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Hyman rides bull to second contest win

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Local stock expert Barry Hyman calls the events that led to the strong rebound on Wall Street last year the "mother of all bull markets."

And as stocks charged ahead in 2010, so did the four participants in the Star-Advertiser’s ninth annual investment contest.

Hyman, private client group vice president for the Maui branch of FIM Group Ltd., took top honors for the second year in a row as his hypothetical $20,000 portfolio soared 32.1 percent to $26,425.07.

"Investors with trillions of dollars on the sidelines piled into CDs, bonds, bond funds and other very low-paying vehicles which was dry timber waiting to be ignited," Hyman said.

The other three participants in the contest also posted strong results.

Next Sunday: The investors make their picks for 2011

Richard Dole, chief executive officer of Honolulu investment adviser Dole Capital LLC, saw his portfolio jump 28.8 percent to $25,751.13. Norm Caris, a Kauai resident and managing director for institutional sales for Caris and Co., was up 22.5 percent to $24,507.39. And Dwight Melton, co-founder of the Hawaii Stocks and Options Group, gained 16.3 percent to $23,265.98.

Hyman said the stock market recovery that began in March 2009 was fueled by an increase in Americans’ personal savings rate, decreased personal debt, improved consumer confidence, federal actions to stimulate the economy, and strong personal consumption combined with reduced inventories that boosted manufacturing.

2010 YEAR-END FORECASTS

Hawaii stock experts collectively underestimated how the major indexes fared in 2010.

 

WHO DOW NASDAQ S&P 500
Norm Caris 10,000 2,000 1,050
Richard Dole 10,700 2,400 1,150
Barry Hyman 10,428.05 2,269.15 1,115.10
Dwight Melton 11,400 2,500 1,230
2009 close 10,428.05 2,269.15 1,115.10
Dec. 31 close 11,577.51 2,652.87 1,257.64
2010 consensus 10,632.01 2,292.29 1,136.28

He ended the year on a strong note as his portfolio rose 11.2 percent in the fourth quarter with investment management company U.S. Global Investors his top pick with a 29.6 percent increase over the final three months.

Dole, a longtime follower of Newport, a supplier of scientific and technical instruments, was rewarded in the fourth quarter as it posted a 53.7 percent gain, the best performance of any of the local expert’s stocks during the period. His portfolio rose 21.6 percent during the last three months of the year.

"The stock market in 2010 benefited from the expected recovery, particularly with corporate profits, a flight from the U.S. dollar, low interest rates, and a continued favorable income tax treatment for investors," Dole said.

Caris had two stocks that rose at least 30 percent during the fourth quarter en route to a 14.6 portfolio gain during that period. Hawaiian Holdings, the holding company for Hawaiian Airlines, jumped 30.9 percent while Collective Brands, formerly Payless ShoeSource, gained 30.7 percent. He said the final three months characterized the stock market for the year.

"It was all about the fourth-quarter political shift that gave us the best rally of the year," he said.

Melton, a former three-time contest champion, came in last despite his 16.3 percent full-year return beating two of the three major indexes.

The Dow Jones industrial average had a total return for the year of 14.1 percent while the Standard & Poor’s 500 index was up 15.1 percent. The Nasdaq composite index rose 18.2 percent.

Melton’s best performer in the fourth quarter was F5 Networks, which makes software for managing computer networks. The stock rose 25.4 percent during the final three months to help Melton’s portfolio gain 15.2 percent during the quarter.

"As the year began, we were buffeted with concerns about China’s likely moves to rein in economic growth; by Europe’s travails, especially in Greece; by the fractious political climate in Washington, and by our own economic worries," Melton said. "The situation worsened in the second quarter as the Dow stumbled badly, losing 10 percent. However, the market corrected itself after midyear as fear about the economy ebbed both statewide and globally."

The end result, Melton said, was that investors grew more tolerant of the economic environment, and a U.S. election that "appears to have produced a divided Congress that is expected to be more friendly to business."

A long line of winners

Champions of the Star-Advertiser’s annual survey of best investment ideas:

2010 Barry Hyman FIM Group Ltd. +32.1%
2009 Barry Hyman FIM Group Ltd. +125.0%
2008 Norm Caris Caris and Co. -13.8%
2007 Dwight Melton Hawaii Stocks and Options Group +13.3%
2006 Barry Hyman FIM Group Ltd. +19.5%
2005 Dwight Melton Hawaii Stocks and Options Group +72.0%
2004 Dwight Melton Hawaii Stocks and Options Group +23.3%
2003 Paul Loo* Morgan Stanley +157.4%
2002 Richard Behnke* Abel-Behnke Corp. Securities +19.6%

* Deceased

Notes: 2005: The first year that investors were allowed to change picks at the end of each quarter. 2004: The first year that investors were given a hypothetical $20,000 portfolio. 2002-2003: Investors’ results were calculated by averaging the return of all their selections

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