In the staredown between Dell and Nasdaq, it’s the stock exchange, not the
computer company, which blinked
first. Dell hasn’t
filed any of its last three quarterly reports, nor its annual report for
2006, which means that, by rights, the Nasdaq should delist its sorry ass. And
the Nasdaq surely would – if it wasn’t dealing with, you know, Dell.
The legendary PC maker trades tens of millions of shares a day, and
has a market capitalization of over $60 billion. Which means, basically, that
Dell is too big to delist.
Nasdaq has now given Dell another fortnight – until July 16 – to
get its act together, and Dell has said, noncommitally, that it is "moving
toward the completion of the reports". In other words, "don’t hold
What happens if the reports aren’t filed by July 16? I’ll wager that Dell simply
gets another extension. I mean, if you were running the Nasdaq, would you
pull the trigger? I didn’t think so. Corporate governance is all well and good,
but ultimately delisting the company would mainly harm the shareholders you’re
purportedly there to protect.