Industrial Automation Stocks Slide - Rumors Buzz
Industrial automation stock continued to take a beating this past
week. You'll find lots of interesting information, with graphs, charts,
facts and figures on the web. Take a look for yourself on the
Yahoo Financial news website:
Honeywell Down, Emerson Up
Honeywell slid to $33 near its 52-week low of 32. A long-term
Honeyweller, now ex, sent me this:
"I have an unconfirmed rumor that P+F just bought the entire
industrial proximity line from Honeywell Sensing and Control
(a.k.a. Micro Switch). If this is true, it might be the preliminary
signal that Honeywell is positioning itself to get out of the
industrial control market and that the photoelectric line is probably
next to go. I don't know if the "cash cow" industrial limit switch
will be going but I do know that GE ED&C was private labeling
that product and may be willing to take it over."
Emerson climbed 5% during the week and closed just above 60.
Some people brought up rumors about Siemens making a bid for
Emerson, which my high-within-Emerson source tells me
(and I believe) is "Horse manure of the finest vintage".
Rockwell slides - how much further?
Rockwell slid to a 52-week low of $31
(ouch#&%@! I bought the stock at 38.00).
A Rockwell “deep throat” commented :
"I keep hearing that Rockwell is doing better than last year but
behind plan. They are laying off people, cutting expenses, stopping
travel and training. Sounds like a short term tactic to boost the
stock price or even clean up prior to being acquired. And meanwhile,
Don Davis (the CEO) continues to collect his almost $3m salary…"
An ex-Allen-Bradley executive commented on my suggestion
(eNews June 26, 2000) that Eaton and Rockwell should get together.
"Eaton and Rockwell could never get together, unless Eaton was the
surviving management team, here's why:
Regarding my eNews story on the Rockwell/Omron alliance
(eNews May 10, 2000) an Allen-Bradley insider emailed me :
- 1. Don Davis fired Randy Carson, who now heads Cutler-Hammer
as the automation brains of Eaton
- 2. Rockwell sold off all the automotive stuff a.k.a Meritor
- 3. Rockwell is too arrogant."
"It seems that the recent Omron/Rockwell news will apparently
lead to merger or acquisition, but slowly and in 'stealth mode'..."
Industrial Automation "Unloved"
Regarding the stock-market slide, Mathieu van den Bergh writes :
"I hope that the market will soon recognize that our old brick and
mortar industries are undervalued. If we look at the market valuation
of companies like Siemens, one wonders about Wall Street (in)sanity.
I guess, we will need to experience a slight economic downturn, with
the "dot-com companies" going out of business by the bunch
before common sense sets back in".
Andrew Bond, editor of UK-based "SCADA Insider" brought this
interesting item to my attention :
"Roxboro (Solartron, Mobrey etc) are in negotiation with a VC
to take the group private. Part of the explanation is that Roxboro
is 'in an unloved sector'. The deal would value Roxboro at 210m UK
pounds (17.9m UK pounds profit on 124.8m UK pounds sales in 1999).
One for the revised urge to merge list before it goes unlisted!"
See my more extended coverage and commentary on this story
Roxboro - UK News and Commentary
Andrew continues, to echo Mathieu's point :
"Interesting to speculate that automation companies are unable
to take advantage of the dot-com effect when technology stocks
rise but appear to suffer from it when they fall!"
My article gives you the background on these goings-on :
"The Changing Face of Automation"
My previous tome includes sales vs. market-cap for all the industrial automation leaders :
The Urge to Merge
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