Barnum's stock

Vanda

Moderesa de Beagá
Português/ Brasil
Good afternoon all,

What kind of stock is this sentence talking about?
P.T. Barnum was an expert at destroying his competitor’s reputation. He published letters in newspapers, warning the public against buying his opponent’s stock. He was a master at poking mockery at the tactics of his rivals.



I know this character, Barnum, but have no idea of which stock is implied here:

livestock? merchandise? Well there are so many alternatives...
There is also these illustrations, but I still can't figure it out which stock it does speak about.
 
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