Forbes Investor Advisory Institute hosted a Financial Round Table discussion on June 30, 2007. Many of the comments were directed to the increasing globalization of both business, and financial markets.
From the Roundtable, hosted by Wally Forbes, here's an excerpt from Audrey Kaplan, Senior Vice President of Rochdale Investment Management, where she heads up the quantitative research team, and manages the Rochdale Atlas Mutual Fund.
WALLY FORBES: Audrey, would you go next?
AUDREY KAPLAN: Following up on everyone's comments about global trade, in terms of goods and services. Germany is number two behind the U.S. And there's a lot of opportunity for companies to participate in the global goods and services market.
So looking for stocks in those areas, several companies in the German economy that stand out in their innovative development in industries that we like are BASF (BF), which is the world's largest chemical company, Bayer (BAY), which is both in chemicals and pharmaceuticals, and a third stock that is a market leader in engineering and technology is Siemens AG (SI).
But keep in mind that at Rochdale we believe that all investors should have a well-diversified portfolio. So, although I am giving out individual stock ideas, you should bear in mind that they should be used as part of a well-diversified portfolio.
In terms of some Italian companies, there's also a history of product innovation. Some of their well-known exporters are Fiat (FIA), Pirelli and Benetton (BNG). Those are all stocks we own in our Atlas portfolio. They all offer high quality goods.
Another area in the Italian market is financial services companies which make up a big part of the Italian stock market and there's been some deregulation efforts going on there. Here we like UniCredito (OTC:UNCIF), and Intesa Sanpaolo.
WALLY FORBES: Are these stocks available as American Depository Receipts (ADRs)?
AUDREY KAPLAN: The German shares definitely yes. On some of the Italian shares as well there are depository receipts, but not in all cases. Typically about 30% of our portfolio is ADRs. But we find that a lot of the best overseas opportunities - about 60% of the best opportunities - are listed only overseas.
In South Korea, which is one of our favorite countries, we also like some of the machinery companies like Hanjin Heavy Industries, and Hyundai Heavy Industries. Both of those are big industrial machinery companies.
Other Asian export companies we prefer are Posco (PKX) and Samsung Electronics. In Taiwan one of the names that always is recommended if you like the economy of Taiwan is Taiwan Semiconductors (TSM), which is one of our top 10 holdings.
WALLY FORBES: Thank you very much, Audrey.