While markets remain volatile there are still plenty of opportunities out there

While markets remain volatile there are still plenty of opportunities out there

What with Easter and a trip to Venice I haven't been doing that much the last couple of weeks.

I have though shorted quite heavily in the 5200 area of the FTSE - seems a bet to nothing really. It can't get through 5200 ish so easy short with take a loss if needs be once 5230 ish is broken. If the FTSE then really tanks down I'll make a lot.

There have been/are a few new issues coming/have just been so I thought I would take a look at some of them.

The one that's got the most attention is Hotel Chocolat. It's a great name, hell I even want to buy it just because of the name. I could eat chocolate all day long. Who needs Xmas when you've got the Easter Day excuse?

But personally I don't like that sort of posh chocolates, organic 70% chocolate kind of thing, give me a yummy Twix or a Twirl any day. It is a bit worrying to note its "end of season sale".

The "Big City Easter Bunny" has hopped down from £7.50 to £3.75. And the Rocky Road Extra Thick Easter Egg didn't sell at its crazy £27 now slashed to £13.50.

Meanwhile the Dark Ostrich Egg which was selling at a staggering £75 (come on!!) is now (just) £37.50.

There are pages of these "bargains" so I simply wonder if they overegged the price of their Easter stuff. A lot seem to be left sitting in the bargain bin.

Looks like it makes about £8m and wants to float at £150m. Looks pretty pricey to me but then again so did Fever-Tree when it launched.

So it's a kind of "maybe" from me but if first day trading is at a massive premium I may give it a miss till the share price melts a bit.

Possibly one to hold onto for a bit then quit. Thorntons had a pretty torrid time on the market till it was eventually put out of its misery with a bid.

My suspicion is it might go too high from the off and it could be worth waiting. And the amount of Easter stuff unsold is a bit of a worry.

The IPO I like the most is Cerillion which recently floated and I'm in and I have last week bought some more.

A £2.1m profit and a 22m market cap at its 76p float looks like value. It installs and supports billing charging etc solutions to the telecoms market mainly.

It operates across the works and includes some big boys like Cable and Wireless. It's a nice steady business, I can see myself doubling my money here over a year or two without losing sleep. It doesn't have the glamour factor of Hotel Chocolat but I always find it's the boring ones that make me money.

I'm not so sure about Blue Prism which has also just floated. This one has tech glamour to it which should excite investors.

Sure it looks way more exciting than Cerillion, after all it's all robots.. robots!!! Cool !!!

But its market cap is more than double Cerillion's and it makes a loss - and only £6m or so revenue last year. But is says current trading is good and "within expectations. " Of course they don't say what those are so valuing it is hard work.

Anyway chillingly it wants to supply a virtual workforce with robots taking over mundane back office clerical jobs. Yes, folks it is after your job. Work in the back office for a finance house? Be afraid... be very afraid....

So yes, I guess profits could grow but there must be a lot of competition out there. Not really sold on this one so I'm doing a Duncan Bannatyne on it (no, not hooking up with yet another woman half my age) what I mean is, "I'm out!"

One that I have tucked away is YU Group (LON:YU.) This one really is impossible to value with no real figures to go on, however there are barriers to entry in its market supplying energy to smaller companies.

It had £8.4 m of contracted revenues for this financial year (ooooh!). It's going to pay a dividend and should throw off plenty of cash.

Safe and solid is Watkins Jones (LON:WJG) which buys property and lets it to students. It won't be an exciting capital play but it plans 6% dividends.

I haven't bought it yet as there is to rush. Similar examples that I hold are Tritax Big Box and Empiric Student Properties. It's the kind of share overlooked as being boring but it with capital growth it could pay 20% a year. Not so boring, right?

An interesting one coming up this month is Osirium, a UK based cyber security software provider.

Cyber security is a hot sector and this could be an interesting gamble.

Definitely a gamble as it makes bugger all yet. As an old fart I don't understand much about this area but I think part of what it does is stop insiders from causing cyber attacks.

So an insider in a bank couldn't use a privileged account to wreak havoc. If you watched "Mr Robot" on Amazon you'll know what I mean. It's a tiny company, might be worth a small gamble.

Now the Harwood Wealth Group. That wants to advise people who have quite a bit of cash but not super rich (£200,000 to £500,000). It says it's a "Vertically integrated financial planning wealth management group".

No idea what that means either, you can imagine the waffle in management meetings can't you? Doesn't really get me going.

And I even tried to think out of the box, had a brainstorm with myself before touching base about it offline. As you see, I always like to give 110% to everything.

Lots of companies have listed over the years promising to fight cancer. The aim is brilliant but generally punters lose their shirt on these. The next one is SalvaRx which wants to develop new therapies to use our own immune systems to fight cancer. I so hope it works but chances are you'll do your money buying into it.

Anyway, don't rely on me, do your own research into these.

Moving away from new issues I've added some toy company Character (LON:CCT) shares.

Looks very cheap and with teletubbies going well, could be a decent statement coming soon. The shares tend to do nothing for ages then suddenly re-rate. And they have done nothing for ages!

Half-year results are due on the 27th April. I notice last year the shares went up quite a lot following results. So maybe history will repeat itself. It's possible the shares could re-rate from a fiver up to 600p.

