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Bull vs. Bear: eBay

eBay's (NASDAQ: EBAY  ) Marketplace and PayPal businesses are undoubtedly two of the most wonderful, asset-light, cash-minting businesses on the planet. Yet with the stock market up nearly 20% so far in 2013, eBay's stock has flatlined. What is the market worried about? Could eBay's growth be hitting a plateau? Is eBay's management team, led by CEO John Donahoe, allocating capital in the best interests of the company's shareholders?

Fools Buck Hartzell and Matthew Argersinger answer those questions and debate eBay's true market-beating potential. Watch the video and head to the comments section below to let us know what side you're on. And if you have another stock you'd like to see Fool analysts debate, let us know that, too!

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Read/Post Comments (7) | Recommend This Article (11)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On September 09, 2013, at 11:57 AM, motleyLiam wrote:

    When it comes to eBay, one cannot think like an investor - all that stuff about the "market doing this and that" is irrelevant.

    One needs to think like a user of eBay - buying and selling.

    Believe it or not, there are folks who base their investing on whether or not they have trust in the company's operations.

    Ebay "fooled" many for a good long stretch after Mr. Donahoe took over as CEO.

    Different story, now. Amazon keeps going up. Heck, even Overstock is up from 6 months ago.

    This is what happens when one tries to be something that it's not - and then when things don't pan out - blame your customers; it's the eBay way.

  • Report this Comment On September 09, 2013, at 1:21 PM, NobodysFool2011 wrote:

    motleyLiam is right. As Warren Buffet always advises, "never invest in a company until you experience how they do business" ~

    That being said, all you have to do is try selling something on eBay and see how greedy and predatory their business model is. Fees for listing, final value fees, fees on shipping, Paypal fees, store fees, etc. At least 4 levels of fees on each sale.

    If that's not daunting enough, try calling their customer service which redirects to call centers in the Philippines. If you can get past the broken English spoken by reps, you'll find they know little or nothing about selling on eBay and most common questions resort in reps reading from a script.

    There's quite a difference between being a "cash-minting" business and a bloated, greedy, predatory entity.

  • Report this Comment On September 10, 2013, at 12:22 PM, TMFValueMagnet wrote:

    If eBay were to spin off PayPal, I'd be a buyer yesterday. PayPal is my favorite part of the business.

  • Report this Comment On September 10, 2013, at 12:35 PM, rianjones1983 wrote:
  • Report this Comment On September 10, 2013, at 1:14 PM, constructive wrote:

    It trades at 26x earnings, a generous multiple. Complaining about the valuation not being higher is misguided.

  • Report this Comment On September 10, 2013, at 4:51 PM, TMFBuck wrote:

    Hi MotleyLiam and NobodysFool2011,

    I am a customer of eBay and I've listed and bought items from them with no complaints. If they are so predatory, why does their platform and user base continue to expand? There's a contrary part of me that loves investing in companies that people hate. I truly value people when they vote with their pocketbooks or their legs but I'm interested when people complain and keep on using the service.

    What about PayPal? It seems like a great service that is being adopted around the world and growing like weeds.

    Trust me I get that people don't like fees and would like everything for free. However, by their votes on transactions processed, marketplaces seems to provide a very valuable offering.

  • Report this Comment On September 13, 2013, at 10:39 PM, dontdrive57 wrote:

    I love that everyone wants everyone for free, but nobody wants to work for free.

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