Tags: Google | GOOG | AAPL | technology

Little Clear Direction for Google Stock

By    |   Wednesday, 07 Sep 2011 02:18 PM

Google (GOOG), the world’s biggest search engine operator, has had an eventful year. Some of the events have been positive and some negative. When you put it all together, it’s difficult to take an extremely bullish or bearish stance on the company. So it may be a good time to sit tight, whether you own Google shares or not.

In August, Google announced that it is buying cell phone maker Motorola Mobility Holdings for $12.5 billion, the most it has ever paid for an acquisition and a few billion too much, according to some. Google bought the company as part of its battle against the Apple (AAPL) iPhone.

Google’s phone operating system Android has a 40 percent market share among U.S. smart phones, compared to 28 percent for Apple’s iOS, according to Nielsen data. Google wants to protect that advantage, of course.

Apple makes its own handsets, and with the purchase of Motorola Google will be able to do so as well. But it risks alienating Motorola competitors who use Android, notably Samsung and HTC.

Another big reason why Google bought Motorola is to gain control of 17,000 patents. That intellectual property could turn out to be quite valuable. A group led by Apple beat out Google in bidding $4.5 billion for Nortel patents in July.

Meanwhile, Google faces a U.S. government antitrust investigation. And in August it agreed to a $500 million settlement with the feds over charges that it displayed ads from Canadian pharmacies that were illegally offering prescription drugs to U.S. consumers.

The positives

On the plus side, in April the government allowed Google's to buy ITA Software, which it’s using to establish a travel-search service. Google’s new social networking service Google+ has gained some traction.

Second-quarter earnings came in strong. The company’s profit surged 36 percent in the period from a year earlier, to $2.5 billion. Revenue jumped 32 percent to $9 billion

Standard & Poor’s analyst Scott Kessler has a hold rating on Google shares. He is impressed with Google’s efforts in display advertising, some mobile services, and social media. But he’s skeptical about the Motorola purchase. The company next reports around Oct. 13.

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Google (GOOG), the world s biggest search engine operator, has had an eventful year. Some of the events have been positive and some negative. When you put it all together, it s difficult to take an extremely bullish or bearish stance on the company. So it may be a good time...
Google,GOOG,AAPL,technology
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2011-18-07
Wednesday, 07 Sep 2011 02:18 PM
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