In the absence of a new Dow Jones high yesterday -- the DJ edged a fraction lower, closing at 3,026.61, nine points below the peak -- we present fine performance records of two local advisers, success principles of another and views of a local bank's investment chief.
LONG-TERM HONORS: The Rothschild Co., for institutional funds, shows a huge gain of 814 percent since the firm's September 1973 inception vs. Standard & Poor's 500-stock index advance of 638 percent. In this year's first half, Rothschild reported a 9.3 percent gain vs. S&P 14.3 percent climb.
CEO Stanford Rothschild Jr. comments, "For many years we outdistanced the all-stock S&P index until the late 1980s, despite the fact that we held only 50-60 percent of our assets in stocks. But we are comparing our institutional funds averaging only 60 percent in stocks against an all-stock index, and we're handicapped in a rising market. Stated another way, our institutional accounts are not 'all-stock' portfolios, although we compare ourselves to an index which is."
1991 LEADER: Eddie Brown, local investment adviser, stands No. 1 among 28 panelists on "Wall Street Week with Louis Rukeyser" for stock performance since New Year's Day. As of July 31, Brown's stocks are up 74 percent vs. a 17 percent gain in the S&P 500 stock index and 16 percent in the Dow Jones average. Brown's stock picks are: Ahmanson, Baltimore Bancorp, Blockbuster Entertainment, Costco Wholesale, Fastenal, Golden West Financial, Harley Davidson, The Limited, Medco Containment, Novell, Office Depot and Value Merchants.
CEO CORNER: When I asked Alvin (Buzzy) Krongard, newly-elected Alex. Brown chief executive officer, his business success principles, he replied, "We're in a service business and we keep reminding ourselves that the stocks and bonds we offer can be obtained at other places at about the same prices, so we strive to give the best service possible. Stated another way, our principles are integrity, fairness and service. As for me and my new position, I'm terribly lucky that many years ago I came in contact with older Alex. Brown partners who had the patience to train me to run the oldest investment banking house in the United States."
LOCAL LINGO: Myron Oppenheimer, vice-president, Security Trust/Maryland National Bank, says, "As in ancient Greek mythology, where the hero Odysseus faced the challenge of sailing his ship between the monster Scylla and the whirlpool Charybdis, investors must carefully set their courses to steer clear of the twin pitfalls of earnings disappointments and stock over-valuation. Investors can reduce risks through broad diversification. And as always, uncertainty creates opportunities which astute investors will take advantage of." (For full letter, phone Oppenheimer, 244-6590.)
MIDSUMMER MEMOS: Money magazine's August cover headline, "Double Your Money in 3 Years" is modified by the story's caption, "15 Investments That 'Could' (quotes mine) Double in 3 Years." I dislike misleading covers; they tempt the unwary. . . . Bristol Myers Squibb and Merck, both in 12-month new high listings at midweek, are recommended by nine newsletters followed by Hulbert Financial Digest. . . . Legg Mason's Gerald Scheinker (486-8010) will mail an "Income Buy List," including BG&E, now yielding over 7 percent. . . . Phone Ferris, Baker Watts' Morry Zolet (685-2600) for "Maryland National Bank at Midyear: Crisis Over." . . . Bank of Baltimore is listed under "Leading Auto Rate Loans" for Baltimore in Money magazine, August, and Loyola Federal tops the local list for "Leading Fixed Rates for 30-Year Mortgages." . . . "Upside potential from Dow Jones 2,900 is limited to 10 percent." (Lancz Letter) . . . "High will be Aug. 22-26 when a sun-Mercury-Venus-Jupiter conjunction opposes a full moon." (Arch Crawford).