Adding 45 points to Tuesday's 52 point surge, the Dow Jones average closed yesterday at 3,379.19.
With election nearing, I checked back and found that on the day Ronald Reagan was elected (Nov. 11, 1980), the Dow stood at 932.42, and on the day George Bush won the election (Nov. 8, 1988), the DJ closed at 2,130.87. The Dow indicator has vaulted 2,446 points, or 262 percent, since Reagan's election.
THE GOOD NEWS: "On the whole the stock market now looks more attractive than it has since December." (Hamilton Investments) . . . "It seems next to impossible that stocks can continue to decline when inflation is in check, the economy is growing moderately and unemployment remains high -- all of which means the economy will not heat up and interest rates will stay low." (OTC Growth Stock Watch) . . . "The number of optimistic investors continues to drop while the number of pessimists rises. This is another bullish [cheerful] signal." (Downing Technical Analysis) . . . "Stocks are not overpriced at this level." (Eddie Brown, local investment adviser)
NOW THE BAD: "We don't think the bull market is over but we're trained to obey the trends and now the market is getting unfriendly." (Dines Letter) . . . "Without enormous earnings gains the stock market will be impacted negatively." (Growth Fund Guide) . . . "Technical indicators look good but unless the Dow breaks out over 3,375 there's no assurance that this isn't just a trading rally." (Sy Harding Forecasts) . . . "If the economy were to recover it would have done so already. Most stocks have seen their highs for years to come." (LaLoggia's Special Report) . . . "We need earnings to boost stocks but second-quarter earnings are disappointing." (Mary Farrell, technician)
WHICH WAY NOW? Regarding the above, and summarizing the pile of financial newspapers, magazines, newsletters, etc., that I read over the past week, stock market opinion is now split about 50/50, a slightly less optimistic reading than that of several weeks ago . . . "August in Wall Street has traditionally been a slightly 'up' month, rising an average 0.3 percent over 41 years, but ignore articles extolling August's extreme bullishness. Since August was up 80 percent of the time in the first half century but only half that time thereafter." (1992 Stock Trader's Almanac)
TAKE YOUR CHOICE: U. S. Surgical, a stock widely held in this area, is written up under "Spotlight Stock: A Surgical Revolution" in Dick Davis Digest, July 20. ("USS is the leading player in laparoscopy, a process that will revolutionize surgery.") But the same stock is listed under "Stocks That Newsletters Say to Avoid" in Hulbert Financial Digest, July.
BALTIMORE BEAT: James K. Archibald of Venable, Baetjer & Howard (phone 494-6200) will mail you "Employer's Guide to Non-Competition Agreements in Maryland," a publication of special interest to small businessmen and -women . . . Dean Witter's Jack Rosenbloom (547-7027) will mail "Finding Higher Yields in the Fixed Income and Equity Markets." . . . "Using the Wall Street Journal's figures, simple math gives [Bill] Clinton 53.5 percent of the vote as a minimum. If the market has counted on Mr. Bush's re-election, a major re-evaluation of investment strategies is in order." (Rex Rehfeld, Gruntal & Co., Baltimore) . . . Bell Atlantic, which serves this area, is mentioned in Forbes, Aug. 3 issue, providing a 5.5 percent yield. ("Investors looking to replace lost CD income should consider Baby Bells.")
MONTH-ENDERS: Tomorrow night, "Wall $treet Week with Louis Rukeyser" examines Midwest investments with guest Alfred +V Goldman and panelists Bernadette Murphy, Carter Randall and William Waters . . . "Of the 14 presidential elections since 1900 in which incumbent parties were victorious, 12 were foretold by a rising market between the last convention and election day. Keep your eye on Wall Street after the Republicans finish in Dallas." (1992 Stock Trader's Almanac) . . . "Never fight the Fed; never fight the tape." (Marty Zweig)