Being a FTSE 100 company is exciting at one level but can be very boring at another, as anybody can see by looking at the Footsie’s inability to get anywhere close to its peak levels well over three years ago, unlike the FTSE 250. Still, at least the FTSE 100 is ahead of the FTSE AIM index compared to the dot-com bubble which ended in early 2000. What a mad world that was, even if it meant the first five full years of my investment management career usefully showed a bunch of busts and booms.
Late November and early December is always a busy time for the brokerage industry to forge, write and publish its investment thoughts for next year. Of course many of such thoughts end up as deeply embarrassing, even before you reach Easter, but – like most of the sales industry – what you said a few months ago was the ancient past, and what matters is your thinking today.
Associated British Foods (ABF) is a FTSE 100 name that is ‘a diversified international food, ingredients and retail group with sales of £13.9 billion, 133,000 employees and operations in 53 countries across Europe, Africa, the Americas, Asia and Australia’. It has been years and years since I last owned the shares and despite it being a very diversified business with Grocery (Twinings and Ovaltine), Sugar (UK beet sugar factories typically produce well over 1 million tonnes of sugar annually), Agriculture (animal feed, nutrition- and technology-based products and offers data services for the agri-food industry), Ingredients (yeast and bakery ingredients production) and Retail (hello Primark). And with regard to the shareholder base, don’t forget that ’54.5% of ABF is owned by Wittington Investments. 79.2% of the share capital of Wittington Investments is owned by the Garfield Weston Foundation, which is one of the UK’s largest grant-making charitable trusts’. Lots of history…and secure ownership makes a real difference.
I have written a few times, most recently HERE, about the ‘development and marketing of veterinary products’ company Dechra Pharmaceuticals (DPH). Whilst I remember being very impressed by it many years ago when it listed, I concluded back in late February that it may have said ‘thanks to the love of dogs (and Brexit fears)’ but it did not work for me. Since then the stock has pushed up even further although – as noted last week – insufficiently to join the FTSE-100. And the shares are down by more than 7% as I write, so what is going on?
Just over a decade ago I remember selling BHP Group (BHP) shares when I used to call the ‘leading global resources company’ “Billiton”, but time has changed a little. Company name evolutions are a boring thing, but far more interesting is that the Australian miner is set to collapse its 20 year-old dual listed company structure that will see all of its shareholders transferred to the Australia-based BHP Group Ltd. There is plenty of other stuff happening in today’s first half formal numbers also.
Back in March here I wrote about Prudential (PRU) which might have been founded in London in May 1848, but today (post the spin-off of M&G (MNG)) is all about its US and Asian insurance and related business focus. And give it another few months its US business Jackson will be spun off following a shareholder vote this month, with investors getting one share in the company for every 40 Pru shares they hold today.
Recommending shares in J Sainsbury (SBRY) as an Income portfolio buy in November at a 199.7p offer price, we noted grocery and general merchandise sales had remained strong to date in its second half of the year and suggested a 260p+ share price achievable. Little more than 7 months later the shares are already nearly there.
By far the most exciting UK stock news for me this morning was that ITV (ITV) will move back to the FTSE 100 as confirmed by the FTSE Russell group yesterday evening. There are many reasons why the company’s shares are still below their early 2020 level but
as I noted here last month at least opportunities with the upcoming UEFA Euros and latest version of Love Island has a positive angle for them.
It has been an excitable week for global markets and certainly anyone (foolishly) heavily weighted in technology and related stocks has not had much fun. For example, it has been fascinating to watch the performance shocker currently being suffered by a leading female US fund manager, Cathie Wood, who a few months ago was being presented as a multi-year genius. Personally, I am still far from convinced that having Tesla as one’s biggest position by a mile is even moderately sensible. Anyhow – and certainly by late yesterday or earlier today – there were plenty of genuine panickers out there. And what do I think?
Hello Share Tweakers. It still takes courage to commend a bank, but if we ignore the big ones we may be missing out on the financial recovery that’s going on. Look at how Lloyds (LLOY) shares, for example, have increased in the last few weeks. Any road up, today’s commendation is Standard Chartered (STAN).
I know I am a complete financial sector sado, but I always like to see how many investment analysts find usefulness in the concept that you should “sell in May and go away, and come on back on St. Leger’s Day” (with the latter this year falling on the eleventh of September). It is a lovely saying but – based on a few years of looking at the data – it is also usually wrong! I think fifty or one hundred years ago it was focused on the idea of stockbrokers and investors liking the concept of leaving their office and being able to attend horse racing, tennis, rowing and various other society events during the summer. Suffice to say – well before recent challenges – the finance and investment world is a very different place nowadays.
