Message Font: Serif | Sans-Serif
 
UnThreaded | Threaded | Whole Thread (1) | Ignore Thread Prev | Next
Author: TMFTwitty Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 175  
Subject: D in Fool Take Date: 9/4/2003 4:08 PM
Post New | Post Reply | Reply Later | Create Poll Report this Post | Recommend it!
Recommendations: 1
http://www.fool.com/News/mft/2003/mft03090408.htm?ref=btp

Dominion's Power Marketing

By Bill Mann (TMF Otter)
September 4, 2003
One of the best mines for investing ideas comes from those things that you use everyday. In One Up On Wall Street, Peter Lynch describes how he skillfully missed the signs that The Limited (NYSE: LTD) offered excellent investing prospects as evinced by how much money his wife -- and all her friends -- spent there.

Many of us are aware of the branded products we use daily. My computer? Hewlett Packard (NYSE: HPQ). Soap? Dial (NYSE: DL). Morning blast of joe? Starbucks (Nasdaq: SBUX). But what about that stuff you use regularly but don't think about? I mean, I send several hundred bucks each month to my power company, and so do all my neighbors. For equity awareness among retail investors, this is not such a good thing.

These were my thoughts when I tore open this month's power bill. That plus the fact that my power bill is substantially lower due to the mild summer we've had in Northern Virginia. Dominion Resources (NYSE: D) included an insert into people's invoices detailing how we can buy stock in "one of the nation's leading energy companies" through a company program called Dominion Direct.

I've got mixed feelings on such efforts by companies to advertise the availability/attractiveness of their stocks. On the one hand, people cannot invest in something if they don't know that the potential exists, and such companies as utilities are generally only visible to the average consumer when (a) the bill is due or (b) there's a blackout. Certainly, this flyer is substantially less blatant than the full-page ads that Washington Mutual (NYSE: WM) took out to flog its own stock -- an act that drew the ire of our own Tom Jacobs.

But we should simply face the fact that the long-held taboo against companies marketing their stocks is crumbling.

I first noticed this when certain dot-coms like Sportsline (Nasdaq: SPLN) included their tickers on billboards, print advertising, even on television. More conservative companies like AFLAC (NYSE: AFL) have also gotten into the act, offering a testimonial from a long-term shareholder.

Dominion's insert ought to be viewed as a continuance of this trend. Hopefully, even with lower-risk companies engaging in stock marketing, the companies make every effort possible to ensure that purchasers read their filings -- and that those who buy the shares take the responsibility to do just that.

Post New | Post Reply | Reply Later | Create Poll Report this Post | Recommend it!
Print the post  
UnThreaded | Threaded | Whole Thread (1) | Ignore Thread Prev | Next

Announcements

Pencils of Promise - Back to School Drive
"Pencils of Promise works with communities across the globe to build schools and create programs that provide education opportunities for children."
Post of the Day:
Macro Economics

Russia Collapsing Again?
What was Your Dumbest Investment?
Share it with us -- and learn from others' stories of flubs.
When Life Gives You Lemons
We all have had hardships and made poor decisions. The important thing is how we respond and grow. Read the story of a Fool who started from nothing, and looks to gain everything.
Community Home
Speak Your Mind, Start Your Blog, Rate Your Stocks

Community Team Fools - who are those TMF's?
Contact Us
Contact Customer Service and other Fool departments here.
Work for Fools?
Winner of the Washingtonian great places to work, and "#1 Media Company to Work For" (BusinessInsider 2011)! Have access to all of TMF's online and email products for FREE, and be paid for your contributions to TMF! Click the link and start your Fool career.
Advertisement