Wednesday, November 14
Babcock (BAB) - hold.
Northern Foods (NRK) a buy if you're brave enough.
Hold - Great Portland (GPOR).
Cable & Wireless (CW.) pay sends wrong message.
Emap (EMA) pension buyout.
Things improve at Vodafone (VOD).
Tiddler to Watch:
EBT Mobile (EBT).
Anglo American (AAL) falls on Xstrata (XTA) bidding rumour.
Intercede (IGP) may benefit from news of 5,000 illegal immigrants being employed as security guards.
Lex : Cautious Macquarie - things are different Down Under.
US and European banks disclose ever bigger write-offs, Australia's Macquarie Group has no such problems and is still on the up.
Vodafone (VOD) rising - Vodafone's consolidated operating profits are equivalent to around 60% of tangible fixed assets which means it will be exposed to regulatory threats.
Wal-Mart (WAL) rebounds - after failing to lure higher-paying customers , Wal-Mart has gone back to basics - keeping inventories tight and costs low.
Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) stakebuilding gives a boost to the FTSE
Johnson Service Group (JSG) could receive a bid from Industri Kapital.
Asos (ASC) in favour.
Buy VT Group (VTG).
Hold Northern Foods (NFDS).
Buy Kewill Systems (KWL).
Limited options for Mervyn King on interest rates.
China's threat to BHP (BLT)/Rio (RIO) mining merger.
Barclays (BARC) and Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) lifted by stakebuilding talk.
Hold Vodafone (VOD).
Buy Lavendon Group (LVD).
Inflation won't allow a rate cut.
Property is the latest hot spot.
Mystery buyer lifts Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS).
Renewed bid hopes lift Asos (ASC).
Tuesday, November 13
ABN Amro repeats hold stance on Standard Chartered (STAN), target raised to £18 from £17.
Citigroup upgrades both G4S (GFS) and Electrocomponents (ECM) from sell to hold.
Cazenove reiterates outperform Cable & Wireless (CW.).
Goldman Sachs upgrades both Vedanta (VED) and Unilever (ULVR) from sell to neutral and upgrades William Hill (WMH) from neutral to buy.
Evolution has a buy for Sterling Energy (SEY).
Merrill Lynch starts coverage of Daily Mail & General Trust (DMGO) with a buy rating and target of 680p.
HSBC underweight F&C Asset Management (FCAM), but raises target from 150p to 170p.
Numis says add and £12.50 target for Aveva (AVV), add and 57p target for Anite Group (AIE), add and £10.03 target for Emap (EMA), buy and 690p target for Babcock (BAB), buy and 715p target for VT Group (VTG) and hold and 95p target for Northern Foods (NFDS).
JP Morgan resumes coverage of Friends Provident (FP.) with a neutral and 165p target.
Seymour Pierce hold on Brit Insurance (BRE), underperform for Cable & Wireless (CW.) outperforms for Emap (EMA) and Vodafone (VOD).
Stocks to Watch
Freight rates - forget the commodities. The real money this year was in the ships that carry them.
BHP's (BLT) rationale - Monday's presentation ti investors of BHP Billiton's proposed takeover of Rio Tinto (RIO) shows India and China going off the charts.
E-trade plunges. A Citigroup note on E-trade led to a meltdown that chopped $2.1 bn off the brokerage's market cap.
Vedanta Resources (VED) shares down on earnings prediction.
DSG International (DSGI) rumoured to be a target for Metro of Germany.
Andes Energia (AEN) up on talks of stakebuilding.
Buy United Business Media (UBM).
Sell Majestic Wine (MJW).
Gordon Brown will not welcome Luqman Arnold's plans for Northern Rock (NRK).
Buy G4S (GFS).
Hold Aveva (AVV).
Buy Bellway (BWY).
Business Commentary :
Lucky Luqie may be Northern Rock's (NRK) best hopes.
Tiddler to Watch:
FDM Group (FDMG).
Afren (AFR) thought to be about to buy assets in Angola and Ghana from Devon Energy.
Times are rosey for Rolls-Royce (RR.).
Sell French Connection (FCCN).
Buy Addax Petroleum (AXC).
Hold Liontrust Asset Management (LIO).
Brokerage houses popular after Close Bros (CBG) bid.
Friday, November 9
What's going on with Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland ? Their share prices just keep falling, despite the fact that they are two of the largest banks in the UK if not the world.
