COMMENTARY

It was a head-spinning week in the markets. First, Asia's worsening crisis

sent the Dow Jones industrial average down 207 points on June 15. A slight

updraft followed on June 16. The next day, the Dow roared up 164.2 points, to

hit 8829.5. The catalyst: The U.S. government's attempt to shore up Japan's

worsening economy--and help stop that crisis from spilling over into the

earnings of U.S. companies--by selling dollars for yen. That led the dollar to

retreat from an eight-year high against Japan's currency.

      
                                                     % change
      U.S. MARKETS                    Latest      Week       Year
      
      Dow Jones Industrials           8829.5      -1.6       14.4
      NASDAQ Combined Composite       1776.4       0.2       24.0
      S&P MidCap 400                   352.9      -1.4       22.0
      S&P SmallCap 600                 185.6      -1.2       16.5
      S&P SuperComposite 1500          235.5      -0.6       24.0
      
                                                    % change
      SECTORS                       Latest       Week     Year
      
      Bloomberg Information Age      334.9         0.0    24.5
      S&P Financials                 133.1        -1.7    29.0
      S&P Utilities                  244.9        -0.5    24.3
      PSE Technology                 327.3        -1.3    15.1
      
                                                   % change
      FOREIGN MARKETS             Latest       Week      Year
      
      London (FT-SE 100)          5832.7       -2.6      25.2
      Frankfurt (DAX)             5709.4       -0.8      53.1
      Tokyo (NIKKEI 225)        14,715.4       -4.1     -28.2
      Hong Kong (Hang Seng)       8004.4        0.3     -43.6
      Toronto (TSE 300)           7195.1       -3.2      10.7
      Mexico City (IPC)           4341.0       -1.3       1.4
      
                                                           Week      Year
      FUNDAMENTALS                           Latest        ago       ago
      
      S&P 500 Dividend Yield                  1.43 %       1.40 %    1.66 %
      S&P 500 P/E Ratio (Last 12 mos.)        25.7         26.6      22.6
      S&P 500 P/E Ratio (Next 12 mos.)*       21.1         21.6      18.4
      First Call Earnings Revision*          -1.13 %      -0.92 %   -1.25 %
      
                                                           Week
      TECHNICAL INDICATORS                  Latest         ago      Reading
      
      S&P 500 200-day average               1012.9        1008.4    Positive
      Stocks above 200-day average            44.0 %        51.0 %  Neutral
      Options: Put/call ratio                 0.73          0.54    Positive
      Insiders: Vickers Sell/buy ratio        2.35          2.52    Neutral
      
      BEST-PERFORMING     Last                                  Last 12
      GROUPS              month%                                months%
      
      Drug Chains          11.6      Specialty Appar. Retailers 104.5
      Personal Loans       10.4      Automobiles                 72.8
      Food Chains           9.8      Airlines                    65.8
      Airlines              9.5      Genl. Merchandise Chains    63.5
      Tobacco               8.5      Homebuilding                63.2
      
      WORST-PERFORMING    Last                                 Last 12
      GROUPS              month%                               months%
      
      Oil & Gas Drilling  -23.0      Metals                     -43.5
      Gold Mining         -18.7      Gold Mining                -32.0
      Forest Products     -16.2      Shoes                      -26.4
      Steel               -14.5      Engineering & Constr.      -20.1
      Instrumentation     -14.1      Aluminum                   -19.7
      
      BLOOMBERG MONEY FLOW ANALYSIS
      Rebound ahead?  Stocks with most                          1-month
      significant buying on price weakness    Price             change
      
      Citicorp                               146 1/4           -7 3/4
      Pfizer                                 109 3/4            -15/16
      IBM                                    110              -14 5/8
      BellSouth                               66 13/16           -7/8
      J.P. Morgan                            117 7/8          -10 11/16
      Chase Manhattan                         67 3/4           -3 3/8
      
      Decline ahead?  Stocks with most                         1-month
      significant selling on price strength   Price             change
      
      Cisco Systems                           79 15/16          2 3/16
      L.M. Ericsson-ADR                       26 3/8              3/16
      Microsoft                               89 7/8            3 13/16
      HBO                                     31 9/16           1 7/32
      Philip Morris                           36 11/16          1 1/2
      Abbott Laboratories                     39                1 11/32
      
      Data: Bloomberg Financial Markets; *First Call Corp.
      
