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Procter & Gamble Has Broad Foreign Presence

From Wire Reports

Procter & Gamble.

Talk about your household names. It’s hard to imagine a home in America without several of its products.

Its brand names include Tide, Cheer, Bold, Crest, Ivory and Joy. In addition, it owns Comet, Pampers and Crisco, as well as Jif, Folgers, Old Spice and Hawaiian Punch.

The Cincinnati-based company is the world’s largest advertiser and sponsors the soap operas “As the World Turns,” “Another World” and “Guiding Light.”

While it’s one of the bluest of America’s blue-chip companies, this international corporate giant now gets more than 35 percent of its profits from foreign operations.

And with the profits flowing into the bottom line, Procter & Gamble shareholders have shared in the rewards. In the first half of the year, P&G shares rose an amazing 26.5 percent. Now as the second half of the year unfolds, P&G stock has really taken off since closing June 30 at $141.25.

Last week the company announced that its board approved a 2-for-1 stock split, effective Aug. 22. The board also agreed to P&G’s 42nd consecutive annual dividend increase, raising the payout to $2.02 a share from $1.80. The next quarterly dividend of 50.5 cents a share will be payable on or after Aug. 15 to shareholders of record July 18.

With that news, P&G shares have jumped as high as $155.

Global CDs offer risks, rewards

The chart of bank rates advertises a one-month certificate of deposit with a 16.35 percent annual yield, a three-month CD yielding 10.6 percent and a one-year at 13.5 percent.

Sound out of this world? Well they are, at least, out of this country. Mexico, Israel and South Africa, respectively.

CDs and money-market accounts denominated in dozens of foreign currencies - a few with doubledigit yields that dwarf the rates currently offered here - can be purchased from some banks in the United States.

These global accounts, which sometimes require lofty minimum deposits of $10,000 or more, can provide high rates of return for those seeking diversity yet concerned that the soaring U.S. stock market may be running out of steam soon.

But global CDs and MMAs also carry some high risks. Besides taking a chance on the direction of interest rates in a particular country, investors have to worry about currency fluctuations and whether their money will be insured.

“They’re a gamble, but they can be a very lucrative one,” said Robert K. Heady, publisher of the West Palm Beach, Fla., newsletter Bank Rate Monitor,.

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