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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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8:30 AM Thursday, September 8, 2005: Timing doesn't work. You can't time the stockmarket nor the real estate market. But you can apply measures -- like P/E and rents. By these measures, both the stockmarket and the real estate market are high -- very high. Many observers see markets going even further, at least short-term. But there are no generalizations. Each of us has his own comfort level. It's a strange world. I have friends who are going 100% to cash. I know others aggressively buying like there was no tomorrow. The more rational ones -- I have a handful of rational friends -- are analyzing each item in their portfolios, one by one. They see the world of investing morphing once again:

Rebuilding efforts will propel massive economic growth in 2006. this week revised its 3.5% annualized GDP growth projection for the first half of 2006 up to 3.9%. That's good news.
+ The massive amounts of steel, lumber, concrete and construction machinery needed in the Gulf over the next few years will push construction costs up nationwide. That's bad news for most of us -- except for the companies that make this stuff.

My friend likes gun companies. He figures everyone will buy a weapon to put in their Disaster Kit. Gun companies include Sturm Ruger (RGR) and Smith and Wesson (SWB). S&P analyst Anthony Fiore has found some companies he feels should benefit from the rebuilding. They are Quixote (QUIX), Manitowoc (MTW), Caterpillar (CAT) and Astec Industries (ASTE). Personally, I'm still looking.

The Katrina swindlers. Be wary: From today's New York Times:

Even as millions of Americans rally to make donations to the victims of Hurricane Katrina, the Internet is brimming with swindles, come-ons and opportunistic pandering related to the relief effort in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. And the frauds are more varied and more numerous than in past disasters, according to law enforcement officials and online watchdog groups.

For more, click here.

Airline miles are almost valueless:
If you have any and want to use them before you die, book early -- at least 9-12 months. And even then, be very flexible about when and where you plan to travel to. Credit cards that return cash remain a much better deal than those which return miles.

Walt Mossberg loves Apple's new Nano: Tiny, a color screen, storage for 1,000 songs, personal photos and contacts, a battery that lasts 14 hours, great sound and some cool accessories. $249. Walt, who works for the Wall Street Journal, says he's buying himself one. And from Walt, who's seen it all, that's a HUGE compliment. For Walt's article, click here. As to the Nano's affect on Apple's already-high stock (40+ P/E), your guess is as good as mine.

Don't believe everything you read:
Today Walt Mossberg says if you want sharper text, use "ClearType." Please don't. ClearType is not clear.

Useful medical statistic:
There is more money being spent on breast implants and Viagra today than on Alzheimer's research. This means that by 2040, there should be a large elderly population with perky boobs and huge erections and absolutely no recollection of what to do with them.

Tennis dumbness: IN the middle of last night's great Agassi-Blake match, the USA Network cut off its broadcast and started Law and Order. The match continued on CBS. In short, to watch the matches, try USA or CBS. For the US Tennis Open TV schedule. Click here.

Children are not dumb
John and Marsha decided that the only way to pull off a Sunday afternoon quickie with their 8-year-old son, Michael, in the apartment was to send him out on the balcony with a Popsicle and tell him to report on all the neighborhood activities. He began his commentary as his parents put their plan into operation:

"There's a car being towed from the parking lot," he shouted.

A few moments passed. "An ambulance just drove by."

A few moments later, "Looks like the Andersons have company," he called out.

"Matt's riding a new bike "

"The Coopers are having sex."

Startled, Mother and Dad shot up in bed. Dad cautiously asked, "How do you know they are having sex?"

Michael replied, ever so calmly: "Jimmy Cooper is standing out on his balcony with a Popsicle too."

Recent column highlights:
+ 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 your 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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