Saturday, 16 May 2015

Contemplations and watchlists.

Frustrating few weeks watching and waiting, and telling myself to be patient.
But when does patience drift into fear and apathy?

Having worked hard this last few years to change behaviours and be patient, I've tried to wait for opportunities to buy targets, or at least for markets to pause for a few days, rather than jump in as soon as I have a mind to.
But, the last few weeks of volatility (could be said for this year so far even), and then break out news is proving frustrating for a number of candidates which have reacted to election forecasts and then election results with a smattering of reporting news thrown in for good measure.

So the companies I'm currently watching then: 
Lloyds @ 89p, 52 week low - 71.92p;
BHP Billiton 1533p, 52 week low - 1276p; 
Bellway @ 2230p, 52 week low - 1352p;
Telford Homes @ 485p, 52 week low - 267.25p;
Telecom Plus @ 831p, 52 week low - 752.5p

added to long running companies like:
Standard Chartered @ 1051.5p, 52 week low - 881p;
VW @ 215.3 Euros, 52 week low - 150.7 Euros, and 1 GBP: 1.38 Euro.
Google @ $546.49, 52 week low - $497.06, and £1: $1.57

Lloyds is very much back in the spotlight with a resumption of dividends, the hive-off of TSB, and the Governments reducing stake. The strategy of the latter seeming to be a saved up pressure to reduce the share price by force of numbers.
However, the recent trading statement ahead of the election reversed recent pullbacks with a 10% gain on the day, and this momentum continued after the election outcome.
But there could be momentum over the next few years as the company continues to "recover" and return to a norm of tangible returns in the form of a dividend,

BHP is off its lows this year and has an upcoming split off of lower value assets into a separate trading company to contend with but with the double impact of a floundering oil price and reduced commodity demand and prices, now might be a good entry point if you can believe that industrial demand for commodities and oil will return.

Bellway and Telford, are both in construction and stem from my frustration at not being able to build a stake in Barratts. Again, the potential of a different election outcome served to pull these companies back, but they have subsequently turned around with 10% gains.

Telecom Plus is still a quandary for me trading mainly through the Utilities Warehouse brand, it has retreated in recent months following disappointments but if the long term story is still intact then this could be a good entry point to a long term dividend play.

Standard Chartered is all about recovering its mojo. It has the obvious significant exposure to the Far East and emerging market, but has a slightly battered reputation to repair.
A new board is being put together but questions remain about the balance sheet and if a fund raising/dividend cut is still required. 
The potential dividend cut being the pause on me, although if I had gone in at £8-£9 then I don't think I would be concerned but hindsight is a wonderful thing.

VW is another niggle as I seem to have watched it from 100 Euros to 175 Euros, pulling back to 130 and 150 Euros, before breaking 200 Euros. Again it appears to be pulling back and sits at 215 Euros.
Doubts over the Euro have held me back and currently I'm trying to understand if the current strength of sterling might give me a possible entry now that it appears to be 10% in sterling's favour.

Google might, or might not, seem an odd one, particularly as it has never paid a dividend, however, I have started to adopt the long term view of thinking which companies will still be around us in the future.
At some stage I expect Google will begin to pay a dividend, its just not close enough to predict currently.

And, as with utility companies, and the long running concerns over pricing and profits etc. I know that its likely I'm always going to need or be a customer of certain companies, so I might as well be a shareholder and for a small upfront investment, benefit year on year, in much the same way as if they were co-operatives.
If Google, or any other company, is going to be servicing you and your family, and your society, and the world over a lifetime, and be profitable, then they seem to be prime candidates for a long term, low maintenance portfolio regardless of economic cycles.

So it seems to be a difficult judgement (and one I'm struggling with), being patient but then recognising when the price range is acceptable against the long term story rather than trying to get THE best price.

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