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Get Even More Bullish on the Dow, Part 1

Editor's note: This is Part 1 of Jim Cramer's review of the prospects for the stocks that make up the Dow 30. Read Part 2 , Part 3 and Part 4 .

The sin of not being bullish enough is not one that I have been guilty of very often, but 2006 found me on that side of the fence when I did my annual predictions for the Dow Jones Industrial Average components. I was just about bullish enough on the average itself, though: The Dow closed the year at 12,463, just 7 points below my target of 12,470.

Seems comical now, but at the time, I was shocked at how bullish that forecast seemed. Now I'm only slightly -- and pleasantly -- more surprised at just how positive I am on the Big 30's prospects for the next year now that I've sat down and quantified it.

You see, I expect the Dow to grow about 17% in 2007, to 14,548. Read on to find out why.

Flat in '07
3M (MMM): This one's not lent to easy analysis. The company dropped a bomb in the second quarter and then made a nice recovery in the third, but who knows what could happen with this odd agglomeration of companies. I don't trust management to deliver, but the company itself perks along nicely. I bet it will finish unchanged next year. There's just not enough to work with here and a CEO who is too unseasoned to take the company where it has to go.

Won't be public
Alcoa (AA): This one's easy. It won't be public by the end of 2007. This management team has had its chance. Alcoa has to be the only major mineral company that's done absolutely nothing during this amazing commodity boom. Someone else will get a chance to make something of Alcoa in 2007. I see the company going out north of $40.

Breakup bound
Altria (MO): Nobody seemed to notice, but the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, one of the most important federal courts in the land, pretty much destroyed the right of plaintiffs' lawyers to put these disparate class actions together, like the one that is haunting Altria in Brooklyn, N.Y., involving light cigarettes. When that case is overturned, Altria will move to break into three parts: Altria Domestic, Altria International and Kraft (KFT). All three will benefit from not being with each other, particularly Kraft. I see these three parts getting you to $110 rather quickly.

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DOW 18,030.21 +6.04 0.03%
S&P 500 2,081.88 -0.29 -0.01%
NASDAQ 4,773.4720 +8.0480 0.17%

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