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Anyone buying Equifax stock?
Old 09-20-2017, 09:57 AM   #1
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Anyone buying Equifax stock?

Ok, hear me out. We all are hating Equifax right now. And their stock price shows it, down around 35% since their hack was revealed. And, like many, I'm ticked off at paying $10 per credit freeze at different agencies when it was their incompetence that put my data at risk.

HOWEVER....

1. I read an article today (wish I could find it) that shows that, even though most people are "worried" about the hack, most are not doing anything about it. It's business as usual. Those of us on these kind of forums are freezing our credit, but the average Joe and Jane aren't.

2. History shows these hacks are soon forgotten. Do you often hear people talk about the major data hacks at Target, Anthem, Yahoo or Home Depot? Even I personally mixed up Equifax and Experian on a post I put up yesterday.

3. The cost of settlement is pretty cheap for companies who are hacked. Equifax has lost around $4 billion in market cap, but comps for settlements from lawsuits would pin the eventual settlement amount in the $200 million range. The reason for the inexpensive "out" is because it's very hard to prove that any specific identify theft is directly tied to any specific hack.

Soooo, rather than continuing to be annoyed at the $30 we need to pay to freeze credit, does it make sense to buy a couple grand of Equifax stock and hopefully make some coin when this thing blows over eventually?
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Old 09-20-2017, 10:48 AM   #2
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I might consider nibbling on the stock, if I hadn't heard some of news relating to the security breach. Execs selling when they learned about the breach, waiting over a month before informing those involved, etc

https://fellowshipoftheminds.com/tag...te-corruption/

And besides that, I've been trying to rid myself of an affliction I like to call
TTCAFKD 'trying to catch a falling knife disorder'

It has cut me pretty bad in the past, most recently with Bank of America.
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Old 09-20-2017, 12:23 PM   #3
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Why I think it could go a lot lower right to possible extinction:

The size of the breach is historic and affects even our wonderful Congress workers, they will be very high on the ID theft list, so how will Congress vote now ??

Equifax is replaceable by their competitors and there are at least 2 of them.

I quickly read a few days ago: Attorney Generals of every State can sue, and some States have a target fine per incident (123 million incidents) = ~ 70 Billion in fines....

I caught a falling knife a few times,, ouch ouch ouch ouch... it was called Nortel... right to Zero
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Old 09-20-2017, 01:21 PM   #4
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I already own this lemon in my total market fund.
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Old 09-20-2017, 02:21 PM   #5
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At this point, I think the unknowns are to great to be an investment. I would classify it more of a speculative bet. I am using Ben Graham's definition of investment vs. speculation (shown below). You can make money with speculation, but today I don't see a way to calculate the risk/return.

“An investment operation is one which, on thorough analysis, promises safety of principal and a satisfactory return. Operations not meeting these requirements are speculative.”

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Old 09-20-2017, 02:34 PM   #6
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Old 09-20-2017, 03:53 PM   #7
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Two words: Sea Drilled
Seadrill was up 42% today. You should have tipped us off yesterday.

Seadrill Ltd
NYSE: SDRL - Sep 20, 5:47 PM EDT
0.48USDPrice increase0.14 (42.66%)

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Old 09-20-2017, 04:14 PM   #8
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I had Equifax for many years before gradually exiting most of my position over the past year or two. However I retained 100 shares until after the breach was announced. I evaluated the situation as best I could and then sold at about 117. I see it going lower but I don't see it going out of business. I might nibble again but not at its current price. I'm not in a position where I need to take big risks in my investments to live comfortably.
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Old 09-20-2017, 05:27 PM   #9
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Nope. The sleaze factor is enough to turn me off.
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Old 09-20-2017, 08:48 PM   #10
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No way. Here's why.

What's their business? According to their marketing they are a data provider. I'm sure they have a big datacenter(s). But those are needed by the business. Scoring credit really doesn't seem that difficult, they're ranges not precision numbers.

Seems like their assets are the data and they gave it away! I wouldn't invest in a grocery store that didn't lock the doors allowing folks to steal from them. Why would I give my money to someone who didn't lock their virtual doors?
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Old 09-20-2017, 09:26 PM   #11
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Why would anyone want to risk investing in a company that is going to be hit with class action lawsuits and from what I have read, there is a good chance that they will end up filing for bankruptcy. Put your money in a company that has had a solid performance and is going to make you money, not a company who knew about what happen this summer and is just now telling the public about it. Here are some of higher ups selling off their stocks before the **** hit the fan. They should be thrown in jail.

