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'Master Stock Picker' Names His Media Investments

Thursday, 31 May 2007 | 3:19 PM ET

When "people don't really understand" an evolutionary trend, that's when Barton Crockett strikes. A media analyst at J.P. Morgan, Crockett was named the top picker of advertising and publishing companies in the Wall Street Journal's 2006 Master Stock Pickers list. He shared his methods -- and favorite names -- with "Power Lunch" viewers.

Profiting From Media Stocks
A look at investment opportunities in the media sector, with Barton Crockett, JP Morgan media analyst and CNBC's Sue Herera

Crockett told CNBC's Sue Herera that his investment criteria involve small and mid-cap media firms with the potential for "a lot of volatility, both up and down." His particular expertise: "the intersection of new technology and traditional media," where industry developments seem cryptic to most.

One example of Crockett's thinking: Arbitron. He concedes that the radio-audience measurement firm sounds mired in another age, but said it is going through a "technology transition": Arbitron is rolling out PPM, an electronic ratings measurement system that will replace the old paper diary -- and perhaps have many more applications.

The analyst praised Greenfield Online as a "home run" ever since J.P. Morgan initiated coverage in December 2005. A "very small" microcap, Greenfield's businesses include Internet surveys and New Ciao, the No. 1 comparison-shopping site in Europe -- which has seen triple-digit revenue growth since its May 4, 2006 inception.

Crockett said Marvel Entertainment had been one of his preferred stocks. But shortly after the third "Spider-Man" came out, the analyst shifted his rating to neutral from overweight. Why? He said the stock -- climbing to nearly $30 from "17 and change" -- had already factored in all the blockbuster buzz. He wanted to take some profit and bide his time until Marvel's "Iron Man" movie release next year.

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  • Sue Herera is a founding member of CNBC, helping to launch the network in 1989. She is co-anchor of "Power Lunch."

  • Tyler Mathisen co-anchors CNBC's "Power Lunch." Mathisen also co-anchors "Nightly Business Report produced by CNBC."

Power Pitch

Kenny Polcari