Walt Disney Co
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Communication Services : Entertainment | Large Cap BlendCompany profile

The Walt Disney Company, formerly TWDC Holdco 613 Corp, is a worldwide entertainment company. The Company operates in four business segments: Media Networks, Parks Experiences and Products, Studio Entertainment, and Direct-To-Consumer and International. The media networks segment includes cable and broadcast television networks, television production and distribution operations, domestic television stations, and radio networks and stations. The Company's Walt Disney Imagineering unit designs and develops new theme park concepts and attractions, as well as resort properties. The studio entertainment segment produces and acquires live-action and animated motion pictures, direct-to-video content, musical recordings and live stage plays. The Company also develops and publishes games, primarily for mobile platforms, books, magazines and comic books.

Premarket

Last Trade
Delayed
$142.00
1.08 (0.77%)
Bid
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Ask
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B/A Size
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Market Hours

Closing Price
$140.92
Day's Change
0.00 (0.00%)
Bid
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B/A Size
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Day's High
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Day's Low
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Volume
(Light)
Volume:
212

10-day average volume:
8,725,553
212

UPDATE: The sharpest investors use this simple tool to pick stocks

2:42 pm ET January 10, 2019 (MarketWatch)
Print

By Vitaliy Katsenelson

Valuing a public company like a private business gives a more realistic picture of its potential

Wall Street glorifies companies that beat quarterly estimates by arguing that the long term comprises a lot of short terms. But beating earnings estimates for a few consecutive quarters doesn't necessarily lead to long-term greatness. It assumes that significant changes to the business are visible in the reported numbers.

This is likely what General Electric (GE) executives rationalized as they destroyed the company's protective shareholder "moat" and its respected corporate culture. Their short-term thinking focused on "beating earnings" on a quarterly basis, thereby insuring seemingly endless analyst upgrades. Except GE's short-term success that was seen by the market came at the expense of unseen damage to its moat, balance sheet, and corporate culture.

Conversely, consider Apple (AAPL) reporting what analysts considered "disappointing" numbers for eight sequential quarters (three lifetimes on Wall Street) leading up to 2007. During that time, Apple is pouring every ounce of its resources into R&D and coming up with the iPhone. It cannot hire the right engineers fast enough and thus must pull in engineers who had been working on the Macintosh (then Apple's bread and butter), which results in delaying the introduction of new computers by a few quarters (this did happen). Did those negative short-term results subtract from the value of the company, or were they instrumental in adding trillions of dollars of revenue to Apple?

Quarterly misses and beats show only what is seen, but true investors are able to see the unseen.

With the luxury of hindsight, I picked two examples, GE and Apple, that seem to prove that earnings misses are great and beats are bad -- but they are neither. They are part of the vocabulary of the semi-staged reality game show on business TV -- which I choose not to participate in. Facebook (FB), for example, was recently accused of using casino gaming psychology to get their users to keep coming back to see if their posts or family pictures were "liked." Quarterly "beats" and "misses" are not much different; they add casino excitement to investing and turn unsuspecting investors into gamblers.

This doesn't mean that an investor should completely ignore what happens in the short run, but quarterly earnings should be always looked in the right context -- the context of the long run.

Long-term thinking should be deeply embedded in your stock analysis. A discounted cash flow (DCF) analysis model forces you to value a company the way you'd value a private business, bringing cash flows that lie decades in the future into the present.

But DCF analysis, though grounding, is a crude model that is most useful at the extremes of a company's valuation, when a company is wildly overvalued or undervalued. This is why it makes sense to estimate a company's value based on earnings multiples. In my process, I look at a company's expected earnings three- to five years out and then discount it back (convert to today's dollars). This is the key: By looking at a company's earnings this far out, you muffle the noise of quarterly earnings -- the "what have you done for me lately?" hysteria -- and focus on the future.

So, how does one invest in this overvalued market? Our strategy is spelled out in this fairly lengthy article (http://contrarianedge.com/how-investors-should-deal-with-the-overwhelming-problem-of-understanding-the-world-economy/).

Vitaliy Katsenelson is chief investment officer at Investment Management Associates (http://imausa.com/) in Denver, Colo. His firm holds no position in any of the stocks mentioned. He is the author of "Active Value Investing" and "The Little Book of Sideways Markets" .

-Vitaliy Katsenelson; 415-439-6400; AskNewswires@dowjones.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

January 10, 2019 14:42 ET (19:42 GMT)

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