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Monday, September 11, 2006

No Big Deal At Dell (DELL)(HPQ)(AAPL)

The market decided to hammer Dell because it will delay filing its earnings. Big deal. Dell is donw 3.5% to $20.90.

By 10:30, the stock had traded about 20 million shares.

The company announced weeks ago that it would have to look at accruals in its financials. At a company Dell's size, that cannot be done overnight. It is also highly unlikely that the probe will result in any changes in the company's cash flow or reserves.

Does it justify taking $1 billion off the company's market cap. Probably not.

Dell has much more significant problems that a potential restatement. Slow growth ,shrinking margins, and poor customer service are at the top of that list. But, the market has already discounted the shares of that.

Much as Apple's shares quickly recovered when the company said it had an options problem and the HP probe has had little affect on the company's share price, Dell's delayed filing is not likely to change anything.

Douglas A. McIntyre can be reached at He does not own shares in companies that he writes about.

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