Friday, September 30, 2016

Stock Swap...Selling ANTM, buying ABBV

I sold ANTM today due to the ongoing uncertainty around their proposed mega-merger with Cigna Healthcare.  I decided to drop this stock and add Abbvie, the spin out from Abbot six years ago. ABBV is currently undervalued, and pays a healthy 3.6% dividend (ANTM was at 2%).

I filled a limit order at $63 today for a 1/2 position in the stock.

Given the uncertainty of the merger for ANTM, the upcoming election, Obamacare, etc..., I'm not really thrilled to own a major healthcare provider.  Instead, I like the drug companies and distributors better.

Here is a snapshot of ABBV today via FastGraphs:

Go Blue.... Part 2

Michigan’s Formal Rebuttal to Jason Gay

The Wolverines of the Wall Street Journal respond to Mr. Gay’s column on America’s finest university

University of Michigan graduates working at the Wall Street Journal were the subject of a Thursday column in the newspaper by sportswriter Jason Gay, who attended the University of Wisconsin Madison.
The column bemoaned the rise of Michigan’s No. 4-ranked football team; poked fun at its coach, the future supreme court justice Jim Harbaugh; and described us—the Journal’s hardworking Michigan people—as insufferable elitists.
Or so we’re told. We were too busy to read it.
Because this column seems to have painted a distorted picture, we would like to set the record straight by employing a device that is near and dear to Mr. Gay’s heart—a list.
Here are 19 thoughts that have crossed the minds of the Wall Street Journal’s Michigan graduates over the last 24 hours:
1. Solving the world’s problems is hard work. Sometimes we wish we’d gone to a school where people drink beer for breakfast.
2. Sadly, Michigan has never felt the need to have a mascot. But if we did, it would probably be a pants-less rodent in a turtleneck sweater. Oh wait, that’s taken.
3. Coach Harbaugh was smart to ditch the pleats. Flat-front khakis are much more flattering on him. They’re also perfect for antiquing.
Michigan Wolverines quarterback Wilton Speight looks to pass to tight end Jake Butt.ENLARGE
Michigan Wolverines quarterback Wilton Speight looks to pass to tight end Jake Butt.PHOTO: REUTERS
4. Michigan’s No. 24 ranking in the recent Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Educationcollege rankings was a robbery, if you ask us—even if it was the best finish for any public university.
5. Wow, these rankings just keep going and going. Look at No. 67!
6. Jason Gay… Wait a minute—isn’t he the guy who wrote that column about the squirrel attorney?
7. Why do alumni of some public research universities in the Midwest keep prattling on about the ‘elitism’ of other public research universities in the Midwest? Haven’t these people visited the East Coast?
8. Ann Arbor was recently named America’s best college town. Madison’s finest hour came in 1986 when it served as the backdrop for the Hollywood classic Back to School, which earned Rodney Dangerfield six Academy Awards.
The greatest moment in Wisconsin sports history.
9. Michigan has a tight end named Jake Buttand a defensive end named Taco Charlton. These are not jokes. They are miracles.
10. Michigan is the winningest college football program in history. Wisconsin also has a glorious legacy of football success. (Go Packers!)
11. We’re glad the team we are playing has a handy “W” on its helmet—otherwise we wouldn’t know who they were. Also nice to see people are still using fonts from 1991.
12. When it comes to the best place in America to buy cheese—OK, let’s all agree there’s absolutely no contest. It’s Zingerman’s.
File photo of unidentified rodent in turtleneck. ENLARGE
File photo of unidentified rodent in turtleneck.PHOTO: JOE ROBBINS/GETTY IMAGES
13. Appalachian State has become one of the best teams in the Sun Belt, winning 11 games last year and recently taking No. 11 Tennessee to overtime. We put that program on the map!
15. This week NASA hired a Michigan aerospace professor to lead its effort to figure out the origins of life and the universe. Kind of a lateral move.
16. Michigan has already won college football’s real national championship, which is measured by an algorithm that gives extra weight to glowing New Yorker articles.
17. Jason Gay’s columns would be a lot better if James Earl Jones (Michigan class of 1955) read them aloud. While former Michigan student Madonna sang background vocals andTom Brady danced along.
18. And they were written by Arthur Miller, who also went to Michigan.
19. Wait, who is Michigan playing this weekend?

Go Blue...Part 1

From the WSJ on Thursday....

The Michigan Wolverines Are Back. Ugh.

A victory by Wisconsin would thankfully put an end to the insufferable swagger that Mr. Khakipants has restored in Ann Arbor.

