Blockbuster"Despite the upcoming competition from...

STOCK WATCH (

February 26, 1992|By Opinions on stocks offered by investment experts. Compiled by Steve Halpen for Knight Ridder.

Blockbuster

"Despite the upcoming competition from pay-per-view channels on cable television, we believe Blockbuster Entertainment (NYSE, BV, $13.125) will be able to continue demonstrating strong earnings growth," says Keith Benjamin, Ladenburg, Thalmann & Co.

Earnings of 17 cents per share for the fourth quarter were in line with our forecast. The same-store revenue increase of 16.3 percent was better than expected. While rental revenues rose 7.2 percent on a same-store basis, most of the strength was from the actual sale of video cassettes... For 1992, we estimate earnings of 75 cents compared with 56 cents per share."

Columbia Hospital

O. Michael Gray, Southeast Research Partners, likes Columbia Hospital (NASDAQ, CHOS, $18.25) a hospital and health services operator with 13 major facilities as well as nine outpatient and diagnostic centers in South Florida.

find the company's performance to date impressive. While the 10-fold increase in revenues from 1988 to 1991 is, of course, not sustainable, double digit growth is likely. Earnings growth, in turn, should follow revenue growth. Net income is expected to rise 51 percent for 1991 and 43 percent in 1992. We believe five-year growth averaging 25 percent is attainable. We recommend purchase for long-term investors."

Cordis

Louie Nejedlo, Equity Analyst, likes Cordis (NASDAQ, CORD, $24.75), a producer of products for diagnostic angiography for the heart.

The company . . . supplies 65 percent of all diagnostic catheters worldwide. Further, Cordis is a growing supplier of advanced products for angioplasty involving the use of balloon- tipped catheters to enlarge arteries obstructed by fatty deposits . . . Angioplasty is an alternative to bypass surgery and is one of health care's fastest growing markets . . . We caution that these shares are risky. However, investors willing to ride out the share volatility are likely to reap outstanding capital appreciation."

Lennar Corp.

Earnings momentum prompts Greg Nejmeh, Shearson Lehman Brothers, to recommend Lennar Corp. (NYSE, LEN, $49.25), which is engaged in the construction, sale and rental of residential and commercial builder and related activities.

"The firm's peak profits were $2.80 a share in 1989. This year, earnings could approach -- and quite possibly exceed -- that level. Further, the housing cycle is just beginning. As such, we would expect the firm's earnings growth to continue beyond this year. In fact, Lennar could earn $3.50 to $4 a share in fiscal 1993.

"We believe the stock will continue to outperform the market."

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