On the boards this week, Fools pondered their new ISAs and looked at company valuations.
New ISA season
April was the first month of the new ISA season, and Fools have been discussing what shares they're planning to go for this year. With the long-term nature of ISAs, many folk prefer to use them to shelter blue-chip shares that they can put away and forget, but there's no reason you can't have a more actively traded ISA containing shares in smaller companies. Anyway, on the Paulypilot's Pub - Share Ideas board, we've had a few ideas from CantEatValue...
"Given that a new ISA year has started I thought it'd be interesting to start a thread on what people are putting in to theirs. A great many of the shares I'm most keen on (and I'd imagine this applies for many others here too) are AIM listed so our potential universe of heavily undervalued small caps is greatly diminished but there's got to be plenty of tasty ISAable investments out there.
To get the ball rolling I'll start with what I've currently got in and what I'm thinking about adding, together with a summary of my investment case and/or link to a good information source..."
Head on over to pick up some ideas, and even suggest some of your own.
Man Group financials
Investment manager Man Group (LSE: EMG) has had investors scratching their heads over its dividend strategy -- it's currently planning to pay out more than its profits suggest is sustainable. It's a tricky company to analyse, but Stemis3 has had a go at picking apart its financials, again at Paulypilot's Pub - Share Ideas...
"I thought I'd start a new thread on MANs financials, as the previous one was getting bogged down in discussions about the contribution of hedge fund activity to stock market movements:-
On a share price of 96p, MAN has a market capitalisation of $2,810m [1,818m shares x 96p x $/£1.61]. I find it's better to work in dollars as that's what MAN report in."
Okay, it's not something we can summarise here, but it provides a valuable insight for those with an interest in the company, so do go have a look for yourself.
A valuation challenge
The Paulypilot's Pub - Share Ideas board seems to be dominating our featured posts this week, but we couldn't fail to bring you an intriguing challenge from Carmensfella...
"I am posting this just to show how share price valuations in small caps in particular can be so ridiculous compared to the actual fundamentals of the company and also to show that whilst we as investors can be asleep (although in this example I was wide awake!) there are some shockingly greedy directors that can lie in wait for the perfect moment to capitalise! Directors are supposed to have a duty to extract shareholder value....so let us see what you think of this case which just for a day or so will remain nameless?"
He provides financial details of the company, and then comes the challenge...
"If you were given the job of independently assessing the value of this company and you are told that a charity saving the lives of thousands depended on a fair price being achieved for shareholders and you are setting that price so that the company can exit the market. Tell me the price per share?"
Think you're up to it? Come and join in the thread.
Turning tragedy into legacy
The death of Claire Squires in this year's London marathon saddened many last weekend, especially as she was doing it to raise money for a charity whose aim is to help those in trouble, The Samaritans. At Paulypilot's Pub - Other Stuff, Carmensfella says...
"Claire Squires started the London marathon on Sunday with the intention of raising £500 for her favourite charity The Samaritans where her mother Cilla had been a volunteer for 24 years. The BBC reports that on Sunday, the day of the race, her Justgiving donation page showed £400 had been raised for the charity [...]
It is truly amazing that the donations have already reached a quarter million pounds and it would not surprise me if this coming week it reaches one million."
Well, it's already beaten three quarters of a million since he wrote those words, and it's still open for new donations.
Last week's roundup: A Fool's Look At Tesco