Boring Portfolio

Pentair joins Borefolio
Tuesday, April 14, 1998
by Greg Markus (TMF Boring)

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (April 14, 1998) -- A good day for the market and a great day for the Boring Portfolio. The Borefolio advanced 1.50% with six of seven holdings gaining ground.

Yup, seven. One hundred shares of Pentair Inc. (NYSE: PNR) were tossed into the Boring basket today, at a price of $43 9/16 each, plus an $18 commish. If you missed it last night, I invite you to click into our report on Pentair, in which we offer our reasons for making this investment.

Pentair shares rose $13/16 today to $44 1/8, so we're already in the black with Pentair.

Atlas Air (NYSE: CGO) continues its ascent. The stock gained $9/16 to close at $36 1/4. Atlas is slated to report its first-quarter results early next week. Earnings for the March quarter are expected to be below last year's results, owing to fewer aircraft in service. As the fleet fills out during the balance of the year, however, profits should rise nicely.

According to First Call, analysts are looking for EPS of $0.20 for the first quarter and around $1.95 for the full year. Forecasts for next year necessarily entail a good bit of guesstimation, but analysts are currently anticipating something in the $2.40 to $3.00 range.

Stock prices can bounce up and down quite a bit in the short run, sometimes for sensible reasons, and sometimes for less than sensible ones. Witness the recent action in some of the second-, third- and even fourth-tier "Internet stocks," for example. The broader trend of stock prices is determined by investors' expectations of future profit flows, however. Should Atlas demonstrate that it's able to achieve the not inconsiderable expectations Wall Street has placed on its shoulders, target prices for the stock above the $40 mark are in order, based on multiples in the mid-teens at which stocks of air freight companies tend to trade.

Shares of Carlisle Companies (NYSE: CSL) gained $2 3/8 to $50 7/8 ahead of the company's first-quarter earnings report, which will be released this Thursday morning. Continuing low interest rates, a solid construction market, and generally favorable weather would appear to bode well for Carlisle. We'll know more very soon.

Cisco Systems (Nasdaq: CSCO) advanced $1 3/16 to $67 11/6. I saw good news and, well, less than good news on The Kid today.

First the bad news: AT&T's (NYSE: T) national frame relay network went down for most of Monday following a glitch involving two of Cisco's Stratacom switches on the network. The network was repaired and placed back in operation earlier today.

Now the good news: Tipper's husband, Al Gore, today unveiled the new Internet Protocol (IP) network for research and education network. Known as Abilene, the network will be available to institutions participating in the Internet2 project of the University Corporation for Advanced Internet Development (UCAID).

The new network uses equipment and technology provided by Cisco and Northern Telecom (NYSE: NT), as well as Qwest's (Nasdaq: QWST) fiber optic network.

"Abilene's advanced networking capabilities will enable researchers and educators to develop the advanced applications crucial to the mission of higher education," said Dr. Douglas E. Van Houweling, UCAID's president and CEO --and Ann Arbor resident -- in a press release.

FoolWatch -- It's what's going on at the Fool today.

Stock  Change    Bid 
 ANDW  +  1/4   19.75 
 CGO   +  9/16  36.25 
 BGP   -  1/16  32.69 
 CSL   +2 3/8   50.88 
 CSCO  +1 3/16  67.69 
 FCH   +  11/16 35.69 
 PNR            44.13 
                   Day   Month    Year  History 
         BORING   +1.50%   .001%   1.08%  27.18% 
         S&P:     +0.55%   1.27%  14.97%  79.49% 
         NASDAQ:  +0.99%   0.40%  17.36%  77.05% 
     Rec'd   #  Security     In At       Now    Change 
   2/28/96  400 Borders Gr    11.26     32.69   190.39% 
   8/13/96  200 Carlisle C    26.32     50.88    93.26% 
   6/26/96  150 Cisco Syst    35.93     67.69    88.37% 
    3/5/97  150 Atlas Air     23.06     36.25    57.21% 
   4/14/98  100Pentair        43.74     44.13     0.87% 
   11/6/97  200 FelCor Sui    37.59     35.69    -5.06% 
   1/21/98  200 Andrew Cor    26.09     19.75   -24.30% 
     Rec'd   #  Security     In At     Value    Change 
   2/28/96  400 Borders Gr  4502.49  13075.00  $8572.51 
   8/13/96  200 Carlisle C  5264.99  10175.00  $4910.01 
   6/26/96  150 Cisco Syst  5389.99  10153.13  $4763.14 
    3/5/97  150 Atlas Air   3458.74   5437.50  $1978.76 
   4/14/98  100Pentair      4374.25   4412.50    $38.25 
   11/6/97  200 FelCor Sui  7518.00   7137.50  -$380.50 
   1/21/98  200 Andrew Cor  5218.00   3950.00 -$1268.00 
                              CASH   $9251.26 
                             TOTAL  $63591.89