World Money Show - Part 2

02/20/2004 12:00 am EST

Focus:

In this 2nd part of The World Money Show highlights issue, we focus on domestic experts. We begin with a US outlook from political and financial leaders Dr. Jeane Kirkpatrick, Jim Michaels, Steve Forbes, Ed Finn, and Jack Ablin. (To view Part 1, click here. )

One of the most intriguing aspects of any Money Show is the wide diversity of experts in attendance and the broad range of topics covered. The World Money Show was no exception. Indeed, it was awe-inspiring to meet and listen to so many financial industry leaders and internationally known political and economic leaders. Here are some of their comments, which suggest a cautious, but optimistic, outlook for the domestic economy and financial markets. (For more information on those cited below, please click on their photos.)

Kirkpatrick, JeaneDr. Jeane Kirkpatrick , former US ambassador to the United Nations: "The end of the cold war was probably the single greatest event to impact our economic well-being. The European Union has been far more successful than even I expected, and I think it will continue to be more expansive than we now envision and will prove beneficial to Europe and the US. I'd say now, that both our military strength and our economic strength are a great deal better than our critics believe. There are many who would like to think that our economic problems are as bad as they say they are and that the future is as grim as they say it is. I don’t agree."

Forbes, SteveSteve Forbes, editor-in-chief, Forbes:  "How will the election affect the financial markets? This year will be positive. Not quite like it was last year, but still a very positive year. The fact of the matter is that what is going to help make it positive is that right now things are starting to get dicey again. When people start to have uncertainties, that is also the time that you can find opportunities. It could be a very roller coaster year in terms of the financial markets and there will be a lot of uncertainty between now and November and, as a result, the markets will have their ups and downs. But they will end up the year 15% to 20% higher. I think the S&P 500 will go over 1300 this year."

Michaels, JamesJames Michaels, editor emeritus, Forbes: "The interesting thing about history is that it can enlighten you or lead you astray. Mark Twain said that history doesn’t repeat, but it does rhyme. And if you are looking at the history of the stock market you can just look at the numbers, you have to listen to the rhythm. I’m a contrarian and a skeptic. But I’ve rarely seen an economy where everything is really cooking together the way that this one is. We’ve heard how the Japanese economy is picking up, the development of China will benefit the whole world, job creation domestically is about to pick up–we may have economic growth here this year that we are only used to seeing in developing economies. Growth of 5% in an economy like ours is a $500- to $600-billion increment."

Finn, EdEd Finn, editor of Barron’s: "Even when one looks at the other investment markets around the world, for most of us, the US is still the place to start. We think the market right now is somewhere around fair value. But we do think the market has the potential to grow 10% a year this year and next year and the year after. There are some caveats, such as terrorism, politics, and currencies. But essentially, earnings will probably go up better than 10% for the major companies in America over each of the next few years and that leads us to believe that stocks should go up at the same pace of perhaps 10% to 12% a year."

Ablin, Jack Jack Ablin Harris Trust and Savings: "Is the market experiencing a multi-year secular advance–or merely a shorter-term cyclical pop? On the verdict, the jury is still out. Whichever is true, though, we anticipate for this year a continued advance–though more modest than last year's–in stocks. While we believe that equities are poised to advance, certain concerns continue to linger. For now, the weaker dollar is providing a tailwind for the market, but if the dollar falls precipitously, there will be a very direct negative impact on US stock and bond markets. Another concern is inflation. And investor psychology is overwhelmingly greedy right now. While this is a short-term concern to us, it is not a worry given our 12 to 18-month horizon. Therefore, investor sentiment might suggest a near-term correction, but given our long-term outlook, we are willing to look over the valley."

In Part 2 of this special highlights issue from The World Money Show, we offer a trio of investment ideas from John Dessauer, the best momentum plays from Jim Collins, and Elliott Gue's outlook on India–and the two best stocks to benefit from the trends he sees unfolding. We also offer highlights from the InvestorPlace panel, which includes Mike Murphy, Louis Navellier, John Mugarian, and Toby Smith. We include an overview of value investing from Jamie Dlugosch, a warning about higher interest rates from Martin Weiss, the top bullish options stocks from Schaeffer Investment Research's Chris Johnson, and the latest buys from Ken Kam's Masters 100 Fund. A personal favorite is the exceptional, long-term advice from contrarian Richard Band, as well as highlights from the Forbes Roundtable, featuring John Buckingham, Dennis Slothower, Josh Wolfe, and Jim Stack.

Finally, for those who are not regular readers of the Digest, simply click here to sign up for your free weekly, online subscription to the Money Show Digest . And as always, if you have any questions regarding the advisors or the stocks featured in the Digest, any suggestions for how we can improve the Digest for you, simply contact me directly at DigestEditor@InterShow.com. I hope you enjoy this report.

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