The $672,000,000 Commercial Investment Trust Corp., world's biggest sales financier, last week jumped into a new and strange field: manufacturing. With six pages of mimeographed handout it announced outright purchase of Boston's 67-year-old Holtzer-Cabot Electric Co., producer of custom-made electric motors and appliances. Net cost to C.I.T.: $1,375,000.

Reason for the purchase: something had to be done to offset C.I.T.'s drop in installment-plan financing. With new-car sales taboo, used-car sales on the skids, and radios, refrigerators, etc. on the way out, C.I.T.'s first-half business dropped 50% to $433,000,000, a four-year low. This left C.I.T. with a lot of cash ($48,000,000 on...

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