In one of his shareholder letters, Warren Buffett talks about how instead of spending countless hours at his desk musing about investment opportunities, the results he had generated would have suggested much of his time would have been better spent sneaking off to the cinema. In a strange way, I kind of felt the same way recently as the Brexit talks rumbled on, the Pound went up and market rotation occurred...whilst I was sitting in a meeting room doing some broader civic duty whilst the net value of my pension fund powered forward…
Hello, Share Bundlers. Looking at the chart for Lloyds Group (LLOY) is enough to give anyone the heebie jeebies. Mid-August the shares fell to 48p. Only a month later they were 55p. So up by 14%, which is an unusually big jump for a Footsie company. Less than three weeks later they were back down to 50p. And then at the end of last week, they were back to nearly 60p. Or approaching 20% better than on the ninth of this month. My Lloyds holding is one of the biggest in my book, so this up and down performance is pretty stressful. But why is Lloyds so volatile lately?...
Hello, Share Trotters. I believe those who say Britain is facing the biggest constitutional crisis since World War 2. But I don't think shares will suffer much. That’s because the problem has already been factored into the Footsie. Probably by far too much. You can’t get away from the fact that, compared to most of the world, many British shares are cheap.
Hello Share Takers. The victory of our new prime minister caused the stock market to take its biggest leap for some months. And though it did retrace the next day, the Footsie is bounding up again, as I write. It may be the noisy optimism of the bloke, but there are other reasons why the Boris effect is energising the market.
Hello Share Crunchers. Surprisingly, the value of our shares was little effected by the chaotic events in Parliament over the week. The Footsie fell a little, but not much. And yet the chance of a no-deal came closer because of that fascinating real-time drama in the house.
Hello, Share Twisters. Not that long ago I suggested you might buy gold. And in particular, shares in an Egyptian miner, Centamin (CEY). Its share price has risen by about 25% since then. But I claim no credit for that, as there was little doubt that gold is becoming more desirable.
Hello Share Carpeters. The Footsie led a disappointing dance downwards last week. But will the slide continue? I don’t think so. There is still a lot of unjustified fear over Brexit. There is still overdone anxiety over trade wars. And while the City is worried stiff over these issues, the bulls among us are cheerfully listing the market’s plus points.
Hello, Share Seekers. Merlin the magician was born in my neighbouring town of Carmarthen. Merlin, the theme park operator, could also magic some growth in its share price. As the world has more leisure time on its hands, thanks to the gallop of technology, many companies which offer ways of filling the time are going to prosper, in my humble view.
After my package holiday confessional contained within my last write-up on holiday company Thomas Cook (TCG) three months ago, I am keeping up my differentiated holiday strategy by heading off to west Wales during part of the upcoming half-term holiday break at the end of the month. Suffice to say west Wales does not figure in any of Thomas Cook's advertising...
Hello Share Chewers. If your portfolio is anything like mine, you’ll be laughing all the way to the bank. All those years of waiting for things to really pick up, after the crash of 2008, are at last bearing fruit. The Footsie has been breaking records for days now. And, if you’ve wisely spread your eggs around loads of baskets, you will be well up.
Hello, Share Smilers. At the end of the week, the Footsie gave us an early Christmas present of 73 points. 0r 1%. Yet, I don’t think the big index has finished yet with its traditional Yuletide gifts. The Santa Rally, rather late as usual, is now upon us.
You do not have to be active in the stock markets for long to realise that FTSE-100 companies have the propensity to deliver incompetence and intrigue just like their smaller cap brethren. Today's shocker is centred on automotive and aerospace sector giant GKN (GKN) which has made a bit of a habit over the last few months in bogging things up.
Hello, Share Bangers. There’s little doubt about it the good ship Shareland is entering very spooky waters. At any time now, the bull market will suddenly turn into a bear that will charge around the china shop. Mixed metaphors a speciality!
Hello, Share Pingers. Budget airline EasyJet (EZJ) has issued a trading statement to say that passengers in its third quarter were up by more than nearly 11% to 22 million. Revenues improved by 16% to £1.4 billion.