UK bank Barclays (BARC) has just categorically denied the rumours that have been circulating in recent days that it was about to announce a $10 billion writedown and see its top management quit. At one point its share price was down another 9% .
"There is absolutely no substance to those rumours," a spokesman for the bank said when asked about a possible $10 billion writedown.
He gave the same response when asked if the bank planned an emergency rights issue or if John Varley, its chief executive, or Bob Diamond, head of its Barclays Capital investment bank unit, planned to resign.
He would not comment on talk that the bank may issue an emergency statement, but reiterated that Barclays planned to issue a trading update on Nov 27.
The trouble with these rumours is that they don't seem to want to go away and are constantly being modified and the trouble with denials is that they can deny one thing while leaving the door open for a whole load of other interpretations, e.g. "no $10 billion writedown" does not deny a write down of some other amount.
All in all very smelly but in the meantime the share price gets hammered every day, not good news if you've been long recently. The same applies to Royal Bank of Scotland although there don't appear to be any rumours.
Barclays 5 Year Chart
6 month chart
1 Day Chart
Royal Bank of Scotland charts are much the same.
6 Month Chart
Thursday, November 8
Online Trading Blog
I've just stumbled upon what looks like an excellent futures trading blog - http://www.traderblogger.com/ - so I'm putting it here so that I don't forget it.
I'll need to check it out tomorrow when I'm not falling asleep but basically it deals with online commodity trading, futures, charting basics, candlstick charts, determining correct entry points.
It looks like there's a whole load of stuff there that could be useful.
online commodity trading
Wednesday, November 7
Source : Moneyfacts
It is unlikely that you have noticed it as it has not been widely publicised, but over recent months credit card providers have started surreptitiously increasing the charges they apply to credit cards. So take care what you agree to.
The increased card charges are not usually applied to the headline interest rate, they are far more likely to be slipped in through the back door so to speak, while you sleep.
The changes are partly the result of the turmoil in the credit markets, partly I suspect an attempt to recoup the drop in revenue from banking charges in the UK following the well-publicized consumer campaign to claim back excessive fees from banks.
There have apparently been one hundred and twenty-five fee and credit card rate increases in the last two months !
These increases are often buried in the terms and conditions where you are unlikely to see them, but they still add up to large amounts of money.
For example a dozen credit card providers have increased the fee for withdrawing cash. Alliance and Leicester being top of the pile here with an increase from 2.25% to 3%.
Interest rates have also been increased, Smile’s Gold Visa credit card now charges 23.9% p.a. on cash withdrawals, which represents a 9% increase for some customers.
The Bank of Scotland, the AA, Intelligent Finance and the Britannia Building Society and have all increased the commission applied to foreign transactions from 2.75% to 2.95%.
Alliance & Leicester has increased its balance transfer fee from 2.25% to 3%, while Royal Bank of Scotland and Tesco have increased theirs to 2.5% from 2%.
I personally discovered another new development last month. I transferred a balance to a Mint card at 0%. I was of course charged a fee, but then I also discovered I was being charged interest ! Interest on a 0% balance transfer ? After investigation I discovered I was not being charged interest on the balance transferred, but I was being charged interest on the fee ! Needless to say I was not pleased, so I wrote to Mint and told them so. They apologized and refunded my money because I had not been told about this new fee, but nevertheless it is now their policy to treat the fee as a ‘purchase’ and to charge interest on it. You have been warned !
By the way, if you can possibly avoid them, don’t use credit cards, you will live to regret it.
Tuesday, November 6
Stocks to Watch
Pass - Dunelm Group (DNLM).
Hold – Scottish & Newcastle (SCTN).
Dicom Group (DCM) - better buying opportunities in coming months .
A Tiddler to Watch:
Saudi stakebuilding rumours help Minerva (MNR) hold on.
US bank takeover rumours lift Close Bros (CBG).
Imperial Energy (IEC) in spotlight.
Buy - Tesco (TSCO).
Hold - LogicaCMG (LOG).
Buy - Dhir India Investments (DHIR).
Sell - Friends Provident (FP.).
Sell – LogicaCMG (LOG).
Critic calls for Citigroup (CGP) to be broken up.
Rumour mill sends banking stocks down.
Meldex International (MDX) in the spotlight with nicotine product.
At a Glance:
Spirited Spirent (SPT).
OTHER NEWSNorthern Rock (NRK) mortgage trade collapses .
