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Industry performance in 1-year and 5-year time frames

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From the Morningstar Database of Industry Sector Performance, http://news.morningstar.com/stockReturns/CapWtdIndustryReturns.html, examine the financial performance of various industries over 1 year and 5 year timeframes. Pick one industry that has achieved an excess of 10% return to shareholders in both time frames. Then pick one industry that has had a negative return to shareholders in both time frames.

Questions:

1. What kinds of industries tend to be better performers in the medium to long term? Why? What kinds of industries tend to do poorly in the medium to long term? Why?

2. Can you make the claim that some industries are inherently more profitable than others? Provide arguments and examples to justify your response.

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Solution Preview

1. Industries such as railroad, resorts & casinos, and insurance services tend to be better performers in the medium to long term. This is due to management practices used within the industry, and to the pattern of cash flow in the industry. For example, in the resorts & casinos industry, the revenue flow may be volatile in the short run, but is stable when viewed in the medium to long term. Management practices used in the industry such as the sale of time shares, can smooth some of the volatility.

Industries such as gold and coal tend to do poorly in ...

Solution Summary

This solution discusses performance of industries and the reasons why some are more profitable than others.

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