Head coach Jim Harbaugh of the Michigan Wolverines leads his team onto the field before a game on September 10.ENLARGE
Head coach Jim Harbaugh of the Michigan Wolverines leads his team onto the field before a game on September 10. PHOTO: DAVE REGINEK/GETTY IMAGES
There are a lot of reasons I want—no, I need—my Wisconsin Badgers to defeat the No. 4 Michigan Wolverines in football Saturday. The most obvious reason is that I graduated from the University of Wisconsin at Madison, unequivocally regarded as the planet’s finest institution of higher learning and bratwurst (sorry, you Harvard/Stanford losers). A victory in Ann Arbor would make Wisconsin a perfect 5-0, and two weeks later, in Madison, when they crush Ohio State and its tetchy coach, Urban Meyer, the Badgers will have a clear track to a spot in college football’s daffy new playoff system.
But the main reason I need Wisconsin to beat Michigan is simple:
I can’t stand Michigan. I’m sorry.
I want to be clear: I mean the college, not the state. I love the state of Michigan. And Michigan State. Sparty, you guys are cool. And nice hat.
I mean the University of Michigan. Harbaughtown. The dreaded Wolverines.
You have to understand: my employer, The Wall Street Journal, reeks of Wolverine. Absolutely reeks. I’d say a solid three-quarters of the people I’ve worked with in the Journal sports department went to Michigan. At one point, my editor, my editor’s editor, and my editor’s editor’s editor were all Michigan people. One of the paper’s most senior editors is a Wolverine. I don’t even ask where the interns come from anymore.
And I’m telling you, it makes a lonely Badger feel invisible. The Journal Wolverines have secret handshakes and inside jokes and a monthly midnight meeting in the newsroom, where they talk about how awesome Ann Arbor was, how handsome Tom Brady is, and laugh as they read from a list of people they know who didn’t get into Michigan. On Fridays before big games, they show up to meetings wearing blue and yellow—oh, I’m sorry, maize—face paint. They hum the Michigan fight song, “The Victors,” in the elevator. They speak their own language: Schembechler.
I know you think my dislike of Michigan is irrational. Of course it’s irrational. What college sports hatred is ever rational?
OK, Duke. It’s rational to hate Duke.
Michigan people at the Journal became impossible last year when you-know-who came to town. Mr. Khakipants. You have probably heard Michigan is paying its former quarterback turned superstar coach, Jim Harbaugh, close to $600 million per season. I hear it is actually closer to $850 million, with a two-billion dollar bonus if he shuts out Ohio State. Harbaugh also gets nine private jets, three dozen chauffeured Chrysler 300s, two rocket ships, a Mars rover, a hot air balloon, a pogo stick and a pony of his choice. I even hear that Harbaugh’s khakis now cost as much as $11.
The Wisconsin Badgers will play Michigan in Ann Arbor this Saturday for the first time since 2010. ENLARGE
The Wisconsin Badgers will play Michigan in Ann Arbor this Saturday for the first time since 2010. PHOTO:ASSOCIATED PRESS
But these Wolverines at the Journal, they think it’s worth every penny. Harbaughmania—you may remember I wandered around Ann Arbor dressed as the guy almost two ago—has made Michigan football relevant again. The first part of the decade was easy around here—Michigan football stank up the Big House, barely won a thing, cycled through 27 head coaches, and were out of the national conversation by the first weekend of October. As the Badgers played meaningful games on TV, the Michigan people I knew went rock-climbing and antiquing on Saturdays. They were humbled. It was the best.
Mr. Khakipants has changed all this. Harbaugh already has Michigan in the Top 4, and even though it’s September, the Wolverines can’t help but daydream of a revenge victory against Ohio State, a Big Ten championship, a college playoff and a potential national championship. There’s a return of that old Michigan “We’ve Won More Games in College Football History Than Anybody” confidence. That annoying swagger.
Wisconsin folks, we recognize this swagger. When I was at Madison, in the early 15th century, Michigan was a juggernaut at pretty much everything. And while the Badgers theoretically have a regional rivalry with Minnesota, beating big old Michigan is really the thing. We haven’t done it a lot. Wisconsin has gone 14-49-1 versus Michigan in its football history, though they’ve won three of the last five in the past decade.
But you want to know the thing that really makes me nuts? Here’s what Michigan people think about Wisconsin: They don’t think about us at all.
The Wolverines have a zillion rivals; a Badger game is nothing to them compared to an Ohio State game, or playing Notre Dame or Sparty or just sitting around talking about how great the Fab Five were. Even if the Badgers have caught up in recent decades, Wisconsin people still look at Michigan as a Death Star. But Michigan people look at us like we’re someone they met in the grocery store once 10 years ago.
Oh, you. Hi.
Now don’t ask me if I’m jealous because I didn’t have the stuff to get into Michigan. Of course I didn’t have the stuff to get into Michigan. I’m certain that today I couldn’t get into Wisconsin, buddy. I’m still convinced my acceptance was an accident.
But I was lucky to get in, and I’ll be Wisconsin until the end. And my Badger friends are my friends for life, because Badgers are the best. Badgers will help you move on a Sunday. Badgers will watch your dog—for a year. Badgers will let you sleep on their sofa, no questions asked. The sofa might be outside on the front porch, and have been there since the Carter administration, but they’ll let you sleep on it.
And a Badger always gets the first round. And the last round. And then one more round after the last round.
Michigan? Look, I know it’s a really good school, and hard to get into, and they’re really smart, but Michigan people think they’re kind of…fancy. They almost think they’re as fancy as Northwestern people. I said almost.
So I’m begging the Badgers to get the job done on Saturday, in the Big House, before a 100,000 people and Mr. Khakipants himself. I want Wisconsin to ruin a Wolverine dream season, whomp Ohio State and run all the way to the National College Football Playoff Dance Party Jamboree or whatever they call that thing. But honestly I’ll just take the win over Michigan. I really want to rub it in at work.