Share tips of the week

MoneyWeek’s comprehensive guide to the best of this week’s share tips form the rest of the UK's financial pages.

Three to buy

BT

The Sunday Telegraph

The one-time phone monopoly has been fighting a losing battle with regulators over its Openreach fibre network, which Ofcom wants opened up to competitors. Add in an Italian accounting scandal and the shares have had a "rotten run" since 2016. Nonetheless, the mobile arm EE has performed strongly, management has reduced spending on Premier League TV rights and the dividend looks reasonably secure. 248p

London Stock Exchange

The Times

A period of share-price volatility in February may have disconcerted investors, but it was good news for the stock exchange, which benefited from higher trading volumes. Leave aside last year's aborted merger with Deutsche Brse and the LSE "remains a top-class operation" as it evolves into a broader financial data and technology player. The exchange may yet prove a tasty takeover target for bigger transatlantic rivals, and it offers a reliable income stream in the meantime. 4,304p

Strix

Shares

Whether you own a "posh Bosch" or a "discount Russell Hobbs", chances are the gadget that turns off your kettle once it has boiled is made by Strix. The business manufactures safety controls for 70 million kettles every year and boasts a 40% share of the global market. Electric-kettle demand is rising worldwide, boosted mainly by China, and risk-averse suppliers prefer to stick with a brand they know when it comes to safety. The dividend yield is 5% this year and rising in 2019, making Strix a "super income and growth investment". 140p

Three to sell

Dart Group

Investors Chronicle

Shares in the Jet2 owner have soared to an all-time high in the wake of the collapse of rival airline Monarch last year, but the good times can't last forever. With demand for flights strong, competitors are likely to lay on new capacity, which will increase pressure on pricing. Higher fuel costs will bring tighter margins, and Brexit means a permanent cloud of uncertainty hangs over the sector. Now is a "good time to disembark". 854p

Kaz Minerals

The Times

Shares in this copper producer have almost doubled over the last year on the back of rising metals prices. The firm claims that the operating costs of its new opencast Kazakh mines are among the lowest in the world, while operations and production remain robust. Yet with "uncomfortably high" debt levels topping $2.2bn, any reversal of the copper price perhaps triggered by a slowdown in the vital Chinese market could yet leave the business in the lurch. Avoid. 916.25p

Record

Shares

This investment manager specialises in helping large institutional investors such as pension funds hedge against foreign-exchange risks in their portfolios. Ongoing currency-market volatility should be a boon for Record, but the share price fell 10% after results showed that assets-under-management equivalents fell $1.7bn in the last quarter. With more clients opting for defensive passive hedging strategies, the group may struggle to generate any performance fees. Investors should cut their losses. 43p

...and the rest

The Daily Telegraph

Improved performance in the Middle East has boosted international healthcare operator Mediclinic (688.5p).

Investors Chronicle

A majority of housebuilder Countryside's profits come from contracts to build affordable homes, making it lower risk than many of its peers (366.5p). Improving margins and a 4.5% yield mean newsagent McColl's should be able to shrug off the collapse of a wholesale supplier (250p). Shares in precious-metals miner Polymetal have been hit by poor sentiment towards Russia, but risk-tolerant investors may spy a bargain (696p).

The Mail on Sunday

Start-up mining companies such as lithium explorer Bacanora can be a roller-coaster, but the shift to electric cars means the current share price could be a steal (87p).

Shares

A strong set of first-half results adds to confidence in automotive testing firm AB Dynamics (1,019p). Results for sub-prime lender Non-Standard Finance were weak, but keep the faith (65.5p). The self-storage market is undersupplied, leaving scope for Lok'nStore to double in value if it delivers on its growth plans (405p).

The Times

The "rapid demise" of investment banking at Deutsche Bank may boost Barclays' own operations, and the shares still look cheap (209.5p). Online fashion business Boohoo looks a "solid prospect" (178.75p). Those looking to gold as a hedge against pricey stocks might take a punt on gold miner Randgold Resources just watch out for political risks in Africa that have plagued the shares of late (5,710p).

A Swedish view

Forestry and paper is a hot sector and that's been good news for suppliers on the outskirts of the industry such as Ponsse, a Finnish manufacturer of forest machinery, says Affrsvrlden. The firm specialises in forwarders and harvesters machines needed to efficiently extract timber from logging forests. In the last quarter, sales grew by almost 10%, while its order book expanded by 50% to €174m. Sales have risen from €225m ten years ago to €577m last year. Over the same period, it has also reported solid profits, with operating margins now close to 12%. Ponsse's future prospects are favourable as the industry heads towards increasing automation. The stock trades on a price/earnings ratio of 19.

IPO watch

Wireless-speaker business Sonos is preparing for an initial public offering (IPO) in June or July, which could value the company at as much as $3bn, says The Wall Street Journal.The firm, based in Southern California, hopes to raise roughly $200m from the float. It has already raised about $110m in primary funding from investors. Last autumn, chief executive Patrick Spence said its revenue for 2017 was on track to exceed $1bn. Sonos has recently moved into the smart-speaker business, partnering with rivals such as Amazon, Apple and Alphabet. Last year it released its first smart speaker, the $199 Sonos One, powered by Amazon's Alexa voice assistant.

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