Boring Portfolio

Boring Portfolio Report
Thursday, March 7, 1996

by Greg Markus (MF Boring)

Not a whole lot happened today, to be honest. Most major indexes were up a couple of points or so. As for the Boring Portfolio, it gained about enough to cover the cost of pizza and a video rental tomorrow night.

In an effort to improve upon those returns, I'll be adding another stock to Borefolio tomorrow: Prime Medical Services, Inc. (NASD: PMSI). Look for a full review of that stock a bit later this evening, in its own folder in the scroll on the left of the Hall of Portfolio main screen.

Until now, the Borefolio has neglected entirely the one-seventh of the US economy that is devoted to health care. The PMSI buy represents an effort to remedy that deficiency. I'm grateful to our resident nephrologist, MF Uptrend, for educating me about the company and the stock.

As for our current holdings, as I say, there wasn't a great deal of activity today. Two of the big movers over the past couple of days, Borders Group and Green Tree Financial, gave back small bits of their recent gains. KLIC dropped another quarter-point--surely not newsworthy by now, I'm afraid. POT arrested its dramatic two-day plummet, advancing a half-point.

And Texas Industries rose *another* $1 1/4 today, to close at $67 1/8. Altogether, TXI has gained more than 23% (figured Foolishly) since it helped open the Borefolio barely 5 weeks ago with a 100-share deposit of rocks and recycled steel. TXI is scheduled to report quarterly earnings next week.

The only real news I have to share with you tonight concerns the stock that ended the day unchanged: Lam Research. I asked David Ringler at Lam if he would comment on the cascade of unsettling news that had hit the semiconductor industry this week--from Texas Instruments, Fujitsu, and various other locales.

His reply was that Lam continues to work flat-out to meet the challenge of filling the large orders in hand. Since the majority of the recent news has focused on the market for DRAM chips, I asked him about Lam's exposure to that side of the industry. Said Ringler: "We estimate between 35 to 40 percent of our system revenues are for tools destined for DRAM production."

Ringler continued by saying that "Orders overall remain in line," although accompanied by some noise from both order pull-ins and push-outs. To conclude, Lam remains "quite comfortable with Street estimates of $1.26 for our FY Q3 and $1.34 for Q4."

"Quite comfortable." Sounds like how I should be getting right about now, just as soon as I finish that PMSI write-up. Do check back here a bit later tonight, okay?

Today's Moves

BGP - 3/8
GNT - 1/8
KLIC - 1/4
LRCX ---
POT + 1/2
TXI +1 1/4

                   Day   Month    Year  History
        BORING   +0.05%   2.91%   0.86%   0.86%
        S&P 500  +0.25%   2.06%   5.15%   5.15%
        NASDAQ   +0.12%  -0.63%   5.01%   5.01%

    Rec'd  #   Security     In At       Now    Change

  1/29/96 100 Texas Indus    54.52     67.13    23.11%
   2/2/96 200 Green Tree     30.39     35.88    18.06%
  2/28/96 200 Borders Gro    22.51     26.00    15.50%
   2/9/96 100 Potash Corp    76.27     70.75    -7.24%
  1/29/96 200 Kulicke & S    23.89     20.00   -16.27%
  2/23/96 100 Lam Researc    48.02     35.00   -27.11%

    Rec'd  #   Security      Cost     Value    Change

  1/29/96 100 Texas Indus  5449.99   6712.50  $1262.51
   2/2/96 200 Green Tree   6077.49   7175.00  $1097.51
  2/28/96 200 Borders Gro  4502.49   5200.00   $697.51
   2/9/96 100 Potash Corp  7627.49   7075.00  -$552.49
  1/29/96 200 Kulicke & S  4774.99   4000.00  -$774.99
  2/23/96 100 Lam Researc  4802.49   3500.00 -$1302.49

                             CASH  $16765.06
                            TOTAL  $50427.56