Notes from Underground: To the spivs on AIM, they probably date the world BS / AS (before ShareProphets and after ShareProphets)

Published 72 days ago

I just realised that we are coming up on our sixth year of publishing ShareProphets. (The actual date is in April).

Tom Winnifrith Bearcast - Steve Moore heads to Wolverhampton, the sex capital of Britain, for Stag weekend hell

Published 74 days ago

With help from Chris "three  brains" Bailey and the Sun Newspaper I explain the logic behind young Steve's weekend plans. I then look at GLI Finance (GLIF), try to explain a few points to a man who attacks a bearcast he has not listened to (Brokerman Dan), Flybe (FLYB ), Blue Prism (PRSM) - surely a stonking short - and Westminster Group (WSG) and its record of cash guzzling shame.

Dividend Munchers – (almost) January update

Published 79 days ago

OK, I’m a bit late with this update and the last one wasn’t at all pretty as total returns weighed in at a depressing -1.4%. So much for being immune to a dodgy market! But the dividends are still rolling in and I’m still beating Neil Woodford….every cloud, and all that!

Trading Update Review: Restaurant Group and Royal Mail

Published 80 days ago

Trading updates have been coming through thick and fast over the last few days, accompanied by an influx of tipster tips and broker ratings. In this week’s article, we review two companies that have attracted the highest number of tips over the last seven days, and assess whether consensus sentiment is positive or negative in each case.

Notes from Underground - Have you ever seen George Soros and Tom Winnifrith in the same room?

Published 86 days ago

A reader this week suggested that we look at a specific bulletin board conversation this week as background to a story. ShareProphets writers rarely look at the boards, and I'd be shocked if any have ever participated, but I took a gander. 

Notes from Underground: Why read when Bearcast is around?

Published 93 days ago

Since I broke up the leaderboard into stories and Bearcasts—as a way of shoehorning in more stories—readers don't really get to see the domination of Bearcasts on the leaderboard, much to Tom's irritation.

Bulletin Board Moron of the week - gilogilo from the LSE Asylum

Published 98 days ago

Hat tip to Gary Newman for spotting this gem from the LSE Asylum. Meet gilogilo.

The ShareProphets share tips of the year 2019 – No 7 is from Chris Bailey

Published 117 days ago

Between Christmas Day and January 2nd we shall be publishing more than 20 share tips of the year – buys and sells. Seventh up is the second one from Chris "Three Brains" Bailey of Financial Orbit.

The ShareProphets share tips of the year 2019 – No 3 is from Chris Bailey

Published 118 days ago

Between Christmas Day and January 2nd we shall be publishing more than 20 share tips of the year – buys and sells. Third up is one from Chris "Three Brains" Bailey.

Notes from Underground - Mainlining it

Published 135 days ago

Last week, ShareProphets member Phil suggested that in the comments that we'd sell more subscriptions if we covered more main market companies.

Video: Nigel Wray (Britain's Buffett) quizzed by Chris "Three Brains" Bailey at the UK Investor Show City forum on December 3

Published 137 days ago

 The next City Forum is on January 21 with Adam Reynolds as the guest speaker being quizzed by the Sith Lord Zak Mir. I bet Adam's quaking about that grilling. Three companies will also present and take questions as will Adam. Put the date in your diary. From this week's seminar here is Britain's Buffett being interviewed by Three Brains himself

Tom Winnifrith Bearcast: Might Chris "Three Brains" Bailey be wrong about Thomas Cook? Are the shares really worth only 12p?

Published 140 days ago

I start with the news about the olive harvest. When you get the full financial report you will laugh. I almost did. I am almost tempted to get Neil Woodford to invest in it. Then I discuss Thomas Cook (TCG), Audioboom (BUST) and Tekmar (TGP), another disastrous IPO on the AIM Casino. I also discuss the battle between the metropolitan elites and the rest of us ref. France, but also the UK and Brexit.

LAST 10 SEATS GOING: Meet & Quiz Nigel Wray, Sosandar, SkinBioTherapeutics and more on December 3rd: Book free seat now!

Published 143 days ago

There are now just ten seats left at the UK Investor Show team's next City forum which takes place on the evening of Monday 3rd December in the heart of the City of London at the headquarters of investment bank UBS. There’s mince pies, wine and canapes on offer but more importantly the event features presentations and a chance to quiz three growth companies: SkinBioTherapeutics, RiverFort Global Opportunities (formerly Paternoster Resources) and Sosandar. The evening ends with our own, Chris “Three Brains” Bailey, interviewing Britain's Buffett Nigel Wray.

The Most Frequently Tipped Companies by Professional Tipsters in November

Published 157 days ago

What blue chips do the "professional" share tipsters like and should we care?

After the MySquar triumph: Still not signed up to quality investigative fraud busting journalism at 2p a pop. Why not?

Published 169 days ago

Just over a year ago ShareProphets went from an advertising model (i.e. letting evil Google bleed us dry) to a subscription based one. That means we can write what we want and thanks to well over a thousand of you, our revenues have gone up and we did, actually, make a tiny, debut, profit last month. Hooray! But perhaps you are reading this article sitting outside all walls and have not signed up for full access at just £5.99 a month HERE. Just think what you are missing…

Dividend Munchers’ List – Full November update

Published 170 days ago

We’ve made November and the world didn’t end on the stock markets after all. Phew. Having noted that three of my four picks had been pretty resilient during the market squall of October, we have now seen a bit of a recovery across the markets (not that I think it will last). So how’s the performance?

Notes from Underground: Chris Bailey is #1 three weeks in a row (misleading headline)

Published 170 days ago

What are your Sunday rituals? The most reliable one of mine is a phone call from Tom demanding to know where this column is.

Dividend Munchers – great stuff from BT, but time to trim?

Published 171 days ago

Fully listed BT (BT.A) is the largest holding in my small collection of dividend munchers by value, although for the purposes of the portfolio it is marked as one unit, along with Centrica (CNA) and ITV (ITV). Vodafone, the fourth member, is half a unit – thank goodness! Yesterday’s interims went down very well with the market, which marked the shares up to around 267p at the peak, and closed at around 260. The shares haven’t been this high since last January and you have to go back to last October before you see an extended period of higher prices than that.

Notes from Underground - Is it an opportunity or a retreat?

Published 177 days ago

Looking at the leaderboard this week, I find it interesting - after a few days of plummeting share prices - that the most read articles are on prosaic things: clothing, hotels, real estate, and minerals.

Trading updates spur tipster focus on the banking sector

Published 178 days ago

Despite a series of strong earnings announcements, it’s been a disappointing few months for holders of London-listed bank shares. Tip activity spiked in the banking sector this week, spurred on by third quarter results announced by Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY) and Barclays (BARC) in recent days. This week, we take a look at recent tip activity in the sector, and see how tipster sentiment towards banking firms currently differs from brokers.

Notes from Underground - Cake, will you do the honour of making my stomach the happiest bag of acid in the world?

Published 184 days ago

Clearly, the topic that brought loads of people into ShareProphets this week was  Patisserie Holdings (CAKE). It makes you wonder why this alleged fraud captures the interest of the mainstream media but the Globos and Folly Follies and Quindells do not. Is a high street presence what stops a scandal from being reported or not?

Tom Winnifrith Bearcast: is BCA still the big short? Yes and here is why

Published 185 days ago

I start with reflections on a rather plump young lady not wearing a bra parking her truck in front of my makeshift studio here in Greece. Moving swiftly on, I have a go at Malcolm Stacey over this piece and at James Bowden over this piece. I stand with Chris "three brains" Bailey on the recruitment stocks. Then it is onto BCA Marketplace (BCA). is it still "The Big Short?" I discuss in light of news both from Pendragon (PDG) and from the USA yesterday. 

Dividend Munchers’ List – October update

Published 198 days ago

Well, here we are a month on from my last update and there has been a bit of excitement in my small portfolio of FTSE100 high-yielders which I hope will ride out any market storms ahead. I say excitement – but nothing has changed: ITV made noises about bidding for Endemol and then announced that it wasn’t going to after all. The shares went down, and then recovered on the two bits of news, so I guess the management got the message!

This Week’s Trading Updates: Broker and Tipster Sentiment

Published 199 days ago

It’s been a busy week in the markets, with a number of big names announcing their latest figures. In this week’s article, we cover broker and tipster reaction to a handful of trading updates that have attracted our attention over the last seven days.

Chris Bailey, Farm Animals, Airlines, Nuclear Energy and the Big Dilemma.

Published 199 days ago

Hello, Share Scrimpers. Some of us consider ourselves ethical investors. We do not buy shares in companies with products and services which we think may harm people or the environment. But some of us have different views on what is ‘ethical. Now my colleague on this beautiful site Chris Bailey is an enlightened man. 

Moss Bros – half-year results, ‘everybody dressing up or dressing down’?

Published 213 days ago

A (Top) hat tip (sorry!) to Chris Bailey re. mens formalwear retailer Moss Bros (MOSB), with he in March having noted serious corporate shooting yourself in the foot and suggested to look for offers from the company rather than buying the shares. The shares are lower, despite a half-year results announcement which included “early responses to the Autumn/Winter 2018 range across Retail are positive and product availability is good”

Tipsters positive on Denelm Group, downbeat on Debenhams

Published 220 days ago

Debenhams (DEB) and Dunelm Group (DNLM) both featured heavily in the financial press this week and while both had some disappointing news to share, both broker and tipster outlook about the future of both companies was vastly different. This week, we take a look at the respective performances of each, and how tipster sentiment has shifted over time.

My Dividend Muncher’s List – time for an update

Published 225 days ago

It is a while since I updated on my small portfolio of high-yielders from the FTSE100. The idea of the portfolio – perhaps somewhat contrary to expectations – is that I am bearish, but am struggling to find somewhere to park my cash. Bond yields are low and prices high, but interest rates are rising so my simple mind sees capital losses there. You still can’t get any meaningful interest at the bank and property prices look set to (at best) stall. And to cap it all, I am nervous that the market might sell off. So I am investing here as a bear.

Notes from Underground: What bad answers have you given?

Published 232 days ago

When I arrived in the UK over a decade ago, I was asked what football club I supported, over and over. 

The answer to that question was far more important than I understood at the time: it would determine, in the questioners' eyes, if I could be trusted, who my friends would be, how hard I was, and a zillion other things. I thought I was being asked what football club I supported. 

Tom Winnifrith Bearcast - equity markets tell you Andrew Monk & Malcolm Stacey are complacent and wrong and residential property is facing a big sell-off

Published 239 days ago

I note Chris Bailey's excellent article earlier, HERE, and have to say he is bang on the money and those who advise buying housebuilding shares such as Andrew Monk and our own Malcolm Stacey are very wrong. The equity markets are telling you there is a stack of trouble ahead.