Two FTSE 100 names of interest published an update this morning. First easyJet (EZJ) which noted that the group headline loss for the 6 months ending a couple of weeks ago is expected to be somewhere between £690-730 million. Naturally that is a lot of money but there were even worse losses feared by some analysts.
In these times of unprecedented uncertainty, it is not a great idea to make bold predictions about anything related to the markets and if ever there was a good time for sitting on the sidelines it is surely now. I will therefore make two not very bold and related predictions with which I feel comfortable…
Today’s numbers from the paper and packaging name Smurfit Kappa (SKG) were damn impressive in my opinion. Certainly it is no disaster to say that ‘prices rose rapidly in H2…and continue to see prices increasing in early 2021’. And when you look a bit more deeply, you realise that the rise of e-commerce remains a great growth area as firms such as Amazon are driving a lot more demand. Smurfit Kappa’s CFO observed that such demand is ‘here to stay’ and even Brexit was not that much of a concern given that the company produces locally rather than relying on significant exports between Ireland/Europe and the UK.
Yup, if he does an interview with me and my tough questions, shares in Optibiotix (OPTI) go down. So, going forward, it is only those paid-for interviews with folks like Proactive. “Steve, is your schlonger enormous or gigantic? Why are your shares so cheap? etc etc.” Whatever, I apologise to you all for asking the odd question. Without my malign influence, Optibiotix would clearly be in the FTSE 100. I discuss this company’s prospects and also those of Skinbiotherapeutics (SBTX) where I am also a loyal shareholder. I look at Trainline (TRN), Online Blockchain (OBC) and Vast Resources (VAST).
Of course, here in Wales, you can get Covid from sledging but Joshua and I will risk it and as the first snow fell today, his excitement was off the scale. Sadly, the snow has not lasted. Fingers crossed for tonight. In the podcast I discuss tips of the year contests (as opposed to our 22 tips of the year) and laugh at Justin Urquhart-Stewart. I look at two reasons the bulls spout for bullishness and discuss. And I look at executive turnover and greed among FTSE 100 fat cats.
Just over a month ago HERE I concluded about FTSE 100 names easyJet (EZJ) and Imperial Brands (IMB) that there was value in both. Since I wrote those words, the former has rather (if you will excuse the pun) taken off with the share up almost 50% from the either side of five quid level it was previously at. Meanwhile Imperial Brands shares are showing more evidence of clearly forging a triple bottom in the twelve/thirteen quid range and are now breaking up/out. That is nice darts…though neither of today’s updates are flawless…
In a recent MoneyWeek article, entitled “Bargain Britain”, its writer Max King asserts:
I declared my new FTSE 100 corporate crush a month or so ago here and Amanda Blanc, the newish CEO of insurance giant Aviva (AV.), is starting to deliver. Yesterday’s announcement was that the company has sold its majority shareholding in its Singapore business to a strong sounding consortium for a cool £1.6 billion, which is not too shabby for a middling at best geographic division for a company with a market cap of £11.6 billion. Go that simplification plan!
Have you ever used e-retailer The Hut Group? On its website it describes itself as being ‘passionate about leading the growth of prestigious global brands in beauty, nutrition, luxury, and lifestyle’. Clearly I am not its target customer but there are plenty of consumers out there for some of its brands including ESPA, Illamasqua, Myprotein and the online retailer lookfantastic, especially in a pandemic-tinged world which has moved more online. As Debenhams, House of Fraser et al fade, The Hut Group takes their place. And soon it will take their place on the stock market with a listing due next week.
Regular readers will know already that as far as index shifts go, I tend to find more interest in those falling out of the FTSE 100 than those coming in. Naturally, for spotting epic growth names, such a strategy is not going to be optimal, but if you like momentum names then…good luck. Did you see late last week that whilst discounter B&M European Value Retail (BME) has been promoted to the FTSE 100 index in the latest quarterly reshuffle, media name ITV (ITV) has been relegated?
Today it is Haile Selassie who gets de-statued. This confuses me. Then Nigel Wray gets confused as to the value of the FTSE 100 and of Apple. I share his confusion, can you help me. I discuss Burford (BUR) and then go to town on Totally (TLY) where the balance sheet is a joke and today's results statement needs to be rewritten and re-issued. Finally I have just filmed the first main stage presentation for MineProphets on July 18. It is almpst an hour long and, I learned a lot from it, it really is most excellent. Book your seat HERE
Say what you like about AIM dog Angus Energy (ANGS) but it has provided us all with a colourful cast of characters during its short and inglorious history on the AIM Casino. Right now, the man at the helm is Lord Lucan but how lucky does he feel in having as his non-executive chairman, a fellow Irish aristocrat Paddy Clanwilliam. Paddy also sits on the audit committee and is paid £68,000 a year for his sterling efforts.
