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Author: MarkHiatt Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 7437  
Subject: Re: Question Date: 10/4/2002 6:14 PM
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>
> What do you folks think B&N's strategy is:
>

A fair and interesting question, Kidd.

>
> Wait and see if the news drives the pps over $1(?)
>

Quite possibly. Every year, boards green-light "proposed share buy-back" programs totalling skillions and skillions of dollars. And every year, companies actually buy back hundreds of dollars of their own shares.

Well, maybe it's not quite that lopsided, but you get the idea. If you go back and re-read the press release, it very specifically does not say that they're going to purchase umpty-hundred shares on Monday, the forty-'leventh of Umptember. It only says that they can, not that they ever will. Quite frequently that is all it takes to spark some interest in a stock, and that's what we're seeing now, I'm pretty sure.

The trouble is, you never really can tell. It's just awfully rare that a block of 1000 shares goes by with a little tag showing everyone that it was Marie or Leonard who bought them. At the end of the day, though, it doesn't really matter. All we care about is that a] BNBN is getting some (good) press. And b] that press is generating some enthusiasm for the stock, reflected in rising volume and pricecs. I don't care if it's you or BKS or BNBN or AMZN or Doc or even poor old Have-We-Finally-Reached-Some-Stability-At-This-Level-Jim who is doing the buying. I only care that it's happening, and moving the price my way.

>
> Buy as many shares as they can cheaply?
>

Well, this certainly may be going on, and may have been going on, too. For sure the price was a whole lot lower before the announcement, and there isn't any law that says they have to issue a press release that they're cleared to buy-back shares (that I know of, anyway). So yeah, maybe on those days when all we did was 35,000 or 50,000 shares, some of those were Leonard and Marie, digging-in with both hands. I dunno. Even today, with the run-up we've had in the last week, I still think of the shares as cheap, myself. No, they're not the bargain they were at fifty cents, but if they're going to the options strike price they are aiming for in NewYork, an additional nickel or dime isn't going to make a whole lot of difference.

>
> Could they have gotten away with quietly
> buying up shares without announcing this move?
>

Yeah, I think so--depending upon the definition of "gotten away with".
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