Predictions in Dow Jones contest vary

The Ticker

February 10, 1994|By Julius Westheimer

As interest rates continued to decline, stocks rallied yesterday on heavy volume of 332 million shares. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 25.89 points, to close at 3,931.92, now standing 495 points, or 14 percent, above its level one year ago and only 46 points, or about 1 percent, below its all-time high. And now where? Read on.

WHAT YOU THINK: From your postcard predictions in our Dow Jones contest, now closed: "I'm very optimistic; I say the Dow will end this year at 4,633." (John Kowatch) . . . "I'm not optimistic; I'll say 3,737." (Edward Velevis) . . . "Ever an optimist, I firmly believe that American business can surmount the obstacles placed before it by the politicians, the economy and by world competition. I say 4,728." (Commodore Jo Ann Palmer, NSHSA) . . . "Dow Jones 4,152; 10 percent gain is good for us in 1994." (Betty Ledford) . . . "Average of all your 51 forecasters' predictions was 3,877, so that's my forecast." (Gordon Albert) . . . "Some day soon, reason will suddenly impress itself upon the mass psyche, and investors will say things have gone too far, current levels are not justified by reality. Then the big bust. Dow 1,176 at year-end." (Henry Schwartz.)

WHAT OTHERS THINK: "There's still lots of worry around. Good." (Laszlo Birinyi, adviser) . . . "One of the best ways to make money in stocks is to identify an industrywide takeover trend in its early stages. Right now, we're in the early stages of such a trend in the hospital/health-care industry. Two possible takeover candidates are Integrated Health Services and Diversicare." (LaLoggia's Special Situation Report) . . . "Municipal bonds now come in all shapes and flavors, but the safest remain the old-fashioned general obligation issues." (Ben Weberman, in Forbes) . . . "The rally could continue, but increasing economic strength poses a risk to stocks . . ." (The Zweig Forecast) . . . "The bond market is at risk near-term." (BCA Interest Rate Forecast).

LOCAL LINE: I will answer your financial questions on the Dan Rodricks Show, WBAL Radio, from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. Saturday. Dial 467-WBAL . . . "China is one of the world's hottest economies, expected to grow 10 percent in 1994. Rather than invest in obscure Asian stocks, you can buy Westinghouse, which produces the steam turbines needed in China, where electricity use will double by 2003." (Moneypaper) . . . The stock of Delmarva Power & Light, our Eastern Shore neighbor utility, skidded into the 12-month new low column early this week . . . The T. Rowe Price New Asia Fund appears under "The Best Funds For The Long Haul" in U.S. News & World Report, Feb. 7. The fund's 1993 return is stated as 78.8 percent, and its three-year return was 137.3 percent.

FEBRUARY FINDINGS: "Here are some companies that could benefit from increased trade with Vietnam: Mobil Oil, Coca-Cola, Pepsico, General Electric, Caterpillar and IBM." (U.S. News & World Report, Feb. 14 . . . "Performance figures of world stock markets last year, with plus percentages, are: Jakarta 115, Madrid 51, Germany 47, Tel Aviv 25, Japan 2.9, Dow Jones industrials 14." (The Jerusalem Report, Feb. 10) . . . Tomorrow night, "Wall Street Week With Louis Rukeyser" spotlights the housing industry and its stocks with guest Bonita Austin (senior vice president, Lehman Bros.) and panelists Harvey Eisen, Greta Marshall and Martin Zweig.

WORKPLACE WISDOM: The National Business Employment Weekly, Feb.4-10 issue on newsstands this week, runs a practical, helpful story called, "The Right Way to Brag About Your Skills in Cover Letters." Excerpts: "Bosses are convinced that your past achievements are the best forecaster of your future success . . . Even an improperly written cover letter will gain you interviews if it's brimming with profit-aiding accomplishments . . . Listing mere duties performed without saying how well they were performed is a principal reason why cover letters and resumes are dumped by hiring managers . . . Example of phrases that stand out: I get letters out 25 percent faster than others in the office; I found a new vendor that's 20 percent cheaper for office staples than the supplier we used for 15 years; I missed only one day in two years, and have never been late."

ENDPAPERS: In response to many requests, here are names of some companies that regularly raise their dividends: AT&T, American Home Products, Baltimore Gas and Electric Co., Bristol-Myers Squibb, Coca-Cola, General Electric.

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