At the recent ShareProphets Shares Conference, PrimaryBid CEO Anand Sambasivan emphasised its expanding reach – this is shown today by a fundraising from FTSE 100 catering and other support services group Compass (CPG) including a “Retail Offer via PrimaryBid.com” Thus Anand's company is now officially in the big league and if you have not registered for free you should do so at once HERE
I had a long chat with Lucian Miers who is right now in Cambodia ( cue cheap Gary Glitter jokes from morons on ADVFN). We discussed coronavirus and the state of the markets. What to buy in the FTSE 100 and his shorts: De la Rue (DLAR), Versarien (VRS), Easyjet (EZJ), IQE (IQE), Apple, Tesla and Purplebricks (PURP) and also the ethics of bailouts and what Governments will be allowed to do., I also comment on Finablr (FIN) and panic selling in Big Sofa (BST)
Natch the bad news came after hours, at no-one is watching O’clock. With journalist smearing FTI Consulting doing the PR turd polishing what else would you expect? My pal Carson Block of Muddy Waters whose dossier first exposed the cesspit at NMC on 17 December 2019 HERE noted “At this point, the company’s announcements speak for themselves and seem to be even more damning than our initial report was.” Indeed. Well let’s start with the apologies
Just now and again the ShareSoc man is bang on the money and his comments on FTSE 100 far cat pay awards are one of those rare occasions. I have no issue with rewarding those who risk their capital or those managers who deliver exceptional returns but that is not what is happening now. So what is the solution?
On my normal FTSE 350 beat it has been a quiet couple of days...and quite rightly so after a busy last few months. Still - if you were gainfully employed in a large fund management operation - you would not be twiddling your thumbs and wondering what to do, because this is peak brokerage lunch time…
It has been a busy weekend...although not exclusively for the reasons Tom briefly mused upon in his bearcast yesterday(and on which i will do a grand reveal early next week). Back to the markets and I read that another FTSE reshuffle is imminent. Regular readers will recall that this is a regular opportunity moment I muse upon.
Back in August I observed that buying Aviva (AV.) shares was 'so much better than buying FTSE-100 units'. If you run some analysis over the last three months or so, then this has certainly been achieved, with the FTSE-100 up a couple of percent but Aviva shares up a little more than 10%.
Micro Focus International (MCRO) has announced a “Trading update and Strategic review”. Uh oh – strategic review of course usually meaning ‘we’re in trouble and don’t currently know what to do about it’…
Hello, Share Breakers. May I admit that some of my expensive wardrobe was bought in Primark, including the fetching purple polo shirt which I’m sporting now. Anyone who goes there can attest to the huge crowds its stores attract. More importantly, the queues to pay are usually long...
First of all. I deal with James Hurley who is obviously a pompous little prat and a total knobhead. Then it is onto Neil Woodfotd where, belatedly, the deadwood press is waking up. I do the math on his remaining FTSE 100 holdings. I am a bit tired. having done a 16 mile training walk for Woodlarks in rain, wind and mud today so as you think of an exhausted 51 year old man slowly recovering please support the rogue bloggers for Woodlarks HERE
Hello, Share Carriers. You may be fed up with hearing about Brexit, but its effect on your shares cannot be easily dismissed. There’s no doubt that the possibility of a no-deal has attacked British share prices for the last few months. Now that possibility is seen to be receding, share prices have broken back through the 7,000 Footsie mark and are now easing ahead again. Though there’s still a long way to go to the fairly recent record of 7,800-ish.
In today's podcast I look at Audioboom (BOOM) in light of today's placing "scoop" in the M ail on Sunday and also what it says about the corruption of the deadwood press. I also comment on the virtue signalling by silly business minister Kelly Tollhurst re diversity on FTSE 100 boards. Suffice to say she, scores a gamma double minus for data analysis.
The UK economy suffered a tumultuous 2018, and it proved to be a particularly rough year for holders long in UK-listed shares: the FTSE100 suffered its worst year in a decade, while the FTSE All Share slumped 13% over the course of the year. The turbulence we’re experiencing looks set to continue into 2019 as markets struggle with mounting uncertainty. As a result “tipping shares has never felt more hazardous”, but there are potential rewards; Joanne Hart (Daily Mail) notes that “UK shares are widely acknowledged to be undervalued, presenting clear opportunities across the market”. I should point out that Tom Winnifrith and others think Ms Hart is useless and clueless.