Mervyn King says Chancellor of the Exchequer, Alistair Darling vetoed secret move to save Northern Rock (NRK).
Blinkx (BLNX) to develop online television service.
Three bidders for Ford's luxury marques.
SMG (SMG) plans £90-million rights issue to avoid fire sale of Virgin Radio.
Imprint (IMP) investors seek better offer.
AB Foods' (ABF) Primark to expand in Spain.
Yamana Gold (YAU) acquires about 90% of Meridian Gold.
Apax denies it is preparing a bid for ITV (ITV).
Dow Jones down 51 to 13543, Nasdaq fell 15 to 2795, S&P down 7 to 1502.
Ministers say Pakistan will hold elections as scheduled in January.
Poll shows a big drop in Gordon Brown's standing.
Fears in the credit markets that turbulence could last well into 2008.
Credit uncertainty may begin affecting US non-mortgage asset-backed securities.
US ISM non-manufacturing business index rose to 55.8 last month vs 54.0 expected.
US FED governor Randall Kroszner says subprime problems could get worse before they get better.
Lenders increase credit card charges.
More money being withdrawn from pooled commercial property funds in the UK than being invested for the first time in nearly five years, according to industry's trade body.
Google unveils Android mobile device platform.
Home Depot (HOM) and Lowe's shares hit multi-year lows after negative analyst comments.
PetroChina first company to reach $1,000-billion capitalisation, overtaking ExxonMobil's (EXX) market value.
British Airways (BAY) rates worst for lost bags and delays.
Monday, November 5
Well it seems some people were not too pleased with her analysis of the situation which led to drop of almost 7% in Citigroup's share price and she has, in her own words, received 'several death threats' !
It turns out she was right in her analysis of the situation, however, and CEO Chuck Prince has now resigned afiter talks with one of his masters the other Prince, Prince Alwaleed of Saudi Arabia.
Friday, November 2
Rumours abound re. Barclays which was down 6% at one point this morning.
Just read this on one of the BBs - it apparently is a broker's note from Panmure out today with their thoughts on the banking sector Barclays, RBS, HSBC abd NRK, and their share price targets. I say 'apparently' because obviously I have no proof.
"Our best guesses for the impact on most UK banks are in our mid-Sep note (where we cut
forecasts and price targets for all UK banks) – and we have since substantially revised
downwards our forecasts and valuations for NRK and RBS. Our key Sells remain BARC
(price target 500p), RBS (PT 420p), HSBC (PT 770p) and NRK (PT 100p)."
Elsewhere : -
Barclays fell 6% to 526 pence.
A spokesman for the London-based bank wasn't immediately available for comment. ``Barclays is rumored to have gone to the Bank of England for some funding,'' said Mamoun Tazi, an analyst at MF Global Securities Ltd. who has a ``neutral'' rating on the stock. ``My guess it that it's very unlikely, but never say never.''
From Citiwire at 10:20 :
The BoE said it had made no emergency loans yesterday which has caused Barclays shares to rally slightly.
The shares are currently down 33p at 538p after earlier falling to 524.5p amid rumours that the bank had asked the Bank of England for emergency funds.
Personally I'm staying on the sidelines, I find Barclays are being very quiet. There is also the small matter of the the jobs report from the USA later today.
Five year chart looks interesting
Spice (SPI) - May Gurney (MAYG) - Hyder Consulting (HYC) - Hydro International (HYD) - Modern Water (MWG).
Sell - Jardine Lloyd Thompson (JLT), Business Post (BPG).
Buy – Gyrus (GYG), Staffline (STAF), Twenty (TWE), Vane Minerals (VML).
Buy - Scott Wilson (SWG), Standard Life (SL.), easyJet (EZJ), Inland (INL), Weatherly (WTI).
Sell - Sports Direct (SPD).
Buy Rambler Metals and Minerals (RMM), Elektron (EKT), Namibian Resources (NBR), West African Diamonds (WAD), Northamber (NAR), BP Marsh and Partners (BPM), Daniel Stewart (DAN), Tristel (TSTL).
Unilever (ULVR) - Hold.
Smith & Nephew (SN.) - Hold.
Xchanging (XCH) - Buy.
A Tiddler to Watch :
River Diamonds (RVD).
Petrol near £1 per liter buts Exxon (EXX) profit slips.
Banks driven down by Citigroup (CGP) warning.
