The Week In Review: Bellway is a good building block for investors
Saturday 22 October 2005
The things a builder has to do to sell a house these days: cash discounts, part- exchange, throwing in fixtures and fittings, and even, according to Bellway, new carpets and curtains, too.
But, while Bellway warns investors not to expect a repeat of the level of growth reported in its latest annual results, the future looks safe as houses for the industry, and for Bellway in particular. The average price of a Bellway home is just £164,000 and half are sold for less than £150,000. Its operations are split 50-50 between north and south.
Above all, there is a housing shortage in the UK. This is the incontrovertible fact that should help investors in the building sector sleep.
It also means that the sector is grossly undervalued. Bellway, in particular, trades at barely six times annual earnings. With such solid foundations, buy.
Wise readers who took our advice to buy Sage, the FTSE 100 software group, a year ago when the shares were 172p are looking clever. The investment has grown a healthy 27 per cent and there is more to come, thanks to Sage's strong cash balances. Buy.
ST JAMES'S PLACE
Britain's worsening pensions crisis is a blessing for St James's Place Capital, the upmarket wealth management group. It can look with confidence to the future as pensions business is surging ahead of government reforms next year. Hold.
WHITTARD OF CHELSEA
Whittard of Chelsea, the tea and coffee retailer, brewed up excitement in July this year when it revealed that it was at the centre of a bid battle. Then London was bombed and the collapse in sales scared its bidders away. The group has not had a good year, with two profits warnings since January. Sell.
While wind power is now a growing part of the renewable energy mix, wave power is so far untapped. AIM-listed Ocean Power Technologies is trying to commercialise this energy and is making good progress. Buy.
Consumer debt levels remain at an all-time high - one way for investors to benefit is to back the new debt advice companies that specialise in 'individual voluntary arrangements'. Accuma floated in March, having raised £4.1m to fund marketing. Buy.
Simon Brickles, who led the successful Alternative Investment Market until 2003, has been drafted in to work the same magic at Ofex, another junior market. Now renamed Plus Markets, the shares exchange is going places again. Buy.
Oxford BioMedica is conducting trials of what could be revolutionary treatments for cancer. Its latest results for TroVax, OXB's most advanced drug, are positive, but a bigger trial is needed. It seems increasingly likely that larger commercial partners may want more data or an improved version of the drug before signing. Sell.
QXL Ricardo operates similar auction sites to ebay, and is finally making a profit. However, returns are meagre and a legal dispute in Poland is making life difficult. Take profits.
Colt Telecom specialises in the business market, but while the stock will always be a punt on future M&A activity, most investors should avoid.
The chief executive of BHP Billiton is basking in praise - another record year for sales, for profits and for dividends. The big picture is of emerging economies sucking in more commodities. BHP has cash coming out its ears - share buybacks or higher dividends could follow. Buy.
New man from the Pru is sitting pretty for the future
The former Lloyd's of London chief executive Nick Prettejohn is replacing Mark Wood, who is leaving Prudential after missing the top job when Jonathan Bloomer, the former group chief executive, was ousted earlier this year. The new UK boss is the first senior hire by Mark Tucker, who took over as chief executive in May.
Prettejohn may be pleasantly surprised by the contents of his in-tray - the insurer is in pretty good shape.
In a country in which an ageing population is forced to save more by a Government keen to trim its social security budget, the financial services sector must be a long-term winner, and the Pru's performance is improving.
The Pru is among our portfolio of tips for 2005 and the shares are up 7 per cent since the start of the year. There is more to come. Buy.
The above are recommendations from the daily Investment Column
Independent Partners: See how much you could save by switching credit cards. Compare now
elephant appealThe first 23 lots in our charity auction have now gone. But there are 22 more still up for grabs
The magicians using online collaboration to push boundaries
lifeIt takes year-long dedication to get Selfridges ready for 25 December. And they're already working on plans for 2015...
Jennifer Lawrence attacks mass media again over body image
- 1 America's 'virgin births'? One in 200 mothers 'became pregnant without having sex'
- 2 Sun will 'flip upside down' within weeks, says Nasa
- 3 Ian Watkins: Police probed over earlier allegations as paedophile Lostprophets singer sentenced to 35 years for child sex offences
- 4 Christmas comes early: Justin Bieber 'retiring from music'
- 5 Children evacuated from swimming pool after prosthetic leg mistaken for paedophile
Exclusive: Young people ‘want UK to stay in Europe’: Four in 10 adults aged 18 to 24 are ‘firmly in favour’ of membership, poll shows
You can STILL be jailed for being a republican, government confirms, and it remains illegal to even 'imagine' overthrowing the Queen
Kiss and yell: Italian protester charged with sexual assault after kissing riot police officer
Fighting back: the woman giving a voice (and 49,999 others) to the victims of sexism - by giving an airing to their horror stories
PM denies two child limit for benefits is part of Tory welfare policy
Ethan Couch: Texas quadruple murderer – or a victim of ‘affluenza’?
