A Scene We'd Like to See on CNBC

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By George Runkle (TMF Runkle)
June 26, 2000

Last week I was traveling (again), and in my motel room I passed the time watching some of the Wise appear on TV solely to predict where the market would go. Few things can be predicted with any accuracy in this world, but you can easily make one prediction: If the market goes up after it's been dropping for a few days, or goes down after it's been going up, someone will come out of the woodwork to prognosticate.

While watching the "market strategists" make their pronouncements, I thought of an interview I'd love to see with someone who isn't wearing a Fool cap (for a change). It would go like this:

TV Announcer: We have here Thomas Petroleo, Chief Market Strategist of Oily Associates. Welcome Mr. Petroleo.

Market Strategist: Hi, Sue. Hey, Mom -- look at me, I'm on TV!

TV Announcer: Uh, Mr. Petroleo, could you comment on today's market moves?

Market Strategist: I suppose. Sure did go up a lot, didn't it?

TV Announcer: Yes, it did. Do you think this is the beginning of a long-term trend, or is it just a short-term rally?

Market Strategist: Oh, come on! How am I supposed to know? Do you know how many things affect stock market moves? There is no way I can get a handle on those things. Don't be ridiculous!.

TV Announcer: But Mr. Petroleo, you are the Chief Market Strategist of Oily Associates.

Market Strategist: Yeah, yeah, whatever. That's why I'm the Chief Market Strategist. I know you can't predict the market with any accuracy. To me, success in predicting the market can come at random, so why waste time worrying about it? I just sit in my chair and watch cartoons all day. Easy job, but it pays well. Hey Mom, did you get this on video tape?

TV Announcer: I think it's time for a station break. Please come back after this short word from our sponsors.

If you watch stock market television shows, do you find the programming to your liking? Vote in our poll on the Fool's "Eyes on the Wise" discussion board.

Drip Portfolio

6/26/2000 Closing Numbers
Ticker Company Day Chg % Chg Price
CPBCAMPBELL SOUP9/161.88%$30.56
INTCINTEL CORP-3/16-0.14%$134.19
JNJJOHNSON & JOHNSON3/46.41%$95.50

  Day Week Month Year
To Date
Drip 1.78% 1.78% 4.46% 29.98% 68.86% 19.68%
S&P 500 .96% .96% 2.44% -.95% 55.01% 16.22%
S&P 500(DA) .96% .96% 2.44% -.95% 57.64% 16.89%
S&P 500(DCA) n/a n/a n/a n/a 26.44% 8.38%
NASDAQ 1.74% 1.74% 15.03% -3.86% 149.25% 36.78%

Trade Date # Shares Ticker Cost/Share Price LT % Val Chg

Trade Date # Shares Ticker Cost Value LT $ Val Ch
  Cash: $0.05  
  Total: $6,070.61  

• S&P 500 (DA) = dividend adjusted. Dividends have been added to the total return of the index.

Drip Port launched with $500 on July 28, 1997, adds $100 to invest every month, and the goal is to own $150,000 in stock by August of the year 2017. Due to the slow nature of dollar-cost-averaging and our relatively significant starting costs, we do not expect to seriously challenge the S&P 500 for the first three to five years as we build an investment base. The long-term advantages of dollar-cost-averaging still overcome the short-term disadvantages, however. Final note: our investment in Campbell Soup is frozen due to fees instituted in its investment plan. Click here for a history of all Drip Port transactions.