PLODER RODOLFO O
Officer
Sale at $145.70 per share.
Direct
250,458
‎Aug‎ ‎1‎, ‎2017
1,719
WILBANKS LAURA LOUISE
Officer
Statement of Ownership
Direct

‎Jul‎ ‎31‎, ‎2017
6,212
LOUGHRAN JOSEPH MICHAEL III
Officer
Sale at $146.02 per share.
Direct
584,080
‎Jul‎ ‎31‎, ‎2017
4,000
WILBANKS LAURA LOUISE
Officer
Statement of Ownership
Indirect

‎Jul‎ ‎31‎, ‎2017
916
GAMBLE JOHN W JR
Officer
Sale at $145.60 per share.
Direct
946,400
‎Jul‎ ‎31‎, ‎2017
6,500
LOUGHRAN JOSEPH MICHAEL III
Officer
Option Exercise at $33.60 per share.
Direct
100,800
‎Jul‎ ‎31‎, ‎2017
3,000
WILBANKS LAURA LOUISE
Officer
Acquisition (Non Open Market) at $0 per share.
Direct

‎Jul‎ ‎31‎, ‎2017
513
LOUGHRAN JOSEPH MICHAEL III
Officer
Acquisition (Non Open Market) at $0 per share.
Direct

‎Jul‎ ‎27‎, ‎2017
862
GAMBLE JOHN W JR
Officer
Sale at $136.44 per share.
Direct
1,910,160
‎May‎ ‎22‎, ‎2017
14,000
GAMBLE JOHN W JR
Officer
Disposition (Non Open Market) at $136.37 per share.
Direct
6,455,346
‎May‎ ‎20‎, ‎2017
47,337
GAMBLE JOHN W JR
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Old 09-20-2017, 09:30 PM   #12
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.

Seems like their assets are the data and they gave it away! I wouldn't invest in a grocery store that didn't lock the doors allowing folks to steal from them. Why would I give my money to someone who didn't lock their virtual doors?
Hahahahahaha
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Old 09-20-2017, 09:31 PM   #13
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No way. Here's why.

What's their business? According to their marketing they are a data provider. I'm sure they have a big datacenter(s). But those are needed by the business. Scoring credit really doesn't seem that difficult, they're ranges not precision numbers.

Seems like their assets are the data and they gave it away! I wouldn't invest in a grocery store that didn't lock the doors allowing folks to steal from them. Why would I give my money to someone who didn't lock their virtual doors?
Exactly!
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Old 09-20-2017, 09:48 PM   #14
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Old 09-21-2017, 06:59 AM   #15
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I'd buy Equifax at a decent price. Sadly, even with the 35% hit, they are not in my price range yet. Another 30% hit and I'm interested.
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Old 09-21-2017, 07:27 AM   #16
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I have a feeling many more shoes will drop on this one. For example, until yesterday, they'd been directing customers to a new page to help them, but used the wrong URL, to a clone site set-up by a white-hat hacker specifically to see if they would be that dumb.... they were, for 10 days.

They also appear to have known about the breach for a long time before they announced, and 3 C-level execs dumped stocks before the announcement.

Many, many other smh-worthy security practices coming to light as well.

I buy few individual stocks, and I'm far from an activist investor, but I do like to somewhat think that a company has a good product if I'm putting my money into it, however small.
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Old 09-22-2017, 09:53 AM   #17
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Put me in the "Pass" column.

While I agree that a lot of these other breaches have had a relatively short "shelf live" in the public consciousness, I agree with the thinking that Equifax won't be one of them.

My thinking is based on a couple of points:
  • First and foremost, Equifax is not a retail merchant like Target. Handling senstive data is their core business and they failed at it miserably.
  • Second, their response is not looking good. I read that their security chief was a music major. I understand that IT security is a relatively new profession, but Equifax should have stood by that. Instead, someone at Equifax has been trying to erase her history. Not a good move, IMO. Add to that the allegations that Equifax execs sold off stock before the news came out. If that's true, this is going to get a lot worse for them.
  • Finally, unlike a United Airlines after 9-11, or some financial institutions, I don't think Equifax is "too big to fail". I think Experian, TransUnion -- or even someone like a Fair Issac -- could relatively easily take up the slack if Equifax was to meet its demise.
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Old 09-22-2017, 09:56 AM   #18
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Wells Fargo analyst thinks it's a buy!!

Yuck, yuck yuck <- that was laughter. You can't make this stuff up!
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Old 09-23-2017, 07:13 AM   #19
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Although management and IT may have dropped the ball on some things, I always wonder if the story was as simple as it seems at face value..

Say you told the CIA or FBI about this immediately, the data is gone, do they let the bad guys fish around a bit while trying to determine who it was. Do you put unannounced fraud alerts on accounts, and even let the criminals play around for a bit?
Announcing detection means they would be on alert and likely not continue to be around at least for a bit.
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Old 09-24-2017, 10:15 PM   #20
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Although management and IT may have dropped the ball on some things, I always wonder if the story was as simple as it seems at face value..

Say you told the CIA or FBI about this immediately, the data is gone, do they let the bad guys fish around a bit while trying to determine who it was. Do you put unannounced fraud alerts on accounts, and even let the criminals play around for a bit?
Announcing detection means they would be on alert and likely not continue to be around at least for a bit.


I'm sure the situation is more complex than it appears, but the scenario above only addresses behavior after their systems were hacked and ignores their failure to install a patch for a known vulnerability. Waiting to disclose only increases victims exposure.
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