Thursday, July 13, 2006

Papers, Please

Washington, D.C., never wants for looming deadlines, and here's a date that has Beltway bureaucrats and contractors scurrying: Oct. 27, 2006. That is when all federal agencies must be able to issue employees identification cards meeting technological standards demanded by President George W. Bush and developed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

"Everyone is working hard to meet this challenging deadline," chirped a White House press release last week.

Whether everyone meets the deadline or not doesn't matter much to Jay M. Meier, senior analyst at Minneapolis' MJSK Equity Research. "If it's Oct. 27 or March 27," he says. "I don't care."

Meier covers a handful of technology outfits, several with an interest in credentialing: Fargo Electronics, Identix, LaserCard and Zebra Technologies. While his ratings vary among those stocks, he's bullish on the identification business as a whole, deadlines or no. "The opportunity is so big," he argues.

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