Wednesday, April 05, 2000

P&G, Cintas, Kroger register advances




BY JEFF McKINNEY
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        While the stock market was getting clobbered in midafternoon trading Tuesday, a few Tristate stocks were climbing.

        Shares of Procter & Gamble Co., Cintas and Kroger rose more than $1, as the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite In dex each dropped more than 500 points at one point before recovering most of the losses by the close.

        The slight gain among local stocks was particularly gratifying for P&G, which has lost about half of its market value since January.

        P&G rose almost $4 to close at $63.933/4, its highest close since early March, when the stock dropped about $30 a share after the consumer products giant said it would report lower-than-expected quarterly profits.

        Other Cincinnati stocks that outperformed the market included Cintas, up $1.311/4 to $40.371/2, and Kroger, up $1.121/2 to $20. P&G's performance was a hot topic with local analysts.

        Chip Pettingill, portfolio manager at Bahl & Gaynor, which owns 3 million P&G shares, said the stock could be rebounding as investors are taking money out of young technology or Internet companies with no proven record of long-term earnings and investing in established companies such as P&G.

        He also said P&G has a long history of earnings growth, has a good stock valuation relative to its peers and is attractively priced.

        “They have some issues to deal with, but if you're a long-term investor who holds it for three to five years, we believe you'll get a very nice return on the stock,” Mr. Pettingill said.

        Dan Popowics, equity analyst at Fifth Third Bank, agreed. “It's starting to rebound as more long-term investors are pumping money into it,” he said.

       



Tech stocks swing low then shoot back up
Markets rebound from rout
- P&G, Cintas, Kroger register advances
Industry Notes: Retail
Tristate Business Summary