Favorite Ledes

Can Xinhua Put Its House in Order?

By Bill Alpert

May 28, 2007 12:01 am ET

WITHIN MOMENTS OF MY ASKING Xinhua Finance about its key executive Shelly Singhal earlier this month, the Chinese company shot me his resignation announcement. It wasn’t even a finished press release. Singhal’s history of promoting stocks that turned out to be multinational frauds had made him appear a strange choice to be running the merger activities of Xinhua Finance — which aspires to be China’s financial information and media leader, while also owning a bunch of U.S. investment research shops….

A favorite clarification:

Crime and Punishment in Putin’s Russia

April 16, 2011 6:15 am ET


In “Crime and Punishment in Putin’s Russia” (April 18, 2011), Barron’s reported the “arrest” of a Russian federal tax service official who had audited Olga Stepanova, the controversial former chief of Russia’s 28th District Tax Inspectorate. The auditor was not arrested, but “detained” and has since been released.

There’s a Bubble Forming in Hydrogen Fuel-Cell Stocks

By Bill Alpert

July 24, 2020 4:52 pm ET

Wall Street discovered hydrogen this year. It has been around for 13 billion years, but the big bucks earmarked for green-energy projects, and a fresh craze for shares of companies aiming to make hydrogen-fueled trucks, have raised the investment profile of all things connected to this ubiquitous gas

Tech Trader

Up Next, TV by AT&T

By Bill Alpert

6 February 2006

What has cast such a shadow upon once-serene telecom investors? The Cable.

“If there’s been one thing that has been an overhang on our stock, it’s been cable competition,” said AT&T‘s financial chief, Richard G. Lindner. Last Tuesday, at the first analyst meeting since SBC merged with AT&T (and adopted its name and ticker: T), Lindner and his colleagues tried to show that AT&T has regained the initiative in communications. They seem to have succeeded. Shares of the San Antonio-based phone giant roused themselves about 4% last week, to close at 26.79, while East Coast counterpart Verizon Communications (VZ) gave up 2%, to close at 31.61.

Offerings in the Offing: DSL Derby: NorthPoint’s a player in fast ‘Net connections

By Bill Alpert

15 March 1999

You want the world and you want it. . . now. Well, you can take delivery of its data two ways: By cable modem or by a telephone technology called DSL.

Cable firms have gotten billions of dollars from AT&T and Microsoft to build Internet fast lanes over cable systems. Firms using a rival technology on phone wires, called “Digital Subscriber Line,” are raising hundreds of millions in initial stock offerings. In January, Santa Clara-based Covad Communications sold 7.8 million shares at $18, to add $130 million to its war chest. San Francisco’s NorthPoint Communications and Englewood, Colorado’s Rhythms NetConnections have filed for IPOs of as much as $125 million and $165 million, respectively.

DSL eliminates the bottleneck of copper phone lines, running data up to 25 times faster than traditional phone modems to reach speeds of 1.5 million bits per second. Some DSL techniques claim they can clock 7 megabits per second. Cable-modem services have signed more subscribers to date, with low monthly rates of around $40. But cable systems only pass about half the potential subscribers, mainly residences but few businesses. Copper wires are everywhere.

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