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Valeant: Why Ackman Bailed PDF Print E-mail

Image Monday Pershing Square's (OTCPK:PSHZF) Bill Ackman sold his entire stake in Valeant (NYSE:VRX) for an estimated loss of over $3 billion.

Bill Ackman's Pershing Square has sold its 5.3 per cent stake in Valeant Pharmaceuticals, bringing down the curtain on one of the most disastrous investments in the hedge fund's history. The fund lost more than 90 per cent of its investment as Valeant plunged into financial crisis, and Mr. Ackman concluded that the tax losses would be more valuable to Pershing Square than any potential rebound in the stock ...

News that the "smart money" had exited the stock sent VRX down 9% in early morning trading. The following charts explain why Ackman finally threw in the towel.

Weatherford's Failed $540MM Equity Raise Appears Ominous PDF Print E-mail

Image Weatherford (NYSE:WFT) received a boost last week after hiring Mark McCollum, former Halliburton (NYSE:HAL) CFO, as its new CEO. The market went wild with speculation of a potential tie-up between the two oil services giants. WFT reached a high of $7.09 last Tuesday and closed yesterday at $6.32. My previous article predicted the stock appreciation would trigger another capital raise:

Last month Weatherford filed a $2.5 billion shelf registration for warrants ($543 million) and other securities ($2 billion). The warrants have an exercise price of $6.43 per share, and 84.5 million shares are issuable. After-hours WFT closed at $6.50; if the share price holds on Tuesday then the warrants would be in the money, and could trigger another equity raise.

The exercise of the warrants could have been dilutive by about 8%. I expected WFT to decline due to dilution from the warrant exercise. However, the warrants were not exercised.

Will Yellen Stop Putting Robitussin On The Economy? PDF Print E-mail

Image During his 1999 stand up routine, Bigger and Black, Chris Rock described how regardless of his illness as a child, his father "put some Robitussin to it":

When I was kid we had no insurance ... You had to be near death to see the doctor. You had to be way past Robitussin. That's all we had when I was a kid ... Robitussin. No matter what you've got, Robitussin had better handle it. "Daddy I've got asthma. Robittussin! I've got cancer. Robitussin! Daddy I broke my leg, Robitussin!"

This reminds me of Fed Chairwoman's monetary policy. Regardless of the malady -- high unemployment, an underperforming stock market, stagnant economic growth -- the Fed has applied Robitussin, i.e., record low interest rates. This has been going on for eight years now. The Financial Crisis of 2008/2009 was so devastating that the Fed had to put liquidity into the system to keep the economy from free falling. Former Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke's strategy was to create a wealth effect by pumping up asset prices via low rates.

Weatherford Hires Halliburton CFO McCollum; Shares Surge PDF Print E-mail

Image Weatherford International (NYSE:WFT) announced the hiring of former Halliburton (NYSE:HAL) CFO, Mark McCollum, as its new CEO. Shares surged 10% Monday after hours on the news. rishna Shivram will be departing as interim CEO effective immediately, and Christoph Bausch, Weatherford's Executive Vice President and CFO, will serve as acting CEO until McCollum takes the helm. The euphoria over the new hire was similar to the euphoria longs felt after former CEO, Bernard Duroc-Danner, suddenly departed in November; WFT surged over 30% on that news. Duroc-Danner's exit came weeks after capital-starved Weatherford had been fined $140 million by the SEC for accounting fraud.

Valeant's Sum-Of-The Parts Is $0 PDF Print E-mail
Image Valeant's (NYSE:VRX) stock fell sharply after the company announced it wanted to [i] restructure about $3 billion in debt and [ii] remove or alter certain of its maintenance covenants. I believe Valeant's structure represents mullet money; lenders should keep covenants intact and ask for an equity stake. That said, I now estimate the company's sum-of-the parts is $0. The company's Q4 revenue fell 3% Q/Q. EBITDA fell 16% due to falling margins at Branded Rx and U.S. Diversified. The sum-of-the parts, including the sale of certain skincare products, is about $27.1B. Too bad net debt is $29.3B. VRX's sum-of-the parts is $0. Sell the stock.
Valeant: Lenders Should Demand An Equity Stake PDF Print E-mail
VRX CEO Joe Papa
Monday Valeant Pharmaceuticals announced it had completed the sale of skincare assets to L'oreal and pared $1.1 billion of debt. However, it is now seeking another $3 billion as part of a debt restructuring:

Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc plans to line up a US$3.06bn incremental term loan as part of a debt restructuring ... In addition to the new debt offering, the company paid down about US$1.1bn of senior secured term loans with proceeds from the sale of its skincare products assets on March 3, according to a Monday regulatory filing. Valeant is also repaying a portion of its 6.75% senior notes due in 2018 and extending the maturity date of its revolving credit facility.

As part of the transaction the company also wants to remove covenants from its term B loans and modify covenants for its revolving credit agreement. In late Monday trading VRX was down over 5% on the news. Below is my takeaway on the proposed restructuring.

Financial Markets Falter After North Korea Missile Launch PDF Print E-mail

Kim Jong Un
On Monday North Korea launched several ballistic missiles into the Sea of Japan. The move will likely escalate tensions with South Korea and Japan:

One of the currently-unidentified projectiles could be an intercontinental ballistic missile, said a South Korean military official without providing further details. If true, the missile launch could prove a pivotal moment. In January, Pyongyang announced it was able to launch a long-range missile, capable of hitting the US, whenever it chooses. The country has never proven such capabilities, but the remarks elicited a rebuke from US President Donald Trump. "North Korea just stated that it is in the final stages of developing a nuclear weapon capable of reaching parts of the U.S. It won't happen!" Mr Trump tweeted at the time.

After 4.22 40 John Ross III Is New NFL Combine King PDF Print E-mail
Image The NFL combines is like the SATs --- they measure something, just not anything necessarily translatable to the football field. However, they can make or break your career or your draft status. Every year the media looks to anoint the new "mythical combine king," whether it's in the bench press, 40 yard dash or vertical leap. With a 4.24 40 yard dash, Chris Johnson has held the fastest man belt for a while now. The University of Washington's John Ross III vowed to usurp that with a 4.2. After Ross clocked in at a 4.22, the Ravens' Steve Smith exclaimed, "4.22 and he limped ... he just ran into an injury. Didn't look like he was running. I would go to the house. He can get on my plane and go home."
Remy Ma Bodies Nicki On "Shether"; Nicki Gets Lawyers Involved PDF Print E-mail

Is this battle rap or pugilism?
Last weekend Remy Ma unleashed the "dogs of war" on Nicki Minaj with her diss track, Shether. While Remy was up top for "seven winters, six summers" Nicki Minaj filled the vacuum for NYC female rap. After her return Remy got "back on her bully," putting the game on notice that [i] she's back, [ii] and she still holds the belt. Apparently, Nicki Minaj took offense to any insinuation that she was a paper champion and tried to diss Remy on "Make Love" , a collab with Gucci Mane. That was not the move ...

Ric Flair Predicts Atlanta Falcons Will Ride High. Woo! PDF Print E-mail

Image I knew the "Nature Boy" Ric Flair was from down South, but who knew he was an Atlanta Falcons fan? Flair recently predicted the Falcons' victory over the Green Bay Packers and that they would advance to the Super Bowl. Will the limousine ridin' ... jet flyin' Falcons take it to the Patriots in the Super Bowl too?


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