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Harry Newton's In Search of The Perfect Investment Newton's In Search Of The Perfect Investment. Technology Investor.

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9:00 AM Tuesday, November 22, 2005: A measure of desperation. Cramer has a daily show. I have a daily column. Devoid of inspiration this morning, I call around. Even Todd is devoid. I TiVo last night's Cramer. He's pushing UPS and FedEx because Internet sales are booming. The logic is that we all got to pay shipping on our ordered goodies. He shows us a daily chart of the last three months. Looking good.

Now spin it back and plot a weekly chart and you get a very different picture.

Here's FedEx also on a weekly chart. Recovering, too. Not booming.

Now you look at the earnings. Not exciting. What if there is an 18% spike in Internet sales, as the Wall Street Journal anticipates? Will EPS spike? Were I a gambling man, I might buy a little UPS, watch the stock carefully, take a few points profits if you get them. I'd make sure I was out by January 27 when UPS reports their December quarter earnings. This is "buy before the news."

Diluted Earnings Per Share (EPS)
3 months ending 8/31/05
3 months ending 5/31/05
3 Months Ending
3 Months Ending
3 Months Ending
3 Months Ending
3 Months Ending
3 Months Ending
3 Months Ending
3 Months Ending

The latest rip-off in the car rental business: From today's New York Times:

IT happened so suddenly. One minute, Shirley Kuhl was returning her rental car to the Enterprise Rent-A-Car lot at Baltimore-Washington International Airport. The next, she was on a shuttle van to the terminal, $500 poorer.

"An employee just materialized in front of me when I arrived," recalled Ms. Kuhl, a retired automotive worker from Green Valley, Ariz. "He said, 'I have to write up an accident report.' I said, 'What accident?' And then he went right to a small dent in the front bumper."

Although Ms. Kuhl denied denting the car, and although no one knew yet how much it would cost to fix the bumper, the company billed her credit card $500. She became even more suspicious when she checked the time of the card transaction. "The card was charged before I got off the shuttle bus at the airport terminal to catch my flight," she said.

Harry's new car rental rule: Show them and document all dents and dings when you pick it up. Use your digital camera to photograph your car when you initially pick it up and when you return it. Be wary of second tier rental companies.

Please wear a helmet skiing: A talented Dartmouth student, Christina Porter, fell while skiing and fractured her skull into many pieces. Though they replaced her skull with an artificial one, she eventually died of complications. Each year, around 12,000 severe accidents occur because the skier wasn't wearing a helmet. I spoke with her father yesterday. He is on a mission to make the wearing of helmets mandatory on the ski slope. See here. His mission makes sense to me. Please don't go skiing this season without a helmet.

Christina Margaret Porter, now dead because she didn't wear a helmet while skiing.

This is Natalie. She's 5. I met her in a Pizza Shop opposite Bloomingdales yesterday. I stopped in after playing tennis. Her sister had picked her up from kindergarten in New York's Public School 59. Natalie ate an entire slice of pizza (cost $2.25). She loves school. She'll be thrilled to see her photo here. Life goes on.

Natalie, 5. That's one happy smile.

Men are like...
they only show up when there's food on the table.

they usually run at the first sign of emotion. helmets
they're good in emergencies but usually just look silly.

...government bonds
they take so long to mature. accounts
without a lot of money they don't generate a lot of interest.

...high heels
they're easy to walk on once you get the hang of it.

keep one around long enough and your gonna want to shoot it.

Recent column highlights:
+ Dumb reasons we hold losing stocks. Click here.
+ How my private equity fund is doing. Click here.
+ Blackstone private equity funds. Click here.
+ Manhattan Pharmaceuticals: Click here.
+ NovaDel Biosciences appeals. Click here.
+ Hana Biosciences appeals. Click here.
+ All turned on by biotech. Click here.
+ Steve Jobs Commencement Address. The text is available: Click here. The full audio is available. Click here.
+ The March of the Penguins, an exquisite movie. Click here.
+ When to sell stocks. Click here.

Harry Newton

This column is about my personal search for the perfect investment. I don't give investment advice. For that you have to be registered with regulatory authorities, which I am not. I am a reporter and an investor. I make my daily column -- Monday through Friday -- freely available for three reasons: Writing is good for sorting things out in my brain. Second, the column is research for a book I'm writing called "In Search of the Perfect Investment." Third, I encourage my readers to send me their ideas, concerns and experiences. That way we can all learn together. My email address is . You can't click on my email address. You have to re-type it . This protects me from software scanning the Internet for email addresses to spam. I have no role in choosing the Google ads. Thus I cannot endorse any, though some look mighty interesting. If you click on a link, Google may send me money. That money will help pay Claire's law school tuition. Read more about Google AdSense, click here and here.
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