Dividend Munchers List – all (more-or-less) going to plan

Published 268 days ago

It was interesting to listen to yesterday’s Bearcast Special, with Tom Winnifrith joined by Lucian Miers and Brokerman Dan – the last of whom sounded like a jolly good cynic to me. He described AIM as “all puff” and asked which company could go to zero he said any AIM company. Of course, I think there are a few exceptions but in general the cynic in me enjoyed hearing what he had to say. Perhaps that is partly why I’ve been looking to put a dividend muncher’s list together, as well as having some stocks I can invest my cash in to generate a return even if the general market keels over.

Tom Winnifrith Bearcast - The £172k court case Safestyle is keeping quiet about & why Chris Bailey's City pal is wrong

Published 278 days ago

I recorded this on my last night in Greece. As you listen I shall be starting the trek back to Bristol. I appeal to those yet to donate to the Woodlarks charity walk by myself, Lucian Miers and Brokerman Dan to donate HERE - we are at 69% of our £20,000 target and every cent pledged will make a difference. Thanks to a reader for spotting a court case involving Safestyle (SFE) which is utterly shocking - I reckon this makes the stock uninvestable. I then take issue with the analysis of a City pal of Chris "three brains" Bailey on the matter of fraud.

Notes from Underground: Steve O'Hara v Kylie Jenner

Published 282 days ago

There was a lot of huffing and puffing this week as Forbes magazine published this piece on the business fortunes of 20 year-old American reality TV personality Kylie Jenner. Forbes declares Jenner the worlds youngest self-made billionaire based on the success of her cosmetics company, Kylie Cosmetics.

Tom Winnifrith Bearcast- I am sorry but I am just not as clever as Chris "three brains" Bailey

Published 284 days ago

I start  with a bit on my walking schedule. I really will suffer tomorrow so about donating a tenner to Woodlarks as you think of the pain that lies ahead. Support a great cause HERE. In the podcast I look at non food retailers where I take a simple view as I am not as clever as Chris. I look at CyanConnode (CYAN), GYG (GYG) and follow up on Gary's piece on Bellzone (BZM) with a discussion on what constitutes market abuse.

BT – seeking a new CEO

Published 319 days ago

Chris Bailey is away, so can’t enjoy his ouzo o’clock moment here on ShareProphets. Instead, that falls to me. Back on May 10, when covering the full year results of BT (BT.A), Chris wrote: …the CEO - who surely the new Chairman is considering whether to keep or not. I, on the other hand, noted only last week that there looked to be a battle going on in the boardroom. So I’ll enjoy my ouzo (but I’ll save Chris a glass)!

Disillusionment!!! And Why I May Ditch My Portfolio and Buy the Next Picasso, Instead.

Published 339 days ago

Hello Share Braves. I’m so disgusted with the sort of person who’s now common and becoming more frequent in Shareland, that I’m actively pursuing other ways to glean an honest income from my pile. You only have to look at what Tom is having to put up with these days to have sympathy with my current jaundiced view of the Big City.

Tom Winnifrith Bearcast: Chris Bailey is right, Malcolm Stacey is wrong

Published 342 days ago

So far it has been a good day. I look at four shares I own: Optibiotix (OPTI), Falanx (FLX), Premaitha (NIPT) - yes Wildes you are wrong! - and Sosandar (SOS). And I comment on today's Julie Meyer bombshell. Praise be the Lord. I look at Beowulf Mining (BEM) and wider lessons after its placing and then discuss housebuilders in general after Chris Bailey's excellent article HERE. Chris is right, my old friend Malcolm - a sector bull - is wrong and I explain why.

UK Investor Show 2018 Video - Making Money in Africa

Published 347 days ago

This session was chaired by our own Chris Bailey  and featured Andrew Bell of Red Rock (RRR), Rob Scott of Anglo African Agriculture (AAAP - where we own shares - Ahmet Dik of Victoria Oil & Gas (VOG) and Colin Bird of numerous companies, including Jubilee Metals (JLP) tipped by Andrew Monk this morning.

Why I’m Unsure It's the Best Course to Follow Chris Bailey’s Latest Tip - with TW Note.

Published 348 days ago

Hello Share Swappers. A fellow Shareprophets scribe and a very nice chap I meet with pleasure at all the Global Group UK Investor Shows, writes to commend investment in Imperial Brands (IMB). That, of course, is a tobacco company.

9 UK Investor Show share tips for 2018 - No 5 Chris Bailey

Published 363 days ago

This week all of the team will tip 1 stock - long or short - which presented at UK Investor on Saturday or was mentioned in a presentation. For paying customers only, fifth up it is Chris Bailey who, TW notes did a superb job interviewing Vin Murria on the main stage. Utterly top notch. Back to Chris and his share tip.

ITV – another one for the dividend muncher’s list

Published 373 days ago

I’ve been wandering through my list of tasty-looking dividend plays identified HERE for further additions to my dividend muncher’s list. The first was BT (BT.A) which I bought at 225p and has since risen nicely to 241.5p. We’ll see how this plays out when its results are released early next month, but so far, so good. My second choice was Centrica (CAN), but I haven’t taken the plunge there yet. Working down my list of high yields, it has been too easy to rule out most of them but I alighted on ITV (ITV) and I wonder if now may prove a good time to climb on board.

Tom Winnifrith Bearcast: The times they are a changin' (for the worse) in praise of Malcolm Stacey & Chris Bailey

Published 388 days ago

The excitement mounts as the Winnifrith family heads off for a day at an owl sanctuary for that is the current obsession of young Joshua. Ahead of that I reflect on themes touched on by Malcolm Stacey today (HERE) and also Chris Bailey (HERE). I go far further than they do. The times they are a changin' and not for the better. Bring on the goats. If you like bearcasts then remember that at UK Investor on April 21 one of many highlights will be a live bearcast with myself and Paul Scott. Make sure you book a free ticket HERE using the promotional code WINNIFRITH

BT – I’m in (blame Chris Bailey!)

Published 401 days ago

Looking down my shopping list for dividend munchers in the wake of our mini-crash (see HERE) I see fully listed BT (BT.A) on a yield of 6.82%. I’m no expert in these large-caps (so this is NOT a tip!), but that seemed pretty tasty to me and worth a bit of a look – my first port of call being what the ShareProphets large-cap professor, Chris Bailey, had to say (see HERE). 

Notes from Underground: As you get older, three things happen. The first is your memory goes. I don't remember the other two.

Published 478 days ago

I'm midway through my Christmas holidays in my home town of Vancouver. Today, my wife and I walked around the central business district and we came across Vancouver's oldest building, marked with a blue plaque and everything. It was built in 1899. Behold the nearly 128 years of history that this city encompasses. 

The ShareProphets 24 share tips of the year: No 11 a buy from Chris Bailey

Published 481 days ago

Between December 24 and January 2 we are serving up 24 share tips of the year from our team of writers at ShareProphets. The share tips are for paying subscribers only. Next up, the second idea from Chris Bailey.

The ShareProphets 24 share tips of the year: No 4 a buy from Chris Bailey

Published 484 days ago

Between December 24 and January 2 we are serving up 24 share tips of the year from our team of writers at ShareProphets. The share tips are for paying subscribers only. Next up, the first of two ideas from Chris Bailey.

Tesco's early Christmas present

Published 489 days ago

Tesco (TSCO) shares are little changed today and progress or not over the next few weeks will be highly dependent on the infamous Christmas trading update of early January. I have no great tactical insights on this but I am hopeful it will be part of the strategic improvement and opportunity in the stock I noted a couple of months or so ago HERE. Certainly the share has shown a bit of form recently and this has been driven by improving sales metrics, hopes for the generation of enhanced margin and cashflows, lower debt...and the potential from the Booker (BOK) takeover. It is the latter which is in the news today.

The hedge funds get greedy on should you?

Published 490 days ago

Back in October I talked about how you could profitably play at being a hedge fund manager via buying some shares in media giant Sky (SKY) - see HERE. From then to now this call has worked out well and the discount to the proposed takeover price has narrowed sharply. Sounds like a building need to make a decision whether to hold on or cash out...except a lot of other stuff has changed.

2017 in a nutshell: rampant IPOs and deals that don't work out

Published 491 days ago

'Twas a week before Christmas...and it is apparently time to spot the stock exchange poseur as I read in today's press that the London Stock Exchange has helped float a cool 98 companies so far this year...and naturally is hoping for a couple of tiddlers to take it over the century level before close of business on Friday 29th December. Well...bully for it...

Sports Direct - drive a bus through the numbers and forecasts!

Published 495 days ago

There are two things I know about 2017. The first is that I had not one but two inaugural trips to a Sports Direct (SPD) store (and survived) and the second is that the omnipresent but embattled retailer should have been my tip of the year the thick end of a year ago. However in this world we must look forward and that brings me to today's first half profits at Mike Ashley's emporium.

Ashtead - 'making' or 'made' it happen?

Published 497 days ago

I have had the horn about Ashtead (AHT) shares for a while now, as noted during my write-up a quarter ago. Another quarter, another update...and boy has it continued to clean up with profits ahead of hopes, assisted by the post hurricane-related spend that tends to benefit the construction equipment and related rental business that the company specialises in.

Greencore - sandwiches are a better theme than blockchain!

Published 511 days ago

I have something to confess. I perused the online Guardian newspaper over the weekend...and I did particularly enjoy one article. Fortunately, it was not anything political (I have not completely lost my marbles) but it did involve a fascinating business case study over time of the humble sandwich. Or as one contributor to the article observed 'we are light years ahead of the rest of the world'. Clearly the Earl of Sandwich has a lot to be thanked for. At the front of the queue in terms of British sandwich production is Greencore (GNC), whose heritage is in sugar beet but is now the top supplier of choice to all but one of the major supermarkets.

Centrica unveils an economic lesson for the Chancellor in Budget week

Published 519 days ago

It is going to be a week filled with economic rhetoric - as every UK Government Budget epoch tends to be. As an aside - and something to remember for this Wednesday - the way to spot a better than average budget is if it is generally slammed in the press the day after. Someone told me this rule too many years ago to recall and I have to say it has been pretty accurate since. Anyhow, back to stocks and specifically another bout of economic common sense from Centrica (CNA) today on the issues of why price caps do not work.

Boardroom shocker at the FTSE-100's GKN

Published 523 days ago

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.

SSE - the FTSE-100's most boring company does something of interest

Published 531 days ago

The most boring company in the FTSE-100 by far is in my opinion SSE plc (SSE, Scottish & Southern Energy). Admittedly utility companies are not meant to be sexy but SSE with its lack of growth and grinding up dividend payment (which encompasses pretty much all of its free cash flow) is the ultimate tortoise. Don't worry I know the hare and tortoise fable and my own investment style is hardly rabid but shoot me now if I make this one a top ten portfolio position at any time before the age of 85. However...

Next - waxing and waning just like the UK economy

Published 538 days ago

Back in mid-September I told you to take your trading profits on Next (NXT) at around fifty quid a share. Today's update highlights again that currently the only way to play even UK retail names with good market shares, decent balance sheets and a propensity to chuck out dividends and undertake share buybacks is with a trader's hat on.

