What's Important in the Financial World (11/21/2012)

Samsung to Stay on Top

Samsung will ship 61 million smartphones in the current quarter, according to the Yonhap News Agency. That is well above forecasts, and the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 - the notebook that competes directly with the Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) iPad - is forecast to ship more units than expected. The reports says:

UBS estimated that Samsung Electronics will sell 61.5 million units of smartphones in the October-December period, up 5 percent from an estimated 58 million in the previous quarter. The number could reach as high as 63 million depending on the sell-through, or the volume that is actually sold to consumers.

The news means that Samsung has cemented its place as the top smartphone company. But it also probably means that Apple will increase is legal challenges over Samsung's patents. Apple has had success with the actions in the U.S. but was less successful elsewhere. Apple can brag that its iPad 2 and mini sales have been at record levels. But, as long as it needs to resort to the legal system to keep its market share, the real appeal of its products could be masked.

Nintendo Optimistic About Wii U

Nintendo struck a positive tone about the launch of it Wii U. There is not much initial data to support whether it can make much progress against Sony Corp. (NYSE: SNE), Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT), and the army of games that work on portable smartphones. In an interview with the San Jose Mercury News, Reggie Fils-Aime, head of Japan-based Nintendo's American subsidiary, said:

The business model doesn't change dramatically, in that as soon as we get the consumer to buy one piece of software, then that entire transaction becomes profit positive.

In the end, the business model is still to drive the install base of hardware, and then to drive a strong tie ratio with all of the other software and experiences for the consumer. And if we're able to do that, then we will create significant profit for the company.

Coal Power on the Rise

The World Resources Institute issued a report that says 1,200 coal-fueled plants will go online around the globe. The WRI said:

Several months ago, WRI began compiling and analyzing information about proposed new coal-fired plants in order to assess potential future risks to the global climate. We released our findings today in the Global Coal Risk Assessment working paper. Our research shows that 1,199 new coal-fired plants with a total installed capacity of 1,401,268 megawatts (MW) are being proposed globally. If all of these projects are built, it would add new coal power capacity that is almost four times the current capacity of all coal-fired plants in the United States.

Douglas A. McIntyre


Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Market Open Tagged: AAPL, MSFT, SNE

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