Shares in focus: Centrica’s comeback trail

The utility has had a rough ride, but the bad news is in the price, says Phil Oakley.

Utility companies such as Centrica are supposed to be relatively safe investments. We all need to heat and light our homes and that should mean a utility’s profits are quite predictable – which should in turn lead to chunky dividends that grow in line with inflation.

However, in recent years utilities haven’t been as safe as you might expect. That’s because back in the late 1990s, the government decided to remove price controls from the household electricity and gas markets. Competition [...]

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