How would you invest $10,000 in the coming year?
I pose that question each year to a varied group of investment pundits. While a troubled economy has made the latest responses more conservative than usual, there is still considerable diversity of opinion. Following are investment recommendations for that hypothetical 10 grand in 1991.Charles Clough, portfolio strategist with Merrill Lynch & Co.: "I'd keep it safe, warehousing $8,000 in government bonds of 20-year duration to try to collect $1,000 interest. To be more aggressive, I'd put $2,000 in shares of a quality growth stock, taking a flyer on technology with Microsoft Corp. or Intelligent Electronics."
Robert Hewitt, chairman of the International Association of Financial Planners: "I'd first pay off high-interest credit card debt. Now I'm ready to put my money to work. Of $10,000, I'd put $7,000 into a good U.S. growth fund, such as Washington Mutual Investors Fund, and $3,000 in an international growth fund, such as GT International Growth Fund. Mutual funds are the way to diversify $10,000 or less."
Howard Ruff, editor of the Ruff Times investment letter: "We are in recession, so I'd stick with utility stocks, U.S. Treasury bonds and U.S. Treasury money-market funds. In electric utilities, I like Southern California Edison, while in natural gas I like the Rushmore American Gas Index mutual fund and Oklahoma Gas & Electric. I also like the Vanguard Fixed-Income Securities U.S. Treasury Bond Portfolio and the Capital Preservation Fund I. Recession will drive down rates, and I've chosen interest-rate-sensitive stocks."
Edward Yardeni, chief economist for Prudential-Bache Securities: "I'd put $5,000 in stocks and $5,000 in bonds. Stocks would be blue chips such as IBM, Coca-Cola and Walt Disney Co. Bonds would be 10-year Treasury notes. Because short-term rates will be coming down, stocks and bonds should do well in an environment in which there aren't a lot of good choices. We won't see people playing junk bonds or tax shelters in 1991."
Elaine Garzarelli, quantitative analyst with Shearson Lehman Brothers Inc.: "I'd put the money in four stocks that are down appreciably in comparison to the Dow Jones industrial average. These are Texas Instruments in semiconductors, Liz Claiborne in textiles, Yellow Freight Systems in trucking and Temple-Inland in paper containers. These stocks have historically performed two or three times better than the overall market during the first 12 months of economic recovery."
Louis Navellier, editor of the MPT Review investment letter: "If it's money you don't need for five years, put it in big growth stocks such as HealthCare COMPARE, Dell Computer Corp. and Scitex Corp. If you're more conservative, use a three-year horizon instead and a conservative mutual fund such as Vanguard World U.S. Growth Fund."
Norman Fosback, editor of the Mutual Fund Forecaster investment letter and president of the Institute for Econometric Research: "Because I believe the stock market will be up 30 percent next year, I'd put $7,000 in Compression Labs, Motorola Inc., Gehl Co., Kasler Corp., Granite Construction and Code Alarm. I also like four funds in the no-load Twentieth Century group, namely its Ultra Investors, Vista Investors, Growth Investors and Select Investors funds. Because junk bonds, now scoffed at, will become good performers, I recommend Vanguard Fixed-Income High Yield Bond Fund and T. Rowe Price High Yield Fund."
Joe Granville, editor of the Granville Market Letter: "I'd put the whole $10,000 into a Treasury bill. I think that we have great risk in the stock market and think that Treasury bills are definitely the place to be."
Steve Timbers, chief investment officer for Kemper Financial Services Inc.: "I'd put $6,000 in a growth stock fund. The economy is going to bottom out and come out of recession sometime in the first half of next year, and stocks will start to do better before that happens. I'd put $2,000 in either a U.S. government fund or high-quality municipal bond fund, depending on your tax rate. I'd put $1,000 in a corporate bond mutual fund and the final $1,000 in a money-market fund. Because rates will fall somewhat, you'll experience fairly good yields relative to inflation and also some price appreciation."