Local stocks make great gifts for one and all at holiday time

The Ticker

December 13, 1996|By Julius Westheimer

Holiday hints about your money:

If you buy stocks with bonus money -- or give shares as holiday gifts -- don't overlook local issues. Some recent developments: Baltimore Gas & Electric Co. appears under "Appealing High-Yielding Stocks" in the Nov. 27 S&P Outlook. The stock yields 6 percent, double the current inflation rate.

The Dec. 4 Outlook lists Black & Decker under "Economically Sensitive Stocks We Favor." A B&D spokesperson says the company's SnakeLight flexible flashlights are selling "extremely well as holiday gifts."

Showing solid buying support, Rouse Co. stock reached a 12-month high last Friday, the day stocks dived after Alan Greenspan's Wall Street-rattling speech. Yesterday, the stock closed at $28.50, up from $18.37 within 12 months.

Bethesda-based Lockheed Martin Corp. receives a Merrill Lynch "Buy" report, stating, "The stock offers the best risk-to-reward ratio of all defense issues we follow."

Columbia Bancorp stock draws favorable comment in Legg Mason's Quarterly Bank Report.

Regarding stocks -- local or national -- here's a good lesson: Fortune, Dec. 9, says that after mutual fund Chief Executive Officer Michael Price was "badly burned" by ordering $400 million of stocks dumped in a plunging market, confessed, "Never, never pay attention to what the market is doing." The stocks quickly recovered.

Speaking of the market, here's how contestants rate in our 1996 Dow Jones forecasting contest:

As of Wednesday's Dow Jones close of 6,402.52, closest are: Judy Laylon 6,404; Mary Jane McGowan 6,401; Marion Grden 6,400; Merle Thorp 6,400.

If you can't predict the market but want to give long-lasting gifts, consider "The Warren Buffett Way," by Robert Hagstrom, Jr. ($24.95), "The Intelligent Investor," by Benjamin Graham ($35 and worth it), "One Up on Wall Street," by Peter Lynch ($12.95 paperback) and "The Small Investor," by Jim Gard ($11.95.)

Growth stock mutual funds -- not U.S. Savings bonds or bond funds -- are the best presents for youngsters. Arrange to have dividends reinvested. Your broker can help with specific selections.

HOLIDAY HASH: When Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates was having breakfast at a New York hotel recently, his oatmeal was delayed 30 minutes because of "a computer glitch" in the kitchen.

"Investment Rules To Live By" in Black Enterprise, December, include: "Invest every month; reinvest all profits, diversify among industries; and don't overlook investment clubs -- they're educational and profitable."

Pub Date: 12/13/96

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