The electric-car maker is on the road to becoming the first rival to break the hold of Detroit's Big 3 in the public's imagination. Can it sustain this success?

By TheStreet Staff May 15, 2013 2:24PM

thestreet logoNight vision © Allan Baxter, Digital Vision, Getty ImagesBy Chris Ciaccia, TheStreet

 

To say that Tesla Motors (TSLA) has been a wild ride in recent weeks would be an understatement. The company is now profitable, and Wall Street analysts are falling over themselves to raise price targets on the stock. Tesla is no longer referred to as an electric car manufacturer. It's being referred to by one analyst as America's fourth car manufacturer.

 

Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas raised his price target to $103 from $47, reiterating his "overweight" rating on the shares, noting that Tesla has addressed fundamental concerns about its market. "Competency in technology is migrating to engineering, manufacturing and marketing," Jonas wrote in a research note. "Detroit, Munich, Wolfsburg and Toyota City must feel a sense of astonishment . . . with a hint of anxiety."

 

A full-fledged recovery will take time and arrive in 3 stages, according to one analyst, who sees the recent dividend hike as the first stage in the company's turnaround.

By TheStreet Staff May 13, 2013 6:10PM

thestreet logoSmart watchesBy Chris Ciaccia

 

Much has been made of the decline in Apple's (AAPL) share price, from $700 in September to below $400 this spring. That fall has prompted more than a few analysts and investors to write off the the company and the stock. Others, however, want to know whether a recovery may be at hand.


It is, if you believe one Wall Street analyst.

 

Brian White at Topeka Capital Markets has identified what he calls Apple's three-pronged approach to achieving a sustainable recovery in the price of its shares: Returning cash to shareholders; a rebound from a trough in the company's profit cycle; and new areas of growth.

 

The greatest takeaway from examining 4 decades of data on music sales and revenue is the record industry's success in reinventing itself in the face of technological change.

By TheStreet Staff May 9, 2013 1:13PM

thestreet logoWoman listening to music on her headphones (© nicolas hansen/E+/Getty Images)By Jonathan Blum, TheStreet

 

When Liz Kennedy informed me I had access to data on every music industry sale over the past 40 years, I had no idea it would feel this sad.

 

As director of communications for Recording Industry Association of America, Kennedy is the gatekeeper to the Industry Shipment Statistics database.

 

Here, since 1973, the RIAA has kept a running tab of music sold in all formats -- compact discs, vinyl records, casette tapes, downloaded singles -- by such industry heavyweights as Warner Music GroupSony Music Entertainment and  Universal Music Group.  

 

Tech stocks are out of favor, and cheap as a result. But the sector should get a boost -- starting in the year's second half -- as corporations start spending their IT budgets.

By StreetAuthority May 8, 2013 3:00PM
Investing in tech stocksBy David Sterman, StreetAuthority                                                           
This is not a good time to be running a tech company.

Corporate clients continue to withhold capital spending funds, investing only in areas that promise rapid payback or require modest sums to realize incremental improvements.

Additionally, spending by the U.S. government -- a major buyer of hardware, software and services -- has been nearly frozen as the sequester limits (or even shrinks) information technology budgets.

Adding insult, tech companies' foreign sales divisions in Europe and Asia are noting a high degree of spending caution.

How bad are business conditions? Based on updated second-quarter guidance, tech companies are expecting revenues to decline 5% year on year in the current quarter, according to Bloomberg. With the exception of a few quarters in late 2008 and early 2009, we haven't seen a drop like that since the dot-com implosion.
 

As a matter of fairness, Congress should pass an Internet sales tax bill. But the final bill should fix problems for retailers having to deal with tax codes from multiple jurisdictions.

By TheStreet Staff May 7, 2013 4:31PM

thestreet logoCursor on shopping cart icon button © Ed Honowitz, Photodisc, Getty ImagesBy Peter Morici

 

The Senate on Monday passed the Marketplace Fairness Act on a 69-27 vote, empowering states to collect sales taxes for out-of-state purchases made online. The legislation is expected to face a bigger hurdle in the House. Though flawed, the House should improve the measure and then approve it. 

 

I don't like the idea of  state and local governments collecting more tax revenues -- they know no limits to their capacity to squander our hard-earned dollars. But the current situation is unfair,  and bad economic policy.

 

In 1992, the U.S. Supreme Court held that states did not have the power to levy taxes on online sales unless the retailer has a physical presence in their state. Consequently, major online retailers like L.L. Bean routinely collect the appropriate state sales taxes in jurisdictions where they have a store or warehouse but do not on sales in states where they do not have a physical presence.

 

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