• Text size      
  • Send this article to a friend
  • Print this article

John Phelps's portfolio

A SUPER-CHARGED performance by the Drax power generation group brought some cheer to a drab stock market last week and helped us to record another overall gain for our four portfolios.

We tipped shares in the coal-fired generator a fortnight ago because of its generous dividend policy, but saw prospects transformed last week when the UK government agreed to help finance a switch to biomass production - burning woodchips, in layman's language.

Recent buyers believe benefits from the switch means it is now only a matter of time before Drax receives a takeover bid from one of the Big Six energy companies and its share price responded with a rise of more than 10% over the week.

Scots transport giant Stagecoach was another tip to move against the general trend, with a useful rise after directors announced a hefty dividend rise. And Smiths Industries gained ground on gossip about a potential offer for its medical supplies operation.

The 2012 portfolio was the main beneficiary, with its value increasing almost 3% over a week when most leading shares had drifted lower on concerns about a cutback in the American stimulus programme.

The 2013 selections also managed a small rise, helped by further support for Dunfermline-based retinal imaging group Optos after its recent trading statement, as well as the Stagecoach gain. But profit-taking in shares of Greenock's British Polythene Industries contributed to a 0.8% slippage in the value of the 2011 portfolio.

The 2010 portfolio - due to be liquidated at the end of the month - recorded a similar fall after publishing group Pearson was hit by concerns over its major US interests and is now only fractionally above our 100% appreciation target. But we still expect to hold on to the double-your-money figure.

Contextual targeting label: 
Finance

Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on HeraldScotland on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis.
If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.

200070