I start with this tip which really is hot. Then I look at the FTSE 100 and why targets for year end 2019 really are meaningless. I then give a target but you may well think that it understates my true level of bearishness. You would be right and I explain why.
Back in the day, I used to be an institutional fund manager and did go on a number of brokerage lunches at around this time of year. The essential underlying aim of these lunches did not change for years: a thank you for business given during the year...and a pitch or ten about stocks that could be bought (or sold) early the next year in order to keep that commission flow going (and from the broker's perspective hopefully building). It seemed to me that the ideas took a very simple form: buy the underperformers and sell the outperformers. Well who does not like a bargain or - indeed - to take profits? So from an akin premise - but with an added slice of cynicism (and no need to elicit your brokerage commission flows!) - what does a 'brokerage lunch list' throw up as interesting in December 2018 looking ahead into 2019?...
In part one yesterday, I talked about some of the complexities around the FTSE 100 today...but finished the piece by promising some stock picks. Before I get into these I have to highlight Nigel's piece yesterday, which absolutely nails the opportunities around names such as BT Group (BT.A), Centrica (CNA) and ITV (ITV).
A pretty poor first trading week of September has got the press all flustered with talk of the FTSE 100 being at five-month lows. Older stock market hands of course know that this is when it starts to become interesting, after all it is better to buy low and sell higher than the other way around.
I am thankful to the Urban Dictionary (frequently a source of...insight), which tells me that to 'bunzl' someone is 'to prank someone gently, randomly, and inexplicably'. You learn something new everyday. 'Bunzl' (BNZL) is also one of the lowest profile members of the FTSE 100 and a description of its core activities - a focused and successful international distribution group providing customised solutions to B2B customers in 30 countries and six market sectors - is suitably opaque too…
I assume that dividend munchers are feeling a bit glum today as the FTSE 100's most boring company (as I previously dubbed it HERE), Scottish & Southern Electricity (SSE) is seeing its shares fall by 3% odd percent. So what is going on?
God willing I will be recording a bearcast from Bristol tomorrow. But this is my last from New York and for any Greek listeners I should say Happy Easter. I discuss Martin Sorrell at WPP (WPP). He is a pompous arse but should he be fired? Then to the Dow, the FTSE 100 and why small caps are not immune from a sell-off that is far from over.
Giants of investment analysis like Benjamin Graham and Warren Buffett have told us that the stock market is a voting machine in the short-term and a weighing machine in the longer-term...and of course there is more than a hint of truth to such observations. Hype, hope, spin, right-on trends and related can push a share up or down for a while but gravity always wins in the end in the form of cash flows and reality. And with such an observation we turn to to the runners and riders for the upcoming quarterly FTSE-100 and FTSE-250 reshuffle.
EVR Holdings (EVRH) is beloved of Bulletin Board Morons but is rightly lampooned by Cynical Bear earlier today HERE. I look at it and note that it has all the markings of an AIM stock promote and that its valuation, £75 million, is absurd and makes it ripe for shorting. Then I ask if £15 million is too much to earn for eight years of FTSE 100 failure? What about £43 million for eight years of success?
Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party are going to have a field day with a £650 million fat cat scandal which will explode within months at £7 billion FTSE 100 housebuilder Persimmon (PSN). Even as an ardent capitalist I am nauseated by this example of obscene fat cattery which shames capitalism,
It is an old stockmarket truism, just like "everything tipped by both Zak Mir and Justin the Clown will always go down". But while the latter truism bears the test of time, proving to be 100% accurate how did the former do in 2017?
In part one of this two part bearcast I looked at the political ramifications of last night's disaster. Now in this podcast I look at the implications for the real economy, for sterling, for the housing market and for the stockmarket from FTSE 100 stocks down to AIM.
I have an awful cold so cannot speak properly and the Mrs is giving me grounds for divorce (again) with awful TV choices as I suffer from my ailments. In the podcast I cover insider dealing (ref Logica), buying after a profits warning (ref Red Rock & SpaceandPeople) and why the bulls are wrong even though the FTSE 100 is at a record high (ref Malcolm Stacey)
When it comes to picking a company which is going to perform well over the course of a year, I believe that you need to consider the macro-economic factors that are likely to affect the sector in which it operates.
If you want to buy just one new single stock in the FTSE-100 for 2017 you need to look at the perceived Brexit losers given, over the course of the next 12 months, Brexit apocalypse will move further away via delays and position dilution. Forget big overseas earners as this backdrop will crimp their translated back into Sterling earnings so it has to be more domestic plays. And filtering for market leadership, strong balance sheet and continued growth hopes I end up with Whitbread (WTB) the owner of the Costa Coffee and Premier Inn franchises.
