Up 25% in a month! 3 red-hot FTSE 250 buys to light up my Stocks and Shares ISA?

Harvey Jones wants to put a bit of fire into his Stocks and Shares ISA and wonders if these three FTSE 250 companies have staying power.

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I’m looking to inject some excitement into my Stocks and Shares ISA. I’ve spent the last year buying undervalued FTSE 100 income stocks, now I’m looking to generate some growth as well. These three FTSE 250 shares are up almost 25% in the last month. Is this where I should start my hunt?

Past performance is no guide to the future, especially over the short term. So I’m approaching Moonpig Group (LSE: MOON) with caution. Its shares have rebounded 24.94% in the last month. That’s a fabulous result, but all that matters today is where they go next.

Growth opportunities

The Moonpig share price is up 20.55% over one year, but that follows a rocky ride for the online greetings card supplier whose shares plunged by two-thirds after listing in February 2021.

The mood changed on 28 June when it posted a 6.6% increase in full-year revenues to £341.1m, with pre-tax profits up nearly 33% to £46.4m. Its subscription service Moonpig Plus, which offers discounted cards and perks for £9.99 annually, exceeded expectations with half a million members in a year.

Broker Berenberg has praised the group’s technology-led strategy and hiked its price target from 265p to 280p. Today, it trades at around 192p. That’s a potential rise of 38% from here. With consumers likely to start feeling better off, it could continue to grow. Trading at 14.72 times earnings, the stock isn’t expensive. I’m tempted to buy before more investors wake up to its recovery, but recent volatility makes me wary.

XPS Pensions Group (LSE: XPS) only joined the FTSE 250 last month but it’s going great guns, up 23.95% in a month. Over one year, it’s up a blockbuster 76.22%. It’s pricier than Moonpig, trading at 19.26 times earnings.

It’s also got a lift from a positive set of results, reporting on 20 June that group revenue jumped 21% last year to £196.6m.

XPS is the biggest pensions consultancy in Britain. It should benefit as the population gets older and starts worrying about retirement. In contrast to Moonpig, it pays dividends, with a current trailing yield of 3.07%. That’s pretty impressive, given its stellar share price growth. Better still, the board hiked last year’s payout by 19%.

Time to buy?

One risk is that it has grown quickly through acquisitions, which don’t always add value. They have so far, though. I like Moonpig, but I like XPS more.

Soft drinks firm Britvic (LSE: BVIC) was the FTSE 250’s third best performer over the last month, up 23.66%. A £3.1bn takeover proposal by Danish brewer Carlsberg has put some fizz into the stock, which has now climbed 42.02% over 12 months.

The board has so far rejected two proposals, one at 1,200p per share and another at 1,250p. Today, the shares trade at 1,216p.

Top Britvic shareholder Aviva reckons Carlsberg needs to go higher. It says it hasn’t factored in the anticipated improvement in Britvic’s finances. Today, the £2.98bn group trades at 19.84 times earnings.

Personally, I never buy on takeover talk. There is too much uncertainty, plus a risk the share price will flop if it falls through. XPS is firmly on my radar and I’ll look to buy once the excitement over its results ebbs. Then I’ll take a second look at Moonpig.

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.

Harvey Jones has no position in any of the shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has recommended Britvic Plc and Xps Pensions Group Plc. 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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