Stocks Gaining Strength

Ticker symbol Company Price as of 4/2/04 Total return 1 month Total return year to date Total return 12 months Relative strength vs. S&P 500 12 months Return on capital past year
DIRECT TO CONSUMER
FLWS 1-800 Flowers.com $10.77 4.4% (5.1%) 52.2% 2.9 7.0%
BL Blair Corp. 27.10 1.8 12.4 20.4 (16.7) 3.4
CWTR Coldwater Creek 23.02 9.1 94.2 218.5 144.1 5.0
HNV Hanover Direct 0.25 (10.7) 13.6 13.6 (18.0) (26.8)
JILL J. Jill Group 21.56 28.1 69.4 89.7 29.3 4.1
MBAY MediaBay 0.62 (34.4) (44.6) (29.1) (49.7) (7.6)
SPGLQ Spiegel 0.14 55.6 154.6 55.6 24.4 (31.1)
DIRECT TO BUSINESS
BBOX Black Box Corp. $56.17 7.8% 22.6% 86.0% 24.7 6.4%
CDWC CDW Corp. 68.1 (4.5) 18.4 68.0 16.4 13.6
HSIC Henry Schein 74.41 3.7 9.0 70.5 11.2 7.8
MSM MSC Industrial Direct Co. 31.88 7.9 16.2 81.6 34.7 8.7
NEB New England Business Service 34.95 6.8 19.5 43.8 (5.9) 3.7
PCCC PC Connection 7.94 (8.7) (3.0) 53.6 6.0 2.7
MALL PC Mall 20.75 35.4 28.8 563.5 319.5 4.4
PFP Premier Farnell 9.35 (3.3) 15.2 95.0 22.6 9.0
SCHS School Specialty 36.30 4.5 6.9 103.2 45.2 5.3
SSPY Sport Supply Group 1.25 4.1 N/A N/A N/A N/A
TESS Tessco Technologies 12.79 (5.1) (10.7) 77.2 26.4 1.6
ZONS Zones 3.26 3.5 92.4 313.9 163.8 -1.9

Americans are spending, and retail and catalog stocks are rising as a result. February retail sales (excluding automobiles) were up 10% from the previous year, notes Ken Packer, managing partner of Des Moines, IA-based Financial Advisory Partners. February sales for what the U.S. Commerce Department calls nonstore retailing rose somewhat less — 7.6% — “due to the strength in home-related products” Packer says, “which are typically not as well represented in the direct consumer channel as apparel, for example.”

The business catalogers have “enjoyed a stronger and more stable marketplace over the past 12 months,” Packer continues. For the past 12 months, the value of the b-to-b stocks rose 92% compared with 61% for the consumer catalogers. Year-to-date, though, the consumer stocks have been stronger, up 37% compared with 14% for the b-to-b stocks, “as the consumer retail business has shown strong results over a weak year-earlier period,” he explains.

The biggest gainer in March, percentage-wise, was Spiegel, but the bankrupt company still ended the month at $0.14 a share. PC Mall had the next-greatest gain, up 35.4% to close at $20.75 a share. The computer reseller also gave the greatest return for the previous 12 months, increasing its value 563.5%.

Partner Content

The Gift of Wow: Preparing your store for the holiday season - Netsuite
Being prepared for the holiday rush used to mean stocking shelves and making sure your associates were ready for the long hours. But the digital revolution has changed everything, most importantly, customer expectations. Retailers with a physical store presence should be asking themselves—what am I doing to wow the customer?
3 Critical Components to Achieving the Perfect Order - NetSuite
Explore the 3 critical components to delivering the perfect order.
Streamlining Unified Commerce Complexity - NetSuite
Explore how consolidating multiple systems through a cloud-based commerce platform provides a seamless experience for both you, and your customer.
Strategies for Maximizing Mobile Point-of-Sale Technology - NetSuite
Learn the top five innovative ways to utilize your mobile POS technology to drive customer engagement, increase sales and elevate your brand.