These times are getting interesting and disjointed times. The FTSE 100 share index is now up 30% over five years, yet earnings have fallen by 80% over the same period and with U.S. unemployment at 5% and the core CPI rising 2.2% over the last year, it is difficult for the “data dependent” Fed to further rationalise emergency rates based on its official dual mandate. In addition we are living in an age when a CEO of two US public companies can give a talk about colonising Mars and shareholders don’t see it as a warning signal.
I have been very pleased with the way that Glencore (GLEN) has performed since I covered it here a few months back, but I now feel that it is time to cash in, at least for the time being.
The FTSE 100 closed down on two consecutive days, it would appear the bear trend has resumed. Oil is still trading near the highs, the S&P 500 is still trading near the highs, it seems the FTSE is going down alone. It could be something to do with the referendum or it could simply be that the UK index is leading the way as it has often done during the bear market. In this case I expect the S&P to follow the FTSE lower.
After last Friday strong rally, the FTSE closed down yesterday. It seems the rally is running out of steam. Same thing in the S&P 500, I was expecting a rally near 2070, but the highest level yesterday was 2055 and the index closed down.
A couple of weeks ago, the FTSE AIM All Share Basic Resources crossed again to the upside on the 200 day moving average. It did this a year ago as well but lost it back, and then some, with the ‘Sell in May and Go Away’ sentiment which was seriously amplified by the Chinese equity market sell off in the summer of last year. The FactSet chart below shows the story.
FTSE 100 fat cats are in the news. They should be strung up with piano wire. I say this as a capitalist my father, a deluded lefty, nods in agreement in the background as I record. I should record that the old lefty was a managerial fat cat this morning as I dug his garden as an exploited worker. Referencing BP in particular I explain who is failing us and why it cannot go on like this.
Last week I said that the FTSE 100 was leading the way down after peaking at 6,237. Very often after a long rally, we see the FTSE 100 underperform the S&P 500. Such a behaviour is associated with a market that is losing strength.
Yesterday my sentiment indicator turned bearish. I know the FTSE 100 is in bullish mood this morning but this was expected. Don’t forget that the FTSE was up 10% in 11 days at the recent high. Such a move has stimulated the bulls, they think the bull market has resumed. Well they will be disappointed, the move up currently underway is a dead cat bounce.
Mr Cameron went to Brussels asking for little and came back with less. He is lying if he says otherwise and should be viewed with contempt. The reporting of this episode by the biased BBC and especially the loathsome Kayta Adler was a disgrace and reason enough not to pay your license fee. 80% of FTSE 100 bosses and the CBI said they would back Cameron even before he got his "deal". In this podcast I explain why these suits do not speak for British business and why all folks on the left or right or those who believe in liberty, freedom & truth should tell Cameron where to stick it and vote for Brexit.
The stock market sell off came amid concerns that the stock market slide itself together with the slowdown in China will cause more capital outflows. Faced with a falling stock market and growing pessimism about the economy, investors are moving money out of China and into countries with better returns.
The FTSE 100 is down 6% in the first two weeks of January, the trend has turned down after a decent bounce during the fourth quarter of 2015. The S&P 500 has turned down too and in China, it is simply a matter of time before China's stockmarket makes a new low.
With the markets in turmoil it makes sense to have at least something more defensive in your portfolio. Gold has historically always been good in this type of situation, and whilst I’m nowhere near as bullish as some are about where the gold price is going longer term, it should at least offer some protection over the coming months.
Hello Share Mashers. Reckitt Benckiser (RB.) is one of those Great British shares which sometimes misses the radar - but the cautious investor might be attracted. This company, which likes to call itself RB, is sometimes ignored by share critics. And yet it is doing rather well among its Footsie peers.
In what are clearly troubled times for the stock market, it would appear to be sensible to veer away from the geopolitical cannon fodder that is commonly referred to as the FTSE 100, and go fo special situations further down the stock market like Clipper Ventures
While it is the case that for the FTSE 100 and many blue chips 2015 was a year to forget, further down the stock market there were some bright spots for which period January to December 2015 was a triumph from the get go.
Tomorrow I shall be in New York with my daughter and her uber-mad lefty godparents. Yesterday I spent the day with my wife's family including her barking mad (Greek) brother in law. He has numerous good qualities and is very likeable but a couple of major blind spots. I managed to control myself as he claimed that the evil Jews were behind 9/11 and controlled global banking. Then he moved onto capitalism. He has it wrong but so does the stockmarket from the FTSE 100 down to the AIM casino. In 2016 chickens will come home to roost for both.
