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As of today's report from the New York Stock Exchange, HD's stock is down to $43.00 a share, down $7.00 a share from The Highwayman's last report on MO, close to 20% down.

Where are you Highwayman? In hidding now? I'm not surprised, you are a moron and a coward!!
 

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You have got to be kidding.



Has anyone at MO been listening to what Harley is doing for the 100th?



They increased production by a large amount to meet demand for the anniversary bikes. Not raising production numbers for 2004 should be no surprise, the fact that they have not lowered those numbers, considering the 2003 sales is amazing in itself. Any real investor who actually knows about the company would be aware of that. Lame investors and lame reporters got nervous, everybody else shrugged.



Stick to reporting about motorcycles, leave the financial reporting to the Wall Street Journal, CNN FN and CNBC....
 

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Super Duper Mod Man
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I can see it now. Investors fleeing, the company floundering, the owners panicking. Bikes being sold for 1/10th of the purchase price and they are happy just to get anything. Panic in the streets! And there I am, cash in hand, picking up a few more Harleys at bargain prices. I can dream, can't I?
 

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The squids have been repeating that same line for about ten years now and it still hasn't happened. How come all those low-mileage Harleys haven't flooded the market yet?



I still can't believe when I bought my Low Rider in 1996 H-D had just reached production volume of 100,000 units per year. Now they're close to 300,000 including a 14 month production cycle for 2003. In 2000 they sold more bikes than Honda which is incredible considering Honda has a multi-bike product line compared to one style of motorcycle for H-D.



They really ought to start making sportbikes. They might sell a few motorcycles that way! lol



I went for a nice ride down the coast yesterday on my neighbors Road Glide. Only three more weeks to go!
 

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It's too bad that the investors who are getting nervous haven't done their homework. Why has Harley raised their production taget each year for many years? Because their production, i.e. supply, was so much lower than the demand. In the 90's you could expect to wait 1 to 2 years to get a bike from a fair dealer with a waiting list, i.e. one that would sell a stock bike for MSRP rather than add on chrome bits and charge you way too much. This is also why Harleys kept their value. A used bike could be bought without the long wait so the selling value was higher than the depreciated value. Harley increased production slowly and steadily as the capability of their production gradully increased. Now perhaps they've matched the supply with the demand and there is no longer the need to increase production. To see this go to any Harley shop and see how many bikes are available. It's not because they are not selling more bikes, it's because they have more bikes to sell.
 

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Seems like stupid investors to me.



HD is just being smart enough to keep the supply low so prices stay high and Baby Boomers continue hear the whole story about how hard it is to get a Harley, making them want them even more.



Seems like a good time to buy some HD stock if it's really down 20%.

 

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Re: Hard times coming for Harley? This squid is holding on to the stock for awhile

Until I see that profit is going to go down substantially, I am going to hold. Even my wife wants to buy more. For all my criticism, HD is great at marketing and as longride has pointed out HD strength areloyal customers and the way the treat their employees. I think other american companies could learn from that. My criticism are nit picks in the big scheme of things. I hope the expand the V-Rod line and give Buell better motors. But as long as they turn a profit.
 

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Re: Hard times coming for Harley? This squid is holding on to the stock for awhile

Nervous investors are the worst thing for a stock. Harley is successful because they keep supply below demand. This is good for nearly everyone involved. Harley sells every bike they make without offering incentives. They give more bikes to the dealers with the highest customer satisfaction ratings, and since every Harley dealer is competing to get extra inventory, they are encouraged to treat the customer well. Lower supply also allows the dealer to add in profit items, and often the customer is happy to pay. Resale value of harleys seem to sit around msrp when they were new, because of long waits or surcharges on new.

Look at how this has been successful in autos, like the S2000. If honda took a nich car like that and increased supply, like vw did with the new beetle, prices would drop, both of new and used.
 

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"They really ought to start making sportbikes."



Why? I would understand that kind of move if they just wanted more market share, but if they want to make more profit, they're better off sticking to cruisers (IMO).
 

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Harley's decision not to increase its production is a wise one. Many a business has been killed by expanding too fast in response to good sales years, only to be followed by normal business-cycle downturns. Investment of working capital in production is a "forever" kind of thing. In other words, when business slows it's kind of hard to sell off some of your production infrastructure. It would be REAL interesting to know what HD's market research is telling them about the next couple years.



In my opinion, I'd like to see Harley solidify their market share by improving their Buell sportbikes as KPaul mentioned.
 

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Re: Hard times coming for Harley? This squid is holding on to the stock for awhile

Probably a smart move on your part. H-D has significantly expanded its presence in South America and other foreign markets. I beleive it's even the number one selling foreign bike in Japan (!) of all places.

I'd like to see the V-Rod line expanded as well. As far as Buell goes, if this current lineup isn't a hit look for H-D to pull the plug or sell it. At least that's the opinion of one of the local dealers here.
 

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The Toad
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I'd certainly like to see the used HD market soften. Even a shovelhead project basket case is waaaay too much these days.
 

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Harley Financials...

I think its more that 2003 will be a great year for HD (the 100th anniversary and all) spurring sales. But beyond that, they are starting to hit saturation...

Old guys buy harleys. Young guys generally don't. Old guys can afford Harleys. Young guys generally can't. Harley has been worried about this for years, but...

The V-rod is a start at attracting a younger market with some real (late 20th century) engineering, but it is fugly and if it really caught on, the Japanese could blow it away: just imagine an RC51/TL1000 powered cruiser, an updated V-max, or a chromed-up Busa/ZX12R engine in a cruiser chassis!

Just imagine the marketing: 175 Horsepower of Cruiser Muscle... You can just feel HD cringe at that idea.

The HD solution to the demographic bubble, Buell, is being killed with neglect. Shipments for Buell are up this year, but last year it was pretty much only the Blast, with so many leftover Cyclones that they stopped the production.

The Firebolt seems a nice idea, but damn that engine sucks. And a V-rod powered 'Bolt isn't going to be much better, what it makes up for in power, it's going to lose in compactness, and the V-rod engine wasn't designed to be light.

That Buell was not even told about the V-rod during its development (and could have therefore influenced the motor to be much better for sportbike as well as cruiser purposes) shows just how much care HD is really giving the Buell line.

Harley will remain a strong company, but PE's of 22+ is overvalued compared to Honda's 6, especially since both companies are mature and in a mature market.
 

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My prediction is that HD will follow the baby boomers to oblivion. Gen-x-ers and newer consumers aren't buying the retro theme and they are not interested in the "lifestyle".



Of course the Buell brand is suppose to be the answer for the "performance oriented" consumer, but look how successful (?) Buell has been.
 

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Re: Harley Financials...

I would say there is a lot of wishful thinking in your statement.

If I could search back in time and find a message board with this type of topic I could almost cut and paste word for word your exact thoughts from an ancient message board.

The demise of H-D sales has been predicted now for at least ten years and still has failed to happen.
 

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Re: Harley Financials...

It has been predicted for different reasons. In this instance, the demographics are obvious.

The poster you responded to seems pretty objective to me. Harley marketing is focused on an increasingly aging market, and Buell hasn't done enough to grab the younger market.

What's "wishful thinking" about recognizing that?
 
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