Flagging Dow Jones index makes partial comeback


October 06, 1994|By JULIUS WESTHEIMER

The Dow Jones industrial average extended Tuesday's 46-point loss yesterday, but, as one local broker put it, "It could have been much worse." After plunging 53 points by lunchtime, the Dow index staged a partial recovery during the afternoon, closing off 13.79 points at 3,787.34.

CONTEST LEADERS: Speaking of stocks, here are names of the Dow Jones contest leaders as of the close of trading on Friday, Sept. 30 -- the end of the year's third quarter -- when the blue-chip index finished at 3,843.19. Our readers made these predictions early in January.

With just three months to go for dinners and lunches as guests of Mr. and Mrs. Ticker at the winners' favorite restaurants, the leading crystal-ball gazer in our Dow Jones forecasting contest is Doris Wade, Sykesville, at 3,838 -- only five points away from the closing figure. Tied for runners-up at 3,850 are George Miller, Parkton, and Degna Cespedes-Cloud, Baltimore.

Next closest, in order, are Nancy Paris, Reisterstown; Faith Fishkind, Baltimore; Mary Jane Meisel, Ellicott City ("I guessed 3,827 because I was born in '27 and wish I were 38"); Beth Brenner, Stevenson; John Nack, Aberdeen; Yvonne Perret, Baltimore; Beryl McDonough, Baltimore; Patricia Hochrein, Baltimore, and Pam Jolliffe, Baltimore. The 10 closest contestants following the winners will receive hardback books about money. Only three months to go!

RE-INVEST THEM! "Albert Einstein, Nobel Prize winner for theoretical physics, wartime atomic bomb consultant to the U.S. government and best known for his 'Theory of Relativity,' called compound interest man's greatest invention. He was right -- especially if you are compounding dividends. Every $1,000 invested in U.S. stocks in 1925 is now worth a stunning $727,380, thanks to the compounding power of reinvested dividends. Without reinvesting dividends, $1,000 grew to just $34,150." (Personal Finance)

BEST JOBS: Here, in order from the top, are "Best Percentage Increases in Jobs by 2005," compiled by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, followed (in parentheses) by "Starting Pay for '94 Graduates": Computer systems analyst, 79% increase ($33,000); physical therapist, 76% ($29,000); psychologist, 64% ($20,000); marketing-advertising, 47% ($25,000); preschool teacher, 41% ($17,000); securities broker, 40% ($28,000); lawyer, 35% ($25,000); accountant, 34% ($28,000); social worker, 34% ($19,000) and electric and mechanical engineer, 34% ($35,000).

AUTUMN LEAVES: If you're thinking of selling a business, send $1 for a booklet, "How to Buy or Sell a Business" to SBA Publications, Box 30, Denver, Colo. 80201. Mention publication MP16 . . . Businesspeople and others, do you want a morning jolt and/or a midafternoon pickup? Consumer Reports, October, rates caffeinated instant coffees for flavor in this order: Taster's Choice, Nescafe, Kroger Premium, Hills Bros., Yuban, Maxwell House. For brewed coffee: Eight O'Clock, Folger's, Hills Bros., Edwards Premium, Yuban and Maxwell House.

HOPEFULLY HELPFUL: Highlights from two useful suggestions in Tax Hotline, September: "Maximize your investment in all retirement plans. A big benefit is tax deferral -- the income your investment earns in the plan is not currently taxed. And tax deferral is worth more at today's high tax rates than it was before." . . . "Never underestimate a revenue agent. A certain doctor carefully kept credit card receipts for all travel and entertainment expenses he claimed as deductions, noting on the slip the name of each party he said he wined and dined. But the revenue agent checked with persons named and found that many had never been entertained by the doctor. Disallowances and fines followed."

PROFIT POTENTIAL: "Timing is everything. By identifying trend stages, you can develop market strategies or know when to invest in an idea. Here are five stages, with examples: Birth Stage: pay-per-view, two-way video communications, home shopping, global age. Growth: coffee bars, environmentalism, health maintenance organizations (HMOs), home health care, self-protection. Maturity: carbonated soft drinks, fast foods, frozen foods, warehouse retailing. Decline: bartending, department stores, movie theaters, tobacco. Dying: furs, neckties, typewriters." (Success, October)

MARYLAND MEMO: Potomac Electric Power is listed under "Somewhat Above Average," and Baltimore Gas & Electric and Delmarva Power appear under "Average" in Legg Mason's recent summary of "Electric Utility Business Positions Update," a Standard & Poor's publication. The periodical evaluates various utilities' markets and service area economies, competitive position, fuel and power supply, operations, asset concentration, regulation and management.

AUTUMN LEAVES: Business Week, Oct. 10, suggests that President Clinton's aides are saving space in the president's State of the Union and budget speeches for a provision that would expand eligibility for IRA retirement plans, thereby "giving the middle class a tax cut." . . . "Never borrow money except for a primary residence, education or emergency health problems." (Old Southern saying) . . . Tomorrow night, "Wall Street Week With Louis Rukeyser" examines small-company stocks with guest William Nasgovitz, fund manager, Heartland Value Fund, and panelists Monte Gordon, Michael Holland and Carter Randall.

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