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Saturday, 4 December 2004
"Looking Back One Year" A review of stock picks from the week of October 20, 2003






Hello Friends! Thanks so much for visiting my blog, Stock Picks Bob's Advice. As always, please remember that I am an amateur investor so please consult with your professional, certified investment advisors, to make sure that all of your investment decisions are timely, appropriate, and likely to be profitable for you! Please feel free to email me with any of your questions, comments, or words of encouragement at bobsadviceforstocks@lycos.com .

If you are new to this website, well welcome and make yourself at home! What I like to do here, is to look at the active stocks of the day, review their fundamental findings (things like earnings, revenue growth, free cash flow, balance sheet, and valuation); take a brief look at their chart and see if it looks like a "solid" company to me! Of course that is only MY opinion, and you or professional investors might think otherwise. THAT is the fun of all of this. If we all thought the same way, who would care? Since the blog has been up now since May, 2003, and have something like 671 entries here (!), it is nice to review the past picks and see how they would have turned out if we had simply "bought and held". As many of you know, I am NOT a buy and hold investor. I sell stocks quickly at losses of 8% and sell slower on gains. But for the sake of analysis, that is what I like to do on weekends; look back one year and figure out if the ideas listed were 'good' ones!

On October 20, 2003, I posted SFBC Int'l (SFCC) on Stock Picks at a price of $34.60. SFCC had a 3:2 stock split on 5/20/04 making our effective pick price actually $23.07. SFCC closed at $39.40 on 12/3/04 for a gain of $16.33 or 70.8%.

On 10/27/04, SFCC reported 3rd quarter 2004 results. Revenue was up 38.8% to $40.4 million from $29.1 million the prior year. Net earnings for the quarter came in at $5.27 million vs. $3.42 million last year or $.34/diluted share vs $.28/diluted share the prior year. These were solid results!

On October 20, 2003, I posted Renal Care Group (RCI) on Stock Picks at a price of $36.31. RCI had a 3:2 split on 5/25/04 giving us an effective stock pick price of $24.21. RCI closed on 12/3/04 at $33.40 for a gain of $9.19 or 38.0%.

On 10/26/04, RCI announced 3rd quarter results. Net revenues climbed 40.3% to $356.1 million from $253.8 million the prior year. Net income rose 14.8% to $30.5 million compared with net income of $26.5 million in the 3rd quarter of 2003. Diluted net income per share was up 25.7% to $.44/share compared with $.35/share in the same quarter of 2003.

On 10/20/03 I posted Varian Medical Systems (VAR) on Stock Picks at a price of $60.78. VAR had a 2:1 stock split on 8/2/04. Thus, the effective stock pick price was actually $30.39. VAR closed at $42.86 on 12/3/04 for a gain of $12.47 or 41.0%.

On October 27, 2004, VAR reported 4th quarter 2004 results. Revenues for the quarter came in at $345 million, up 14% from the prior year. Net earnings for the quarter came in at $51.8 million, up from $43.6 million the prior year or $.37/diluted share vs. $.31/diluted share in 2003. Solid results imho.

On October 21, 2003, Exponent (EXPO) was posted on Stock Picks at a price of $20.04. (This is currently the only stock on this weeks group that I currently own in my "Trading Portfolio") EXPO closed on 12/3/04 at $27.95 for a gain of $7.91 or 39.5%.

On October 18, 2004, EXPO reported 3rd quarter 2004 results. Revenues came in at $38.04 million, a 7% increase over the $35.66 million reported in the same quarter in 2003. Net income was up 11% to $3.17 million or $.37/diluted share compared with $2.85 million or $.36/diluted share the prior year. These were good results if not quite as spectacular as a couple of the prior posts.

On October 21, 2003, I posted AirTran Holdings (AAI) on Stock Picks at a price of $19.56. AAI closed at $12.34 on 12/3/04 for a loss of $(7.22) or (36.9)%.

On 10/27/04, AAI reported 3rd quarter 2004 results. AAI reported revenue of $245.6 million, up from $237.3 million last year. However, the company lost $(9.8) million or $(.11)/share down from a profit of $19.6 million or $.24/share last year. These were NOT good results and the stock price reflected this.

On October 22, 2003, I posted Headwaters (HDWR) on Stock Picks at a price of $17.41. HDWR closed at $30.47 on 12/3/04 for a gain of $13.06 or 75.0%.

On November 10, 2004, HDWR announced 4th quarter 2004 results. Revenue for the fourth quarter ended September 30, 2004, came in at $198.6 million (including acquisitions), up 86% from the $106.5 million the prior year. Net Income increased to $19.5 million or $.57/diluted share compared with $11.2 million or $.40/diluted share in the prior year. These results were good and the stock price reflects these developments.

Shenandoah Telecommunications (SHEN) was posted on Stock Picks on 10/23/03 at $43.50/share. SHEN had a 2:1 split February 23, 2004, making out effective stock pick price $21.75. SHEN closed at $31.01 on 12/3/04 for a gain of $9.26 or 42.6%.

On October 19, 2004, SHEN announced 3rd quarter results. For the quarter ended September 30, 2004, total revenues increased 13.4% from last year. Earnings came in at $.41/share up from $.35/share last year. In addition, SHEN announced a dividend increase. All of these are positive developments for the stock price!

I posted SM&A (WINS) on Stock Picks on October 23, 2003 at a price of $13.248. WINS closed on 12/3/04 at $8.09, for a loss of $(5.158) or (38.9)%.

On October 18, 2004, WINS reported 3rd quarter 2004 results. Revenue came in at $16.1 million DOWN from the $18.7 million reported for the same quarter last year. Net income came in at $1.7 million or $.08/diluted share compared with net income last year of $2.9 million or $.13/diluted share. These results are reflected in the lower stock price!

Finally, on October 24, 2003, I posted Business Objects (BOBJ) on Stock Picks Bob's Advice at $32.15/share. BOBJ closed at $23.65 on 12/3/04 for a loss of $(8.50) or (26.4)%.

On November 3, 2004, BOBJ reported 3rd quarter 2004 results. Revenue came in at $219.5 million and earnings per share were $.12. This compares with revenue of $129.1 million in 2003. Earnings, however, came in at $.17/share in 2003. Thus, imho, the lower stock price at this time!

So how did we do that week a little over a year ago? Of the nine stock picks that week we had six with gains ranging from 38.0% to 75.0%, and three with losses ranging from (26.9)% to (38.9)%. Our average percentage gain came out at 22.7%. THAT was a great week! Of course, past performance is NOT any kind of guarantee for future performance!

Thanks so much for stopping by! I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and get all of your Holiday Shopping and visiting done! If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to email me at bobsadviceforstocks@lycos.com .

Bob


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