Taking Stock Of Baltimore

July 07, 1994|By John E. Woodruff | John E. Woodruff,MoneySun Staff Writer

Baltimore nose-dived from No. 7 to No. 22 of 24 cities on Money magazine's second-quarter ranking of stock performance by "representative" companies headquartered in U.S. metropolises.

Three big losers accounted for most of Baltimore's drop: Annapolis-based aircraft parts maker UNC Inc., whose stock was down 45 percent for the second quarter of 1994; Columbia-based house builder Ryland Group Inc., down 16.87 percent; and Towson-based toolmaker Black and Decker Inc., down 15.85 percent.

Baltimore's 15-place drop was mild compared with Los Angeles, which went from No. 1 in the first quarter of 1994 to dead last in the second. Ten of Los Angeles' 12 "representative" stocks declined during the quarter.

In fact, the entire ranking, which is based on the average price changes of 12 stocks in each of 24 cities, proved wildly volatile amid the quarter's general decline in national financial markets.

Atlanta jumped all the way from No. 21 to No. 1, mainly on the strength of Scientific-Atlanta's 25.9-percent stock price increase over the period and a 19-percent increase in the stock of Equifax, a national credit-reporting agency.

Each of Baltimore's three big second-quarter losers had its own reason for a fading stock price.

UNC announced plans to lay off 400 workers across the country and to close or sell off several facilities, downsizing to meet cost pressures imposed by its customers' declining sales to airlines.

Ryland announced operating reforms to correct its failure to get its share of the housing market during the economic recovery.

Black and Decker has been struggling with debt from past acquisitions.

Baltimore had only four winners on the index for the quarter: Baltimore-based Mercantile Bankshares Corp., up 7.53 percent; Baltimore-based Baltimore Bancorp, up 3.92 percent; Columbia-based developer Rouse Co., up 2.74 percent; and Baltimore-based consultants PHH Corp., up 0.35 percent.

Five other Baltimore stocks on the index declined: Baltimore Gas & Electric Co., down 8.11 percent; Legg Mason Inc., down 7.93 percent; Manor Care Inc., down 7.8 percent; USF&G Corp., down 7.85 percent; and McCormick & Co. Inc., down 6.90 percent.

BALTIMORE'S DOZEN

5) ...... ..... ..... Price ..... % chg

Company ....... ..... 6/30 ...... in qtr

Mercantile Bksh .... $19.63 ...... 7.5%

Balto. Bancorp ...... 19.88 ...... 3.9

Rouse Co. ........... 18.75 ...... 2.7

PHH Corp. ........... 35.63 ...... 0.4

McCormick ........... 20.25 ..... -6.9

USF&G Corp. ......... 12.25 ..... -7.6

Manor Care .......... 25.13 ..... -7.8

Legg Mason .......... 18.88 ..... -7.9

BGE ......... ....... 21.25 ..... -8.1

Black & Decker ...... 17.25 .... -15.9

Ryland Group ........ 17.60 .... -16.9

UNC Inc. ..... ....... 5.50 .... -45.0

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