Hello, Share Cinchers. It’s been a while since I last commended British Land (BLND) to you. I don’t regret that, though the share was falling at the time and has yet to really rebound. The company deals in what they are not making any more of and it owns it around the UK, including where it’s most costly: London.
Hello Share Pokers. If any more evidence was needed that we live in strange times it is this weekend’s news that the Bank of England was investigated by the Serious Fraud Office. I ask you!
Hello Share Smudgers. Companies which manufacture plastic bits and pieces have done rather well in my bag in recent years. But one I have not so far touched, yet ought to do so soon, is Carclo (CAR).
Hello Share Mashers. It’s going to be a scary end to the week. What if Labour gets in? The Big City won’t like that and shares will dive heavily. But that will be a short-lived shocker, in my view. Because Jezzer in power will cause the pound to fall even lower. And that more than anything is keeping the Footsie at record highs.
Hello Share Tweakers. If I were an investor in Associated British Foods (ABF) I would be getting a little nervous at the moment. It processes and sells food and has the very different business of Primark, the budget clothes stores. You’ve probably discovered that these shops are often stuffed with customers as their prices can be remarkably low.
Hello Share Shufflers. There is a Geordie company which wages war on switches and buttons. It makes touch sensors. You’ll see this kind of technology everywhere these days, beginning with your mobile phone.
Hello Share Pillagers. We all should have known something big was going to happen by the way shares were marked down heavily after the Easter break. On Easter Monday, when our stock market was closed, the US version was open. During that session, American shares rose by about 1%. That usually means British shares rise in tandem, but not this time.
Hello Share Tasters. At the big UK Investor Show, just gone, I confided on the stage that I’d invested in Sula (SULA), a gold and iron company, because I read a piece from Uncle Tom on this tremendous website. This quoted another expert who felt that Sula was a possible ten-bagger in the making.
Hello Share Takers. Compass Group (CPS) is one of my all time favourites, but it is not a fast mover. We have here more of a slow steady profitable company that rarely sees huge jumps, and even rare falls in its share price.
Hello Share Smashers. With the Footsie once again pushing into a new all-time record, it is perhaps time to re-visit an old favourite of mine.
Hello Share Takers. Normally, I commend shares your researches might show are worth buying. I consider I have a bit of an obligation to be bullish on companies which might deserve it, to act as some kind of balance towards the many firms that Uncle Tom and the gang so skilfully warn you about.
Hello Share Mashers. Are you ready to give another chance to a great British giant of the High Street? One such outfit, in my humble opinion, is WH Smith (SMWH).
Hello Share Toppers. Allow me to take a tiny break from recommending stocks which could soar to another figure which is on the increase. And that’s inflation, which has risen for the fourth month in a row. How will this trend affect our shares?
Hello Share Tweakers. Everyone has a few shares in their bag which they consider as super reliable. This faith can sometimes backfire, as we all know to our cost. But it’s not a frequent happenstance.
Hello Share Trudgers. I’m going to suggest again you look at Diageo (DGE), one of the world’s biggest drinks companies. If you look at your FaceBook pages, you’ll see snaps of loads of friends and relatives, leering with a drink in their hands.
Hello Share Skaters. When pushed by the respected blogger Bearfacts on this ground-breaking website this week, my finger was hovering over ‘sell’ buttons more than ‘buy’ switches in this rather scary month.
Hello Share Movers. After a long and happy relationship, I’ve dumped all this family’s shares in the tool and plant hire company Ashtead (AHT). There are fair reasons, I feel. Though they are nothing to do with the company itself.
Hello Share Crushers. I’ve long held that travel operators are not an ideal choice for investment these days. This is based on the view that as people become more internet savvy, they see the economies of arranging their own holidays - thus eliminating the middle man. This makes it very hard to attain growth, and that’s what really drives share prices. And there are now other concerns on the horizon.
