Hurricane Charley Boosts Mobile Home Stocks

Shares of mobile home manufacturers soared on Monday on hopes of increased business after the destruction Hurricane Charley wreaked in Florida over the weekend, an analyst said.

But Barbara Allen, an analyst at Natexis Bleichroeder (search), downplayed the significance of the rebuilding on overall quarterly results for the national companies. She attributed the stock rise to optimism by retail investors.

"It's so irrelevant to a national company's earnings," she said. "I have never in my career seen a hurricane have anywhere close to a measurable impact on anybody's earnings."

Shares of Champion Enterprises Inc. (CHB) were up 6 percent, or 54 cents, to $9.72, Monday on the New York Stock Exchange. Shares of Fleetwood Enterprises Inc. (FLE) rose nearly 5.8 percent, or 63 cents, to $11.49. Both were among the top percentage gainers on the Big Board.

Nobility Homes Inc. (NOBH) jumped 12.5 percent, or $2.36, to $21.25, and was among the top percentage gainers on Nasdaq.