Hello Share Helpers. Not long to go now before Santa calls. But I’m not sure it will as sumptuous a Yule celebration as normal in Stacey Towers. It’s not really been a good year and that applies to most of us, I fear.
Despite the recent sell off my BTI (sentiment indicator) is still rising (bullish divergence), an indication that the FTSE will rally. But the rally must start now otherwise there is a risk the BTI will turn down. Sentiment is affected by stock market declines, if the market falls and the decline lasts too long people turn bearish.
Way back in March, I highlighted the opportunity for ShareProphets readers to become merger arbitrageurs and buy Rexam (REX) shares for a dull but worthy double digit return potential over the subsequent year. The thick end of three-quarters of the way through this period and Rexam shares are up 2-3% whilst the esteemed FTSE-100 is down 7-8%.
Getafix is worried. His potions based on cuttings from the money tree do not seem to be working. Why are shares in Advanced Oncotherapy not at 50p despite being featured here twice a week? Why is the FTSE 100 not at 8,000 as predicted? Perhaps the Money Tree he has been using in the depths of the Welsh forest is a fake or has lost its powers. Fear not…for another old fool (sorry we meant respected druid) has emerged in North London
One of London’s top brokers argues that the London Stock Exchange’s (LSE) lust for screwing the last nickel out of anyone it can is a disgrace and perhaps a sign that on a PE of 42 the shares are a sell. Despite an Oxford degree this fellow needs a grammar lesson so to spare his blushes I have semi-subbed accordingly? The broker writes:
If you want me to analyse a stock for you just drop me a line at email@example.com - Today I look at shares in Avanti Communications (AVN), Lonmin (LMI), Optimal Payments (OPAY) and set share price targets for all three.
A lot of people are panicking about shares. You can’t blame them. It was just a few months ago that the FTSE 100 was trading at 7000. Now it is well below 6,000. Many AIM listed shares have done even worse. And so some people are just selling everything in a blind panic. That is YOUR opportunity.
Rolls Royce (RR.) has had a real roller-coaster of a year so far, including profit warnings and disappointing financial results. The FTSE100 listed aerospace and defense company had just about recovered the losses to its share price from the profit warning that it issued last October, when it announced in mid-May that it was reducing its marine business and set-off on another downwards trajectory.
If you want me to analyse a stock for you just drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org - Today I look at Daniel Stewart (DAN), FTSE 100 (UKX), UK Oil & Gas (UKOG).
In this podcast I discuss why I welcome a market correction which I regard as inevitable. I explain why I view it as inevitable - following on from themes in this Saturday show - but say why I welcome it. I look forward to the day because a) as a long term investor it will allow me to buy great stocks at bargain prices - and yes I am looking at FTSE 100 stocks - and b) because it will force a belated clean out of the Augean stable that is the UK stockmarket today. I look back to 2003 for some inspiration.
With the FTSE 100 holding towards its best levels ever, it does appear to be relatively difficult for would-be bears to gain traction on all but the most obvious of negative setups, Plus500 notwithstanding, of course,.
At the UK Investor Show I made a bearish statement; I won’t tip any share this year because in my view, the rally in 2015 is done. I expect a large correction sometime in the not too distant future. The FTSE 100 could go down by as much as 10%.
Sentiment was boosted by news that Greece made a loan repayment to the International Monetary fund and continued M&A speculation. Greece’s future is still uncertain but what could be driving the market in the short term is M&A activity.
Malcolm Stacey reckons today that I should apologise as the FTSE 100 breaks 7,000. I make no such apology. Some shares have gone up but a headline index can mislead and the reasons for the rally are not sustainable for reasons I explain here. Malcolm is wrong about how current PEs are justifiable and wrong not to be advising folks to bank gains. I look back to 2003 and to 1999 and look forward to 2016 and explain why Comrade Stacey is rash and unwise. A 1916 Wisden is a far better bet.
People are still listening to what he has to say. In a few months time they won't listen anymore, from positive mood investors will become more pessimistic. I can't say why or what will cause this change of mood, but I have observed this behaviour for many years. Nothing has changed since my last article, a major correction is expected between now and June.
A few days ago the FTSE 100 crossed above the previous high of 6950.6 set in December 1999 at the height of the dotcom bubble. The euphoria was short lived, today the index is back below that level, there is strong resistance near 6950. It's been a real struggle for the UK index to register a new closing high, the S&P 500 made a new all-time high back in 2013, the FTSE 100 is lagging badly.
It is always worth taking a look when there is a big fall in a well-owned FTSE-100 stock. Today’s performance dog is Centrica (CNA) which probably supplies many of you via its British Gas brand with gas and electricity and which has blamed a combination of energy price moves, the weather and utility market competition for a 30% fall in earnings per share in 2014…and most strikingly a 30% fall in the dividend it is going to pay.