Hello Share Cravers. Whitbread (WTB) is a name which still conjures up old-fashioned pubs and breweries. Not necessarily a great business to be in that, as pubs seem to close down all over the shop.
Hello Share Scramblers. While its beginning to look a lot like Christmas, B&M (BME) the cheapie store is beginning to look like a reasonable punt to me. The full name is B&M European Retail, by the way.
Hello Share Slurpers. After four years’ dedicated slog, I have finished my blockbuster crime/horror novel. So I've been sending it, one at a time, to literary agents. This is a scary moment, as it could mean four years down the pan. However, I have not made a great deal of money out of my shares over the last four years, either.
Hello Share Creepers. I’ve just had a kitchen and a bathroom fitted out. As it isn’t likely to be done again, I chose the most expensive tiles, snazzy worktops, a bath made from steel not plastic and a posh shower screen. Which brings me to today’s suggestion for your further exploration: Howden Joinery (HWDN).
Hello Share Scrapers. The Dow continues to fall. The days when it topped 18500 seem long gone. Happily, the progress of America’s big indicator no longer seems to influence British shares very much. Perhaps it’s because the Brexit vote has given us more of an independent status in the eyes of big investors.
Hello Share Plinkers. The old memory is not what it was, but I think I may have commended Easyjet (EZJ) to your further researches not so long ago. But stories change all the time, as Uncle Tom often reminds us, and circumstances have altered over the budget airliner.
Hello Share Grinders. The falling pound always seems like a disaster. And It is to holidaymakers and students who are studying broad, like my daughter at the moment. But there is no need to be glum if you are a shareholders. There’s no doubt in my mind that the current soaraway Footsie is because we have brilliant companies over here. Not!!
Hello Share Perkers. Nigel Somerville is not only a very nice chap but his analytical skills are legendary and his integrity, like everyone else's on this glittering website, is impeachable. (We quickly disappear from the ranks if we are found the slightest bit wanting). So when Nigel admits to nervousness at the current success of the soaraway Footsie, we have to take it seriously.
Hello Share Hammerers. I cashed in my British Airways shares before the price of aviation fuel crashed. This timing error cost me a lot of money. And you probably agree with me that selling just before a share price leap is probably the nastiest feeling a share shifter can experience.
Hello Share Shufflers. I have commended Debenhams (DEB) shares in the past, but I’m changing my mind. This is not because I dislike the store. My nearest branch, which is fairly new, is well laid out, spacious and welcoming. But the truth is that many of us are ordering on-line these days. And sadly these big chain stores may become more and more unnecessary. I had hoped that the nation’s love of shopping would keep them hugely profitable, but hopes are fading.
Over the years I have heard a lot of rubbish about asset allocation – your choices between equities, bonds, ‘alternative investments’ and cash – being an 80%+ determinant of your return as well as the notion that stock picking is futile and we should all save time and money buying a bunch of cheap-as-chips tracker funds.
Hello Share Swiggers. Games Workshop (GAW) make tiny figures for the war gaming industry. The name Warhammer might be familiar to you. The very imaginative little warriors can be found in specialist shops in many a high street. The firm also makes Hobbit figures. To say that the Hobbit is popular with our young folk is an understatement.
Hello Share Plasterers. Before the Brexit result, I opined that shares would topple, but then make a quick recovery. I didn’t realise then how the bounce back would be much more than a recovery. Shares reached an 11 month high. And yet the BBC continue to broadcast doom and gloom comments that the British economy is now in a perilous situation. The healthy Footsie belies that sort of talk.
Hello Share Swelterers. I don’t much like the name of today’s firm I offer for your consideration. You see, I don’t admire company titles which are hard to remember or even say because they don’t conform to the rules of grammar. The company is FairFX (FFX) which is a prime offender reference my aforementioned prejudice. But having said that, this share is fashionable. That’s because of the EU referendum. If we leave Europe, the pound is expected to take a hit. I dunno why exactly, as the Euro should also be damaged by one of its biggest members leaving. But there we are.