Turkey exploration hopes buoy Addax Petroleum (AXC).
Footsie slides due to bank and mining jitters.
JSG (JSG) doesn't impress.
Rumours of an upbeat trading statement from Metals Exploration (MTL).
Buy – Unilever (ULVR).
Buy - Tullett Prebon (TLPR).
Buy - Character Group (CCT).
Takeover talks helps Invensys (ISYS).
Hold - Stagecoach (SGC).
Buy - Domino's Pizza (DOM).
Unilever (ULVR) sales surge .
Manitowoc bid rumours lift Enodis (ENO).
Domino’s Pizza (DOM) – Hold.
St James’s Place (STJ) - Buy.
Fed’s warning hurts Wall Street.
Rumours of earnings enhancing deal for Xploite (XPT).
Rumours of another big contract for Aero Inventory
Thursday, November 1
Ceri Jones over at iii has just written an excellent article on investing in commodities that you may have overlooked.
Molybdenum is the first on the list - a copper by-product, used to produce stainless steel, and also in various chemical applications such as lubricants and refinery catalysts. Supply is tight and demand is 'sky high'.
Iron ore is also in huge demand.
After that comes fertilizers and agricultural chemicals like potash.
And also aluminium. I hoighly recommend the article above for all the details and information on the companies involved.
8 Engineering Stocks : - Buy Goodwin (GDWN), Rolls-Royce (RR.), Hamworthy (HMY), Fenner (FENR), Cookson (CKSN), Spectris (SXS), IMI (IMI) and Charter (CHTR).
Buy – City of London Investment Group (CLIG), Halfords (HFD).
Hold - Max Petroleum (MXP), Sports Direct (SPD).
Metalrax (MRX) – Sell.
F&C Asset Management (FCAM) - Sell.
Plays of the Week:
Buy - Braemar Shipping Services (BMS).
Buy - WH Smith (SMWH).
Sell – Rightmove (RMV).
Buy – Experian (EXPN), Admiral (ADM), British Energy (BGY), Legal & General (LGEN), Luminar (LMR), Taylor Wimpey (TW.), Trinity Mirror (TNI).
Sell AstraZeneca (AZN).
Buy Pearson (PSON), Imperial Tobacco (IMT), Vodafone (VOD).
Calm before the storm for Tesco (TSCO)?
Buy - Imperial Energy (IEC).
Sell - Johnson Service Group (JSG).
Hold - Taylor Wimpey (TW.).
Hold – Woolworths (WLW).
Buy - Celsis International (CEL).
Premier Oil (PMO) up on talks of takeover .
Premier Oil (PMO) up on rumours of deal with Santos.
Alizyme (AZM) gets a boost.
Schroders (SDR) falls on chief’s sale.
Avoid - Taylor Woodrow (TW.).
Avoid - Johnson Service Group (JSG).
Worth holding - Celsis International (CEL).
Tiddler to Watch:
Southern Cross Healthcare (SCHE) up on acquisition hopes.
Curidium Medica (CUR) up ahead of presentation next week.
Tesco (TSCO) rises to record on inquiry findings.
New chairman could be on the way for Stanley Gibbons (SGI).
Premier (Oil (PMO)) up on takeover talk.
Short-term outperformance expected from Entertainment One (ETO).
Vodafone's (VOD) Phones4U hamper Carphone Warehouse (CPW).
Bid talk around Moneysupermarket.com (MONY).
Rumours of a bullish circular give Tomkins (TOMK) a lift.
Citigroup (CGP) fires two senior executives in charge of mortgage-backed investments business - it may face further heavy write-downs in its holdings of subprime-linked securities.
Northern Rock (NRK) rescue could take up to 6-months.
Northern Rock (NRK) advisers still keen on Lloyds TSB (LLOY).
BT's (BT.A) planned acquisition of I.Net suspended by court.
Addworth (ADW) buys 30.43% stake in UK investor Early Equity.
Legendary Investments (LEG) says it knows of no reason for increase in its share price.
Dow closed up 137 at 13930, Nasdaq up 42 to 2859, S&P up 18 to 1549 after
US FED cuts interest rate by a quarter-point to 4.5%.
FED says there may not be any future cuts due to upside inflation risks.
BoE chief economist Charlie Bean, warns that it inflation is still priority .
Standard & Poor's says oil may soon hit $100 a barrel and fall back to around $70 next year.
Europe and US seeking to strike biofuels deal.