Wednesday, January 25, 2006

The plan to destroy Microsoft
Seattle's own Pat Robertson wannabe, the Rev. Ken Hutcherson, has a cunning plan to demonstrate his influence and punish companies that support gay rights.
A pastor who threatened a national boycott against Microsoft and other major corporations for endorsing a gay rights bill urged supporters Tuesday to buy up the companies' stock and dump it to drive prices down.

Rev. Ken Hutcherson, pastor of Antioch Bible Church in the Seattle suburb of Redmond, said the stock-dumping plan had been part of his strategy all along.


He wants supporters to buy one or two shares over the next few months, then sell them May 1.

I can see at least on gaping hole in this scheme. If you announce in advance that you're going to dump a bunch of discount stock shares in Microsoft and Boeing, don't you think there might be some saavy investors out there willing to snap them up, thus holding the price level? Also, if you announce that you're trying to fix the price of a stock, mightn't you attract the wrong sort of attention from the SEC. In any case, it's highly unlikely that Hutcherson's followers, with their "one or two shares" each, will amount to a big enough blip to hurt these companies.

As Goldie at Horse's Ass points out:
But the most obvious problem with Hutcherson’s plan is that Microsoft has over 10.6 billion shares outstanding, with a total market valuation of about $280 billion. Over 63 million Microsoft shares are traded on a typical day. Large institutional trades happen all the time, so even if Hutcherson’s fantasy stock boycott could manage to dump a few million shares, the market might not even notice.

It should be fun to listen to his damage control when this fizzles.

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