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Forget Bitcoin! I’d rather buy this FTSE 250 dividend growth stock

The euphoria surrounding Bitcoin has died back down in recent sessions after the blistering start to 2020.

Currently trading around $9,300, the virtual currency has leapt 29% in a little over a month. Some may think I’m insane but it’s these rampant price gains that make me a Bitcoin bear. There’s been no significant newsflow to have driven investor demand in recent weeks, exacerbating my concerns that this is a bubble waiting to burst. And I’m not the only one.

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Fears over the legitimacy and the uses of Bitcoin are still raging and threaten to cause prices to crash again. I’d much rather put my money to work through stock investment, a market that can reward long-term investors with returns of up to 10% a year. And there’s one particular growth and income share I’ve got my eye on today.

Good news everyone!

Strong trading at Future (LSE: FUTR) made it one of the FTSE 250’s success stories in 2019. It drove a 200%-plus share price advance in the course of the year. And if news at the start of 2020 is anything to go by investors could be cheering more monster gains in the new year.

The magazine publisher continues to enjoy brilliant momentum, it reported this week, with “strong organic revenue growth” and “improved conversion of higher margin revenues” helping to drive the bottom line. Business has been so robust in fact that Future said that results for the full fiscal year (to September 2019) would be “materially ahead of current market expectations.

To round off another top release, Future said that the strong cash conversion of its media divisions meant that its cash position was better than forecast, too.

Big plans

A strong balance sheet bodes well for both growth and dividend investors. The electrifying profits growth of recent years has been driven in part by Future’s aggressive drive for acquisitions. Magazine revenue leapt 20% in the last fiscal year as Future used its chequebook to expand its geographic exposure and its range of titles. News that cash generation remains strong could pave the way for more M&A moves, too.

Its exceptional balance sheet means that shareholders can look forward to more chunky dividend hikes, too. Future doubled the annual reward in fiscal 2019 to 1p per share. And City analysts are expecting another chubby year-on-year increase this time out, to 1.25p.

In fact, it’s quite possible that these payout forecasts will be upgraded as the financial period progresses. The number crunchers have continued upping their earnings estimates in the last few months, too. Right now they are predicting bulky annual increases of 13% and 27% in fiscal 2020 and 2021 respectively.

Future doesn’t come cheap, and trades on a forward price-to-earnings ratio of 23.7 times. A 0.1% corresponding dividend yield doesn’t quicken the pulse either. But despite these numbers I reckon the company’s brilliant profits outlook makes it a top buy for long-term investors.

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Royston Wild has no position in any of the shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has no position in any of the shares mentioned. 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.