Continental Homes"We are unusually bullish on the...

STOCK WATCH

April 01, 1992|By Opinions on stocks offered by investment experts. Compiled by Steve Halpen for Knight Ridder.

Continental Homes

"We are unusually bullish on the prospects for Continental Homes (AMEX, CON, $15)," says Donald Rowe, The Wall Street Digest.

"The company constructs, sells and finances single-family homes for entry-level and move-up buyers. Continental is active in the Phoenix, Denver and Southern California markets. During 1990 and 1991, the company delivered 1,240 units. Meanwhile, a mortgage-banking subsidiary originates a substantial portion of mortgages for homes sold by the company. The company's latest quarterly earnings were 25 cents a share, vs. a 70-cent-a-share loss in the year-earlier period. The stock is a buy."

Fidelity Real Estate

United Mutual Fund Selector suggests Fidelity's no-load Real Estate Fund for aggressive investors.

"While the real estate market's problems have been well documented, the current question is: 'Is the worst over?' If you believe it is, Fidelity Real Estate is a pure play to participate in an eventual rebound. It is the oldest and largest open-end real estate fund. Its primary investments are real estate investment trusts and stocks of homebuilders. After a decline of 8.7 percent in 1990, the fund rose 38.4 percent in 1991. This year, the fund is up 3.8 percent, but we expect further long-term progress . . . . A buy for patient, speculative investors."

Weingarten Realty

"Weingarten Realty (NYSE, WRI, $31 5/8 ) posted a strong 33 percent price advance in 1991 and appears well-positioned for further gains in 1992," says United & Babson, Investment Report.

"This real estate investment trust took advantage of depressed real estate prices last year to add over one million square feet of space to its portfolio. This added space, coupled with the relatively strong economy in the Southwest, should propel profits higher. Further, we expect the company to announce a dividend boost shortly to maintain its yield in the 6 percent-plus range. This well-managed trust is attractive for a combination of income and capital gains."

Scotts

"Scotts (NASDAQ, SCTT, $18 1/2 ), which came public in January at $19 a share, is the leading manufacturer and marketer of lawn-care products in the U.S.," notes Lynne Hyman, First Boston.

"Scotts has built its reputation and market presence on years of leadership in technology, innovation, and service. We anticipate that Scotts' earnings will increase sharply this year to 85 cents a share, up from 23 cents in 1991. Longer-term, we look for Scotts' earnings to grow at a 12 percent to 15 percent annual rate. The stock is trading at 14.6 times our $1.30 per share calendar 1993 earnings estimate. Our 12-month price target for Scotts of $23- $25 per share."

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