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Friday Email: 06 December 2013

Every Friday morning our lead analyst Mark Riding sends out his weekly run-down and upcoming events in the investor calendar, like this one:

A sad day as the world reflects the passing of Nelson Mandela.

It is a funny time of the year when everybody starts talking about a Santa rally and yet the start of December is invariably poor. After a pretty decent year so far, for the FTSE 250 mainly, traders and fund managment companies no doubt will try and lock in some of the more spectacular profits as the year end approaches. There are various spurious theories as to why there is the end of year rally and this year you have to wonder if it will be an opportunity to sell as we face more US budget woes and the beginning of the end of Q.E. as it is tapered. We should see a decent start to the year as new money comes into the market. Around the end of January, nervousness will creep in as the markets begin to doubt the ability of politicians to resolve amicably. That said, we still see equities as a well backed asset class for 2014 as a whole.

The market has been poor this week and the FTSE 100 has fallen 170 points in the past three days, whilst the FTSE 250 has fallen over 300 points, apparently as worries about Q.E. tapering emerge. Back to dividends and we can have no complaints on that front with increases from Greene King and ITE. There was another solid increase from Micro Focus and Betfair increased its interim dividend by 50%. Brewin Dolphin, after a few years of maintaining the dividend suddenly went for a 40% increase in their final dividend. Sage completed a good year of returns for its shareholders with a 6% increase in the final dividend. Yesterday saw really good numbers from Smith (DS) and a 28% increase in its interim dividend.

The week ahead looks fairly quiet and we will have an eye on Photo-me's results. Our best performing dividend of the week has tripled since we recommended it on 20/11/11, back in the early days of DividendMax.

This email was originally sent on Friday 06 December 2013

The Friday email is delivered to over 20,000 subscriber’s every week, and remains a widely read run-down of recent events and what investors can expect in the week ahead written by our chief analyst Mark Riding.

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