It’s a New Year and with it often comes the annual or bi-annual review of investment portfolios. In an effort to help with some good ideas for companies to take a closer look at in 2018, we’ve planned a series of articles covering online stock trading tips for the coming put forward by industry experts. As always when investing online, do your own research and don’t simply rely on stock tips. However, they can provide a very useful starting point for those who think their ISA or SIPP portfolios need some freshening up.
Iain Dey, who writes for The Sunday Times’ ‘Money’ section had some success backing British biotech stocks last year and likes the look of Oxford BioMedica for the coming year. He believes the company offers the potential for very good upside with the downside limited.
Over the course of 2017 BioMedica doubled its share price to 8.85p after positive results from clinical trials around a childhood leukemia treatment. Analysts Jefferies and Peel Hunt already have a 13p price target on the stock and formal approval of the leukemia treatment could see the company’s value rocket to $1 billion.
However, even taking that possibility out of the equation, Dey is excited about the tie-up with Novaritis. The Swiss pharma giant is at the cutting edge of the revolution on immunotherapy, which involves the modification of cells to combat cancer. Oxford BioMedica is providing the ‘vehicle’ that transport’s Novaritis’s immunotherapy treatment and is forecast to generate $127 in revenue from the partnership by 2022. Other products in BioMedica’s portfolio pipeline with considerable potential include a treatment for Parkinson’s and gene therapy treatment that it is hoped will prevent the rejection rate of corneal grafts. Clinical trials for both are scheduled to yield results this year.
Budget airline EasyJet is Gwyn Topham of The Guardian’s pick for 2018. He believes EasyJet is one of the few strong prospects among transport stocks, with decreasing passenger numbers meaning rail companies face a tough year and reform around local buses also meaning companies in that industry are no longer the cash cows they once were.
The 2017 demise of Monarch airways has lessened competition and with a move to Austria pre-empting Brexit woes, Topham belies of the airlines EasyJet is in the strongest position and offers the best potential upside.
However, on a cautionary note, of the newspaper’s 2017 tips, another airline, Flybe was the biggest miss after finishing the year 28.4% down.
The Telegraph’s Ben Marlow has faith in Shell over 2018. His belief is based on the fact that Shell’s CEO Ben van Beurden is one of the few oil and gas giant leaders who has publically recognised that peak oil demand is probably close – and he’s preparing the company for the shift. The company’s strategy is increasingly diversification.
Acquisitions such as electric vehicle charging company NewMotion and household electric utilities provider First Utility late last year are signs of the process already being underway. Investment in the group’s ‘new energies’ division is also expected to double this year and Marlow believes that Shell reducing its exposure to fossil fuels will help boost the company’s share price. It’s currently close to its record high at £24.86 but the 12-month analyst consensus target price is £26.63.
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