Monday, Nov. 03, 2008


A major component of Obama's economic-recovery plan is to create as many as 2 million new jobs rebuilding and repairing the nation's bridges and tunnels. He would like to start something called the Infrastructure Bank, which would be an independent organization that would decide what projects to pursue, and fund it with as much as $60 billion of federal money over 10 years. But some experts say the nation's ailing highways and transportation system could use significantly more funds, as much as $1.5 trillion over the next five years, to keep it in working order. So it is likely that Obama would end up spending more than he is right now projecting. International Strategy & Investment says infrastructure plays are the best way to invest in an Obama presidency.

Pick: Vulcan Materials (ticker: VMC) is the largest U.S. producer of sand, crushed stone and gravel — key ingredients in making roadways. So it is sure to benefit from any building boom. The company's shares have slid, to a recent $54 from a high of $120, as the end of the housing boom has lowered the demand for construction materials. Still, the stock is not particularly cheap. Vulcan's shares have a price-to-earnings ratio of 20, based on expected earnings. That's considerably higher than the average valuation of the stocks in the S&P 500 index, but Vulcan investors are paying up for consistency. The company is one of very few that have increased dividends every year for the past 40 years.