If I had £1,000 to invest, here are my top UK shares to buy now

Our writer’s list of shares to buy now for his portfolio includes these four names, all of which he thinks currently offer him growth potential.

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I think there are some great companies selling at attractive prices right now. If I had £1,000 and wanted to invest it at the moment, I would consider spending it on these four names from my list of shares to buy now.

boohoo

The online retailer boohoo is set to reveal its annual results next month and I expect a lot of eyes to be on the announcement. The company has already warned on profits several times and the outlook for earnings looks worse than last year. Inflation is adding costs that could hurt profits.

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But I think that is already factored into the boohoo share price, which is in penny stock territory. While the shares have fallen 74% in a year, I expect the company to deliver solid revenue growth. It has also been consistently profitable in recent years. Looking forward several years, I think the proven success of the boohoo model will help its business do well. I see the current share price as a buying opportunity for my portfolio.

JD Sports

Another retailer that has seen its shares fall over the past year is JD Sports. The JD Sports share price is down a fifth in 12 months.

Unlike boohoo, I am not clear on why that is. The company has flagged that the end of government stimulus in the US may hurt revenues and profits. But JD is a growth juggernaut and has been since long before stimulus arrived. Its interim results were the best ever.

There is a proven retail formula the company has mastered. I have been buying JD Sports for my portfolio in the expectation that long-term growth prospects could help support a higher share price again.

Unilever

Will people be using Dove soap in a decade? Will they be eating Marmite? Will they be washing their clothes with Surf?

I think the answer to all three questions is a resounding yes. So although cost inflation may hurt short-term profits at brand owner Unilever, I see a rosy long-term picture. The premium nature of Unilever’s brand portfolio gives it pricing power. That could help it offset inflationary pressures.

I expect customer demand to remain strong. I would buy these shares for my portfolio hoping for long-term share price growth, but the 4.1% yield also looks attractive to me.

Safestore

The self-storage company Safestore may not be an exciting growth story – but it is a growth story nonetheless.

Demand for storage is set to keep increasing in the UK. As a leading player in the market, I expect that to benefit Safestore. Its simple formula of building and buying properties then letting small units in them out on short-term leases has proven highly lucrative. Last year the dividend grew by 35%. Low barriers to entry could hurt profit margins in the self-storage industry. But from a buy and hold perspective, I am happy to have Safestore tucked away in my portfolio.

Shares to buy now

I like these four shares so much I have already bought them all and continue to hold them in my portfolio. I think they continue to look attractive at their current prices and would consider adding more.

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Christopher Ruane owns shares in JD Sports, Safestore, Unilever and boohoo group. The Motley Fool UK has recommended Unilever and boohoo group. Views expressed on the companies mentioned in this article are those of the writer and therefore may differ from the official recommendations we make in our subscription services such as Share Advisor, Hidden Winners and Pro. Here at The Motley Fool we believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.

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