If you had had the foresight to buy stock in the Montreal Canadiens a year or so ago, you wouldn't be complaining so much about the market today. Canadian Arena, the company that owns the Canadiens, the Montreal Forum, in which the team plays, the new Voyageurs of the American Hockey League and several minor league franchises, sold at 265 a share in 1968, but this month the Stock soared past the 900 mark (it jumped 175 points in one day). The company has announced a 50-for-1 split, said to be the largest in the history of the Canadian securities business.
Hockey's new expansion plans (SCORECARD, Sept. 22) are a factor in the extraordinary growth of the stock, but mostly it is because Canadian Arena had been drastically underpriced. The company—which has no holdings beyond the hockey teams and the Forum—is said to be worth about $30 million; even at its high point of $920, before the split, the stock was selling at less than 20 times earnings.
The only problem with it is finding someone willing to sell. The Molson brothers, William, David and Peter, own about 65% of the 19,700 shares outstanding, and another 15% is owned by other members of the family. There are only about 150 shareholders in all.
TOP TENNIS, ANYONE?
Rod Laver's streak of 31 consecutive tournament victories was broken a week or so ago, but that did not affect Layer's place in the world tennis rankings announced by London's The Daily Telegraph, which has been doing this sort of thing for 55 years. This year's list, with last year's ranking in parentheses:
1. Rod Laver, Australia (1)
2. Tony Roche, Australia (5)
3. John Newcombe, Australia (6)
4. Tom Okker, Netherlands (4)
5. Ken Rosewall, Australia (3)
6. Arthur Ashe, U.S. (2)
7. Cliff Drysdale, South Africa (9)
8. Pancho Gonzales, U.S. (10)
9. Andres Gimeno, Spain (unranked)
10. Fred Stolle, Australia (unranked)
1. Margaret Court, Australia (5)
2. Ann Jones, Great Britain (6)
3. Billie Jean King, U.S. (1)
4. Nancy Richey, U.S. (3)
5. Julie Heldman, U.S. (unranked)
6. Rosemary Casals, U.S. (10)
7. Kerry Melville, Australia (unranked)
8. Peaches Bartkowicz, U.S. (unranked)
9. Virginia Wade, Great Britain (2)
10. Lesley Bowrey, Australia (9)
Men's tennis in the U.S. obviously declined in 1969 (only two in the top 10 and none in the top five). But America's women are coming on (five in the top 10 and three in the top five).