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No. of Recommendations: 6
A few observations

Numbers are nice but to me a real rule maker should clearly dominate its industry. Is its industry really sustainable?

Is the Rule Maker Port really a rule maker? What I noticed in the rule maker port is... they really don't seem to plan their investments with the whole Port in mind. Even the Drip Port with only four companies seems better diversified. Furthermore, the port is over-weighted in major drug and technology. I agree that Microsoft, Nokia, Intel, and Coke are all rule makers. However, I don't believe that either the drug companies or the other companies chosen really represent the idea of what a rule maker should be.

It seems to me that they only analyzes individual companies and then they don't ask the big question “Is this company really a rule maker and not just a hot company in a hot sector?”

The three drug companies in the port are all good companies but none of them is the largest major drug maker. I am a little surprise that the number one drug maker, Merck is not even in the port. Shouldn't the rule maker be the largest (biggest and badest) in its respected industry?

I don't have an American Express and never had. I believe most people have and use Visa or Master Card more often that American Express(I welcome correction if I am wrong). Again, how is this a rule breaker? Does it dominate its industry? The same I believe can be said for T Rowe Price Group Inc. and I won't even go into Yahoo.

Where are our every day brands, our Frito Lays? Hey that's what is said in Step 4 and yet no PEP is in the port. Where is the maker of Tide or Crest (PG), Arm and Hammer (CHD), ExxonMobile (XOM) Or GE? Each of these companies set the rules that their competitors must follow. Yes, they are not real high growth companies but each have a proven track record for success and sustainable advantage. Each will more likely be here and strong after we are gone. And each would have provided a terrific balance to the otherwise Tech./Drug heavy port.

Growth is great but does it make a Rule Maker?

If we are really looking for tweener shouldn't we call this the tweener port and arrange our criteria accordingly?

Don't get me wrong I have learned a lot thanks to the TMF but two things seem to be missing from the port: A clear strategy that considers the overall diversification of the port and the question after all the number crunching… does this company really set the rules in its industry?

Foolishly,
Mark

P.S Biases: A recent convert to the DRIP

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