DS Smith & Croda - UK companies doing the business

Published 539 days ago

A busy corporate update Tuesday and three sets of comments stand out for me.

Financials mash-up: who do you fancy in a cage fight - Lloyds or Metro Bank?

Published 545 days ago

Putting a portfolio together involves making decisions by comparing and contrasting one company against many others and wrapping it all up in some overriding sector/macro strategy. Simples, right?! For reasons too obvious to state, the financial sector had a shocker during the global financial crisis and which, in due course, led to the creation of a new competitive grouping - the 'challenger banks'. As one traditional name (Lloyds Bank - LLOY) and one new challenger name (Metro Bank - MTRO) have both reported today, let's compare and contrast and see if either pass muster. Prepare the cage...

Is Whitbread roasted or worth a punt?

Published 546 days ago

Whitbread (WTB) has had an up-and-down year since my last update on the stock - HERE. The Costa and Premier Inn operator unsurprisingly has been impacted by the changes in perception towards the strength (or not) of the UK consumer and this has pushed the shares between a £36 and £42 range this year. Today's interim results have again pushed the shares towards the lower end of this range despite the company reiterating its hopes for the full year.

Office shocker by IWG (aka Regus)

Published 551 days ago

I cannot get used to calling the company formerly known as Regus the new comedy name of International Workplace Group (IWG). Perhaps David Brent had something to do with the change of name... Anyhow the newish name has not provided much luck today with a 30%+ dumping in the shares.

Merlin Entertainment - losing the magic?

Published 553 days ago

I have never written about Merlin Entertainment (MERL) before but i have certainly visited one of its leisure facilities religiously at least once a year for the last five years or so. Yes, I can attest that Legoland is actually damn good, clean family fun and due to the fifty minutes I spent in the queue for the new Ninjago ride the other month I have changed my specialist subject for any future Mastermind appearance. 

Centrica gets shafted by the government getting down with the electorate

Published 565 days ago

After the omnishables that was Theresa May’s big cough-rence speech, mumblings from the Brexit transition Queen about the need for a price cap on the easy targets of the electricity and gas utilities spanked the shares of Centrica (CNA) and Scottish & Southern (SSE), with the former falling to a 14 year share price low. Whilst the latter bores me, the former does grab my attention as the current management team does have a sensible plan involving selling us energy efficiency related technology and services to complement our core gas and electricity bills.

Ferguson - fifty quid again, flippin' heck...

Published 567 days ago

The fine office of Wikipedia informs me that: 'Ferguson is a Scottish surname and given name. The surname is a patronynic form of the personal name Fergus. The name Fergus is derived from the Proto-Celtic elements *wiros ("man") and *gustus ("vigour", "force", or "choice"). learn something new everyday. Additionally as of a few weeks ago it is the new name of the old Wolseley (WOS, now FERG), the FTSE-100 plumbing and heating kit stalwart.

Imperial Brands - time to light up...

Published 572 days ago

I have never smoked and have no plans ever to but I am enough of a libertarian to take the view that if individuals want to light up after knowing everything that medical science has discovered about tobacco over the last couple of generations then that is their business. And so I do periodically invest in the tobacco sector.

Three day rule selling time for Johnson Matthey

Published 575 days ago

A cool two years and two months ago (almost to the day) I observed you had the opportunity to make some money on the shares of precious metal refiner and clever catalytic converter technology company Johnson Matthey (JMAT) with the natty headline of '19th Century heritage with 21st Century appeal'. After briefly getting to the area of my £35 target price a few months after the original call, they are back there again now after a stupendous end of last week bounce.

B'jesus I live near the UK's personal debt hot spot

Published 583 days ago

One of the great pleasures of a Sunday morning is reading the Sunday press or - because i am not completely antediluvian - reading various bits and bobs online without the threat of newsprint getting everywhere.  Pacing through the Sunday Times business section on my laptop i almost spat out my morning coffee when I read: 

NEXT! Great winner but book profits and look elsewhere

Published 586 days ago

If I told you that UK clothing retail behemoth Next (NXT) mentioned this morning that earnings per share for the current financial year were now estimated to be down between 3.1% and 10.9% you would probably not want to buy the share after muttering about the downbeat UK consumer, nobbled by a lack of real wage growth and a slumped Pound. Well you would be quite correct in not wanting to buy Next shares today...because with the stock up a cool 11% it is once again pushing close to the 50 quid a share level I hoped for as a share price target in my writings on the stock earlier in the year (for example HERE).

UPDATED: Don't be locked out from ShareProphets at Midnight TONIGHT! Sign up NOW!

Published 587 days ago

Evil Google and wicked Facebook have sucked all the advertising spend out of online media. We poor content providers do the creative work, the internet giants take the cash. And so we have no choice we must ask you to subscribe to ShareProphets or we must shut down. There are 297 reasons a month why you should pay as little as £5.99 a month for our content.

Video:Chris Bailey of Financial Orbit on why you should subscribe to ShareProphets

Published 588 days ago

Chris Bailey is one of the writers who a subscription based ShareProphets - assuming enough of you sign up! - will be showcasing more often. In the video below he explains exactly why you should sign up NOW HERE 

Who knocked over my pint? Greene King has a late summer shocker

Published 592 days ago

Has the weather been bad since the second half of July with you? It seems to have been alright in the locality of Bailey Towers but as I spend my time inside slaving over copy for ShareProphets among other akin matters, rather than sitting in a pub garden, I cannot really tell you if Greene King (GNK) is talking reality or not with its expectations-chopping update today observing: 'since the second half of July, when the weather worsened, trading weakened'.

Royal Mail - second class post can be the value option!

Published 600 days ago

In a world of omnipresent instant communication and next day delivery options, I am not really sure there is that much difference between the first and second class letter service - and I am certain that many of you reading this in rural communities can barely distinguish between the two. Anyhow, Royal Mail (RMG) has itself been downgraded this morning with the news it is out of the FTSE-100 and into the mid-cap melee known as the FTSE-250.

Dixons Carphone - anyone fancy a new phone?

Published 607 days ago

I have not written about Dixons Carphone (DC.) before but, whilst Darren counts the profits from his short sell tip on the share of early January, I have to say today's share price dump has rather piqued my interest.

Billiton gets religion...with a little help from its activist hedge fund 'friend'

Published 609 days ago

It was around a year ago that I wrote an article about one of my then tips of the year BHP Billiton (BLT) observing that the world's largest mining company had just made billions of dollars of losses...but correctly the share price was going up. Billiton was a nice solid pick for 2016 but so far this year the share has been more volatile than remunerative.

Glencore - imminent M&A splurge suggests you should go bye bye

Published 621 days ago

Who remembers the infamous zero pence share price target established by one 'teenage scribbler' broker on Glencore (GLEN) the thick end of a couple of years ago? Funnily enough, via a decent commodity marketing/trading business, a cute money raising and some decent tier 1 mining assets, Glencore shares did not trouble the scorers below even 50p and over the last 20 months have recovered back to levels seen four or five years back. Today's first half numbers continue that renaissance.

Easyjet's big challenge: not Brexit but who's the new captain?

Published 642 days ago

I really do commend to you the search capability on the ShareProphets website because it provides a great short-cut to who-said-what-when. It was last August when I last mentioned Easyjet (EZJ) and since then the stock has been volatile but positive. Ok, it certainly did take a bit longer than I thought AND there were a couple of sub 1000p/share diversions...but you know what it is like with these low-cost airlines: take-off is not always precisely on time...but you get there eventually.

Marks And Spencer: the management better hope Margins Are Sustainable

Published 651 days ago

The macro news today showed a glimmer of hope for retailers with the UK British Retail Consortium (BRC) data showing a 1.2% rise in June like-for-like retail sales compared to a year ago.  All hail the hot weather and the Eid celebrations which apparently - according to the experts - helped out.  

I just want to say one word to you: Packaging

Published 663 days ago

Fans of The Graduate will recognise the form, if not the precise wording of the title. Life has thankfully moved on from the 1960s and in today’s world of internet delivery and crowded consumer choice, packaging matters from both a practical and differentiating perspective.

The UK consumer is not in a complete stupor says Whitbread

Published 671 days ago

Is the UK consumer completely shot? For the last year we have had a waxing and waning in views from 'the experts' on this. The reality is that it depends who you talk to but, biggest picture, what is needed is a great product, attractive marketing and a base underlying need. I last chatted through the Whitbread (WTB) investment case in late January, where I concluded that the stock was still worth a punt...

Ashtead's awesome strategy and numbers... so what to do now with the shares?

Published 679 days ago

I last mused about industrial plant and tool hire company Ashtead (AHT) fourteen months ago, since when the shares have basically doubled. Happy days...but no resting on the laurels because correctly you should be asking the question of 'so what do we do right here and right now?' Fortunately, the company puckered up its full year results today so all the latest information is to hand.

BT Group - WIFI debacles, scandals and u-turns: got to be time to buy!

Published 693 days ago

As the part of rural Wales I was staying in during a good chunk of the Bank Holiday weekend apparently is intermittently covered by the leading mobile network recently purchased by BT Group (BT.A), I had to return to England to surprisingly wax lyrical about the telecoms giant, as the dearth of WIFI forced me to buy an antiquated media device called a newspaper. Within its grubby pages I read that shock-style headline that 'BT threatens fatal blow to final salary pensions'.

Unless you are an unbending yield muncher… sell Vodafone here

Published 707 days ago

Near the top of the FTSE-100 leaderboard today is the telecoms behemoth Vodafone (VOD), which proudly said earlier today that it had enjoyed a ‘good year, gaining share’. Of course the headline profit numbers were full of the negative impact of a non-cash impairment of €5 billion relating to its Indian business. But don’t worry about this! ‘Organic adjusted EBITDA growth of 4%-8%’ is expected and, with €5 billion of free cash flow and a 2% hike in the dividend, the yield munchers will be bought off. Right here, right now though, I would sell Vodafone shares.

Next - profit warning ahoy #2

Published 719 days ago

The seasons may have evolved a little but the message from FTSE-100 clothing behemoth Next (NXT) is basically unchanged. Life is still tough in a market where, in its words, ‘the UK consumer environment remains challenging’...

Video: Chris Bailey and Johnny Hon discuss: Is China a Fraud-ridden bubble at UK Investor Show 2017

Published 730 days ago

In this video from the storming success that was the 2017 UK Investor Show, Chris Bailey of Financial Orbit and Johnny Hon of Global Group discuss: Is China a Fraud-ridden bubble? And make sure that you keep April 21 2018 free for next year's UK Investor Show.