If you want to make money in large cap shares then you have to spot the big changes. Deals can be such transforming events…and updates from two big FTSE-100 heavyweights over the last day or so are noteworthy.
Sirius Minerals (SXX), the ambitious company seeking to exploit the world’s largest and highest-grade deposit of the high-nutrient agricultural fertiliser Polyhalite, has withdrawn one of its planning applications for the project, in the North York Moors National Park, for ‘re-tweaking’ and re-submission. But managing director Chris Fraser is still pushing ahead with off-take deals to help fund the £1 billion-plus York Potash project and the company, which hopes to be in production by 2018 if all now goes well, insists it could have the green light by May and then be on its way from a quote on AIM with a £182 million stockmarket value to membership of the FTSE 100 share index of the most heavily-capitalised companies in Britain.
Sentiment is no longer bullish after a series of negative developments. Concerns are emerging about the possible impact of the decline in crude oil and the Swiss National Bank's decision to abandon the euro cap. My sentiment indicator is neutral but if the stock market trend has turned down as I believe this indicator will turn down to confirm the downtrend.
It’s not been a pretty period for the oil price. On Monday (Monday 5 January) ICE Brent Crude Oil fell by a whopping 5.95% to just over 53 dollars a barrel. On Tuesday (Tuesday 6 January) it was down a further 1.05% to 52.50 dollars a barrel. The slide continued yesterday.
I tipped this stock as a sell last year based on fundamental and technical factors. After an uneventful start to the year 2014, the stock rallied during the summer and peaked at 379p on 28 July.
A year ago I tipped Randgold Resources (RRS) as my ‘FTSE-100 tip of the year’ and despite the volatility in the underlying gold price and desperate performance of the average gold miner the tip has done well and has nicely outperformed the UK’s leading share index.
Tomorrow I start serving up my ten tips of the year. On reflection given my bearish take on the markets I am going to go with a 50/50 long/short split. Other writers will be serving up plenty of buy ideas but I cannot bring myself to do that given my macro-take on the world. I am sorry to be so gloomy this Christmas day but for what it is worth I wish you a Merry Christmas. Now to the macrobabble:
Shares can be a real rollercoaster ride. ‘Mr Market’ can perform such gyrations for no logical reason, but this can still have a serious effect on our wealth. This week £62 billion was added to the value of the FTSE 100, as the index enjoyed its best week in three years.
Stockmarkets are always full of surprises and many overpaid pundits have been caught the wrong way during December as those longed for quiet, lengthy ‘business development’ lunches and a half day off to watch the school nativity play has been augmented by a bit of proper volatility.
I wish no offence to those who believe in Santa (rallies) such as comrade Stacey not to those young whippersnappers such as Mark Howitt who see every sell off as a buying opportunity. But I have been warning for months that UK Equities were simply overvalued and that remains the case. Their advice to buy on the dips and not on the dips has been flawed. I am vindicated and I shall be more vindicated and so today I explain why shares (FTSE 100 down to AIM) are not for buying just yet.
Hmmmm. Lots of low grade Aim stocks are flying, the FTSE 100 is nearly at all-time highs, there is a lot of rubbish being spouted about a Santa Rally coming early and I am stuck in Greece preparing to start the olive harvest tomorrow when I should be punting rubbish on AIM making a killing. Right? Wrong.
Today’s news that China cut interest rates has been well received by the stock market. The FTSE 100 rally continues, the UK index has now retraced 80% of its previous decline and has regained the levels above the 200-day moving average.
In March this company was capitalised at almost £3 billion, Quenron (QPP) was – according to fraudster Rob Terry – heading for the FTSE 100. Today, at 68.5p, it is valued at less than £300 million and surely the end is nigh. So when do our readers think that Quenron shares will be suspended and/or hit 0p. The deadline for voting is midnight Sunday.
Christmas has come early at Marks & Spencer (MKS) – or almost: “Joy to the world” and “God rest ye merry gentlemen.” As a long term bull of the long awaited Marks & Spencer recovery these figures are an unsurprising pleasure and the shares have rallied to 439p. The market has for long taken progress on the food side as a given; a section of the business that can look after itself. And so it proved once again food sales up 3.6% in the first half and a quarter of one percentage improvement in gross margins on food sales.
As regular readers of my financial research output will attest I am not a skilled technical analyst but the current level of the FTSE-100 index strikes me as interesting. The reason why is sourced in an article I published on this site a couple of months ago where I noted that back then the UK’s leading index was kicking around that 6,800 level. Now I know one correspondent found it to be ‘pointless’ but in the interim selling a few FTSE-100 futures short (as I did) was a sensible way to help protect the value of your portfolio over the last month or two.
