3 Shares You Should Have Bought In March: GW Pharmaceuticals (+70%), Premier Foods (+88%), EnQuest (+71%)

Can GW Pharmaceuticals (LON: GWP), Premier Foods (LON: PFD) and EnQuest (LON: ENQ) continue their climb into April?

| More on:

The content of this article was relevant at the time of publishing. Circumstances change continuously and caution should therefore be exercised when relying upon any content contained within this article.

When investing, your capital is at risk. The value of your investments can go down as well as up and you may get back less than you put in.

Read More

The content of this article is provided for information purposes only and is not intended to be, nor does it constitute, any form of personal advice. Investments in a currency other than sterling are exposed to currency exchange risk. Currency exchange rates are constantly changing, which may affect the value of the investment in sterling terms. You could lose money in sterling even if the stock price rises in the currency of origin. Stocks listed on overseas exchanges may be subject to additional dealing and exchange rate charges, and may have other tax implications, and may not provide the same, or any, regulatory protection as in the UK.

You’re reading a free article with opinions that may differ from The Motley Fool’s Premium Investing Services. Become a Motley Fool member today to get instant access to our top analyst recommendations, in-depth research, investing resources, and more. Learn More.

Promising

GW Pharmaceuticals (LSE: GWP) shares shot up 70% in March, to end the month at 421p. The company specializes in developing “novel therapeutics from its proprietary cannabinoid product platform“, and got some good news from a phase 3 trial of its Epidiolex (cannabidiol) treatment for Dravet syndrome on 14 March.

Dravet syndrome is a rare and severe form of epilepsy that affects children, and as yet there are no FDA-approved treatments — and so a breakthrough there could be nicely profitable. The trial results found that the drug reduces seizures, with “high statistical significance” when compared to a placebo control. As a result, the share price more than doubled on the day, though it’s fallen back a bit since.

Epidiolex notwithstanding, the shares are down 40% since their peak in June 2015, and the company still looks to be some years away from turning a profit. There was $324m in cash on the books at 31 December, although GW did make an operational loss of $86.6m in its last full year. The next step for Epidiolex is a regulatory submission, but though the drug does seem promising, this still looks like a risky investment to me.

Partnership

A takeover approach is one event that can make a share price jump, and we heard on 23 March that Premier Foods (LSE: PFD) had kicked out an offer by McCormick & Company saying it “significantly undervalues Premier’s growth prospects and represents an insufficient premium to Premier’s enterprise value“. The announcement was accompanied by news of a cooperation agreement with Nissin Foods, the inventor of instant  noodles.

The McCormick offer, revised from an earlier 52p bid, valued Premier shares at 60p, and on the day we saw a 70% share price rise. Since then, McCormick has upped its offer to 65p per share, and the shares ended the month trading at 57p for an 88% rise during March. The Premier board still believes that’s too cheap, but it’s going to have talks and hopes for an even better offer to emerge, and if that comes off then there’d be a profit to be made.

Even after the month’s rise, Premier shares are still valued on a P/E multiple of under seven based on 2016 forecasts, so it looks like there’s room for negotiation.

Rising oil

Results on 17 March gave oil explorer and producer EnQuest (LSE: ENQ) a 31% share price boost, and since then the price has kept on going for a 71% rise over the month. We’ve now seen a 118% gain since 20 January’s low point, buoyed by the price of oil which seems to be steadying at around $40 per barrel.

EnQuest reported a 31% rise in production for the year to December 2015 to 36,567 barrels of oil equivalent per day, which was above the upper end of the company’s guidance. The price of extracting the stuff dropped dramatically, due to continuing savings in operating costs, from $42.10 per barrel in 2014 to just $27.70 per barrel.

Net debt rose to $1.55bn at year-end, but the firm reckons it’s “well within its net debt to EBITDA covenant of five times“. EnQuest isn’t expected to get back to profit this year and next, so it’s tricky to value — but I reckon there could be more to come.

Should you invest, the value of your investment may rise or fall and your capital is at risk. Before investing, your individual circumstances should be assessed. Consider taking independent financial advice.

Alan Oscroft has no position in any shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has no position in any of the shares mentioned. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.

More on Investing Articles

Dividend Shares

Starting with £0, here’s how I’d turn my Stocks and Shares ISA into a second income machine

Jon Smith explains how compounding his dividend payments can help him to grow his Stocks and Shares ISA from a…

Read more »

Happy parents playing with little kids riding in box
Investing Articles

A 9.7%-yielding FTSE 100 dividend gem that could create generational wealth

A sizeable investment pot that can be passed onto the next generation could be built with much smaller investments over…

Read more »

Investing Articles

Up 31%, do Lloyds shares have more to give?

Shares in major FTSE 100 bank Lloyds are on a charge. But what could be in store for the stock?…

Read more »

Three signposts pointing in different directions, with 'Buy' 'Sell' and 'Hold' on
Investing Articles

Time to sell this FTSE 100 underperformer, says Goldman Sachs

Analysts at one investment bank have a ‘sell’ rating on FTSE 100 stock Diageo. But could a short-term weakness in…

Read more »

Arrow symbol glowing amid black arrow symbols on black background.
Investing Articles

Down 5%, Glencore’s share price looks a serious bargain to me now

Glencore’s share price looks undervalued to me, supported by strong earnings growth prospects and the potential resumption of extra shareholder…

Read more »

Young brown woman delighted with what she sees on her screen
Investing Articles

I’d invest £6,580 in this FTSE 250 REIT for £500 passive income

This FTSE 250 renewable energy enterprise is on track to become a Dividend Aristocrat! Here’s how I’d invest to earn…

Read more »

Investing Articles

Buying 1,000 of some dividend shares today unlocks £45 in weekly passive income!

These shares are among the biggest dividend payers in the FTSE 100. Should investors be buying them now to earn…

Read more »

Young female business analyst looking at a graph chart while working from home
Investing Articles

If I’d put £5k in index funds 5 years ago, here’s what I’d have now

Investing in index funds is an excellent way to grow wealth with minimal effort. But how much money can investors…

Read more »