Four companies to invest in postBrexit vote

first_imgThe vote by the UK people to leave the European Union was clearly not anticipated by the financial markets, given the harsh reaction on Friday morning and then again on the following Monday.The pound sterling is probably the best example of this sharp readjustment by financial markets to this new reality, with the pound falling to a new 31-year low against the US dollar of $1.32 on Monday (Chart 1), and also suffering heavy losses against the euro too. If you havent already bought your holiday money in preparation for this summer, then guess what – you are going to get a lot less for your pounds abroad now.In the UK stock market, smaller companies have suffered moreIf we turn our attention to UK stocks and shares, we can observe that the flagship FTSE 100 index of the largest companies in the UK has actually not fared too badly.If you look at Chart 2, you can see that in fact, the FTSE 100 index has gained over 3% since the beginning of this year, in spite of the EU Referendum result.But why is this, when the pound has been hit so badly? Well, the main reason is the heavy global exposure of the largest companies that make up the FTSE 100.Oil companies like Royal Dutch Shell and BP have the vast bulk of their operations overseas in oil- and gas-producing regions such as West Africa, the US and Canada and the Middle East, so are not really affected by the UKs domestic policies.Similarly, HSBC is one of the largest banks globally, but has a huge footprint in Asia, the Middle East and the US, not to mention in Continental Europe (in France, for example). So again, while it has operations in the UK, this represents only a small part of the overall banks revenues and profits.In contrast, the FTSE Mid 250 index representing the 250 companies that are just below the largest 100 companies in size has borne the brunt of the post-Referendum pain in the UK stock market, with this mid-cap index 8% lower today than pre-Referendum Thursday (June 23) – the green dashed line in Chart 2.Recession risk sectors hit hardest: Property-related, retailers, financial servicesIndustries with the greatest exposure to the domestic UK economy have suffered the most over the last few days.Chart 3 highlights that while global, defensive sectors like Oil and Gas, Pharmaceuticals and Tobacco companies have all actually enjoyed rising share prices since June 23, domestically-sensitive sectors like property companies, house builders and banks have lost more than 10% on average over these few days.The reason for this is simple: the political and economic uncertainty that now hangs over the UK as a result of this vote hinders economic growth, as companies are now reassessing their investment and hiring plans in the UK, and may well be forced to relocate jobs and operations to other European Union countries.Economists are forecasting a high likelihood that the UK will fall to zero economic growth or even recession by late this year, conditions where these domestic, cyclically-sensitive companies have under-performed in the past.Four potential UK opportunities for the keen value investorWhen turmoil like this hits financial markets, the sharp sell-off can create investment opportunities for value-oriented investors with a sharp eye for a bargain.If the UK does not enter a deep recession, but instead sees a slowdown to zero growth at worst by winter this year, then the share prices of many domestic companies may prove to have overreacted currently.I would look at the following UK companies and sectors:Hammerson (property; UK code HMSO) is interesting, as 27% of its commercial properties are actually in France, so it has a relatively high exposure to the Eurozone today. Hammerson offers a juicy 4.6% dividend yield for income, and is valued at a discount to net asset value of 29%. That means that you can buy £1 of Hammerson property assets for just 71p today.Hansteen (property; code HSTN) , although smaller than Hammerson, Hansteen is potentially even more interesting as it actually has 58% of its property exposure in Germany, and another 22% in the Netherlands, with only 17% exposure in the UK. And Hansteen offers a generous 5.5% dividend yield today.Halfords (retail; code HFD) is a retail stock that has lost 20% since June 23, with a share price that has fallen to just 322p today. The average analyst share price target is 390p (21% higher), the price/earnings ratio is very cheap at under 10 times earnings, and Halfords could get a boost from the Rio Summer Olympic Games if Team GB does well as expected in the cycling events.Schroders (asset management; code SDRC) is a very high quality asset management company with a very strong brand in investment funds, a strong track record in managing their business well and which has lost 15% in share price terms since June 23. They have raised or maintained their annual dividend payments every year without fail over at least the last 15 years (even through recession), and offer a 5.1% income yield from dividends today.Investing at times like this is clearly for the brave; but it is also at times like this when the best investment opportunities can be found (when investor fear is widespread).last_img read more

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US donates bombsniffing dog to Costa Rican penitentiary

first_imgNo related posts. The U.S. Embassy in San José donated a dog trained to detect weapons and bombs that will be in charge of checking every object and person entering the maximum-security prison La Reforma, the largest in Costa Rica.Ámbar is the first bomb-detecting dog owned by the Penitenciary Police and is worth $ 5,900. The new K9 officer will join five drug-sniffing dogs currently working at La Reforma, located in the province of Alajuela, north of the capital.The 9-month-old Belgian shepherd arrived from Guatemala on Monday, and Justice Ministry plans for her include initiating a breeding program.The U.S. government provided training in Guatemala for two La Reforma officers who will handle the dog.The embassy also donated a sound system that will be used for announcing the entry of visitors to La Reforma. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

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CSI CBS is preparing what it hopes will be the wor

first_imgCSICBS is preparing what it hopes will be the world’s largest ever drama simulcast with a simultaneous 150-country screening of CSI.International broadcasters and channels that have CSI rights will show the same episode of the enduringly popular US procedural, which is distributed by CBS Studios International.The simulcast, which will take place on March 4, will be of the ‘Kitty’ episode of the drama that contained the ‘embedded pilot’ for the latest edition of the franchise, CSI: Cyber.CBS said it was organising ‘CSI Day’ to mark the fifteenth anniversary of the scripted show.The previous record for the largest international simulcast was for the fiftieth episode of BBC sci fi series Doctor Who, with an episode going out to 98 countries across six continents ion November 2013.The episode will go out at 7pm US Eastern time on March 4. In the US, it will be streamed on the CBS website.“When CSI premiered, I had no idea it would become the sensational global franchise it is today,” said Anthony Zuiker, creator of the CSI franchise and co-creator and executive producer of CSI: Cyber. “I can’t think of a better way to kick off CSI: Cyber and celebrate 15 years of international success than with a worldwide simulcast.”last_img read more

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