Probably the hottest thing that has hit the Dallas investment community in years was the Morton Foods stock issue , which was sold to the public during the past week .
For many reasons , the demand to buy shares in the Dallas-headquartered company was tremendous .
It was not a case of the investment bankers having to sell the stock ; ;
it was more one of allotting a few shares to a number of customers and explaining to others why they had no more to sell .
Investors who wanted 100 shares in many cases ended up with 25 , and customers who had put in a bid to buy 400 shares found themselves with 100 and counted themselves lucky to get that many .
In fact , very few customers , anywhere in the nation , were able to get more than 100 shares .
Some Dallas investment firms got only 100 shares , for all of their customers .
A measure of how hot the stock was , can be found in what happened to it on the market as soon as trading began .
The stock was sold in the underwriting at a price of $12.50 a share .
The first over-the-counter trade Wednesday afternoon at Eppler , Guerin & Turner , the managing underwriter , was at $17 a share .
And from that the stock moved right on up until it was trading Thursday morning at around $22 a share .
But the Morton Foods issue was hot long before it was on the market .
Indeed , from the moment the reports of the coming issue first started circulating in Dallas last January , the inquiries and demand for the stock started building up .
Letters by the reams came in from investment firms all over the nation , all of them wanting to get a part of the shares that would be sold ( 185,000 to the public at $12.50 , with another 5,000 reserved for Morton Foods employes at $11.50 a share ) .
There was even a cable in French from a bank in Switzerland that had somehow learned about the Dallas stock offering .
`` We subscribe 500 shares of Morton Foods of Texas .
Cable confirmation '' , it said translated .
But E.G.T. could not let the Swiss bank have even 10 shares .
After it allotted shares to 41 underwriters and 52 selling group members from coast to coast there were not many shares for anyone .
But the result of it all was , E.G.T. partner Dean Guerin believes , an effective distribution of the stock to owners all over the nation .
`` I feel confident the stock will qualify for the ' national list ' '' , he said , meaning its market price would be quoted regularly in newspapers all over the country .
He was also pleased with the wide distribution because he thought it proved again his argument that Dallas investment men can do just as good a job as the big New York investment bankers claim only they can do .
But what made the Morton Foods stock issue such a hot one ? ?
The answer is that it was a combination of circumstances .
First , the general stock market has been boiling upward for the last few months , driving stocks of all kinds up .
As a result , it is not easy to find a stock priced as the Morton issue was priced ( at roughly 10 times 1960 earnings , to yield a little over 5 per cent on the 64-cent anticipated dividend ) .
Second , the `` potato chip industry '' has caught the fancy of investors lately , and until Morton Foods came along there were only two potato chip stocks -- Frito and H. W. Lay -- on the market .
Both of those have had dynamic run-ups in price on the market in recent months , both were selling at higher price-earnings and yield bases than Morton was coming to market at , and everyone who knew anything about it expected the Morton stock to have a fast run-up .
And third , the potato chip industry has taken on the flavor of a `` growth '' industry in the public mind of late .
Foods , which long had been considered `` recession resistant '' but hardly dynamic stocks , have been acting like growth stocks , going to higher price-earnings ratios .
The potato chip industry these days is growing , not only as a result of population increase and public acceptance of convenience foods , but also because of a combination of circumstances that has led to growth by merger .
The history of the U.S. potato chip industry is that many of today's successful companies got started during the deep depression days .
Those that remain are those that were headed by strong executives , men with the abilities to last almost 30 years in the competitive survival of the fittest .
But today many of those men are reaching retirement age and suddenly realizing that they face an estate tax problem with their closely held companies and also that they have no second-echelon management in their firms .
So they go looking for mergers with other firms that have publicly quoted stock , and almost daily they pound on the doors of firms like Frito .
All those things combined to make the Morton Foods stock the hot issue that it was and is .
Now , if Morton's newest product , a corn chip known as Chip-o's , turns out to sell as well as its stock did , the stock may turn out to be worth every cent of the prices that the avid buyers bid it up to .
Dallas and North Texas is known world-wide as the manufacturing and distribution center of cotton gin machinery and supplies , valued in the millions of dollars .
More than 10 companies maintain facilities in Dallas and one large manufacturer is located to the north at Sherman .
It is no coincidence that the Texas Cotton Ginner's Association is meeting here this week for the 46th time in their 52-year history .
The exhibition of cotton ginning machinery at the State Fair grounds is valued at more than a million dollars .
It weighs in the tons , so the proximity of factory and exhibition area makes it possible for an outstanding exhibit each year .
A modern cotton gin plant costs in the neighborhood of $250,000 , and it's a safe assumption that a large percentage of new gins in the U.S. and foreign countries contain machinery made in this area .
The Murray Co. of Texas , Inc. , originated in Dallas in 1896 .
They've occupied a 22-acre site since the early 1900's .
More than 700 employees make gin machinery that's sold anywhere cotton is grown .
Murray makes a complete line of ginning equipment except for driers and cleaners , and this machinery is purchased from a Dallas-based firm .
The Continental Gin Co. began operations in Dallas in 1899 .
The present company is a combination of several smaller ones that date back to 1834 .
Headquarters is in Birmingham , Ala. .
Factories are located here and in Prattville , Ala. .
About 40 per cent of the manufacturing is done at the Dallas plant by more than 200 employes .
