WSJ.com - Internet Boom Is Under Way, Says Morgan Stanley's Meeker: "Mary Meeker is as jazzed about the Internet as ever.
The Morgan Stanley analyst, well known for her bullish and influential calls on Internet stocks during the late '90s craze, said the predicted boom is under way.
'The enthusiasm was well placed, it just got ahead of itself in many respects,' Ms. Meeker said, speaking at the Interactive Local Media 2004 conference in Jersey City, N.J., Friday. 'As we have said for a long time, from a wealth-creation standpoint, we believe we lived through a boomlet, followed by a bust, followed by a boom.'
As evidence, Ms. Meeker pointed to the combined market value of eBay Inc., Google Inc., Yahoo Inc., Yahoo Japan Corp. and Amazon.com Inc., which was $231 billion as of Wednesday.
While Microsoft could become a competitive threat to established Internet players, Ms. Meeker argued its success isn't assured. Unless its search technology is clearly superior to those of Google and Yahoo, it will be hard for it to take share. "Microsoft has to show their ability to compete, and they haven't quite done that," she said. "This is a more competitive market for Microsoft to play in than they've had in a long time.""
If I understand correctly, this could be summarized as:
1. Mistakes were made... but you should have read the fine print, if you lost money; we were clear about the risks.
2. Real value was created anyway (sure, $231B is a bit less than the $Ts lost when the bubble burst; see point 1 above).
3. Microsoft is going to have to do some serious shopping to remain competitive; they should check out our company investment portfolio.
So we put a spammer in jail for 9 years but let the financial analysts flush their portfolios, exploit the market attention deficit disorder, and resume pontificating and pocket-picking.