Briefly Speaking...

03/28/2003 12:00 am EST

Focus:

In his MPT Review, Louis Navellier has added Garmin Ltd. (GRMN NASDAQ) to his buy list. “The company makes navigation equipment based on global positioning technology. Garmin’s products are used in many applications such as for boats and airplanes. Even hikers use the company’s products. Fourth quarter earnings jumped 60%, and Garmin just raised its 2003 earnings forecast  to $1.45 to $1.54 per share, up from Wall Street’s previous forecast for $1.37 a share.”

 

“What investments will best protect you from prolonged war against terrorism?” asks Mark Skousen, editor of Forecasts & Strategies . ”My best bets in stocks, income, and commodities are Pimco Real Return Fund (PRTNX ), which invests in inflation-adjusted Treasuries and Oppenheimer Real Asset Fund (QRANX), a commodity index fund which has risen 20% since January 2002. For precious metals, I recommend American Century Global Gold Fund (BGEIX) or the Tocqueville Gold Fund (TGLDX), which for added protection also holds gold and silver coins in its portfolio. We also like Fidelity Select Defense (FSDAX), which invests in defense stocks and has fallen into a good buying range near $37.”

 

XM Satellite Radio (XMSR NASDAQ) is a nationwide satellite provider of coast-to-coast audio entertainment and programming for reception by vehicles, home, and portable radios,” notes Chuck Carlson ofThe DRIP Investor . “The company charges $10 per month for its service and has been building its subscriber base through distribution arrangements with automakers, and GM plans to offer the service on 44 of its models in 2003. The firm hopes to have one million subscribers by the end of this year, although it will likely need twice that amount to reach breakeven.  Despite significant upside potential, we emphasize that this is a very high-risk situation.”

 

“When we last owned Hartford Financial (HIG NYSE),  we made 1,500%+ over a 16-year period; after selling the stock two years ago, it has now returned to our buy list,” notes John Buckingham, editor of The Prudent Speculator. “Hartford is one of the nation’s largest investment and insurance companies.  Like all P&C insurers, the firm has asbestos risk, but even with this uncertainty we think the stock has fallen enough to justify purchase.  Hartford trades at just eight times estimated earnings and at a discount to book value, while yielding 3%.  We would buy the shares up to $37.12.”

 

“Gold stocks have moved down exactly as we expected in what is simply a profit-taking consolidation,” says Jim Dines, editor of The Dines Letter. “Our guess is that the decline should be over by mid-April. The charts do not display the type of major top formation that would alarm us. On the contrary, this seems like a perfectly healthy consolidation that should be followed by upside breakouts above the February highs. Accordingly, we see no reason to do anything except stand our bullish ground on gold.”

 

Marvel Entertainment (MVL NYSE) is the latest featured recommendation from Jim Collins, editor of Listed Insight. “Marvel is an entertainment company with a library of over 4,700 characters, including Spider-Man, X-Men, Captain America, and the Incredible Hulk. In addition to its long-standing comic books, the company is now focusing on video games, TV and movie licenses, and a wide range of consumer products and services. To date, Marvel character-based movies have generated more than $1.5 billion in worldwide box office sales.  This summer, 20th Century Fox will release X2, the sequel to X-Men. In June, Universal will release The Hulk. Spider-Man 2 is also planned. After dipping to $4.15, the stock recently rallied to new highs above $10, showing a relative strength rating among the top 2% of all stocks.”

 

“I hope you own Novartis (NVS NYSE),” says John Dessauer, editor of Investor’s World. ”Sales for the drug firm rose 11% in 2002, while operating income was up 8%. The company gained market share in virtually all of its product areas. The Swiss firm has a super-strong balance sheet and recently raised its investment in Roche (another Swiss pharmaceutical company). Overall, Novartis is an excellent growth company. In 2004 and beyond, earnings are set to grow at a 14% annual rate. Over the past three years, sales, cash flow,and earnings are higher, yet the stock is still well below is 1999 high of $51. Novartis is a buy.”

 

“Some 17 million Americans suffer from overactive bladder, yet only 13% of them were treated with drug therapy in 2002,” notes John McCamant, editor of the Medical Technology Stock Letter. “Trospium has been developed by Indevus (IDEV NASDAQ). Trospium has a unique chemical structure that should lead to a much cleaner side effect profile than current drugs, which have severe dry mouth effects and potential problems interacting with other drugs.  Trospium’s advantages are particularly important to the elderly who often take multiple medications. We antcipate formal FDA approval by the second quarter of 2004. We find it hard to believe that this stock is valued at just $100 million. If you don’t own this stock, you should establish positions soon, buying up to $4 a share.”

 

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