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Dow edges off from its peak


Edging down 15 points from Tuesday's record close, the Dow Jones average finished yesterday at 3,257.60. The Dow index now stands 3 percent above its Jan. 1 level and 24 percent ahead of New Year's Day, 1991.

LOOKING AHEAD: "With individual money still pouring into the market, it's far too early to sell." (David Dreman, Forbes, Feb. 3). . . "When the market is too high, and individuals jump in and buy cats and dogs while blue chips hesitate, sell!" (Bernard Baruch, highly successful investor, 1920). . . . "As long as short-term rates don't climb significantly, there's little stock market danger from interest rates." (Wayne Wong, bond analyst). . . . "Because lower interest rates have fueled this huge rally, we may see this bull market movie played in reverse once rates begin to climb." (Mr. Ticker on "Wall $treet Week with Louis Rukeyser.")

LOCAL LINGO: Myron Oppenheimer, investment chief, Security Trust/Maryland National Bank (phone 244-6569) will mail his firm's Investment Letter. ("You can still extend bond maturities due to large differential between short and long rates, but don't be too aggressive now."). . . . Phone Dean Witter's Jack Rosenbloom (547-7027) for his firm's "25 Stocks for 1992," a conservative list, with charts and graphs. . . O'Connor, Piper & Flynn's Moses Morris Jr. told me, "Due to sharply lower interest rates, home sales are picking up. Our firm had its best January ever."

WINNERS ARE: Here, from Mark Hulbert's Financial Digest, are performance ratings of financial newsletters for the past 11 years, reported in Forbes, Feb. 17. Best recent overall performance: The Chartist, by Dan Sulivan. Most consistent long-term performer: The Zweig Forecast. Best stock rating service: tie between Zweig Performance Ratings Service and Value Line Investment Survey. Best mutual fund newsletter: Mutual Fund Strategist. Best "new kid on the block": Louis Navellier's MPT Review.

MIDWINTER MEMOS: A highly successful Baltimore Realtor told me, "I'm in real estate, that's my field, but I wouldn't dare pick my own stocks. I hire professional counsel to manage my investments on a discretionary basis.". . . On TV's "The McLaughlin Group," Newsweek's Eleanor Clift said, "President Bush took a year and a half longer than Herbert Hoover took to realize that we're in a recession.". . .

BALTIMORE & BEYOND: Black & Decker is listed under "Prime Beneficiaries of Lower Interest Expense" in S. & P. Outlook, Jan. 29. . . . One of the best questions I've fielded in 11 years of WBAL talk radio came last week from a 10-year-old boy: "To make money in stocks, I thought you were supposed to buy low and sell high. Why do most people do it the other way?" (Let's have your answers, readers.)

HOPEFULLY HELPFUL: Be sure to set up your IRA and your SEP (simplified employee pension) by April 15; check your accountant. . . . I will answer your "money" questions on WBAL Radio this Sunday, 1-2 p.m.. . . . Duty Free International stock, widely held here, is recommended by six newsletters. . . . Tomorrow, "Wall $treet Week" features global investing. . . TC "Banks are taking a step that could be ominous for the mutual fund industry: They're rolling out in-house funds and going head-to-head with established funds." (Business Week). The Kiplinger Letter predicts Congress will pass most of President Bush's economic proposals.

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