                                   Latest      Week      Year
      KEY RATES                     week%      ago%      ago%
      
      MONEY MARKET FUNDS             5.10      5.10      5.16
      90-DAY TREASURY BILLS          5.20      5.14      5.03
      6-MONTH BANK CDS               5.07      5.08      5.21
      1-YEAR TREASURY BILLS          5.41      5.44      5.66
      10-YEAR TREASURY NOTES         5.54      5.51      6.40
      30-YEAR TREASURY BONDS         5.75      5.70      6.69
      LONG-TERM AA INDUSTRIALS       6.32      6.27      7.18
      LONG-TERM BBB INDUSTRIALS      6.79      6.71      7.61
      LONG-TERM AA TELEPHONES        6.65      6.58      7.42
      
      BLOOMBERG MUNI YIELD EQUIVALENTS
      Taxable equivalent yields on AAA-rated, tax-exempt municipal bonds,
      assuming a 31% federal tax rate.
      
                                 10-yr. bond         30-yr. bond
                                Latest     Last     Latest     Last
                                 week      week      week       week
      
      GENERAL OBLIGATIONS        4.45%     4.40%      4.98%     4.93%
      PERCENT OF TREASURIES     80.54     79.93      86.83     86.53
      TAXABLE EQUIVALENT         6.45      6.38       7.22      7.14
      INSURED REVENUE BONDS      4.58      4.54       5.17      5.13
      PERCENT OF TREASURIES     82.90     82.48      90.14     90.04
      TAXABLE EQUIVALENT         6.64      6.58       7.49      7.43
      
      EQUITY FUNDS
      Leaders                            Laggards
      Four-week total return        %    Four-week total return            %
      
      Franklin Utilities II        5.1   Lexington Troika Russia        -28.8
      Prudent Bear                 5.0   Newport Greater China A        -27.3
      Galaxy II Util. Idx. Retail  4.9   Guinness Mainland China        -26.9
      Merrill Utility Income A     4.7   Matthews Pacific Tiger I       -26.5
      Wright EquiFd.-Belg./Lux.    4.5   U.S. Global Investors Gold     -26.0
      
      Leaders                            Laggards
      52-week total return         %     52-week total return             %
      
      Weitz Hickory               52.5   Matthews Korea I               -73.7
      FMI Focus                   50.4   Lex. Crosby Sm. Cap Asia       -66.0
      Fidelity Select Retailing   50.2   U.S. Global Investors Gold     -65.1
      Scudder Greater Europe Gr.  49.9   Montgomery Emerg. Asia R       -64.2
      Texas Capital Val. & Grth.  46.3   Morg. Stan. Inst. Asia Eq. A   -62.9
      
      EQUITY FUND CATEGORIES
      Leaders                            Laggards
      Four-week total return        %    Four-week total return            %
      
      Utilities                    0.7   Pacific/Asia ex-Japan          -20.5
      Domestic Hybrid             -1.6   Precious Metals                -18.4
      Large-cap Growth            -2.2   Diversified Emerging Mkts.     -15.0
      International Hybrid        -2.2   Diversified Pacific/Asia       -14.0
      Europe                      -2.2   Latin America                  -13.0
      
      Leaders                            Laggards
      52-week total return         %     52-week total return              %
      
      Communications              29.2   Pacific/Asia ex-Japan          -54.0
      Financial                   28.8   Diversified Pacific/Asia       -44.3
      Europe                      27.5   Precious Metals                -41.5
      Utilities                   23.7   Diversified Emerging Mkts.     -32.7
      Large-cap Growth            23.6   Japan                          -31.6
      
      All data are as of market close Wednesday, June 17, 1998, unless otherwise 
      indicated. Industry groups include S&P 500 companies only.  Fundamentals, 
      technical indicators, Bloomberg money flow analysis, and mutual fund returns 
      are as of June 16. For a more detailed explanation, write to us or E-mail 
      figures@businessweek.com.  NA=Not available  **Vanguard Index 500 Fund
      
      
      
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