‘Twas the Night Before Twitter…and ‘Drill Baby Drill’…Google, Facebook and Twitter as The New Exxon’s

Tomorrow Twitter should be a public Company. I have no idea what will happen to the price, but since I own some shares and submitted to Morgan Stanley for some shares (for my fund), I am thinking there is enough public appetite for higher prices. I would be a seller at $40 if my broker allows me.

The cool thing about the markets with the Facebook IPO and now Twitter is how a young generation of investors will be pulled into the world of financial markets. Eddy sums up the new rules (there are none):

Stocktwits traffic and engagement is roaring and it can’t just be the bull market. Our audience is skewing much younger than the portals that dominated the last bull market.

My gut is the young have no affinity to the brands of the past like Fidelity, Shittybank, Schwab or Etrade. They wont get their stock quotes at Yahoo Finance (.com). The lean and nimble financial web startups of today can focus on this younger crowd that may have capital in the future.

The gun toting, mobile first, burrito eating, coffee drinking, Facebook posting, Twittering, global travelling…yoots of today would be crushing the indexes if they understood how their fears, wants and needs could lead to investment returns.


Nov. 6 at 2:34 PM

The perfect portfolio for 2013 has been a gun $RGR , a coffee $SBUX and burrito $CMG, an airline ticket $PCLN a Tesla (even after today)

It is super expensive to build financial brands because of the regulations which in turn scares out the VC’s and angel investors, but it seems impossible that a massive round of investments and acquisitions does not begin to take place at a quickening pace.

In the late 1990’s, the ebrokers started arming their sites with all the tools that would lead to mass destruction of individual investors. Today’s tools are more about mobile, information, mentoring – the people and connections. The data and the tools of the last bull markets are now commodities. That includes the hardware.

Back to Twitter now. It’s very cool to see small investors so excited again. I see NOTHING wrong with it. It is our job to harness that excitement and teach a new generation about investing. The joys and the pitfalls. Who to follow, what to read, how to evaluate, what we are buying, why? and of course, when to sell. Wall Street has taken ZERO interest in this. They are celebrating Twitter, like they celebrated Facebook and quickly, they will head back behind their walls.

The media believes we are in a bubble. They are licking their chops to write stories about how small investors (‘retail’) are going to be left holding the bag.

They will point to the YouTube acquisition for $1.6 billion, the Instagram acquisition for $1 billion and the possible SnapChat acquisition that will come with zero revenues.

I would argue that today’s giant web companies and their acquisitions are just a new form of wildcatting and drilling. They are drilling for attention and engagement. It’s the new oil. It’s a new form of currency.

I wonder if a TechCrunch or TechMeme existed to cover deep sea drilling by BP and Exxon if we would be as harsh about billion dollar empty holes in the ground.

So I will keep participating in this new economy and continue to leverage the platforms to build up a currency that I am not quite sure how to value. It is thrilling in a less life threatening way…for now. (#NSA)


  1. Great post Howard. Always love your holistic view of the markets and the (changing) demographics within.

    As for $TWTR, I’m with Ivan and expect a lot of volatility as the new shareholder base settles over the next few quarters.

    Don’t see a need to rush in, but may nibble if it doesn’t pop to hard at the open.

  2. William Mougayar says:

    It sounds like an “All aboard” call, but I hope we can curb our enthusiasm a bit, so the whole thing doesn’t come crashing. If the retail little guy gets hurt, that’s not such a good thing.

    I’m seeing some of the same patterns pre-2000; like we don’t know how to value these beasts, and high level people from non-Internet business starting to join the next hot thing (eg Pinterest). I hope I’m wrong, because 2013 is not exactly like 1999, but there are parts of that movie that are giving me a flashback.

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