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Saturday, 12 February 2005
"Looking Back One Year" A review of stock picks from the week of December 22, 2003






Hello Friends! Thanks so much for stopping by and visiting my blog, Stock Picks Bob's Advice. As I always remind you, please remember that I am an amateur investor, so please consult with your professional investment advisors prior to making any decisions based on information on this website.

I use the weekend to post a review of past stock picks on this site. I have been running Stock Picks since May, 2003, and have hundreds of stocks listed. In order to see how "we are doing", I try to look back about a year, and each week move another week ahead...and see if I had purchased each stock and had held on without regard to sales on the downside or upside, how would I have done? Of course, this is not how I personally manage my portfolio, but it can give us a rough idea how my 'system' is working!

On December 23, 2003, I posted Ventana (VMSI) on Stock Picks at a price of $39.80. VMSI closed at $70.96 on 2/11/05, for a gain of $31.16 or 78.3%.

On February 4, 2005, VMSI announced 4th quarter results.For the quarter ended December 31, 2004, sales were $48 million, a 27% increase over the fourth quarter of 2003. Net income for the quarter was $8.6 million or $.48/diluted share compared with a net loss of $(2.0) million or $(.12)/diluted share the prior year. To top off this story, VMSI also announced a 2:1 stock split.

On December 23, 2003, I posted Computer Sciences (CSC) on Stock Picks at a price of $43.80. On February 11, 2005, CSC closed at $48.51 for a gain of $4.71 or 10.8%.

On February 8, 2005, CSC reported 3rd quarter results.Revenue rose 6% to $3.52 billion while earnings were up 23% to $157.5 million, or $.82/share from $128.4 million or $.68/share the prior year.

On December 24, 2003, I posted Sanderson Farms (SAFM) on Stock Picks at a price of $42.79. SAFM closed at $45.22 on 2/11/05, for a gain of $2.43 or 5.7%.

On December 7, 2004, Sanderson reported 4th quarter 2004 results. For the quarter ended October 31, 2004, net sales came in at $259.2 million, up from $254.7 million the prior year. However, net income was $5.1 million or $.25/diluted share compared with $20.5 million or $1.04/diluted share the prior year.

On December 24, 2003, I posted Faro Technologies (FARO) on Stock Picks at a price of $23.90. On February 11, 2005, FARO closed at $28.75, for a gain of $4.85 or 20.3% since posting.

On November 4, 2004, FARO reported 3rd quarter 2004 results. For the quarter ended October 2, 2004, sales increased 21.9% from $19.2 million to $23.4 million in the quarter. Net income was down slightly to $3.1 million or $.22/diluted share from $3.3 million, or $.26/diluted share in the third quarter of 2003. However, the 2003 quarter included "other income" related to a settlement from arbitration of $1.1 million or $.08/diluted share. Thus, results were actually a little bit better than last year!

The last stock picked that week was Sharper Image (SHRP), which was picked on Stock Picks on December 26, 2003, at a price of $32.40. SHRP closed at $15.10 on 2/11/05, for a loss of $(17.30) or (53.4)% since posting.

On November 18, 2004, SHRP reported 3rd quarter 2004 results.Revenue climbed 20% to $153.6 million from the prior year's $128.1 million. Total store sales were up 15% to $80.1 million, but same store sales actually dropped 1%. However, catalog sales increased 28% to pick up the drop at existing stores. However, the third quarter result was a loss of $(3.3) million or $(.21)/share compared with a prior year's gain of $1.0 million or $.06/diluted share. Recently, on 2/10/04, SHRP reduced outlook further and the stock has continued to trade lower.

Well, how did we do on these five stocks? Assuming an equal dollar amount invested in each of these five, and a buy and hold strategy, I had an average performance of a gain of 12.34%.

Thanks so much for stopping by! If you have any questions, comments, or words of encouragement, please feel free to email me at bobsadviceforstocks@lycos.com.

Bob


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