Yahoo! Resurrection

February 15, 2007 by Douglas A. McIntyre

Yahoo!’s (YHOO) stock is up 20% since the first of the year. Google’s (GOOG) is flat. Online auction company Ebay (EBAY) has seen its share rise over 10%. The stock of Baidu (BIDU), China’s largest search firm has actually fallen about 6%.

Yahoo! has just announced another sweeping reorganization, according to TechCruch. A board member recently bought shares in the open market. And, of course, the new Panama platform is rolling out to compete with Google.

The company did get rid of its chief operating officer. And, Q4 earnings were not very good. Revenue growth was pitiful. The topline rose from $1.5 billion in 2005 to $1.7 billion in 2006. Income from operations fell from $329 million in 2005 to $308 million in 2006.

The rise in the stock is hard to understand. Over the last 12 months, the stock is down about 7%. At one point during that period it was off closer to 30%. But, the results have been poor so the share price is not a surprise.

But, the recent recovery in the shares is a surprise as well. The company has been through a lot of movement, but movement is hardly progress. Perhaps the market believes that Panama will help take revenue from Google, but that is certainly not assured.

Twenty percent is a big move. Perhaps too big.

Douglas A. McIntyre can be reached at douglasamcintyre@247wallst.com. He does not own securities in companies that he writes about.