The company sells a complete line of gin machinery all over the cotton-growing world .
Hardwicke-Etter Co. of Sherman makes a full line of gin machinery and equipment .
The firm recently expanded domestic sales into the Southeastern states as a result of an agreement with Cen-Tennial Gin Co. .
They export also .
The company began operation in 1900 with hardware and oil mill supplies .
In 1930 , they began making cotton processing equipment .
Presently , Hardwicke-Etter employs 300-450 people , depending on the season of the year .
The Lummus Cotton Gin Co. has had a sales and service office in Dallas since 1912 .
Factory operations are in Columbus , Ga. .
The district office here employs about 65 .
The Moss Gordin Lint Cleaner Co. and Gordin Unit System of Ginning have joint headquarters here .
The cleaner equipment firm began operations in 1953 and the unit system , which turns out a complete ginning system , began operations in 1959 .
Gordin manufacturing operations are in Lubbock .
The John E. Mitchell Co. began work in Dallas in 1928 .
The firm is prominent in making equipment for cleaning seed cotton , driers , and heaters , and they lay claim to being the first maker ( 1910 ) of boil extraction equipment .
The increase in mechanical harvesting of cotton makes cleaning and drying equipment a must for modern gin operation .
Mitchell employs a total of about 400 people .
They export cotton ginning machinery .
The Hinckley Gin Supply Co. is a maker of `` overhead equipment '' .
This includes driers , cleaners , burr extractors , separators and piping that's located above gin stands in a complete gin .
The firm began operations back in 1925 and sells equipment in the central cotton belt , including the Mississippi Delta .
The Cen-Tennial Gin Supply Co. has home offices and factory facilities here .
They make gin saws and deal in parts , supplies and some used gin machinery .
The Stacy Co. makes cleaning and drying equipment for sale largely in Texas .
They've been in Dallas since 1921 .
Cotton Belt Gin Service , Inc. of Dallas makes gin saws and started here 14 years ago .
They distribute equipment in 11 states .
The firm also handles gin and oil mill supplies such as belting , bearings , etc. .
Cotton processing equipment is a sizable segment of Dallas business economy .
New car sales in Dallas County during March showed slight signs of recovering from the doldrums which have characterized sales this year .
Registrations of new cars in Dallas County cracked the 3,000 mark in March for the first time this year .
Totaling 3,399 , sales jumped 14 per cent over February's 2,963 .
However , compared with March 1960 new car sales of 4,441 , this March was off 23 per cent .
On a quarter-to-quarter comparison , the first quarter of 1961 total of 9,273 cars was 21 per cent behind the previous year's 3-month total of 11,744 .
This year-to-year decline for Dallas County closely follows the national trend -- estimated sales of domestic cars in the U.S. for first three months of 1961 were about 1,212,000 or 80 per cent of the total in the first quarter a year earlier .
With the March pickup , dealers are optimistic that the April-June quarter will equal or top last year .
The March gain plus this optimism has been encouraging enough to prompt auto makers to boost production schedules for the next quarter .
On the local level , compacts continue to grab a larger share of the market at the expense of lower-priced standard models and foreign cars .
Only three standard models -- Buick , Chrysler , and Mercury -- had slight year-to-year gains in March sales in the county .
The top 3 students from 11 participating Dallas County high schools will be honored by the Dallas Sales Executives Club at a banquet at 6 p.m. Tuesday in the Sam Houston Room of the Sheraton-Dallas Hotel as the club winds up its annual Distributive Education project .
Now in its third year , the program is designed to provide a laboratory for those youngsters seeking careers in marketing and salesmanship .
Business firms provide 20 weeks of practical employment to supplement classroom instruction in these fields .
More than 500 juniors and seniors are taking part in the program and 100 firms offer jobs on an educational rather than a need basis .
Principal address will be delivered by Gerald T. Owens , national sales manager for Isodine Pharmical Corp. of New York .
The 33 honored students are : Mike Trigg , Raymond Arrington , and Ronald Kaminsky of Bryan Adams , Janice Whitney , Fil Terral , and Carl David Page of W. H. Adamson ; ;
Bill Burke , Tommie Freeman , and Lawrence Paschall of N. R. Crozier Tech. Paulah Thompson , Gerald Kestner , and Nancy Stephenson of Hillcrest ; ;
Arnold Hayes , Mary Ann Shay , and Lloyd Satterfield of Thomas Jefferson ; ;
William Cluck , Deloris Carrel Carty , and Edna Earl Eaton of North Dallas ; ;
Patricia Ann Neal , Johnny Carruthers , and David McLauchlin of Rylie of Seagoville ; ;
David Wolverton , Sharon Flanagan , and James Weaver of W. W. Samuels ; ;
William Austin , Gary Hammond , and Ronnie Davis of South Oak Cliff ; ;
Bill Eaton , Carolyn Milton , and Ronnie Bert Stone of Sunset ; ;
and Charles Potter , Ronnie Moore , and Robert Bailey of Woodrow Wilson .
The Kennedy administration's new housing and urban renewal proposals , particularly their effect on the Federal Housing Administration , came under fire in Dallas last week .
The Administration's proposals , complex and sweeping as they are , all deal with fringe areas of the housing market rather than its core , stated Caron S. Stallard , first vice-president of the Mortgage Bankers Association of America .