Video: David Lenigas of Anglo African discusses making money on African investments with Laurence Read of Victoria Oil & Gas & Chris Bailey of Financial Orbit at UK Investor Show 2017

Published 736 days ago

In this video from the storming success that was the 2017 UK Investor Show, David Lenigas of Anglo African (AAAP) discusses making money on African investments with Chris Bailey of Financial Orbit and Laurence Read of Victoria Oil & Gas (VOG), compered by Nigel Somerville. And make sure that you keep April 21 2018 free for next year's UK Investor Show.

Tom Winnifrith Birthday Bearcast - where's my ffing ouzo Paul Scott & Chris Bailey's a freak

Published 831 days ago

I start by explaining why Chris Bailey of Financial Orbit is a freak!. it is all to do with Star Wars. Then it is onto TrakM8 (TRAK) following my kerboom article of earlier. I make specific points about Paul Scott's favourite dog but then general points about why company's acquire and why that turns me off.

ShareProphets Share Tips of the year 2017: No3 Sell Wolseley says Chris Bailey

Published 850 days ago

Best FTSE-100 short for 2017?  After musing about the property stocks I chanced upon Wolseley’s (WOS) epic push towards a 50 quid share price.  First congratulations to anyone who picked up shares in the plumbing and building industry supplier at the time of the Brexit referendum vote for around 36 quid.  My advice though for 2017 is to sell the shares. 

ShareProphets Share Tips of the year 2017: No 1 Buy Whitbread says Chris Bailey

Published 851 days ago

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. 

Sainsbury’s: piling it high and selling it cheap (so treat the shares the same)

Published 937 days ago

As I will publish one day as ‘Chris Bailey’s guide to reading regulatory news statements’, rule 354 is ‘worry about any retail company that starts talking about the price of their products in a RNS’.  Normally such price disclosures highlight desperation and hence Sainsbury’s (SBRY) musings earlier today that…

Sainsbury's does vinyl..are the shares a hit or a flop?

Published 1049 days ago

If you are interested in retail shares then one of the more sensible uses of your research time would be to become familiar with the output of Kantar. Even for cheapskates like me there is a reasonable flow of free insights from the business research consultancy to provide a bit of colour. 

Video: The Balloon Debate from UK Investor Show - now this was fun

Published 1072 days ago

This was meant to be just a fun debate to start the day with a few laughs. Girly swat Chris Bailey took it really seriously but other competitors myself, Malcolm Stacey, Colin Bird, Dominic Frisby were more relaxed. Speaking for gold Andrew Bell was so relaxed he forgot to turn up but Jan Nelson stood in at the last minute. I explain what a balloon debate is in the video. Enjoy.

Video: Nigel Wray, TW, Chris Bailey & Paul Jourdan at UK Investor Show - value investing

Published 1072 days ago

After Saracens European triumph on Saturday I imagine that Nigel Wray will be a happy man. He was at the centre of the value investing panel at UK Investor Show with Chris Bailey of Financial Orbit, Paul Jourdan of Amati and myself, Tom Winnifrith. Enjoy

Baby Bear, Graham Neary - Welcome aboard the good ship ShareProphets

Published 1083 days ago

I rather think that the lineup of main writers is now complete. Joining myself, Malcolm Stacey, Amanda Van Dyke, Lucian Miers, Steve Moore, Nigel Somerville, Gary Newman, Chris Bailey, Thierry Laduguie, Evil Banksta and Cynical Bear we now - as of today - have Baby Bear, aka Graham Neary on board.

You want one gold stock to buy but what? Ten experts say it should be...

Published 1093 days ago

Gold seems to be in an uptrend so maybe it is time to get a bit of exposure to the gold sector once more? But how? We adsked ten writers connected to this site and/or speaking at UK Investor show on Saturday if they had to bet the ranch on one stock what would it be?

Ashtead: taking advantage of shabby peers

Published 1095 days ago

What characteristics do you like to see in an equity?  How about revenue and profit growth, free cash flow generation, relatively modest debt levels, an experienced and sensible management team, taking market share against peers and a good capability this could continue over the next few years?  And how about for the icing on the cake: a low valuation and increasing dividend capability?

Panning for gold in the USSR (with Polymetal)

Published 1114 days ago

I don’t need to write another love-up article on Randgold Resources (RRS) because with the shares up 50% odd year-to-date you should be looking elsewhere for a bit of relative value. Extending this line of thinking today’s announcement from Polymetal (POLY) is another common sense corporate update from the Russia-focused gold play.  Yes I have used the words ‘Russia-focused’ and ‘common sense’ in the same sentence. 

DS Smith: weird name, great stock

Published 1140 days ago

Back at the turn of the year I chose DS Smith (SMDS) as my second share tip of the year noting that the corrugated board and packaging company was:

January edition of UK Investor Show Magazine now live packed with share tips

Published 1174 days ago

The January edition of UK Investor Show magazine is now live featuring an astounding 79 share tips, three sells (from TW), company profile on Avesco, buys from Zak and Chris Bailey, an interview with Zafar Karim, CEO Legendary Investments and more. You can download your free copy below.

Chris Bailey's share tip of the year number 2 - Buy DS Smith

Published 1213 days ago

Unless you want to stop the conversation dead one tip for a smooth running social gathering event is never to mention corrugated board or packaging. Nevertheless in the ever more consumer convenience world we all live in such products become intimately aligned with ecommerce and retailer brand differentiator trends and that’s why corrugated board and packaging are growing faster than underlying GDP.

Chris Bailey's share tip of the year No 1 - Buy BHP Billiton

Published 1214 days ago

My first tip of the year has to come attached with a mea culpa.  I tipped BHP Billiton (BLT) at 1000p a share a few months ago and after a suitable disclosure delay bought stock.  Since then I have also bought shares below 900p, below 800p and reasonably recently below 700p per share.  The clock does not completely reset with a new year but for those investors who joined me in investing at around the 1000p a share level I offer my apologies…but also my advice to double up now. 

REVIEWED: ShareProphets writers share tips of the year for 2015

Published 1216 days ago

On the long tack, it is congratulations to Tom Winnifrith with OptiBiotix Health (OPTI) soaring by more than 300%. Kudos also to Steve Moore (K3 Business Technology, KBT, +62% and Impellam Group, IPEL, +57%), Malcolm Stacey (Zytronic, ZYT, +43%), Chris Bailey (Coca-Cola HBC, CCH, +25%) and last of the double digit gainers Nigel Somerville (Core VCT, +11%). On the other hand, it is commiserations to…

Video: Amanda van Dyke Commodity Panel at Gold & Bears 2015

Published 1220 days ago

And now another main stage presentation from Gold & Bears with the Van Goddess, Amanda Van Dyke leading a resources panel including Chris Bailey, Willem Middlekoop,Chris Berry and the CEOs of Bacanora Minerals (BCN), Jubilee Platinum (JLP) and Asiamet (ARS). There is also a main stage stoming by myself, Tom Winnifrith, as I put the Dutch chappy in his place.

Eight shares to buy for the Santa Rally - find out which ones NOW!

Published 1227 days ago

ShareProphets Press' NEW book of 2015 is by Tom Winnifrith, Ben Turney, Chris Bailey and the whole ShareProphets team. In it, the writers on the UK's most compelling financial website look for the eight shares to take advantage of by buying ahead of the 'Santa Rally'.

My Christmas wish list suggests you do not sell here

Published 1227 days ago

Spooked by the market sell-off last week, starting to think it will be a Santa sleigh crash in the City? Fear not, Chris Bailey of Financial Oribit  discusses the myriad current challenges in the global economy, a hoped for Christmas wish list and why now is not a time for panic selling.

Legal & General drops quarterly reporting: quality vs quantity?

Published 1229 days ago

Let me know if you can find a sector more opaque than the insurance sector.  In too many years of pacing through corporate reports I cannot think of a sector that consistently bamboozles even experienced analysts with all sorts of anachronistic terminology. 

2016 growth policies and how a mega El Nino might impact economies

Published 1249 days ago

The latest Financial Orbit Speaks reviews 2016 growth rates & policies, sentiment insights, the reason we need to be thankful to China and what we should think about a mega El Nino. 

Royal Mail: appealing portfolio stodge

Published 1250 days ago

Six months ago after rhapsodising about the 4.5%+ dividend yield I described the Royal Mail (RMG) as:

‘…a brand that has persisted for hundreds of years and it is not going away.  As a balance to your blood, guts and violence capital gain stocks it works’  

And in that sense the outperformance versus the broader FTSE-100 index since then has been pleasing to note albeit still down a handful of percent since the call was made versus 10% for the UK’s large cap index.  Of course you can’t eat relative performance…but that’s where that dividend comes in. 

Poundland – as predicted a results shocker

Published 1251 days ago

Back in September I confessed to the ShareProphets readers that I had been making some semi-regular visits to my local 99p Store.  I also called a sell/avoid/short on Poundland (PLND) shares and it is the latter which has to interest us today following a litany of disasters in the company’s interim results statement today.

Burberry: zero revenue growth, zero profit growth…but still a buy

Published 1258 days ago

A month ago almost to the day (link here) I wrote on the luxury retailer Burberry (BRBY) that:

‘The direction of Burberry shares over the next six months does largely depend on how Chinese performance is perceived.  I think they surprise these low expectations and extrapolations…And this makes Burberry shares (still) a buy today’.

Today’s formal six month numbers to the end of September released today reiterate this view. 

Rolls Royce – short cycle versus long cycle.

Published 1258 days ago

In the Thursday earnings season results frenzy I knew that Rolls Royce’s (RR/) interim management statement was going to be of the ‘excitable’ nature when the first emboldened headline of the statement was ‘fundamentally strong portfolio of products’. 

Whisper it quietly but large listed UK banks are looking interesting for 2016

Published 1260 days ago

With Santa apparently due to make his big arrival at my local garden centre next Saturday the starting gun has been fired for the rundown to the end of the year. And for the medium-term investor in me this only means one thing: which sectors, themes and stocks are looking interesting for 2016?

BHP Billiton: investing after a disaster

Published 1261 days ago

There are some events which transcend normal investment analysis.  The shocking scenes of devastation over the last few days from the area around the Samarco iron-ore mine in Brazil following the unintended release of mine tailings received a lot of press coverage.  As the co-owner (along with the Brazilian business Vale) BHP Billiton (BLT) correctly in a regulatory disclosure earlier today ‘offered its full support to help the immediate rescue efforts and to assist with the investigation’ and made its ‘immediate priority…the welfare of the Samarco workforce and the local communities’. None of this of course will bring back those who have lost their lives.

Randgold Resources: flashing below the 4000p share price level again

Published 1261 days ago

I actually was not going to write-up Thursday’s quarterly update from the world’s best larger cap gold mining stock Randgold Resources (RRS).  The numbers showed good progress: rising production at an attractively low cash cost, a building net cash balance and exciting prospective exploration development opportunities.

Global economic outlook and a ludicrous list of things to do before breakfast!

Published 1263 days ago

The latest Financial Orbit Speaks discusses US wage increases, global money supply action, signalling from a major European corporate, the US$ and sector opportunities and a ludicrous list of things to do before breakfast.  

