With the deadline approaching for this year’s ISA allowance, I’m on the hunt for the best UK shares to buy. Should I add the following FTSE 100 stocks to my shares portfolio today?
Left on the shelf
The behaviour of the Tesco (LSE: TSCO) share price during the past month has been startling. It plummeted after the retailer decided to pay an eye-popping special dividend to its shareholders, pulling value out of the company. Plenty of UK share investors have been happy to stick around though, partly as they think Tesco’s brilliant online proposition should deliver big profits in an increasingly digital marketplace.
I have to say that I’m not so sure. Established operators like Tesco face an increasingly competitive landscape, both in the physical and online realms, which threatens to keep eroding their customer bases and thin margins. Last week, Amazon opened up a new front in the battle by launching the country’s first till-free supermarket in London.
It’s true that, on paper, Tesco offers plenty of value for money. It trades on an ultra-low forward price-to-earnings growth (PEG) multiple of 0.2. Its corresponding dividend yield of 4.5% beats the broader prospective average for UK shares by a full percentage point, too. Still, as a long-term investor, I’m looking past these attractive figures and thinking about the company’s murky outlook further down the line. I’ll be happy to leave this supermarket on the shelf right now.
A better UK share to buy?
I think Polymetal International (LSE: POLY) is a much more attractive share to buy following recent price weakness. This UK gold mining share fell to its cheapest since June because of the falling metal price. Bullion values have also slipped to their lowest for nine months below $1,700 per share as optimism over the economic recovery has boosted demand for riskier assets. Rising US Treasury yields haven’t helped demand for the yellow metal either. World Gold Council data shows holdings in global gold-backed ETFs fell 2% month-on-month in February.
Gold prices could remain on the back foot, too, if positive news over the economic rebound lessens demand for safe-haven commodities. This would damage profits at Polymetal and pull the share price lower too. But there are reasons why precious metals prices could spike again as well. The total number of Covid-19 cases worldwide is rising, casting a cloud over the economic recovery. There are also increasing concerns about booming inflation as central banks keep rates low and continue with quantitative easing.
As for Polymetal itself, the Russian mining giant has a collection of top-quality assets from which it plans to steadily raise production over the next few years. Though the threat of rising labour and materials costs could hamper profits growth, I think the picture is bright. At today’s prices the company trades on a forward price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio of nine times and carries a big 7.9% dividend yield. I think it’s one of the most attractive cheap income shares to buy on the FTSE 100 right now.