- < Previous
- Next >
iJobs Money & Business
£60000 - £75000 per annum + Bonus and Benefits: Harrington Starr: A leading au...
£25000 - £32000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Junior Business Analyst - Banking...
£25000 - £35000 per annum + benefits + bonus: Harrington Starr: Business Analy...
£50000 - £75000 per annum + benefits + bonus: Harrington Starr: Implementation...
Day In a Page
A two-bedroom flat with an open plan kitchen and two balconies, close to Arsenal station
A six-bedroom farm house with separate, detached cottages and 371 acres of land
A two-bedroom cottage with parquet floors, chunky beams and an open fireplace
A Grade II-listed home with six bedrooms, secluded landscaped gardens and views across Hadley Green
A Grade II-listed mansion with two apartments and a cottage, near Gretna Green
A three-bedroom Grade II-listed mews house with vaulted ceilings and roof garden
A spacious Grade II-listed family home with annexe and equestrian facilities among four acres of land in Itchingfield
A four-bedroom home with exposed brick walls and open fires in the picturesque village of Northill
A Grade II-listed property with five bedrooms and unique tower, overlooking Hastings Old Town
A charming five-bedroom detached family home, set within half an acre in Kew
A two-bedroom maisonette set on the top two floors of a period building, close to Kentish Town Tube.
Take advantage of the extra space provided by former stables and outbuildings at this five-bedroom farmhouse.
This three-bedroom Victorian terrace is near to Queen’s Road Peckham station, Nunhead station.
A five-bedroom modern house with terrace, swimming pool, Zen treehouse and large carp pond
An unexpected gem with four bedrooms, remarkable vaulted reception and a galleried study area
A five-bedroom house in one of Lymington's most sought after tree lined avenues, moments from the marinas and sailing clubs
A grand early 19th century B&B close to the historic harbour, with four en suite bedrooms
A four-bedroom, 17th century home with walled gardens, a landscaped terrace, cellar and open fires
A six-bedroom house with five bathrooms and four reception rooms spread over 4,000sq ft of luxury living space
A stunning three double-bedroom apartment with two decked terraces in the exclusive gated community, Bromyard House
A 10-bedroom period, family home amid beautiful surroundings in the centre of the Wentworth Estate in Longcross village
A stylish three-bedroom apartment with two bathrooms and private landscaped garden, moments from Fitzroy Square
A Grade II-listed Elizabethan barn with landscaped gardens, exposed elm beams and four bedrooms, all with lovely views
A six-bedroom family home, dating back to 1280 with four reception rooms, barn, swimming pool and tennis courts in Harwell
A spacious two-bedroom flat, refurbished to a very high standard with private landscaped garden, close to Kentish Town station
An exceptional two-bedroom apartment with balcony and underground parking in the centre of Richmond
A one-bedroom, luxury, duplex apartment in the grand landmark building, Imperial Hall
Run a fabulous boutique shop, live above it in a one-bedroom flat and let a second one-bedroom flat that comes part and parcel
A Grade-II listed, thatched cottage in Hundleby village, with five bedrooms, a coach house and three and a half acres
A spacious two-bedroom flat in the heart of Hoxton Square with wooden floors and roof terrace
A five-bedroom family home with stunning pool and gym complex set among two acres of land
A six-bedroom period house with heated swimming pool and a separate two-bedroom annexe cottage in Townlake, £795,000
A spacious and contemporary two-bedroom flat arranged over three floors, with garden patio close to St George Square, £600,000
A one-bedroom flat in a beautiful Regency building opposite the beach in Kemp Town, £190,000
A two-bedroom flat with London skyline views close to Surrey Quays. £395,000.
A seven-storey tower with three bedrooms and a stunning roof terrace. Guide price: £850,000.
A 16-bedroom country pile with nine reception rooms, four self-contained flats and a 13th century Peel Tower. £850,000.
A classic six-bedroom Victorian Manse house 10 miles from Edinburgh. £495,000.
John Lennon's childhood home in Liverpool to be sold at auction. Guide price: £150,000-£250,000.