David Lenigas & Chris Oil don’t get free speech, you disgust me and shame yourselves

Published 1270 days ago

Market abuser Chris Oil is a big investor in Lenigas Cuba whose IPO will be a car crash on Monday. Thus he and David Lenigas are best buddies these days. Their twitter exchanges last week are disgusting as they celebrate closing down their critics. Prepare to be made nauseous by these ghastly individuals.

Its been a very good October so what next?

Published 1270 days ago

In this week's global investment enhanced podcast, Chris Bailey the Founder of Financial Orbit discusses the strong October performance in financial markets, the challenges to Federal Reserve policy, why China is making correct policy changes, a full update on the quarterly corporate earnings round and presents a chart that perfectly explains the investment industry.

Chemring: ammunition for the cautious about the world

Published 1274 days ago

The last time I wrote about Chemring (CHG) I noted the lack of questions on its conference call and noted that a lack of interest is generally good news for investors.  All eyes are on the defense company today though as it punches up an RNS shocker combining a sounds-almost-certain potential delay to an ammunitions contract with a right issue. Quelle surprise the shares have been slammed over 30%! 

BP's dividend maintenance dance - one to add to the pension

Published 1274 days ago

The global mega cap energy sector reporting period kicked off today with BP (BP/) reporting 'underlying profit of US$1.8bn for the third quarter of 2015, up US$500m on the previous quarter, along with plans to rebalance its financial framework and grow value long term'.   Well that sounds like something for everyone then: profits sequentially up and more than a hint or two about the importance of remunerating it shareholders. 

Five Global Investment Themes for 2016 from Chris Bailey

Published 1277 days ago

The latest Financial Orbit Speaks is a special with commentary from the presentation slides Chris Bailey gave on Friday at the London Investor Show on the subject of 'Five Global Investment Themes for 2016'              

Tom Winnifrith Bearcast 19 October - the Great Unravel for LGO and Tribal Group

Published 1282 days ago

Today's podcast finds me in a panic as Oakley and I need to do frantic tidying before the Mrs returns to cover our respective sins. Meanwhile Tara the cat is also misbehaving. On the agenda - the great unravels at LGO Energy (LGO) but more especially Tribal Group (TRB) - the latter getting a thorough analysis. Then it is onto JQW (JQW), Alba Minerals (ALba) and the Horse Hill/Horse Shite prospect and Michelmersh Brick (MBH) which leaves me confused, perhaps Chris Bailey of Financial Orbit is geekish enough to assist?

Chris Bailey of Financial Orbit discusses global trade slowdown and gold's improvement

Published 1284 days ago

This edition of Financial Orbit Speaks reviews the latest macroeconomic news including some troubling data in the United States, a clear slowdown in global trade volumes and the improvement in the gold price. Drawing on these insights five investment themes pertinent to this backdrop - along with relevant individual stock examples - are discussed.

Burberry’s China crisis…and why the shares are a buy

Published 1286 days ago

Six weeks ago when I wrote an article for ShareProphets’ e-book The Magnificent Seven I wrote about a business with…

‘…real heritage and was founded a mere 159 years ago in 1856.  It is a large business and nestles happily in the FTSE-100 supported by brands that have a growing global appeal with net cash on its balance sheet, good free cash flow generation and a progressive dividend yield of currently just below 3%. The company used to just sell its wares from an expensive shop location but today interacts with its fans and followers digitally to such an extent that a couple of years ago its previous CEO was poached by a small technology company you may have heard of called Apple to assist with their digital brand positioning’

Well more fool me.  Burberry (BRBY) may have risen pleasantly in the month or so immediately after the e-book publication but today’s shocker statement and share price moves puts me at a loss today versus my tip level. 

Tesco: the super tanker starts to turn

Published 1294 days ago

Which of the following do you believe is more important as a guide to Tesco’s (TSCO) corporate well-being?

"We are moving into a stock picking dream period" says Chris Bailey of Financial Orbit

Published 1298 days ago

The latest Financial Orbit Speaks reviews the past week's financial news including discussion on the latest economic data, poor sentiment but also opportunities for investors due to the high correlation of sectors and stocks plus the general pessimism of investors.

Jim Mellon, 7 share tips, Rob Terry jail update and much more – UK Investor Show Magazine Sept now out

Published 1299 days ago

Issue 4 of the UK Investor Show Magazine is now out and can be accessed below. Jim Mellon, Rob Terry (prison update), the stockmarket crash (a buying opportunity?), Advanced Oncotherapy, 6 other share tips, accounting for Geeks from myself and Chris Bailey. There is something for everyone.

Vodafone – the best things DON’T come in small packages

Published 1303 days ago

Allegedly the best things come in small packages…well not today if you are a Vodafone (VOD) shareholder.  Below – in its entirety – is a regulatory news service update from the company that hit the wires at just after 7am today:

Seasonality in the market, fund manager sentiment and Volkswagen scandal

Published 1304 days ago

The latest Financial Orbit Speaks reviews the past week's financial news including thoughts on seasonality, the global manufacturing PMI numbers, fund manager sentiment and insights from Caterpillar...and VW. 

Discount store spending confessional…but avoid Poundland shares

Published 1306 days ago

Dear readers…time for another confession.  I may have over the last few months enjoyed shopping at my local 99p Store snaffling a bargain or ten (£9.91 worth!) of relatively near-date cereal, biscuits and chocolate not to mention various household goods. 

Royal & Sun Alliance: it is not you but me…

Published 1310 days ago

Bit of a Swiss surprise today with the news that Zurich Insurance is ending its 550p bid for Royal & Sun Alliance (RSA).  Normally when a proposed deal falls apart it is because the bidder has found something dodgy in its detailed due diligence – and let’s face it insurance accounting is opaque at best.  However this time the issue is all with the seemingly not-so-prudent Swiss with the management at Zurich noting ‘the deterioration in profitability in certain parts of the(ir) General Insurance business’ which it has to sort out first before it could even consider completing a bid on another insurance company like RSA. 

Ferrexpo's shocker shows why you have to be a top-down AND bottom-up investor

Published 1312 days ago

Way back at the start of the year one big picture investment theme I had a good deal of sympathy for was that bond investors would have to get used to the term ‘haircut’ (a cut in anticipated coupons/principal repayment cash flows) reflecting the reality of too many crud balance sheets out there.  I still believe Greek government bonds have that capability given time and a variety of energy sector bonds look deeply shocking but yesterday the Ukrainian Parliament voted through an agreement struck with its largest bond creditors which included a 20% haircut on its sovereign bonds. 

Financial Orbit Speaks: The lowest interest rates in 5,000 years!

Published 1312 days ago

The latest Financial Orbit Speaks reviews the past week's financial news including thoughts on the Federal Reserve, 5,000 year lows in interest rates, whether QE will be expanded or not and why we should not fear a structural fall in corporate profitability over the next generation.  

Panic city at Glencore = mining sector opportunities

Published 1315 days ago

Let’s review recent events at the self-styled mining giant Glencore (GLEN).  A month or so ago Glencore management gave a pretty clear view in its post results conference call that the balance sheet was strong enough not to raise money. Nine days ago bullied by panicky ‘key stakeholders’ (i.e. big institutional shareholders) the company announced a surprise range of initiatives as I noted here to strengthen their balance sheet. On the accompanying conference call the management noted cost cuts, mine mothballing and disposals were all way preferable to an equity money raising but that – once again – they would be sounding out the company’s ‘key stakeholders’ to gauge their views.

Financial Orbit Speaks: Reasons to be both optimistic and pessimistic in this market

Published 1319 days ago

The latest Financial Orbit Speaks enhanced podcast by Chris Bailey, focuses on the week's key macroeconomic news and why the key remains specific theme and individual stock selection in the current market backdrop. This edition focuses on current market challenges, reasons to be both optimistic and pessimistic, plus also why cheap breakfasts and inexperienced CEOs provide insight.

Glencore’s non-surprising surprising money raising

Published 1324 days ago

Well, well, well.  For me today’s number one most interesting UK regulatory news update was from Glencore (GLEN).  Just nineteen short days ago after listening to the management of the FTSE-100 mining/commodity trading company confirm their faith in their balance sheet and general corporate approach, Glencore have unveiled a range of initiatives including a US$2.5bn of new equity issuance, the suspension of the dividend for at least the next year and various asset sales and mothballing actions to slash US$10bn from their net debt pile.   Well I did warn at the above link that Glencore was ‘still too much of a full-on risk situation to get involved – and don’t believe that 9% dividend yield many data providers are highlighting at the moment…Enthusiasts for large cap mining investment should continue to prefer Randgold Resources (RRS)…or…BHP Billiton (BLT)…(companies) with a proper underpinned dividend and little debt’.  For the one-line summary this remains my view.

Financial Orbit Speaks: The good news is stockmarket panic is apparent!

Published 1325 days ago

The latest Financial Orbit Speaks enhanced podcast by Chris Bailey focuses on the week's key macroeconomic news and why it is so important to stick to specific theme and individual stock picking. This is especially the case when the market is in the grips of a panic, as it appears to be now.

Financial Orbit Speaks: What volatility means for investors

Published 1332 days ago

In the latest edition of Financial Orbit Speaks, focuses on market volatility, the response of financial markets and what investors prospectively should be thinking about. 

More EBITDA shenanigans (and a lousy IPO): the case of HSS Hire

Published 1336 days ago

My formative investment years were so long ago that I remember the daily thump that announced the arrival of the physical research pile from a variety of investment banks.  As a callow youth I used to devour these publications believing them to be a route to insight and riches.  The latter was true – although almost exclusively not to the readers of such ‘research’.  The reason for this walk down memory lane was that I was reminded by an article from Tom Winnifrith of a report I kept by my desk for months titled something like ‘why EV/EBITDA is the most important statistic for fund managers today’.  Suffice to say the quality of my investment insights all those years ago improved materially after I had a desk tidy-up…

BHP Billiton – 10 quid odd a share is just plain rude

Published 1337 days ago

Who ever said that large cap equities could not be exciting?  A quick glance at the share price graph of the world’s largest miner BHP Billiton (BLT) shows that even a miner with lowest quartile production costs, rising volumes, low debt and a progressive high single digit dividend yield can still struggle against the might of negative investor sentiment towards the space. 

Financial Orbit Speaks: Why financial markets are suddenly volatile

Published 1340 days ago

In the latest edition of Financial Orbit Speaks  Chris Bailey reviews the reasons for the volatility in financial markets...and where to position portfolios to benefit from the next shifts.

Stock Spirits and the Polish vodka market

Published 1342 days ago

Do the Poles drink vodka?  I learnt today listening to the results call of Stock Spirits (STCK) that apparently the drink made from the distillation of fermented cereal grains or potatoes accounts for 90% of the Polish spirits market.  Surely good news then for the mid cap producer and distributor of vodka brands such as the catchily named Zoladkowa, 1906 and (inevitably) Stock Prestige who is generally regarded as having Poland’s largest market share in the area.

