When it comes to hating on companies we don’t like, Americans are never shy.
Blog posts. Social media posts. Twitter (TWTR) missives. Yelp reviews. And even good old-fashioned word of mouth. No matter what the platform, many of us like to tell others about the bad experiences we’ve had doing business with companies.
Hey, I’m no different. In fact, if there is a company that I have a problem with, or that I have experienced poor service from, I won’t hesitate to tell them about it. And I’ll probably mention it to my friends, family … or you, the Uncommon Wisdom Daily reader.
The reverse also is true. In fact, I am actually pretty eager to sing the praises of companies where the product, service and/or experience is excellent.
Today’s Afternoon Edition is the first in a two-part series on the companies that Americans love to hate …. and the ones that we love to love.
Let’s start out with those we love to hate, because there’s nothing like a little venting about bad experiences to cleanse the emotional palate.
Here are some of America’s most-despised companies.
The following list is a sample largely taken from an article at the website 24/7 Wall Street.
After reviewing a range of sources — including customer survey results from the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI), employee reviews on Glassdoor, and the website’s annual customer satisfaction survey — 24/7 Wall Street identified the following names as some of the top offenders.
If there is one thing we love to hate, it is really bad customer service.
And customer service that’s connected with monopoly-like services such as cable TV and internet service providers? Well, it’s pretty notorious for leaving callers more upset with the call itself than the issue that prompted the call.
Comcast is the big offender here. First, because it’s a really big company. And second, because nearly everyone I’ve spoken with who has Comcast is less-than-pleased with the customer service experience.
Bank of America (BAC)
The ubiquitous money-center financial institution Bank of America had the lowest customer satisfaction score of any bank in the ACSI. Combine that with a general distrust and disaffection with big banks since the 2008 financial crisis, and you get a company that’s just begging to be put on anyone’s list of most-hated.
Wells Fargo (WFC)
Another bank begging to be hated, especially last year, Wells Fargo set a new standard in bad behavior by creating millions of fake accounts to artificially inflate sales and performance data. The company agreed to pay a big settlement for its misconduct, but how can you not love to hate WFC all the same?
When you jack up the price of a well-known, life-saving drug like the allergic reaction treatment EpiPen by more than 500% (from $114 for two pens in 2007 to over $600), you are basically putting yourself on the most-hated list.
The social media giant seems to always be under fire for one reason or another. Be it the company’s privacy policies, or its mass data collection, or its facilitation of radical terror groups or its role in propagating fake news, there are plenty of reasons to hate on FB.
Still, most of those same haters check their FB pages each day to see how many "likes" they got on their latest posts.
Other companies that made the 24/7 Wall Street most-hated list include:
DISH Network (DISH)
Sears Holdings (SEARS)
Charter Communications (CHTR)
Now, that’s not to say you can’t make profits on many of their shares. But keep in mind that stocks can really get rocked on bad news. The names on this list have seen a mountain of bad news … and each could have more coming their way.
So if you’re looking to put your money into companies where their customers are in love with their products — and therefore likely to remain loyal for life — you might want to skip the stocks on this list.
In tomorrow’s Afternoon Edition, we’ll turn the tables on hate and look at some of the companies America loves to love.
And if you want the best of both worlds …
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What’s your take on the top names we talked about today? Do you have your own "most hated" list? If so, please share it with me and your fellow Afternoon Edition readers. And, doing so is easy. All you have to do to share your thoughts is leave me a comment on our website or send me an e-mail.
A month ago, we talked about whether Trump’s tweets can offer great buying opportunities. Specifically, we looked at a dip in Lockheed Martin’s (LMT) shares as a gift from the Twitterverse in front of big promised defense spending during his upcoming administration.
As it turns out, his press conferences can also offer similar opportunities. We saw that today after the president-elect hosted his first presser since July … and LMT once again found itself on the receiving end of a tactical strike from Trump. He said the company is "way behind schedule and billions over budget" on its F-35 fighter jet program. LMT shares slid as much as 1.6% midday as a result.
Health-related stocks also dipped after Trump said pharmas that charge high prices get "away with murder." This knocked the Nasdaq off its fresh all-time high for much of the day, but the index rallied back and set another record. Today’s 0.2% gain puts it at 5,563.65.
• What are the world’s top risks in 2017? Not too different from the World Economic Forum’s 2016 list. Un/under employment … large-scale involuntary migration … interstate conflict … and failure of national governments continue to top the list. Climate change is also a key concern that the WEF will discuss at its meeting next week. This year, members will welcome Xi Jinping as the first Chinese president to attend the annual Davos, Switzerland, event.
• The FAA hasn’t lifted its ban on Galaxy Note 7 phones. But it no longer requires airports to tell you that you can’t bring the fire-prone phone onboard passenger or cargo jets. Since the Oct. 16 ban, Samsung has recovered 93% of the phones sold in the U.S. and reportedly "bricked" the rest.
• Saudi supply cuts to Asia helped to push WTI crude oil 2.8% higher, to $52.25, in Wednesday’s session, as did U.S. dollar weakness.
• Gold flirts with $1,200: The weaker greenback was also good for gold, which gained $11 to close the day at $1,196.60 per troy ounce.
Good luck and happy investing,
Uncommon Wisdom Daily