My subscription to Barron's weekly ran out a few weeks ago, but the fool keeps delivering it to me. That means I can report on the Barron's Google Page Rank Index.
Every week, Barron's includes on one page an index of companies that are cited in that issue of the magazine. Along with each company cited, the page numbers of the citations are shown. In other words, an index. Or you could think of it as an old media, pitiful version of Google's page rank mechanism by which everything in the world is rated.
I check this index every week to see how many times Google has been cited. I think of it as an estimate of Barron's opinion of Google at any given time. Barron's usually has a low opinion of Google. This is evidenced by the large amount of Barron's space given to Fred Hickey, when Fred Hickey, in the opinion of most responsible analysts, is a fool. Right up there with Peter Schiff. Fred Hickey is on record as saying that fair value for Google is $25. Fair value for Google has never been $25.
Most weeks, Google will be cited two or three times less than Apple. Sometimes, it is not cited at all. Often, when Google does get cited, it's somebody badmouthing the company. Like Fred Hickey.
Lately, the situation has been improving. Today, Google is mentioned five times, two more than any other company in the list, including Apple. And the mentions are good. On page L14, Eddie Brown, who used to appear on Rukeyser's show, says that Google "is doing everything right."
This is part of a groundswell of improvement in traders' opinions of Google's chances from the current level of $600. Karen Finerman, on FastMoney, is downright evangelistic, telling everybody to just buy it. Pete Janarian agrees, with the stipulation that options be purchased. Finerman says, "Just buy it." She didn't used to be that way. Cramer pegs it for $750.
We've been here before. But, this time, it will stick. Barron's Google Page Rank Index confirms it.