Magazine article Black Enterprise

Earnings Growth Redefined

Magazine article Black Enterprise

Earnings Growth Redefined

Article excerpt

Michael Manns' picks benefited from real expanding businesses

With the recent meltdown of some formerly red-hot technology shares, investors have me to appreciate companies that have--dare we say it?--actual earnings and strong fundamentals. One such investor is Michael Manns, a senior portfolio manager for American Express Asset Management in Minneapolis. He studies how companies grow their earnings, valuing firms that boast strong management and a 15% or greater annual earnings-growth rate.

Manns' Private Screening picks from last year rose an average of 41.24%, as of April 28, outperforming the Standard & Poor's 500-stock index's return of 8.8% for the same period. In first place: Cisco Systems (Nasdaq: CSCO), which dazzled investors with a triple-digit gain of 143.09%. Next in line: General Electric (NYSE: GE) and financial services giant Citigroup (NYSE: C) posted double-digit returns of 50.97%, and 19.51%, respectively.

Internet expansion and the ever-popular infrastructure sector helped propel Cisco Systems. As expected, Manns will continue his long-term hold on Cisco. "I am willing to pay more for companies that dominate attractive market segments," he said. "The company has a dominant share of the network equipment segment, which fuels Internet growth."

Interest-rate worries continue to plague financial services stocks, but Citigroup's restructuring efforts, combined with its global reach, helped the company weather the volatility. …

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