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|Secs.Scotland Daily Update: Secs.Scotland is listed in the Equity Investment Instruments sector of the London Stock Exchange with ticker STS. The last closing price for Secs.Scotland was 156.25p.|
Secs.Scotland has a 4 week average price of 152.56p and a 12 week average price of 153.02p.
The 1 year high share price is 165p while the 1 year low share price is currently 118p.
There are currently 112,400,832 shares in issue and the average daily traded volume is 68,544 shares. The market capitalisation of Secs.Scotland is £174,221,289.60.
|northernlass: Reasons To Be Cheerful
SECURITIES TRUST OF SCOTLAND: PORTER FINDS REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL
Securities Trust of Scotland manager Alan Porter says a stable US housing market, recovery in bank lending and healthy company balance sheets are reasons to have a positive outlook.
One year on, having taken over the Securities Trust of Scotland, investment trust manager Alan Porter has raised the trust's gearing level and its exposure to cyclicals as a sign of being more bullish on company prospects.
Porter took over STS on 1 August last year with the mandate of transforming the portfolio from a UK income fund to a global mandate. This followed a shareholder vote to change its investment objective from solely seeking income in the UK.
In December, when Fund Strategy last profiled the trust, the manager described himself as "getting close to being greedy but not quite there yet". At the time, his gearing level was 5 per cent and the fund was underweight in cyclicals as he felt they looked too expensive.
By February, Porter had upped his weighting in cyclicals to neutral while he has since raised the trust's gearing to 8 per cent as he believes the current macro economic environment is supportive for equities, in particular, income stocks.
"By the turn of the year, for the first time, we saw improving data coming out of the US and since then GDP has been growing at around the 2 per cent mark," he says. "While there has since been negative data, there are reasons to stay positive, namely stronger labour markets, stability in the housing market, good retail numbers and a recovery in bank lending."
Meanwhile, from a micro perspective, Porter notes companies are sitting on healthy balance sheets and profit margins are at all-time highs, which he says is good for income in the short to medium term.
"Companies are not investing this in terms of capital expenditure, instead opting to return it to shareholders, which is good news for income and growth funds as payout ratios rise," he says.
Indeed, as a result, Porter is expecting 7-8 per cent dividend per share growth for STS over the next 12 months.
One year into the trust's new mandate and performance has been strong. According to the latest AIC data over one year to 31 July 2012, the trust has returned 17.8 per cent on a share price total return basis, outperforming its benchmark by 9 per cent. In the trust's last financial year, it also increased its dividend by 1.1 per cent to 4.70p per share and its current net yield is 3.7 per cent.
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Secs.Scotland share price data is direct from the London Stock Exchange