NHBR/Chartworth Stock Index
Beginning with this issue, New Hampshire Business Review will present the New Hampshire Business Review/Chartworth Stock Index, the quarterly and trailing 12 months’ stock performance of New Hampshire-based publicly traded companies. The list of companies has been sorted on the basis of the percentage change in each company’s stock for the most recent quarter, the fourth quarter of 2004. To be included in the stock index, a company must have its primary office and headquarters in the state. Currently there are 26 companies conducting business in New Hampshire that meet these criteria. This information shows both the trailing 12 months and the most recent quarter’s performance by calculating the price change over the period. The research and analysis for this information has been provided by Howard Smith of Chartworth, an investment banking firm with offices in Manchester and Portsmouth. New Hampshire stocks turned in a strong finish in the fourth quarter of 2004 as stocks rallied to close out the year. The NHBR/Chartworth Stock Index handily outperformed both the Nasdaq Composite and the S&P 500 by posting a solid 31.96 percent return for the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, 2004. Twelve of the 26 New Hampshire stocks outperformed both of the broad market averages. The strong finish was due in large part to a year end rally in technology-related stocks. New Hampshire leaders in this sector included MangoSoft, Bottomline Technologies, iCAD and PC Connection. iCAD — which designs, develops and markets computer-aided detection imaging technology for the early detection of breast cancer and other medical applications — achieved the most significant turnaround in its prospects for the year, announcing strong third-quarter quarter financial results and disclosing that Vital Images Inc. entered into an agreement with it to acquire iCAD’s CT Colon CAD technology. In the large cap sector, White Mountain Insurance and Timberland solidly outperformed the S&P 500 to close out the year.