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The Stat

The number of DVD players sold in 2002: 25.1 MILLION, up 51% from 2001.

Data: DVD Entertainment Group Happy to see some upside this spring in the stock market? So were corporate insiders. Many took the rally as a magnificent opportunity to cash out of shares they happened to own. In May, insiders' sales of stock leaped ahead of April's sales by $2 billion, to $3.3 billion, the highest level in two years, according to Thomson Financial. Insider selling ran especially heavy in the energy and health-care sectors. For example, Burlington Resources (BR) Coventry Health Care (CVH) Express Scripts, and Genentech all had insiders selling as the prices of their companies' shares rose strongly.

Naturally, not everyone was selling. Shares bought by insiders rose 60% in May from April's level. Insiders at ChevronTexaco (CVX), Cox Communications (COX), Lowe's, and UNUMProvident made notable purchases. Just the same, at $119 million, insiders' total purchases in May wound up both far below the five-year average of $180 million a month and way below aggregate sales. The ratio of monthly buys to sales has not been so low since May, 2001. If history is any guide, to Thomson this is a clearly bearish signal for the overall market. A will is usually the first estate-planning tool that people think about. Less obvious is the need to write a detailed letter telling the survivors how you want your affairs to be handled. You can find what must be included in this letter, among other helpful hints, in a free pamphlet from the Financial Planning Assn. entitled "Thinking the Unthinkable: What Everyone Needs to Know About Estate Planning" (800 647-6340; Caffeine-starved parents with babes in arms will love Hamilton Beach (NC) BrewStation with its push-to-serve dispenser. And because the coffee brews directly into a heated, internal well, you'll never have to buy another replacement glass carafe again. You'll find the Brew-Station at retailers at $50 for a basic model, or $70 for one that has a water filter, digital clock, and timer.

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