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Thursday, November 16, 2006

XM's $150 Million GPS (XMSR)(SIRI)(MSFT)(AAPL)

XM Satellite Radio got a nice run-up in its stock yesterday. The company's shares moved from $14 to almost $14.80 and traded above $14.90 for part of the day.

The move added over $150 million to XM's market cap, which now stands just shy of $4 billon.

The uptick in the stock seemed to be based on an announcement that XM has launched its new GPS in some Nissan and Infiniti cars. The navigation system is nice, but the fact that it will be offered in Nissan Altima's is hardly big news.

Satellite radio investors have developed the kind of desparate behavior that is usually exhibited by people who have been without water in the desert for several days usually display.

XM's stock is still down from a 52-week high of $32, and even improved earnings have barely moved the stock.

The market appears to believe that satellite radio is last year's next big thing and Wall St. has moved on to things like the iPod and Xbox.

The question now is whether the two satellite radio companies can do anything to get back the interest of investors. Shy of a sharp acceleration in subscriber growth rates, probably not.

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

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