A rising Tide: Procter & Gamble could put a shine on your portfolio


Procter & Gamble (PG) is probably the strongest consumer-staples stalwart on a U.S. exchange. Long considered one of the best-managed companies in the country (making everything from Tide detergent to Crest toothpaste to Pampers diapers), this component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average ($INDU) has made great strides in shedding lower-margin businesses while buying or building out more profitable ones. (Olay beauty products for $130, anyone?)

As Jefferies & Co. analyst Douglas Lane told clients when he initiated coverage with a buy in September: "[The company's decision] to make fiscal 2010 an investment year provides a powerful catalyst for share outperformance over the next 12 to 36 months. Additionally, the stock has been trading at a market discount recently for the first time since we exited the last recession."