Glencore – an update from the large cap mining sector coalface

Published 1343 days ago

For the mining sector the last couple of years have been almost a perfect storm with its biggest customer China having a growth slowdown and strength in the US dollar further crimping demand.  Throw in too the lagged impact of new mines commissioned in more bullish times coming on stream the supply/demand balance has been dire.  And so shares in the sector have plunged.

Challenges to continue for Europe despite Greek bailout

Published 1347 days ago

In the latest edition of Financial Orbit Speaks, Chris Bailey looks at continuing challenges in Europe despite the likelihood of a third Greek bailout, interpretations around the Chinese yuan movement, issues in the US and why individual corporate equity analysis remains the key.

Coca-Cola Hellenic’s shares go…pop!

Published 1348 days ago

Greece may only be a handful of percent of Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling’s (CCH) sales and profits but the malaise from the Eurozone’s most indebted member has overhung the share with its Greek heritage and shareholder base. 

Financial Orbit Speaks: Why US Dollar strength is bad for global growth

Published 1352 days ago

In the latest edition of Financial Orbit Speaks, Chris Bailey focuses on the impact of the recently strong US dollar, why this is unstable for the global economy and what areas to focus on if this there is a change in financial metric leadership. Click below to listen to the podcast.

esure’s turnaround plan: a mock opera singer

Published 1352 days ago

I ended my previous write-up on esure (ESUR) with the observation that ‘my conclusion is to leave the shares for other investors. That is – of course – unless it brings that Italian-Welsh mock opera singer back… ‘.

Who else out there, apart from LeniGas Cuba, is a Twitter fibber?

Published 1369 days ago

After Tom’s revelation yesterday about LeniGas Cuba’s… how to put this… “mysterious” leap in popularity on Twitter, we’ve been wondering at ShareProphets who else out there likes to pretend they are more popular than they actually are? As it turns out, this is a fun game and here’s how you can play along too.

Johnson Matthey: 19th Century heritage with 21st Century appeal

Published 1370 days ago

For those of you bemoaning the decline of British industrial ingenuity I present to you Johnson Matthey (JMAT): a company with a 19 Century heritage, the name of a provincial solicitor but 21st Century appeal.  Here’s why.

Tesco – every little improvement helps (and hello 225p again)

Published 1395 days ago

Well hello again a 225p Tesco (TSCO) share price.  Friday’s trading update still has plenty of grim headline news contained within it (-1.3% UK like-for-like sales performance and a general food retail market that is ‘still challenging and volatility is likely to remain a feature of short-term performance’) but Tesco shares had a better day.  

Chemring – no interest…is interesting

Published 1399 days ago

I am a strong believer in accountability and that’s why you will often find me referencing previous articles (good or bad) I have written on ShareProphets.  Chemring’s (CHG) results stood out to me today as I have written before about the specialty defence company noting approximately a year ago at approximately the same share price that the share was worth holding. 

Poundland: blame those damn loom bands!

Published 1404 days ago

Hands up if you know someone who is still crazy about loom bands? If I had asked that question a year ago I would have been inundated by parents bemoaning the hundreds of tiny plastic bands everywhere in their homes not to mention the number of ‘right on’ people actually wearing the luminous creations.  But today?  Tumbleweed…

Another Poor Result: APR Energy and me – the confession

Published 1406 days ago

My name is Chris, I am an experienced investor with years of successful institutional and personal investing behind m,e but I would like to confess guilty to the charge that I have made a bad call.  I accept that the Sheriff of AIM in a rare cross-jurisdictional move into the Main Market is correct in his judgements in his generous oral testimony here.

Tom Winnifrith Bearcast 16 June - homage to Chris Bailey

Published 1407 days ago

Chris Bailey of Financial Orbit is on my mind for three reasons and I explain why. One of them is APR Energy which I discuss and Chris will post on later. I also look at two China POS stocks, the fraud Sorbic and Auhua Clean Energy. Then at Thor Mining, Trap Oil and Mosman Oil & Gas. Then it is onto the boiler room stocks: Inspirit, Sabien and Flowgroup. Warning: this podcast contains both bad language and also a lot of racist generalisations about folks from Australia and New Zealand with the exception of Kylie Minogue (pictured) who can, of course, do no wrong.

Government share placings: nothing to fear but fear itself, ref RBS, Lloyds and Royal Mail

Published 1412 days ago

The Depression era US President Franklin Roosevelt is probably not often mentioned on this site but his dictum that ‘there is nothing to fear but fear itself’ is inadvertently one of the best pieces of stock market advice you are likely to read. Let’s consider this in respect of some of Britain’s best loved bank shares Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and Lloyds (LLOY).

HSBC: Hooray Some Bloomin’ Cost cuts

Published 1413 days ago

The only story of real interest in UK larger cap shares today is a strategy update by the banking behemoth HSBC (HSBA) which has finally got some focus on what they it wants its business to look like in a few years time.  I noted a little over a month ago that:

Did anyone really think Vodafone was going to be taken over?

Published 1417 days ago

I read on the internet that ‘the Vodafone logo was designed in 1997 by Saatchi & Saatchi. The colour is red (Pantone 485)’.  Well then yesterday there are Pantone 485 coloured faces amongst certain professional investors, as the FTSE-100 giant Vodafone (VOD) said in a regulatory statement today that it was ‘not in discussions with Liberty Global concerning a combination of the two companies’.  At the time of writing this knocked a couple of percentage off Vodafone’s share price which now sits over five percent off its multi-year high of a week or two ago. 

Aggreko’s booted out of the FTSE-100…therefore it is time to buy:

Published 1418 days ago

You have to be careful of trading rules because as soon as they become gospel they tend to not work.  I have noticed however that when a stock is booted out of the FTSE-100 it often provides a buying opportunity.  This is because in today’s panicky financial market world passive tracker vehicles, which mechanically buy or sell shares depending on inclusion (or not) in an index.  Add in the impact of certain ‘clever’ fund managers attempting to anticipate this impact by selling before any such judgement and the quarterly index change period can throw up some opportunities. 

Tom Winnifrith: I'm on sabbatical - "flip Flop" Ben Turney is in charge

Published 1423 days ago

As of midnight "flip flop" Ben "pitchfork" Turney will be editing this website as I am on leave for the next six to nine months. Let me explain.

Telecity’s epic last year ends with a takeover: another reason to think thematically

Published 1424 days ago

UK Investor Show attendees will know from the presentation I made there that I am a fan of Telecity (TCY) and its exposure, via its range of data centres, to the phenomenal growth in corporate data management requirements.  Today was the beginning of the end of the Telecity journey as it was confirmed that its large US peer Equinix will be making a takeover offer half in cash and half in Equinix shares.

Randgold Resources: fundamentals, technicals and a Free Speech and Liberty Xmas party challenge

Published 1427 days ago

A month or so ago at the UK Investor Show I sat on a panel with Ed of Stockopedia and Thierry the technical guru in a screens versus technicals versus fundamentals debate which you can watch here. To cut to the chase my view would be that whilst you should not close your mind off to anything the key for choosing investments for me are fundamental factors like cash flow, selected earnings indicators, the signalling around shareholder remuneration (dividends, buybacks etc) and management credibility and commentary.  In short some science (balance sheet), some art (reading primary company documentation) and a slug of psychology appraising the words and actions of management.  

Billiton:The world’s largest mining company does something investors should applaud

Published 1436 days ago

If there is one event that should fill investors with glee it is a spin-off.  Here’s the theory: a big, complex company decides to allow part of their business to separately list which in turn allows investors to appraise and the market to value the now two separated businesses independently.  And guess what?  Sometimes 2+2 =5 and sometimes 2+2=3.  In my experience it rarely leaves the combined market cap unchanged.  This is because either the spin-off is an underappreciated diamond or it is a piece of relative rubbish that investors should run a mile from and dump in the first few weeks of spun-out ownership. 

Europe’s guzzling of Coke Zero boosts Coca-Cola Hellenic

Published 1439 days ago

Forget austerity, economic malaise, grinding political angst and the magnitude of Greece’s debt the most important influence on the Greek-tinged but London listed Coca-Cola Hellenic (CCH)'s solid trading update today was… strong Coke Zero sales.

The good news is that the market for ripe bananas is booming , now for the bad news

Published 1444 days ago

Chris Bailey, the founder of Financial Orbit always finds the quirkiest data - this week it concerns ripe bananas. The bad news starts in China and ends up with some sage words from George Soros. Those who expect the equities surge to continue ad infinitum should spare a few minutes to listen to this podcast.

Telecity, Randgold, Aviva: UK Investor Show share tips newsfest frenzy

Published 1447 days ago

I am not sure if we should all be thinking about the General Election today or not but hopefully I will be able to squeeze in some time to vote given the newsfest frenzy on shares I am interested in around the world. Last month at the epic UK Investor Show I mentioned four UK stocks to the assembled audience (as you can watch here).  Three of them usefully gave interesting updates today.

Video of Chris Bailey interview at the Bloggers Cafe at UK Investor Show

Published 1447 days ago

Also at the bloggers cafe at UK Investor Show 2015 was Chris Bailey, City whizz kid turned editor of Financial Orbit

Being idiosyncratic (and why that includes having some HSBC in your portfolio)

Published 1449 days ago

In my youth I used to come back from overseas investment research trips brimming with new ideas and insights.  Having spent much of the period since the superlative UK Investor Show in the US of A I would hope to be able to say that opportunities are a-plenty.  But they are not.  Here’s a few of my notes from speaking with global investors far cleverer / richer than me at a conference in California a few days ago:

UK Investor Show Video: Picking stocks with Ed Croft, Chris Bailey & Thierry Laduguie

Published 1458 days ago

Stockpicking - that is what you all wanted to hear about at the UK Investor Show 2015 and as such a packed out presentation with more than 800 folks crammed into a 700 person theatre came from Ed Croft of Stockopedia, Chris Bailey of Financial Orbit and "the miserable froggie" the great Thierry Laduguie.

Tesco: don’t look at your holding for three years or don’t bother

Published 1462 days ago

It might be a heavy corporate earnings results day around the world but for tomorrow’s business pages the lead story is already obvious following the disclosure earlier by Tesco (TSCO) that it lost a cool £6.4 billion in the last full financial year. 

UK Investor Show – come chat to us at the Bloggers Café: tickets start landing today

Published 1474 days ago

To save me answering a few emails, tickets for the UK Investor Show should start landing today. By tomorrow all bar 40 of the 2000 tickets should have landed so if you have booked and not got a ticket by Thursday PM email me on [email protected] and I will sort it out. The show is now just 10 days away and there are still 40 tickets available so if you want one book NOW at – there are many reasons to book but one is “The bloggers café”

Buying BG Means a Tasty Profit When the Shell Marriage Goes Through.

