Catch up on some local stocks, and be fair with the waiter's tip

The Ticker

April 26, 1996|By Julius Westheimer

CLEARING the April notebook:

Light Note: A hotel survey showed waitresses' tips ran 20 percent above average when they drew a "smiley face" on room-service checks, but the smile didn't help male servers at all.

Black & Decker hit a 12-month high at midweek, touching $40 RRTC share vs. 12-month low of $27.50, representing a 45 percent 12-month gain.

Bell Atlantic, which serves our area, appears under "Income Portfolio" in Personal Finance, April 24. The stock yields 4.3 percent.

"In May, S&P 500-stock average was up 10 straight years since 1985, beating all other months, gaining 31.5 percent." (1996 Stock Trader's Almanac)

Forbes, May 6, says, "Simple strategy for beating the market is to buy highest-yielding Dow Jones stocks. Total return last year: 36.8 percent." The article is worth studying.

Last Day Today! "What secretaries say are best gifts for Secretaries Week, in order: Lunch, flowers, fruit basket, business gift." (USA Today)

Vanguard Index 500 is listed under "Great Funds That Slash Your Risk" in Money, May. An index fund closely tracks the stock market's direction.

"It takes about 10 years for the Dow average to double again, putting DJ 10,000 around the year 2006." ("Stocks For the Long Run," by Wharton Professor Jeremy Siegel)

"When traveling on business, stop at Kinko's to use the phone. Kinko stores offer clients free local calls." (The Cheap Report)

"When switching jobs, stick to what you know. One person says, 'I would have been lost if I went in a completely new direction.' " (Money, May)

The New Yorker's April 29-May 6 "Black in America" double issue runs a fascinating article on investment adviser Alphonse Fletcher Jr.

"More clerical errors are made in spring than in any other season. Although employees feel mentally alert, many are distracted by urge to be outside." (Maria Simonson, Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions)

"Track down a missing tax refund by calling IRS Refund Center, (800) 829-1040, and speaking to an IRS employee. Have tax papers in front of you." (Coopers & Lybrand)

Maryland Memo (1): "Never before have so many sheep been led to slaughter. Music plays on. Dancers are having a great time while stewards arrange deck chairs on the Titanic." (Charles Allmon, Chevy Chase)

Maryland Memo (2): "Demand for stocks is strong as money continues to flow into mutual funds at record levels! Fundamentals remain strong." (Legg Mason mailer that Gerald Scheinker, 486-8010, will send.) Take your choice.

"Top 5 newsletter performers over last 10 years are, in order, MPT Review, California Technology Stock Letter, BI Research, Fundline, Value Line Convertible Survey." (Hulbert Financial Digest, April.)

"People 62 or older can save a bundle by buying senior-discount coupons offered by most airlines. Ask carriers for details. They're better than ever." (Money, May)

"Over three years a CD delivers what looks like a respectable gain, but taxes and inflation will wipe out most of it." (Smart Money, May.)

"Worried about interest rates? Cheat the fixed-income gods by building a 'bond ladder' in your portfolio." (Same Smart Money)

Several readers asked the address for "100 Highest Yields." It is 11811 U.S. Highway #1, N. Palm Beach, Fla. 33408.

"Homework about the firm you're applying to helps enormously when you go to get a job." (Barbara Walters)

"Maximize the amount of time you can keep money in your retirement plan by naming a grandchild as beneficiary." (Tax Hotline, May) See your accountant.

Check on any bank's stability with Veribanc (800-44-BANKS) For $10 (you can charge it), the company will give you the bank's safety rating.

Did you know that credit for Daylight Saving Time belongs to Benjamin Franklin, who suggested it in 1784?

Pub Date: 4/26/96

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