While watching the progress of my shares on http://hotstocktip.com , I came across the following information concerning Panamerican Beverages Inc. Shares of PB rose 1 3/8, or 6 percent, to 24 1/4 and traded as high as 24 5/16. The largest soft-drink bottler in Latin America was raised to "buy" from "neutral" by analyst Laura D. Meizler at Salomon Smith Barney. Meizler said the company is expected to report stronger second-quarter earnings. She said the stock should reach 30 over the next 12 months.
Having just looked over the annual report, fiscal '98 for PB is probably best summarized by the adjectives that kept surfacing: "turbulent and challenging." While "turbulent" accurately defines the country risk in each of PB's markets, "challenging" would best describe the company's stated objective of boosting per capita Coke consumption in Latin America. I am encouraged by the aggressive marketing approach but would like to see more information about costs/benefits associated with recent distribution upgrades. PB has shown some real strength over the past two months following earnings numbers and analyst upgrades. I'll continue to buy PB on the dips and look forward to more frequent posts from other shareholders.