Dreadful news for followers of the Quenron (QPP) saga – the LSE asylum has banned the most deluded ramper of all time QPP1000 from posting on its boards. We have begged the LSE to reconsider and allow this most entertaining of total nutters back in the interests both of free speech but also for sheer entertainment value. We ask al ShareProphets readers to join us in our campaign to get QPP1000 unbanned. After all, who could forget such gems as:
It is good to see the FTSE 100 rise today, but not all companies are joining in on the fun. Shares in British American Tobacco (BATS) have fallen, so have shares in GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Banco Santander (BNC) shares are basically flat at 549p.
After a nice recovery for the FTSE yesterday, I hope we’re all in a better mood. I am, although I still think it’s pretty surreal that every day I’m worth at least hundreds or more likely at least a thousand pounds less or more each day...
You could describe what has happened to the market as a massacre over the past two days. It’s even making ‘conventional’ news now, and new ‘experts’ are being found to pass comment on it. The truth is... most of these experts don’t have a clue really. Interestingly today the Telegraph is doing a review of highly paid fund managers who at the beginning of the year were predicting the FTSE would be at 8,000 by the year end...
Ineffectual investors follow the herd. The crowd may be right some of the time, as they're all following the same obvious pointers to success. But if everybody is correct about a situation, and puts their mouth where everybody else's is, profits won't be worth hollering about.
The FTSE 100 is not plunging. But it will be coming off and some individual company share moves tell you an awful lot about the state of the stockmarket and I am not only talking about Quenron (QPP) which of course gets a good mention in today’s podcast.
In certain circumstances share buybacks make sense. Where a company has surplus capital and cannot think of a way of earning an economic return on that capital it is absolutely right that it is returned to shareholders via buybacks. I prefer them to special dividends because one can elect to sell less or no stock or to stay on board with a bigger percentage of the equity. It is down to the individual investor. And it is right that surplus capital should be returned to the company’s owners (shareholders) not simply be hoarded by management.
I have said many times that the bull market of 2009-2014 is not the first leg of an even greater bull market that could last many, many years as many believe. The reason the stock market appears to be a one way bet is that stock prices have been inflated by the central banks. The question is: can we trust central banks?
Since I had a strategy for investing, I have adopted the ‘High Yield’ approach to buying shares. In a nutshell, this strategy states that you should buy shares with a yield higher than average for the FTSE 100, if possible with a low PE ratio, the dividend well covered and debt as low as possible. Does it work?
This week's Financial Orbit starts with the FT celebrating the FTSE 100 hitting a 14 year high despite the Ukraine, ISIS, etc, etc. However back in the real world...
At the weekend we asked readers which of the eight stocks where marmite figure David Lenigas runs the show is likely to gain most this week. The start price was the Friday closing mid-price. We also gave a ninth option – that the FTSE 100 would outperform the lot. And so our readers said:
David Lenigas is a Marmite figure and larger than life character on AIM. He is involved in a stack of companies so which will do best next week for its investors …and we include an option for the bears as well. Voting closes midnight on Sunday.
Malcolm Stacey is a great man and one of the nicest guys in shares. But his bullishness about equity markets is wrong. And here is your 10 point checklist as to why it is right to be bearish.
The new UK & Europe Step Down Autocall (SG15) is a 6 year investment which is linked to the performance of the FTSE 100 and EuroStoxx 50 Indices.
Early last month, I pointed out that Rentokil Initial (RTO), the £2 billion plus market cap services support company, was not far from what looked like a potential one year trend support line. At 118p, according to my inspection of the share price chart, the share seems to have reached that support level. So will it bounce off it?
Hello Share Fiends: The markets are in a stuck-in-the mud phase, as nobody really knows which direction shares should take. Consequently, the Footsie has been trading in narrow bands on most days. Daily gains have been coming quite steadily, but mostly under 30 points and often a lot lower.
I do not want to go into technicalities too much, but this week the equity markets are threatening to deliver the same treatment for stocks as we have seen for Gold.
There are not too many times when darting and hovering investor is able to by Rio Tinto (RIO) at an historic dividend yield that close to that of the FTSE 100 Index. I note that that the dividend yield on the FTSE 100 index last seen was 3.55% and the historic dividend yield on RTZ was an attractive looking 3.5%. At a share price of 3,176p its ordinary shares are back to levels last seen three years ago and well below the price of above 4,500p it reached in 2011. Clearly a closer look is suggested.