No extra commentary because I already wasted forty-five minutes earlier today ranting about health care reform and judicial review, and I don’t have time for two rants in one day. True, you didn’t ask for the first rant. But if you didn’t even ask for the first one, why should I give you a second? Exactly.
The market ground out a slight gain this week to cap a blockbuster quarter (S&P +12%, Nasdaq +19%). The Family Stock Index outperformed even Appley Nasdaq, up 21.2% over the last three months (just +0.3% this week, though). Reagan (+110%), Justin (+97%), Lulu (+60%) and Ruby (+44%) have been the workhorses, but the Q1 rally has had tremendous breadth as well. Only six of our 25 components finished in the red, the best quarterly performance in…probably a while. I’m not so into this that I’m going to check. Not before this weekend, anyway.
Instead of the week’s advancers and decliners, I’m going to cover some of the quarter’s outstanding stocks (outside of the top four mentioned above, about whom plenty has been written already).
- Me (MSTR) +29%. The numbers speak for themselves, for once: 13 weeks, 13 chapters, 80 thousand words. Is the work any good? I really don’t know. But the market doesn’t seem to hate it, or me, so far.
- Katie (CATY) +19%. If Katie were writing an IPO prospectus, the single biggest risk she’d need to disclose to investors is…her husband. It’s been an adjustment for her, having me go away emotionally the way I have to when I write. I’ve written books before, but this is the first time I’ve attempted something of this scale since we rebuilt our marriage after I stopped drinking. It’s not that I need Katie to keep me balanced when I’m writing so much as that I need her to help me wall off the necessary imbalance. Katie’s one who has to remind me of who I am every time I walk back out of my office; that can’t be easy. Looks like investors are buying anyway.
- Dustin (DST +19%) and Lisa (LNCE +15%). Did we even have a winter season this year? Now that I think about it, did spring even last through the end of March? I bet the golf courses in Blacksburg never even closed.
- Jenny (JNY) +19%. Jenny is notable for finishing January at -10% and rallying back to the middle of the pack. The market was ambivalent when she had so many strong school choices for next year; it was off to the races once her choice was made. I can tell you one thing beyond any doubt: reading Hunger Games twice had nothing to do with it (Jenny’s opinion notwithstanding).
- Mario the Younger (SUP) +18%. The market is taking a wait-and-see approach to all of 2012’s prospective brides and grooms, with the exception of Mario. (I don’t count Justin because his gains are certainly due to all the science he’s been writing.) Is that how I thought it would play out? Actually, I sort of did.
- Marisa (MOLX) +18%. Lulu’s quarter was fatter, but Marisa’s was more filling.
- Charlotte (ICE) +14%. I would call this the NC Effect. Jenny would call it the Jenny Effect.
- Jodi Ann (JOY) -2.0%. Jodi Ann is like the Z-tranche of a collateralized mortgage obligation. When the more demanding tranches are stressed, the Z-tranche is the one that really suffers. That’s because the Z-tranche is there to absorb prepayment and credit stress on the senior tranches in the CMO structure. A summer away from school stress will be good for Marcus (-0.5%), and so it’ll be even better for Jodi Ann.
- Wilson (WILC) -3.8%. It will be sad when Wilson dies. Just not for Wilson.
- Mario the Elder (MGEE) -5.1%. In a bull market like this one, investors gamble on the more speculative plays, and thus money is drawn away from older, more established names. Folks can only chase biotechs and science writers for so long; Mr. Gee is bound to come back into fashion later in the year.
- Winston (ED) -5.8%. On the other hand, sometimes, when investors are selling, it’s because they’re on to something.
- Brinkley (BCO) -11%. No one had a rougher quarter than Brinkley, at least from the market’s point of view. Good thing he has no idea.