Waiting for TASER

At least TASER (Nasdaq: TASR  ) management thinks shares of its company are cheap -- sort of.

During a second quarter in which the stun gun maker and two-time Rule Breakers recommendation reported its first per-share loss since 2006, management spent $12.5 million to repurchase 1.8 million shares.

Interestingly, they may have been buying some shares from longtime board member Bruce Culver. He's sold 136,000 shares since June 1. His last sale -- executed on June 30 -- was, according to this Form 4, to cover a margin call. Talk about weird. What was he betting on?

We can't know. What we do know is that it's tough to blame Culver for selling; TASER has underperformed recently. Look at yesterday's Q2 results: Revenue fell 18%. Operating income fell 85%, and that's after excluding the impact of a $5.2 million litigation charge.

Even our more than 11,000-strong Motley Fool CAPS community has mixed feelings about the stock:

Metric

TASER

CAPS stars (5 max)

***

Total ratings

1,099

Bullish ratings

1,014

Percent bulls

92.3%

Bearish ratings

85

Percent bears

7.7%

Bullish pitches

259

Bearish pitches

27

Data current as of July 25, 2008.

"Legal issues," wrote CAPS All-Star indiobravo in a bearish pitch made last month. "If deadly weapons are not so seriously taken by some law enforcers, these weapons will be party time."

Fair enough. But legal issues alone are no reason to avoid a stock. Baidu (Nasdaq: BIDU  ) , Research In Motion (Nasdaq: RIMM  ) , and PotashCorp (NYSE: POT  ) have all faced legal challenges over the past 12 months, according to Capital IQ.

To me, the TASER technology is inevitable -- a safer alternative to deadly weapons made by Smith & Wesson (NYSE: SWHC  ) and Sturm, Ruger (NYSE: RGR  ) . What's troubling is the thing rocker Tom Petty called the hardest part: the waiting.

Get your clicks on related Foolishness:

Fool.com contributor Tim Beyers didn't own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article at the time of publication. He hunts for tech's best as a contributor to Motley Fool Rule Breakers, which counts TASER and Baidu as holdings. Get a daily dose of his Foolish musings via this feed for your RSS reader. The Motley Fool's disclosure policy is a stunner.


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  • Report this Comment On July 27, 2008, at 9:29 AM, Nodaytimetrader wrote:

    I think Lamperd's less lethal products will be used in place of the Taser - starting with Canada. Below is a recent article headline from Canada.

    No Tasers For Regular Police In Saskatchewan

    Regular municipal police in Saskatchewan will no longer be using

    Tasers in the wake of several high profile deaths in other parts of

    the country, the province's police commission announced Friday.

    See news area at LamperdLessLethal.com for the video clip.

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