Published 1474 days ago

Hello Share Tweakers. The BG (BG.) takeover story started very well with a rise of 40% on the share price of a few days earlier. That was because Royal Dutch Shell (RDSA), one of the biggest companies in the Footsie, seek a juicy merger.

Shell’s late Easter present for BG shareholders

Published 1476 days ago

Dissatisfied with your chocolate haul at Easter?  Well if you are a BG Group (BG.) shareholder than industry behemoth Royal Dutch Shell (RDSB) has been kind enough to offer you a late Easter present.  Today’s bid may only value BG shares back to a level seen in the middle of last year but at a theoretical near 50% premium to the previously prevailing share price.

Kingfisher and faith in the French (economy)

Published 1484 days ago

If I said ‘Kingfisher plc’ (KGF) to you what would be your first response?  Of course many of you are super smart and would immediately tell me that it owns B&Q, Screwfix and the more exotically named Castorama and Brico Depot, which collectively supply us with a range of DIY and home improvement materials across multiple geographies. 

Only buy EasyJet when its shares lose a bit of altitude

Published 1488 days ago

I was on an EasyJet (EZJ) plane yesterday and a generally fairly pleasant experience it was too.  Admittedly there were not free drinks or nibbles, I had to print out my own boarding card (in a personal technological first I actually downloaded it to my phone – who said you cannot teach an old dog new tricks!) and there were attempts to cross-sell me all sorts of things I did not want but as an overall A-to-B travel experience it was absolutely fine and did what it said on the tin without being too minimalist or crude. 

Why you can call Morrisons shares better than overpaid City analysts

Published 1503 days ago

One of the biggest fallacies of this whole investment game is that a sensible individual investor cannot beat the professionals expensively employed in the City of London.  As – I guess – a previous member of this latter club let me tell you a little secret: you can…and even in the trading in the largest of large companies out there.  Believe me the debate on Tesco (TSCO) on this website was far better than in most ‘professional’ circles. 

Far from sure about esure

Published 1505 days ago

I admit it: I’m a car insurance price tart.  When that time of the year comes around again I am more than happy to dump one car insurer for enough at the merest hint of a lower price for my simple cover requirements.  I’m pretty sure I have used esure (ESUR) before but frankly I might be wrong – they all blur into one after a while.

Great theme, big problems: so what do you do with APR Energy/Aggreko?

Published 1508 days ago

If you spot attractive investment themes early enough then profits should follow.  Much more of a challenges is working out what to do when a good structural theme has tactical challenges.  Take the temporary power world.  Demand by the emerging world for power far outstrips the ability of central governments to provide it and so temporary power providers like Aggreko (AGK) and APR Energy (APR) have a ready market for their services even before you consider opportunities at major sporting events or music festivals.  Over the last few years both have cleaned up and today stand proudly as key players in the global industry. 

April 18, Westminster, The Investor show of the year 75% sold out – book your seats today!

Published 1509 days ago

The final gold tickets went last week. There are now fewer than 500 of the 2000 £12 investor class seats left for the show of the year and at current rates they will be gone within weeks so book your seats TODAY for UK Investor Show 2015 and here are 5 reasons why – you can book HERE.

Greece: Kicking the can down the Cul De Sac

Published 1521 days ago

So - apparently - there is some element of a deal for Greece although the more I read about it the more I think that it is nothing really more than kicking the can down the road for four months at most. The trouble is that it does not get to the heart of the problem: debts that still need to be serviced or refinanced.  Given the only viable solution is a restructuring (which will have other repercussions) I really struggle to see how ultimately this is nothing more than a sticking plaster. And that is not all that is wrong with the world.

Is Centrica the new Tesco’s?

Published 1524 days ago

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. 

Growth and cost cutting: why you should look to buy Telecity

Published 1527 days ago

There are a few candidates for the most interesting UK company update over the last week but high on my list are a couple of updates from the premium carrier neutral data centre operator Telecity (TCY).  Regular readers will know it is a share that I have written positively about a number of times over the last year or so, most recently back in December when I noted that while ‘there has been a bit of huffing and puffing on the site about the old CEO’s exit but my view remains this is a business benefiting from the unbelievable growth in data need and usage with pretty reasonable barriers to entry.  I’ve bought it three times in 2014 with a ‘6’ in front of it and I would certainly recommend embracing any volatility because ultimately we are going back to the 1000p+ level…’ 

A most Excellent Financial Orbit – the financial world has gone mad edition

Published 1528 days ago

That is not the official title of this week’s Financial Orbit but my pal Chris Bailey should have used it. This is a most excellent edition covering the insanities of negative bond yields in Europe, the alarming disparity between earnings revisions and equity re-ratings on the S&P, data on new brokerage account openings in China and much else. To my friend Mr Bailey, I say “this is your best issue yet!”

Randgold Resources – confirming that it is the gold standard

Published 1532 days ago

A very pleasing set of numbers from Randgold Resources (RRS) earlier this week confirmed that it is clearly the best larger cap gold company in the world. The Q4/FY update reinforced its consistent achievement of the gold sector’s holy trinity of rising production/grade, all in cost control way under spot gold prices and a solid balance sheet (in its case now with net cash on it). 

The best news is that investors are less bullish

Published 1534 days ago

In the glow of the US jobs number on Friday (don't hold your breath for a quick interest rate rise in my view)...let's get back to some realities: the S&P 500 index is struggling to decisively break the 2,000 index point level. Looking longer term, I look back to 1500 for charting evidence that inflation – and thus rate rises – will come back before that long.

Big cap deal smackdown: Glaxo and BT Group

Published 1538 days ago

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. 

Greece, China, Japan, the US – where’s the value?

Published 1542 days ago

The first Highlights since mid-January due to travel finds the global financial markets at a similar point to which we left it: troubled and hence volatile. Still opportunistic too of course but you need to be brave, skilled or lucky (or maybe all three…).

AO World = An Opportunity Which Only Really Looks Disastrous (for shareholders)

Published 1562 days ago

Tom W has already mentioned a certain Mr Rose earlier today but it is another one of his chairmanship that particularly interests me today and that is at AO World (AO.). I looked at the self-styled ‘leading European online retailer of electrical products’ a few weeks ago and concluded that it would ultimately prove to be a car crash for investors based on an excitable valuation today in a sector with growth but ultimately wafer-thin margins and a high level of competition. 

Has Tesco Dave played a blinder?

Published 1565 days ago

As Tesco (TSCO) shareholders celebrate the return of a share price that begins with a ‘2’ what should we think of the turnaround plan rolled out by the company’s newish CEO Dave Lewis?

EEEK: a London-listed Greek stock you should seek out (if you are not a meek investor)

Published 1569 days ago

How many share tickers can you remember?  Of the hundreds that are floating around my head one of my favourites used to be ‘EEEK’ which stood for the eastern / central European focused soft drinks beverage producer/distributor Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling on the Greek stock market.  I have to say ‘used to be’ because in a rare display of austerity the ticker today is a truncated ‘EEE’ which is much less memorable. 

Why Gold Stocks will rebound sharply in 2015

Published 1570 days ago

I am glad to see that Chris Bailey is calling gold and gold stocks as a buy in his 2015 macro themes out today. As a gold bug that is music to my ears. I am still a believer! As is Jeb Handwerger. the editor of who was interviewed this week by my colleagues at Palisade Capital. Jeb explains clearly why this bombed out sector will rebound in 2015 but also why you have to be selective and how to be selective.

Chris Bailey’s share tips for 2015 No 2 - Aviva

Published 1572 days ago

Hopefully I don’t need to elaborate on the observation that the global economy has a few problems otherwise at this stage of the economic ‘rebound’ from the dark days of 2007-9 interest rates would be going up.  This warped environment favours a different sort of share and – sorry to say for any current employees who will be impacted – but Aviva’s (AV.) cost cutting heavy takeover of Friends Life (FLG) is just the sort of story that has a strong chance of working next year. 

Chris Bailey of Financial Orbit's share tips for 2015 No 1 - Reloading on Randgold Resources

Published 1575 days ago

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. 

In the market bloodbath…filtering the larger caps (part 2)

Published 1586 days ago

Whilst  part 1 was a romp through a few larger cap stories with cost cutting as a core theme, part 2 is a bit more edgy.  Looking at 2015 it seems to me that there are two themes that really make investors nervous.  The first is growth and the second is underperformance.

Is the third longest bull market in history sustainable?

Published 1605 days ago

No wonder investors are so bullish, we are now officially into the third longst bull market in history. But will it last? In this week's edition of Financial Orbit I flag up a number of worrying indicators. And just for Tom W one of the flashing warning signs is coming for the country where he now seems to live most of the time, Greece.

Poundland: worth more than one pound but don’t pay more than three…

Published 1608 days ago

When we look back on 2014 the market share gains by discounters in the retail sector will be one of the investment themes that will be remembered.  There is therefore a certain correctness in the timing of the Poundland (PLND) IPO earlier this year.  Unsurprisingly if you were lucky enough to buy some shares early on in its life as a public company you are currently at a capital loss but let’s not be too critical at least the business has shown a bit of form over the last few quarters.  It is not easy to generate a 4.7% like-for-like sales growth as Poundland did over the last six months.

Something UK companies should learn from Europe (and the rest of the world)

Published 1616 days ago

I nearly spat out my Sunday morning cornflakes when I read on the Telegraph’s finance section that ‘Quarterly reporting quietly comes to an end’.  Yes, apparently, the FCA have concluded that ‘Interim management statements, which generally cover three months of trading, were deemed too short a snapshot of a firm’s performance to properly inform investors’ and in order to encourage longer-term thinking any mandatory requirement to publish detailed has been scrapped. 

Equities may be up but the world remains unbalanced

Published 1619 days ago

A month ago global equity markets were in a state of complete panic.  Four weeks later markets are substantially up, sentiment has hugely recovered and investors are generally looking forward again to 2015…especially in the US.  Despite the market recovery of recent weeks the world remains clearly imbalanced.  That’s not to say there are now things to be doing and the technology, food retail and gold sectors were of particular interest to me this week. 

Looking for a consistent global view? Forget it

Published 1626 days ago

There’s a lot going on at the moment.  The impact of the US mid-term elections, implications from the monthly ECB meeting in Europe, changes in Russian, Japanese and Chinese policy-making plus volatility in foreign exchange rates and commodities and the ongoing Q3 earnings season (of course).  If you pull it all together a casual observer would conclude that the differentials and challenges are building.  Funny how not much of this is reflected in investor sentiment or volatility measures.  Maybe that’s the dulling impact of expanding global QE.  It feels to me much more of a specific world than that. 

