By Ken Shea and Robert Gold
The -- representing S&P analysts' top picks for the year -- topped its benchmark, the S&P 500 index, again in March. For the month, the portfolio posted a total return of 0.2%, vs. a decline of 1.5% for the "500", both including dividends.
Year to date through Mar. 31, the portfolio has beaten the "500" in 3 of 3 months, and posted a superior return of 5.1%, vs. 1.7% for the benchmark index, both including dividends.
The top performers in the portfolio on the month were Landstar (+15%), Quiksilver (+11%), Corinthian Colleges (+10%), Commerce Bancshares (+9%), and Reliant (+8%). Notable laggards in March: America West (-13%), Triad Hospitals (-13%), Smurfit-Stone (-5%), Millennium Pharmaceuticals (-5%), and Flextronics (-5%).
About the S&P PowerPicks 2004 Portfolio
The portfolio represents the collective "best ideas" of the Standard & Poor's equity research staff.
Each of the most senior 40 industry analysts on S&P's equity research staff has chosen one of the stocks they follow as the best-positioned for superior growth. The S&P PowerPicks 2004 Portfolio is diversified across all the 10 S&P economic sectors comprising the S&P 500 index.
The portfolio is a "frozen" one, meaning it will undergo no changes throughout the entire year. The objective of the portfolio is to exceed the total return (capital appreciation plus dividends paid) generated by the S&P 500 index during the next 12 months.
For more on the S&P PowerPicks 2004 portfolio, please visit http://www.businessweek.com/investor/content/dec2003/pi20031226_5517_pi071.htm
Shea is director of global equity research, and Gold a senior portfolio group analyst, for Standard & Poor's Equity Research