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If you'd invested in: Anglo American and Northgate

Miner Anglo American has seen its share price quadruple, while vehicle-hire firm Northgate has suffered a slide in profits.

If only...

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Anglo American (LSE: AAL) is a mining firm with operations on all continents. Its share price has almost quadrupled in the past two years. Last month the firm announced results for 2017. In that year it generated $5bn of free cash flow, allowing it to declare a full-year dividend of $1.02 a share, its highest level in a decade, and to halve net debt to $4.5bn. It also saw a 45% rise in underlying earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation to $8.8bn, which led to a doubling in earnings per share to $2.48. The shares dipped slightly as investors were expecting a bigger dividend.

Be glad you didn't...

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Northgate (LSE: NTG) is a commercial vehicle-rental business operating in the UK and Spain. In June last year its share price plunged after results for the year ending 30 April showed a 7% decrease in profits from £77.6m to £72.2m. It was blamed on a drop in rented vehicles to 39,500, down from 42,400 vehicles the year before, causing major shareholders to push for the firm to sell itself for £800m. Half-year results to the end of October showed revenues up by 10% at £349m, but much of this came on the back of the recovering Spanish economy. Pre-tax profits slumped by 16% to £33m.

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