Stockpicking the key and Europe the place to be

Published 1633 days ago

The end of a particularly brutal and volatile October.  Despite the exhausting nature of such financial markets now is not a time to relaxing. I note below the potential for more volatility across multi-asset classes as the combination of US optimism, Japanese policy shifts and European challenges meet with emerging market inherent growth of influence.  It is a time of volatility, an importance of putting the work in but also – as far as I can see it – of opportunity too. This remains a stock pickers world and in that context Europe surely offers the greatest opportunities as I explain in this week's Financial Orbit

After a volatile week – what next? Keep stock picking

Published 1647 days ago

That was a volatile week! As Fast FT noted though due to the bounce back on Friday it was not a wipe out week for index trackers: “The gains, though, weren't enough to erase losses for the week, with both the S&P 500 and Dow 1 per cent lower over the past five days – the fourth consecutive week of declines”. So what next? 

Two companies beginning with ‘R’: Royal & Sun Alliance and Rolls Royce

Published 1649 days ago

Well what a week and if you are a Rolls Royce (RR/) shareholder what an end to the week…but more on the perils of owning one of the favoured holdings of institutional professional fund managers in a minute. 

Amid the carnage and uncertainty there is value

Published 1654 days ago

Stockmarkets were exciting this week. In this issue of Financial Orbit I look at the looming deflation threat in Germany and the EuroZone but flag up the posdsibility of QE 4 in  the US. But amid the cranage there is value. The US earnings season has started and I look at a couple of value plays which reported - this is still a stock picker's market.

What should you do in the "new mediocre" - PICK STOCKS!

Published 1661 days ago

I should have thought of the phrase myself but Christine Lagarde’s observation that the clear risk for the global economy is of an extended ‘new mediocre’ era fits with many of my observations about the world. Investment life, however, is not about extended pessimism and the most important observation has to be that it will mean individual investment opportunities – namely stock picking – become more important. Starting with the UK:

SABMiller: the beer is getting a bit too warm

Published 1681 days ago

Back on the final day of January earlier this year I asked the question whether it was time to get the emerging market beers in? This slightly strange title question was a reference to the global brewer (with a particularly large geographic focus on Africa and Latin America) SABMiller (SAB), which, at that time, was buffeted by emerging markets concerns and kicking around the £27 share price level. 

Morrisons – reiteration now and a surprise to follow?

Published 1685 days ago

It would be fair to say an interim results statement from Morrisons (MRW) that reiterated their profit range and debt reduction hopes for the current financial year was not a consensus view amongst the (to quote a Chancellor of the Exchequer of yesteryear) ‘teenage scribblers’ that populate the professional analytical ranks of the City’s investment firms.  Still, sentiment towards the company feels as low as it was when I first wrote on the stock a couple of months ago.  The shares are certainly still kicking around the 170s. 

Tesco – a buy after the profits warning?

Published 1688 days ago

They say profits warnings come in Threes so is Tesco (TSCO) not a sell now? Chris Bailey reckons that it is a bargain basement buy and has made it the largest holding in his pension as you can see HERE. Clearly there are two points of view.

FTSE 100 at 14 year high but back in the real world

Published 1689 days ago

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...

Why I made Tesco the largest holding in my pension fund this morning

Published 1698 days ago

Last business day of the month.  Last day of a departing CEO’s corporate reign.  Last chance to ‘kitchen sink’ the corporate earnings guidance numbers in the UK’s largest food retailer? A share price back to the level of a decade ago and a 75% cut in the interim dividend does not make pretty headlines.

Telecity: changing the CEO is not a disaster

Published 1701 days ago

The post bank holiday cobwebs were well and truly blown away by this morning’s Telecity (TCY) regulatory statement innocuously titled ‘Board Change’.  No third level non-executive director shuffling his range of fee paying obligations…no, this was a big one: the resignation of the CEO. 

It’s….Groundhog Day for the FTSE100

Published 1705 days ago

I would hope that most of you have had the opportunity to watch Groundhog Day one of the greatest films, in my view, of the last generation.  Fortunately I am not about to go into a reverie about twenty plus year old films but talk about a couple of stock market related Groundhog Days. Bring up a chart of the FTSE-100 over the last couple of years…  

Its a switcheroo stockmarket

Published 1710 days ago

Change is good for all of us but in financial market terms it can causes those difficult transition points which investors –extrapolating the past into the future – can dislike. What strikes me most about today’s financial markets is the fusion between change and sentiment.

Weekly Financial Video Postcard #45 – reasons to be very cautious

Published 1715 days ago

Sitting on his newly constructed eco-loo in The Greek Hovel, Tom Winnifrith reflects on how much he is enjoying living on Greece but – sadly for Quindell (QPP) shareholders he is going to have to come back to the UK at some stage.

Where we are now with my eight most recent share tips?

Published 1725 days ago

A week ago I published a review of the status of some of my tips I originally made a few months ago (here ).  So how about some of the more recent names I have mentioned? I am happy to say that on balance I am, well ahead!

Update on my eight share tips number 2

Published 1732 days ago

According to the excellent ShareProphets website search functionality it is over 140 days since I wrote a piece titled ‘Update on 8 share tips’.  In the spirit of continued openness and accountability, how are these eight tips looking and what would be my view now?

Watch Out: 2014 is 2000 again & Worrying lessons from Sweden - This week's Financial Orbit

Published 1738 days ago

Financial Orbit is one year old - congratulatons to Chris Bailey. This week's edition makes fascinating reading - the 2014/2000 comparisons and clear signals for the world economy from Sweden (yes really) are fascinating. And make grim reading for the bulls.

Should you put Morrisons shares in your shopping trolley?

Published 1741 days ago

At the start of the year a Morrisons’ (MRW) share was worth about 270p, whereas today you can own a stake in the UK’s fourth largest supermarket chain at a share price in the 170s.  So much for supermarkets being defensive businesses, but is there any hope for this chain?  

Consumer debt, Portugal and the real reasons to be scared explained by Financial Orbit

Published 1745 days ago

This week’s issue of Financial Orbit by Chris Bailey explians the Portugal issue and looks at consumer debt and then finds a few more reasons why the bulls should be scared.

Bill Gates on headlines (and why it is good news for Serco):

Published 1754 days ago

Even Bill Gates has not been immune to a few bad headlines in his wildly successful corporate life. His point is well made, however, and is deeply applicable to the stock market.  One of the hardest aspects for anyone – beginner or experienced investor – to fully appreciate is the role of expectations or to put it more simply: what is factored in already. One of the best ways to gauge what is factored into a share price currently is to look at the reaction to what – at first glance – is a good or bad news headline. And this brings us to Serco (SRP).

Nigel Wray, Chris Bailey, Paul Kavanagh and Ed Croft – value investing 2014 on video

Published 1755 days ago

Britain’s Buffett, Nigel Wray led the value investing session at UK Investor 2014 and what an educational and sparky session it was as you can see in the video below. Wray was as humble as ever but Britain’s Buffett did not pick up that nickname by chance.

Chemring – second bite at the cherry

Published 1763 days ago

With events in Iraq, Syria and Ukraine continuing to rumble on, you would have thought that a defence company would be an ideal investment – especially one with strong global market positions in pyrotechnics and countermeasures plus developing exposure in the growing sensors/electronics areas.  Chemring (CHG) has been a volatile investment, however, and at the time of writing is once again below 200p a share having been at 285p as recent as March.  I noted an opportunity in Chemring shares back in January and enjoyed the sharp rise, but now the shares are back to the multi-year low levels of last November.

Croda – why I've doubled my position

Published 1764 days ago

Was it really 187 days ago when I wrote about Croda International (CRDA) and Vedanta (VED) exiting the FTSE-100 and maybe providing a buying opportunity?  Vedanta has worked well enough (and I have been taking some profits but, of course, do your own work and come to your own conclusions) but Croda has returned to the c. £22 share price level today it was in mid-December after a short Q2 pre-close statement.

The latest issue of Financial Orbit Highlights is out - download June 2014 issue here

Published 1765 days ago

Time really does just fly past.  It has been about a couple of months since my last Highlights publication – apologies for that – but the ever expanding range of activities under the Financial Orbit banner has kept me very busy.  The good news is that new articles have been appearing on every day despite the busy schedule…and the even better news is that I am looking to augment this with a restyled highlights piece each Saturday of four or five pages in length (of which this is the first one).

Forget the football wail have a look at the Royal Mail

Published 1768 days ago

Despite the inevitable national torpor following events in Brazil yesterday it is time to pull yourself out of the depths of misery and think about shares.  Well today one share in particular: the Royal Mail (RMG).  Now you probably remember trading this one late last year (or early this year) and selling your IPO allocation somewhere either side of the 6 quid level if you were clever, lucky or both.  Have you checked the share price recently?  No longer a ‘6’ in front of it. Not even a ‘5’…but a ‘4’.  The low 480s to be precise at the time of writing.

Go to the beach if you want but don’t buy an index fund (part 2)

Published 1775 days ago

In part 1 of these articles I talked about the need to avoid index funds and the importance of stock picking focusing on growth or ‘proper returns to shareholders’.  Now, in part 2, I focus on the second of these two investment themes.

Part 1 - Go to the beach if you want but don’t buy an index fund!

Published 1778 days ago

It is probably a good thing that England’s World Cup games are in a completely different time zone; otherwise already poor trading volumes are likely to become worse than negligible.  With the FTSE100 putting a little bit more clear air between itself and the 6,800 point resistance level the easy conclusion for the stock market watcher is to catch a few of the intermittent sun rays and a lot of the ‘summer of sport’.

Think before you leap! A check-list for Buyers & Sellers of Company Shares

Published 1785 days ago

‘It is naught, it is naught, saith the buyer: but when he is gone his way, then he boasteth’ – unknown author on bargaining

Adam Reynolds, the Company Rescuer, Speaker No. 28 at UK Investor Show 2015

Published 1795 days ago

Following the mammoth success of UK Investor Show 2014 we are moving into overdrive for the 2015 show on April 18 and one new feature will be a series of 14 one hour masterclasses with an audience limited to 80 – we are taking on an additional floor in Westminster.

Telecity: ignore the rotation influence

Published 1799 days ago

It is all about rotation I am told.  Telecity (TCY) shares remain above where I talked positively about them in early December and early March, but frustratingly they are only a few percentage points to the good. Even so, as I explain below, this is still a stock I am happy to hold. 

BSkyB goes all European – and it is good news

Published 1807 days ago

I got two regulatory disclosure news alerts in my inbox this morning from BSkyB.  The first was the regular share buyback announcement and the second concerned some of the rumours that appeared in the weekend press.  As the statement by the company to the market today notes:

UK Investor Show 2014 video - Stephen Streater of Forbidden Technologies

Published 1828 days ago

Direct from the Queen Elizabeth Conference Centre a video featuring a UK Investor Show 2014 presentation by Stephen Streater of Forbidden Technologies (FBT)

Nigel Wray & Ed Croft keynote speakers on Value Investing - UK Investor Show video 2014

Published 1831 days ago

Direct from the main stage at the Queen Elizabeth Conference Centre, featuring Nigel Wray, Ed Croft, Chris Bailey, and Paul Kavanagh - the topic is value investing man vs machine


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