck-drivers-may-soon-have-something-in-common/
via A Health Business Blog

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Here’s How Warren Buffett Feels about BNSF

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nzSMOtv9p9A
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Warren Buffett’s Returns Hampered by Berkshire’s Size

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fr5UadG_rqU
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Is Berkshire Hathaway’s Growth Slowing Because of Its Success?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qKH-mZYLkSI
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Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger’s Remarkably Successful Approach to Buying Companies

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TX1VrL1JALk
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How Does Warren Buffett Think Investors Should Approach the Stock Market?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QG20BGi53cs
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Your Basic Guide to How Berkshire Hathaway Makes Money

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1JbKQtNmB68
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Consumer Stock Highlights From the Berkshire Hathaway Meeting

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_aZtyVTxpx4
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What You Need to Know About the Comcast / DreamWorks Animation Deal

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V_3kcM8bJGM
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Why a Combined Comcast and Dreamworks Is Greater Than The Sum of Its Parts

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysYZp8IKBfI
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Health Wonk Review is up at Wright on Health

Wright on Health hosts the latest incarnation of the Health Wonk Review blog carnival. It’s the Pivoting Toward the General Election edition. Interestingly, multiple posts focus on the same topic as mine: United Healthcare’s exit from the Obamacare marketplaces.

But beyond those posts you’ll see a lot of variety, along with a striking gallery of candidate photos!

from Health Business Blog https://healthbusinessblog.com/2016/05/05/health-wonk-review-is-up-at-wright-on-health-12/
via A Health Business Blog

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Consumer Goods: Why Comcast Bought DreamWorks for $3.8 Billion *** INDUSTRY FOCUS ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bjv-pxVphJw
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What We Know About Hulu’s TV Bundle

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_nHyQZuyRtM
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What Under Armour Can Do About Blatant Copycat Company, Uncle Martian

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EZqRIMwV5LQ
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What You Need to Know About Baker Hughes and Halliburton Now that the Merger is Off

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fAGIy_27eo0
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Updates on the Halliburton-Baker Hughes Failed Merger *** MARKET FOOLERY ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gxvwZnLUdsM
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Financials: Your 23-Minute Guide to Berkshire Hathaway's Annual Meeting *** INDUSTRY FOCUS ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UYCRszwbRFk
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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

High Profits, Raised Guidance, and No Love From the Market for LinkedIn

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3BqYaeGO-bc
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Panera Bread Posts Nice First Quarter Growth to Little Fanfare

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5r-TXMlrvkg
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Chipotle’s First-Ever Quarterly Loss

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qmGoLZuUCH8
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Why Coach is Up 13% This Quarter

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qvXtoDhn74g
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3 Stocks on Our Radar This Week

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b-lFYDUVSGo
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Apple Down 11% After Decline of iPhone Sales

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zQ3-zYFOg6g
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Amazon.com Posts Most Profitable Quarter Yet

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kz3AJ2q1nyc
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Impressive First Quarter Earnings Report for Facebook

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RVhFm68X63E
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Comcast Acquires DreamWorks Animation

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wMl10cd1J8E
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Rough Q1 Earnings for Gilead Sciences

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BBG6xiKoO40
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Carl Icahn Bailed on Apple, Is He Right?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sk_UesdJwjw
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What’s Up With the Apple Watch?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TuOQ5sgbwG0
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Apple Investors Should Be Excited About India

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GNprHRtsYcU
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How is Apple Doing in China?

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zo2NDFBg9d8
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Apple’s Services Segment is Bigger Than We Thought

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tXlW0YNyg2o
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Monday, May 2, 2016

Apple Sends Investors a $250 Billion Love Note

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k0T7DjT8s4Y
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Why We’re Not Freaking Out About iPhone Sales

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4zi5IWMPnzc
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Ignore Apple’s Earnings Per Share Number

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RFSzI-ZcTHE
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What to Expect for Apple’s Margins Moving Forward

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=77y6IY6eblM
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Tech: Apple – Then and Now *** INDUSTRY FOCUS ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Twdgh7etuiY
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Energy: Looking Back on Energy’s Glory Days and Predicting the Future *** INDUSTRY FOCUS ***

from The Motley Fool http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=duco98e6f3g
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