Dividends: Rolls-Royce Fire Sale

The price of prestige plunged last week. Faced with sluggish sales, the U.S. distributor for Britain's Rolls-Royce Motors, makers of the world's most elegant line of automobiles, slashed prices on all Rolls models. The cost of a sleek Silver Spirit, the cheapest Rolls, dropped from $111,000 to $93,000, while the price for a top-of-the-line Corniche convertible fell from $162,500 to $148,500.

Since 1978 the cost of the least expensive Rolls had surged from $55,900 to $111,000. Rolls-Royce sales in the U.S. slumped last year to 908, down from 1,158 in 1981. Says Charles Bamberger,...

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