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Robert Stephens, CFA

Margin of safety makes Lloyds attractive

Margin of safety makes Lloyds attractive

5 mins. to read

Lloyds (LON:LLOY) has a valuation which I think is exceptionally cheap. I feel this will be important during 2017, since there are clear risks facing investors. For example, Brexit talks are about to commence and according to the President of the EU Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, the two-year period will see the EU adopt a tough…

Dollar strength makes Unilever a no-brainer for US rivals

Dollar strength makes Unilever a no-brainer for US rivals

5 mins. to read

Kraft Heinz’s bid for Unilever (LON:ULVR) will not be the last takeover approach for the Anglo-Dutch business, in my opinion. The strength of the US dollar makes it an obvious move not only for Kraft Heinz, but for other US-based consumer goods companies who wish to tap into the stunning growth potential of emerging markets.…

Aviva is a stock for all seasons

Aviva is a stock for all seasons

5 mins. to read

Predicting the future is fraught with difficulty. Even during the most genteel of trading conditions, risks can come along which even the most pessimistic, doom-mongering of investors didn’t see coming. Given the uncertainties facing investors at the moment, I think it’s even more challenging than ever to guess which way the market is going to…

Why Imperial Brands could be a takeover target

Why Imperial Brands could be a takeover target

5 mins. to read

The tobacco sector looks ripe for consolidation. Already in recent months, sector heavyweight British American Tobacco has sought to merge with Reynolds. There are also continued rumours about a potential re-merger between Altria and Philip Morris. This scope for M&A activity is coming along for two main reasons, in my opinion. First, cigarette volumes are…

This factor could hold the key to Tullow Oil’s future

This factor could hold the key to Tullow Oil’s future

5 mins. to read

Low interest rates have incentivised borrowing in recent years. There has been little reason for companies to reduce their debt levels. Therefore, businesses in a range of sectors have leveraged up their balance sheets in order to improve shareholder returns. This has helped to boost profits and generated higher returns for investors. However, a more…

Randgold’s income attractions are shining through

Randgold’s income attractions are shining through

5 mins. to read

In my view, dividend investing is about more than simply buying a handful of high-yielding shares. I focus less on yield than most dividend investors and more on dividend growth. A long-term investment horizon dictates that a stock which can grow dividends quickly may be worth more than a company with a high yield. Fast-rising…

Housing crisis makes this house builder a strong buy

Housing crisis makes this house builder a strong buy

4 mins. to read

In recent decades, house prices have become a national obsession. Other countries across Europe seem to lack this constant focus on how much house prices have changed in the last month, quarter or year. However, in the UK the love of rising house prices looks set to stay in the long run. The reason for…

Why easyJet has become an ‘easy buy’

Why easyJet has become an ‘easy buy’

5 mins. to read

The FTSE 100 has surged 17% in the last year, but easyJet (LON:EZJ) has slumped 38%. For some investors, a large share price fall could dissuade them from buying. However, I’ve always been more interested in buying shares which have fallen in price. I think they often offer less risk, not more risk, and such…

Rolls-Royce’s recovery has wings

Rolls-Royce’s recovery has wings

4 mins. to read

While Donald Trump’s victory in the US election was unpopular, there will inevitably be some winners from his Presidency. One sector which could record higher profitability as a result of his win is the defence sector. His promise of greater military spending and the possibility of rising defence spending among NATO members means the sector…

Shire has defensive appeal

Shire has defensive appeal

5 mins. to read

Since the inauguration of Donald Trump on Friday, market conditions have become increasingly volatile. The FTSE 100 has fallen by as much as 70 points since then, bringing its total decline for the last six trading sessions to 170 points (2.3%). This decline may or may not continue, but in any case it seems likely…