Two readers -- Ms. Lee Finckel of Lauraville and Mrs. Mary Jane Wilson of Mt. Airy -- have tied for first place in Ticker's l990 Dow Jones readers' forecasting contest.
They both predicted Dow Jones 2,635, less than two points away from the actual December 31, 1990 closing of 2,633.66.
A New Year's Day coin flip decided that Ms. Finckel and friend will be dinner guests of Mr. and Mrs. Ticker at the winner's favorite restaurant. Mrs. Wilson and guest will join us for a freebie lunch at her No. 1 eatery.
Reached on Jan. 1, Ms. Finckel exclaimed, "I even forgot I entered your contest last January; I'm terribly surprised and happy! Know how I picked my figure? I was 35 years old on Feb. 26, and that's how I came up with 2,635." Co-winner Mrs. Wilson said, "I really don't know how I selected 2,635; I just picked it out of the sky." (Last year's winner, Mrs. Lois Leuba, won by adding her age to her lucky number. Three years ago the winner had never heard of the Dow Jones average but merely picked a number from thin air and mailed it in.)
The next 10 closest crystal ball gazers with their predictions are, in order: Rita Amernick (2,636); Donald Irwin, Glen Burnie (2,637); Carol Adams, Glen Burnie (2,638); Theresa Sadofsky (2,628); Bernard Eberwein, Lutherville (2,640); John Shipley, Sr. (2,641); C. Paul Niesslein (2,625); B. J. Vondersmith (2,625); John Katchan, Bradshaw (2,643); M. Daniel Krolczyk, Keedysville (2,624). All are from Baltimore unless noted. They will receive copies of the l990-91 edition of the Maryland Business Almanac published by The Baltimore Sun.
The 1991 contest opens next Thursday, with a long list of "expert" predictions to guide (?) you. Generally, our readers have done much better than our professionals.
In our l990 "expert" contest (bankers, brokers, investment advisers, journalists, media stars, etc.) the winner is my journalistic boss, Patricia Fanning, financial editor, The Evening Sun, with her Dow Jones 2,630 prediction, less than four points from the l990 closing figure. Runners-up were Denise Koch, Channel l3 anchor (2,650) and James Hardesty, Mercantile Bank & Trust Co. executive (2,651). In the "expert" category, winners receive only glory and their names in print, no feeebie dinners or lunches.
BALTIMORE BEAT: Legg Mason's Gerald Scheinker (486-8010) will mail "Utilities: The Case for Investing in Selected Electrics" . . . Phone Morry Zolet, Ferris, Baker Watts (685-2600) for the latest "Electric Utility Update," with specific suggestions . . . Baltimore Security Analysts Society hosts DLJ Demographer executives, Wed., Jan. 9, noon, Tremont Plaza . . . Merry-Go-Round, the Joppa-based specialty clothing retailer, is deleted from "Five-Star Stocks -- Buy List" in S&P Outlook, Dec. 26 . . . Mercantile Safe Deposit & Trust recommends AMP, Intel, K mart, 3M Corp. and Witco.
JANUARY JOTTINGS: In 1990 the Dow Jones average fell from 2,753 (decimals dropped) to 2,633. Locally, these declines: BG&E, 34 to 28; Black & Decker, 19 to 9; Crown Central Petroleum, 31 to 23; Delmarva Power & Light; 21 to 18; MNC Financial (Maryland National Bank), 22 to 4; Rouse Co., 26 to 14; USF&G, 29 to 8 . . . A couple who visited me New Year's Eve said, "We got married 52 years ago today; l938 was a Depression year and you got married on holidays or you lost your job when you took time off." . . . "Don't hate your enemies; it affects your judgment." (Michael Corleone in Godfather Part III) . . . "Your emotions are often a reverse indicator of what you should be doing." (1991 Stock Trader's Almanac) . . . Tomorrow night, "Wall Street With Louis Rukeyser" takes "A Look into 1991" with guest Abby Joseph Cohen, Goldman, Sachs & Co. and panelists Laszlo Birinyi, John Dessauer, Robert Stovall . . . "Stocks should tumble again in early 1991 as the recession deepens." (LaLoggia's Special Situation Report).