Dow Diary: Kraft Plus Cadbury Equals Sweet Profits!

Dear Diary,

Chalk up another win! I’m 9 for 11 so far in September, and today’s 47-point gain puts me up a rollicking 5.6 percent on the month. Year-to-date, I’m rocking a gain of 1.4 percent, and all I’ll say about that is it’s better than zero. Not to get too braggy, but while the news media is calling the individual investor dead, I’m over here ratcheting up the gains.

The Federal Reserve said nationwide industrial production grew 0.2 percent in August, less than expected and less from a downwardly revised July gain of 0.6%. Still, a gain is a gain, and I’ll take it. Plus, import and export prices both rose the most in months!

Not to mention Kraft, one of my stocks, came out with good things to say about its Cadbury acquisition. Oreos and Creme Eggs — how could that deal have not worked?! Spot on, I say! And then there was Travelers with a share buyback in the works. Great news there, too. Only 10 of my stocks went down, and 20 went up!

It wasn’t all roses, of course — and in this economy, who would expect anything else. The New York Federal Reserve’s regional manufacturing survey showed a September index reading of 4.1. Any positive number signals expansion, but this month’s reading was a lot lower than August’s 7.1, and was lower than Wall Street was generally expecting. Plus, there’s talk of a double-dip recession in housing thanks to the expiration of the home-buyer tax credit and a lot of home loans moving into foreclosure. That’s a scary thought, with a huge oversupply of houses still on the market.

Still, gotta stay upbeat to try to keep those bulls a-chargin’. We’ll see how we do tomorrow, when weekly jobless claims numbers come out. Here’s hoping fewer people are going on the dole. I’ll also be watching for FedEx’s earnings before the open, because when the economy is good, people tend to ship a lot of packages. A hot economy means a hot Dow, and today I feel a fever coming on.

Fingers crossed,

The Dow Jones Industrial Average

Dow Diary: Kraft Plus Cadbury Equals Sweet Profits!