Why Yandex NV Shares Dropped Today

Is Yandex's plunge meaningful? Or just another movement?

Apr 25, 2014 at 4:55PM

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of Yandex NV (NASDAQ:YNDX) touched a new 52-week low after falling more than 18% during Friday's intraday trading, then settled to close down around 10% following concerns the European Internet search provider could face pressures from Internet control in Russia.

So what: Specifically -- and keeping in mind that the Russian parliament is considering legislation that could categorize major Internet companies as "strategic" assets -- on Thursday, Russian President Vladimir Putin described the Internet as originally a "special project of the U.S. CIA, and that's how its developing."

He went on to criticize what he views as undue exposure to Western influence for Yandex -- which is Russia's leading search engine -- saying:

As far as Yandex is concerned, not all is so simple. When they too were pressured, told that they had to have so many Americans and so many Europeans in their governing bodies [...] And they had to agree with that. And they are partly registered overseas, not only for tax reasons, but also out of other considerations."

Yandex responded with a news release insisting that, as a publicly traded company with a 70% free float, it is not facing pressure from any of its shareholders. Moreover, Yandex reminded, "It is quite common for any Internet start-up in any country in the world" to have international investors.

Now what: As it stands, while nothing may ultimately come of Putin's suspicions, I still prefer to steer clear given the increasing escalation in the situation between Russia and Ukraine. Personally, the risk of Putin taking action, and potentially forcing foreign investors to sell their stakes or face expropriation, is one that I'd rather not worry about.

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Steve Symington has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Yandex. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

A Financial Plan on an Index Card

Keeping it simple.

Aug 7, 2015 at 11:26AM

Two years ago, University of Chicago professor Harold Pollack wrote his entire financial plan on an index card.

It blew up. People loved the idea. Financial advice is often intentionally complicated. Obscurity lets advisors charge higher fees. But the most important parts are painfully simple. Here's how Pollack put it:

The card came out of chat I had regarding what I view as the financial industry's basic dilemma: The best investment advice fits on an index card. A commenter asked for the actual index card. Although I was originally speaking in metaphor, I grabbed a pen and one of my daughter's note cards, scribbled this out in maybe three minutes, snapped a picture with my iPhone, and the rest was history.

More advisors and investors caught onto the idea and started writing their own financial plans on a single index card.

I love the exercise, because it makes you think about what's important and forces you to be succinct.

So, here's my index-card financial plan:


Everything else is details. 

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