So UK shares are tumbling since the country voted to leave the EU, are they? Well, it’s certainly true that the FTSE 100 has lost 4.5% since the end of that fateful day last Thursday, standing at 6,059 points as I write.
But you know what? A fall that small is completely lost within its usual day-to-day volatility, and the UK’s top index hasn’t even given up the gain it made in the week leading up to the vote.
On top of that, some shares are soaring.
Here are three that could be among the year’s big winners:
Speciality pharmaceuticals developer Indivior (LSE: INDV) enjoyed a boost in early June, when a patents case in the District Court of Delaware went in its favour and confirmed the validity of the firm’s Suboxone patent. On the day, Indivior shares climbed by 36%, and since this year’s low point on 9 February they’re up 71% to 224p.
The downside is that Indivior is expected to see earnings per share dropping both this year and next, which would put the shares on a P/E based on 2017 forecasts of 15.3 — which is only a little behind GlaxoSmithKline‘s multiple of 16.2 for the same year (with EPS growth and a 5.8% dividend on the cards).
In its first full year as a public company after demerger from parent Reckitt Benckiser, chief executive Shaun Thaxter told us “We significantly outperformed our financial plan for the year“. Indivior’s focus on opioid misuse coupled with its pipeline for developing “potentially transformational treatments for addiction” could well see it ending the year on a high.
Services firm Serco (LSE: SRP), which manages labs, education services, leisure centres and prisons, has not done well in recent years, with its shares losing 80% since their high point in July 2013. But we’ve had a 33% recovery since February’s low, to 102p.
Full year results in February provided a boost, with underlying trading profit coming in ahead of guidance at £96m, and although cashflow was negative, an outflow of £16m was better than expected. A rights issue during the year enabled the company to almost wipe out its debts with a reduction of £605m to just £78m, and Serco saw its pipeline of larger opportunities growing by £1.5bn to £6.5bn.
The shares are on a big forward P/E of over 50, but this looks like a company that is genuinely into recovery — an update in May said performance in the first four months of the year had been “stronger than we anticipated” and that profit for the year should be ahead of previous expectations.
Are smaller oil explorers finally coming to the fore? Indus Gas (LSE: INDI) has suffered badly though the oil price crash, with its shares down 80% since December 2012, but again we’ve been seeing a powerful comeback in 2016 — from a February low, the price has more than doubled to 215p. Strengthening oil prices have help for sure, although the price of a barrel has dipped below $50 again.
In September last year I found it hard to understand the low valuation of Indus Gas shares when they were trading at around half their current price, so I’m pleased with the movement since then. There hasn’t been a great deal of news, so I think the recovery has largely been due to a change in sentiment towards what are actually very thinly-traded shares.
If we see further oil price gains over the next 12 months and more, Indus’s resources in Rajasthan could look very attractive.