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24th Annual

APRIL 5, 2001

Stock Market Symposium

“What we are seeing now is a healthy correction that makes you sick.”

“The hot air in the techs has been let out.” Benjamin F. Edwards III offered that description of the downturn in technology stocks at Methodist’s 24th annual Stock

Market Symposium April 5.

Rule. We need to give value and be efficient.”

He decried the way some American corporations have downsized: “Many workers are fearful and demoralized. I believe cutting should start at the top.”

The CEO and president of A. G. Edwards, Inc. said greed caused many Americans to overinvest in dot-coms and other high technology issues. “There was a lot of capital around, but stock options were the chief form of compensation in the technical sector,” he noted.

Benjamin F. Edwards

As an example of volatility in the high- tech sector, he cited Yahoo, saying its stock had once sold for $250 a share, but had recently fallen to $11. “Whenever there is a new industry,” he continued, “there are always questions about

management. You have to wait to see who survives.

Business Awards

Four Fayetteville residents were honored for business achievements at the symposium.

R. David Ruth, vice president and general manager of Lee Hyundai, received the Business Ethics Award. He was cited for setting high ethical standards at his business and rewarding employees who uphold them. Lee Hyundai leads the 11-state Southeast Region in sales and ranks in the top 10 Hyundai dealers in customer satisfaction.

Celia McGuire, owner of Global Tours and Travel, was named Outstanding Woman Entrepreneur of 2000. A native of Argentina with 25 years’ experience in the travel and airline business, she has grown her business from three to 12 employees

He said the two strongest emotions affecting investment decisions are greed and fear. “What we are seeing now is just a healthy correction that makes you sick. A lot of paper wealth was lost, but it can be created again.” since 1996 and earned the distinction of becoming an Tr a v e l American Express Representative. G. Michael Pleasant, president of Ready Mixed Concrete, received the Small Business Excellence Award. Since 1983, he has transformed a business with annual revenues of $2 million, 26 employees and two plants into one with six plants, a new downtown headquarters/maintenance facilit , 85 employees, and annual sales exceeding $10 million. Ed Melvin, owner of Ed’s Tire and Auto Service, was inducted into the Fellowship of the Silver Spoon, which recognizes persons who were not born to wealth but have become successful entrepreneurs. In 1980, Melvin borrowed $5,000 to buy an existing tire store that he had managed. Today, his firm operates six tire stores servicing as many as 200 cars per day. The symposium ended with Dr. Sid Gautam, director of MC’s The head of one of America’s largest investment firms said 75 percent of the people in his industry “have not seen a bear market.” He then offered some blunt advice: “Nothing soars to the sky. Don’t fall in love with anything. Don’t bet the ranch. Free markets go both ways— up and down.” Edwards said dollar-cost averaging is the only gimmick that works in equity investing, but it requires a lot of discipline. “Put your savings in Business award winners at a reception hosted by President & Mrs. Hendricks L to R, David Ruth, Celia McGuire, Ed Melvin, Michael Pleasant the market at a certain rate,” he advised. “If the market’s up you buy fewer shares. If it’s down, you buy more.” The speaker devoted much of his speech to a description of the corporate philosophy at A. G. Edwards, a St. Louis-based firm with 700 offices and 7,000 financial consultants managing total assets worth $1.6 billion. The firm went public in 1980. Center for Hudson, a Entrepreneurship, awarding a $100 bill to Michelle business student at Methodist. Hudson’s advance “In our corporate mission statement, ‘fun’ is one goal,” he said, “along with mutual trust and respect. We believe our clients, employees and vendors should be treated according to the Golden of to the the Dow Jones closing for actual closing of 9,918. April projection the closest 5—9,933—was

Summer 2001

Methodist College Today


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