Short ISIS, and Long Social Media CEOs

Steve Kanaval |

ISIS.jpgISIS Rattles their Sabres, Twitter Shares Unchanged

Executives of public companies have been targets here and abroad since the first shares of stock traded, and in 2015 I would not be surprised to find that Facebook Inc. (FB) CEO Mark Zuckerberg, along with Twitter Inc. (TWTR) CEO Jack Dorsey and other high profile social media news editors have thought that at some point they would be targets.
I don’t know the security detail for them (no one should), but it exists for all executives - and particularly for those who are such high-profile media figures. We know that C-Level execs may not fly together after some horrific travel disasters. I can name a few I covered in the 80s and 90s, but threats to executives are nothing new. These are tough guys who are battle hardened - and they don’t scare easily.



What is new is that it is logical, and we do not give them enough credit. Sure, they get paid substantial salaries, but that is really the road less traveled. If you want to get the media’s attention, threaten the highest profile person you can. This is what ISIS is doing.

I can tell you that based on market action, Wall Street does not consider it a highly probable threat. Wall Street traders have confidence that Twitter, Facebook or Google Inc. (GOOG) would operate just fine. That is one of the beautiful things about capitalism – the market defines the odds in real time through share price, and all are unchanged at mid-day trading.

If ISIS Were a Stock I Would be Shorting it. 

I hope for all concerned the media cycle rejects the ISIS threat and instead looks at how the shares are trading, because Jack Dorsey and Mark Zuckerberg and Sergi would want you to deflect attention away from them, and have you focus on the message from the great platforms they built. 

Social media editors have had battles all along the way from launch to today. They toppled the newspaper business with code and a keystroke, and they have more power (each of them) than whatever jackass is leading ISIS.

Again, I would be long all those CEO’s and short the JA of ISIS because one thing they (Zuckerberg, Dorsey, etc) all have in common which ISIS does not...is a very large/powerful Uncle - Uncle Sam and the old USA. They also have a very powerful tool at their disposal, and as information flows, data collects and sorts, they become easier to follow - which makes this is a really easy trade.

 

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Companies

Symbol Name Price Change % Volume
FB Facebook Inc. 127.39 -0.48 -0.38 8,233,896
TWTR Twitter Inc. 16.92 -0.05 -0.27 7,312,904
GOOG Alphabet Inc. 801.96 -2.65 -0.33 647,349

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