Boring Portfolio

Boring Portfolio Report
Tuesday, November 11, 1997
by Greg Markus (

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (Nov. 11, 1997) -- U.S. stock indexes closed mixed Tuesday, with the S&P 500 gaining 0.29% and the Nasdaq dropping 0.37%. With the bond market closed in observance of Veterans Day and the Federal Reserve board slated to meet tomorrow, trading was light.

The Boring Portfolio slipped 0.43%. Losers outnumbered winners four to three, with two holdings -- Borders Group (NYSE: BGP) and Prime Medical Services (Nasdaq: PMSI) --unchanged.

Yesterday, I puzzled about for a possible explanation to the $2 5/8 surge in shares of Tidewater (NYSE: TDW). A reader suggested to day that it might have been due to TDW's presence on a Smart Money list of "Eighteen Stocks That Look Cheap."

The magazine mentions Tidewater as a stock that "can't miss." That's not a phrase you're likely ever to see in The Boring Portfolio, although I certainly agree that at less than 14-times projected earnings for calendar 1998, TDW is a very good value.

Alas, the tide goes in and the tide goes out. TDW gave back yesterday's gains plus a few pennies more, as stocks of drillers and related service companies numbered among Tuesday's laggards.

Also on the Smart Money list was Borefolio holding Atlas Air (NYSE: CGO). Notice that new symbol? Atlas began trading on the Big Board today, using an acronym for "cargo" as its nom de ticker.

This afternoon, Reuters carried a story in which Atlas founder and CEO Michael Chowdry said that his company is upping its order with Boeing (NYSE: BA) to eleven new 747-400 air freighters from ten.

Atlas mentioned this possibility in their recent conference call following the report of third quarter earnings.

Atlas had previously planned to take delivery of four of new freighters in 1998, but it is now finalizing talks with Boeing to take five jets instead, said Chowdry in the story.

In a recent routine SEC filing, Atlas said that any delivery delays caused by production problems at Boeing could "adversely impact" its ability to initiate service with prospective customers. But in the earlier conference call and again in the Reuters story, Chowdry emphasized that delivery delays should not affect company profits because Boeing has agreed to compensate Atlas and is also providing three aircraft for Atlas to use pending delivery of the new freighters.

CGO eased $1/4 in very light trading Tuesday.

Stock lists seems to be the topic of tonight's recap. Bessemer Trust Co., which manages approximately $16 billion on behalf of some 750 wealthy clients offered its list of attractive stocks for 1998 at its semi-annual investment outlook briefing today.

Executive vice president and chief investment officer Timothy Morris told journalists that he particularly likes financial services and technology-related issues. On the financial services side,

Green Tree Financial (NYSE: GNT) was among eight stocks he cited. As for the tech sector, Cisco Systems (Nasdaq: CSCO) made an elite list of six stocks.

We in the Boring Portfolio currently manage something less than $16 billion, but we're getting there, thanks to sensible investments in leading stocks of leading industries, as Cisco and Green Tree most assuredly are.

Speaking of Cisco, I leave tomorrow for sunny San Jose and the Kid's annual shareholders' meeting on Thursday. If you're there, please say hello. I'll be the one in the "Fool" baseball cap ... or perhaps one of a number of individual investors sporting Fool caps?

                  Today's FoolWatch -- all the latest in Fooldom.

Stock  Change    Bid
CGO   -  1/4   27.38
BGP     ---    28.94
CSL   -  7/16  44.13
CSCO  -1 1/8   80.63
FCH   +  5/8   37.25
GNT   +  1/4   43.44
ORCL  +  3/8   34.94
PMSI    ---    13.00
TDW   -2 15/16 65.75
                   Day   Month    Year  History
        BORING   -0.43%   1.75%  19.48%  37.49%
        S&P:     +0.29%   1.00%  24.71%  48.61%
        NASDAQ:  -0.37%  -0.55%  22.76%  52.25%

    Rec'd   #  Security     In At       Now    Change
  2/28/96  400 Borders Gr    11.26     28.94   157.08%
  8/13/96  200 Carlisle C    26.32     44.13    67.62%
  6/26/96  100 Cisco Syst    53.90     80.63    49.58%
   2/2/96  200 Green Tree    30.39     43.44    42.95%
 12/23/96  100 Tidewater     46.52     65.75    41.32%
   3/8/96  400 Prime Medi    10.07     13.00    29.11%
   3/5/97  150 Atlas Air     23.06     27.38    18.72%
 11/21/96  150 Oracle Cor    32.43     34.94     7.72%
  11/6/97  200 FelCor Sui    37.59     37.25    -0.90%

    Rec'd   #  Security     In At     Value    Change
   2/28/96  400 Borders Gr  4502.49  11575.00  $7072.51
  8/13/96  200 Carlisle C  5264.99   8825.00  $3560.01
  6/26/96  100 Cisco Syst  5389.99   8062.50  $2672.51
   2/2/96  200 Green Tree  6077.49   8687.50  $2610.01
 12/23/96  100 Tidewater   4652.49   6575.00  $1922.51
   3/8/96  400 Prime Medi  4027.49   5200.00  $1172.51
   3/5/97  150 Atlas Air   3458.74   4106.25   $647.51
 11/21/96  150 Oracle Cor  4864.99   5240.63   $375.64
  11/6/97  200 FelCor Sui  7518.00   7450.00   -$68.00

                             CASH   $3021.10
                            TOTAL  $68742.98