Three to buy
The market for price comparison sites is growing strongly, with more than two-thirds of consumers using them to find an insurance product, says market research firm Mintel. MoneySupermarket.com boasts excellent cash generation, and with peers such as GoCompare.com now joining the stockmarket, investor interest in the sector is only likely to grow. Buy in ahead of financial results due at the end of February. 333.5p
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Low & Bonar
The Mail on Sunday
Manufacturer Low & Bonar makes lightweight yarns and fibres from plastic polymers. Profits rose 6.6% in the year to 30 November and the dividend yield is now more than 4%. The group specialises in high-end materials that are not easily copied and is expanding into China and the US. There "could be substantial rewards over the next few years". 71p
The Sunday Times
Glaxo staked its future on a controversial strategy of selling cheap drugs in high volume to emerging markets rather than focusing on expensive treatments for rare diseases. In an era when a Trump tweet on drug pricing can "cause healthcare stocks to plunge", that move "now looks smart". 1,547p
Three to sell
It is a bad sign when a firm's management focuses on the share price instead of the business. Online bingo operator Jackpotjoy has switched its listing from Toronto to London, partly because it thinks gambling stocks are valued higher in the UK. But management risks taking its eye off the ball: Jackpotjoy has a "considerable amount of debt" and operates in some tough markets. 630p
The Sunday Telegraph
The arrival of Australian home-improvements retailer Bunnings in the UK poses a threat to B&Q owner Kingfisher. Yet chief executive Veronique Laury seems to have shrugged the risk off.It is too early to assess the results of Laury's plan to revamp Kingfisher by 2021, but analysts have raised doubts and now there's more competition. Investors can find better value elsewhere. 338.75p
Aberdeen Asset Management
Aberdeen had an "awful first quarter" with assets under management falling and signs that the problems will continue. The share price has now lost £1 since October and there are no obvious reasons why this trend should be reversed.A 7.8% dividend yield is the main thing supporting the shares, but even that may not be assured."This is one falling knife best avoided." 249.75p
And the rest
The Daily Telegraph
Student accommodation builder Watkin Jones offers an attractive 4.8% dividend yield and has no debt (137.5p). Recruitment firm Staffline, which supplies staff to Asda and Tesco, is growing fast, yet the shares are cheap on a forecast price/earnings ratio of nine (1,073p). Despite the gloom about buy-to-let, niche landlord lenders such as OneSavings should prosper (344p).
Half-year results at drinks giant Diageo suggest it is wrestling back business in the US (2,241p). With the government keen to solve housing shortages, brick-maker Ibstock is well placed (186.5p). A growing balance sheet and talk of a takeover make FTSE 350 gold-miner Acacia Mining a solid pick (410p).
A proposed merger between Vodafone's Indian operation and Idea Cellular could take the sting out of a fierce price war (194p). Sports nutritionist Science in Sport could become a takeover target (83.25p). Oil and gas producer SDX Energy has raised $40m to fund new asset purchases in North Africa (38.25p). Satellite Solutions Worldwide could fill Europe's internet coverage gap (8.75p).
Food supplier Cranswick is a "good long-term growth stock" (2,300p). A crackdown on fixed-odds betting terminals shouldn't affect gambling group 32Red (139p). Specialist asset manager Intermediate Capital Group's move to a different business model means more reliable earnings (692.5p).
A German view
Morgan Stanley's infrastructure fund has just bought a 29% stake in Germany's VTG, Europe's biggest private goods-wagon leasing group. No wonder: the long-term outlook is auspicious. Most of the freight wagons in Europe belong to national railway companies, but many of these are struggling so private operators are gaining market share. VTG has broadened its range of wagons it started out with tankers for chemicals and fuels, but now also owns covered goods wagons and container shipping, says WirtschaftsWoche. The European fleet has been digitalised, with a small box on each wagon allowing users to monitor the location and load in real time, bolstering efficiency. And the US arm looks well placed to benefit from the new government's infrastructure investment programme.
The initial public offering of Ramsdens, a pawnbroker and financial services provider, which is set to launch on London's Aim stockmarket on 15 February, has been overshadowed by all the talk of tech firm Snap's mega-IPO. Based in Middlesbrough where it sponsors the local Premier League football team Ramsdens operates 127 shops in the north of England, Scotland and Wales. It buys and sells jewellery and precious metals, sells travel money, and offers pawnbroking loans, and says it served more than 700,000 customers in the past year. Ramsdens is backed by private-equity firm NorthEdge Capital, which will retain a minority stake. The flotation aims to raise £15.6m, valuing the company at £26.5m. The shares are expected to be floated at 86p.
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