If you're feeling good about the market, you're not alone. Take my hand as we go over some of this week's more uplifting headlines.
1. Bring back some IPO sizzle
An uninspiring run of Wall Street debutantes ended when Financial Engines
Financial Engines was hoping to price 10.6 million shares between $9 and $11 apiece, and was able to fetch $12 a share. It wasn't enough, with the stock soaring 44% on its first trading day.
There may not be a lot that is fundamentally titillating about Financial Engines. It didn't post its first annual profit until last year. Revenue growth of 19% in 2009 is commendable, but not necessarily exciting. However, the stock's post-IPO pop will go a long way to revive the stagnant pipeline of new offerings.
Underwriters can't move IPOs if investors don't see the occasional jackpot. Too many winners may create a feeding frenzy, but a lack of opening day success stories is deal breaker. Financial Engines is just what the pipeline needed.
2. Stream on, Netflix
Terms of the deal weren't made public, but StreamingMedia.com indicates that Akamai is offering Netflix a cutthroat rate of $0.015 per gigabyte -- a fourth of what it typically charges, and a third of what Akamai's smaller rivals charge to win deals -- through the first few months. If it's true, Netflix is also coming out a winner in this deal.
Netflix has indicated that it will enter at least one market outside of the United States later this year. We don't know if this will be strictly a DVD service or if it will launch with a streaming component, but having the global market leader as your content-delivery network can only help down the line.
3. Kindle wants to be a Mac daddy
In a timely move, Amazon.com
Is Amazon expecting MacBook owners to become so enamored with the software that they snap up actual Kindle readers? I doubt it. Amazon may just be trying to show up Apple's domed ecosystem, demonstrating that it's willing to play nice across a wide series of gadgetry.
The e-book battle between Apple and Amazon is going to be an MMA slugfest in the coming months. Amazon is just getting in an early jab -- even if both may very well be end up as victors.
4. Tell me how you really feel, satellite radio
Sirius XM Radio
Sirius XM will appeal the ruling, buying it up to 180 days if it's successful. However, the real merit badge goes to the satrad star's response.
In a press release indicating the receipt of the exchange's notification, Sirius XM points out a few things to prove that it's Nasdaq-worthy.
- Sirius XM commands an equity value that is greater than 92% of the exchange's listed companies.
- It delivered $2.5 billion in revenue last year.
- A public float of 3.7 billion shares makes it one of the most actively traded stocks routinely.
- The exchange itself tapped it to join the Nasdaq Q-50 Index a week ago, a list of 50 stocks that are prime candidates to graduate into the larger NASDAQ-100 Index.
In short, it could have just responded with three words to the exchange: "I dare you."
5. I want my GTV
Obviously it will be an uphill battle for Google to master the living room. If Apple TV has been a rare recent miss out of Cupertino, Google's foray will face even more obstacles. However, Google wants to make sure that it's serving targeted ads through your television set. Would anyone be surprised if this is a precursor to its own digital television service, disrupting an industry that's just begging for it to happen?
Watch this space.
Akamai Technologies and Google are Motley Fool Rule Breakers selections. Apple, Amazon.com, and Netflix are Motley Fool Stock Advisor picks. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services, free for 30 days.
Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz is an optimist at every turn. He does not own shares in any of the stocks in this story, except for Netflix. Rick is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.
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