Market Statistics

A Dream Become a Nightmare – And a Plug for ShareSoc

There was a good article in the Daily Telegraph on Sunday (17/5/2015) explaining how Thatcher's dream of a share owning population has become a nightmare. She tried to create a nation of investors by privatisations and regulatory changes to improve business competition but instead many companies have ended up being sold to foreign buyers. Even worse there has been a collapse in private share ownership. The reported proportion of UK shares held by individuals has collapsed from 20% in 1994 to 11% ...

2014 Review and New Year Resolutions

Now's the time of year to look back on the performance of the stock market in 2014, and look at plans for the future. Last year was undoubtedly a disappointing year for the UK stock market. The FTSE All-Share index was down 2.45%, worse than many other major markets. The cause was undoubtedly that the All-Share index is dominated by large mega-cap FTSE-100 companies such as BP, Shell, Glaxo and Tesco. The first two have been badly hit by the decline ...

Better Finance Press Release and ESMA Report

Yesterday Better Finance (a European representative body for individual shareholders of which ShareSoc is a member) issued a press release. It is worth repeating here:"European Financial Regulator fails to recognise the mounting losses hitting European savers and investors - Brussels, 4 September 2014Better Finance welcomes the new "Trends, Risks and Vulnerabilities" report released today by the European Securities & Markets Authority (ESMA).But the ESMA press release does not say a word about individual investors’ trends and risks.Moreover, and of additional concern, ...

Are you a speculator or investor?

There was a very interesting article in a recent edition of Investors Chronicle. Stephen Wilmot reported the views of Interactive Investors, one of the major execution-only brokers, on their client profiles. They apparently classify half their clients as "traders" (i.e. speculators) or investors. In the former, half of those only buy or sell one stock which are companies such as Blinkx (now where have we heard that name before), Gulf Keystone, Quindell or Xcite Energy, with the rest speculating on small ...

AIM is no longer a dog, but the mastiffs are the winners

There was an interesting analysis of the performance of AIM stocks in a recent "AIM Journal", a publication sponsored by Finncap.  As others have pointed out, AIM finally changed course after a long streak of poor performance, and the AIM index actually beat both the FTSE-100 and FTSE-250 indices in 2013.If you had invested in the AIM index back when it was formed back in 1996, even with dividends reinvested  you would still be losing money. And that is the case ...

Investment Trust Discounts at Record Low

The AIC issued a press release today saying the average investment company discount was now 3.4% - a record low since the figures were first recorded in 1970. The AIC (Association of Investment Companies) represents investment companies such as investment trusts so you can see why they would want to fanfare this figure. Investors in such trusts generally welcome a narrowing of discounts (net asset value versus share price) although it no longer means they can buy the underlying assets on ...

A nation of DIY investors?

Research firm Compeer have reported that funds held by stockbrokers in "execution-only" accounts have increased by 20% in the first nine months of this year.  And a survey they undertook of 1,000 investors showed that half of them would invest without taking financial advice (i.e. by using an IFA or taking advice from a stockbroker for example).This growth in the DIY investor community might partly have been driven by the Retail distribution Review that took effect in January of this year ...

The level of speculation in AIM stocks

How much speculation is there in AIM stocks? Quite a lot based on some figures recently published in a FinnCap newsletter. “Speculation” might be defined as a short term bet on a share price rising or falling. That’s the opposite of “investment” where someone takes a view on the medium to long term returns from investing in a company. These are the figures published by Finncap for the ten most traded AIM stocks in September – based on the percentage of the overall ...