Of course as ever with markets no guarantees for good results so it's not one to bet the house on, but it could pay off. If it doesn't pay off at least I can pretend to be a teletubbie and say "Eh oh!" (Thank f I don't have to watch that anymore along with Peppa Pig and Fireman Sam).

I also bought some more Cerillion (LON:CER) as mentioned above. - this new issue has got off to a great start, one of the few that appeared to launch at a reasonable price!

Impellam (LON:IPEL) still looks cheap and seems to go up a little bit every week. I've added some more - to me, these should be rated well over a tenner. Anything under a tenner looks a buying price. I suspect a decent re-rating at some point.

And I've picked up some more FlowGroup (LON:FLOW). Bought this earlier this year and already they have done nicely.

I am someone who likes to "average up" and I think there is plenty more upside here.

First installations of its flow boiler start this week and it has been awarded accredisation. The vat issue that marred the share price looks to be easing with hopes that vat remains at 5% and not a rise to 20%.

The market seems to hate mkt at the moment, I always find there is little point fighting the market so took a loss of £468. However keeping an eye on it and will try another entry point when it looks right, perhaps when there is some demand for them. It also doesn't like Ncc and with same comments as above really, have taken a loss of £96. Careless really, could have banked a giant profit! Definitely be back in there soon though. I suspect both will come back into favour at some point.

I sold out of much of Sepura a long time ago banking some decent profits. I kept some in the ISA and they more or less kept on going up so I kind of lost touch till the other day when I saw they had tanked. Well, it was poor of me to lose touch, however I sold which still banked some very decent profits for the website of £6,208. Should really have banked the rest a long time ago.

It's time to finally wave goodbye to the last of the Carpetright short.
Carpetright has been the most fantastic short over the last 4 years. Not certain of the total I've made out of it but must be around the £40,000 mark having shorted it from 700 to 315 and again from 6 ish and down again. Always too highly rated and never really delivers. But around this price is about as far as it usually falls so out of the last for a profit of £1,375. I suspect I'll be back!

The ETO shareprice remains under the cosh so I sold off a few more. I expect the share price will at some point get a significant re-rating but it looks like it might take some time. So while I continue to hold some I have lightened up and book a profit of £836.

All in all then profits banked of £7,855.

Some lovely rises from some recent buys. Cerillion, discussed earlier. |
YU Group has seen a nice lift. So too CMC, Vectura and Interquest. IS Solutions looks on the up.

Nice news from Cyprotex - results were decent but in effect it is putting itself up for sale or a partnership. That could potentially give a fair lift to the share price, I'm going to hold to see what happens.

Elsewhere after the excellent dividend, Tritax BB produced brilliant results so already a nice uplift plus the dividend, a three year hold for me and I am after 25% pa from it inc dividends. Talking divs, a nice one from Quartix has just arrived.

Paysafe is having an excellent run with all positions well in profit. 425 looks the number to crack.

Iomart is bubbling along nicely trying to break 265. Nearly there! Cracking results from Empresaria, they really ought to be higher and tempted to get some more.

Mcarthy and Stone looks to have a great future after its results too.

Photo-Me has at last been re-rated, took a while but well deserved after its statement, Japan going well. Dignity has started to rise from the dead and is pushing up into highs.

So while markets remain volatile there are still plenty of opportunities out there.


Nakedtrader was created after I left my full-time job as a finance editor for BskyB to trade full-time. I had been writing an diary page for its teletext service since 1998 and decided as I was leaving to transfer that to the internet.
These articles are simply a "diary" of my life, or what you would now call a "blog". I detail what I've bought, sold or shorted and briefly why. I use various spreadbetting companies and stockbrokers to carry out the trades. I ignore commission but also dividends and I reckon the two balance each other up.
So you should be aware this is not a "tipping" site and I do not consider myself, nor do I want to be, a "tipster". In other words tipsters will urge you to "buy" something - and they generally are regulated to do so by the FSA. I simply state I have already bought or sold something personally. Because of that I am not "regulated" - so I am not an authorised "tipster". I am simply a trader who states his positions.
That is quite a big difference. I am not allowed to give what is called "Individual investment advice". And quite right too - I am not trained to do so. What that also means is if you e-mail me and ask me anything along the lines of "Should I buy or sell this share?" I cannot answer you except to say it is your choice! Of course I am more than happy to answer anything to do with general market/educational questions.
You should understand I always have an interest, and sometimes a big interest, in any stock I talk about. For website purposes my buys will often be to smaller stakes than in reality. So although my buys are real enough, as are the prices, I can and often do buy much bigger stakes in the shares. I may also "top up" in shares without declaring it and I will sometimes deal more often than I mention on the site - mainly because of time pressure, if markets are busy. So though the buys on the site are around the £5,000 mark I may well deal in reality is sizes of £10,000 - £30,000.
My reasoning for this is I simply do not want to encourage people to blindly follow me into something when they do not understand the potential risk. It's ok for me because I can afford to lose money I put into the market. It may not be the case for you. I am generally a medium term investor holding my shares usually between 1 week and on occasions up to 3 years. Average holding time is probably about 3 months.
So one of my main messages is: don't be tempted to follow me blindly into my choices. Quite often, as I play momentum, a share I have bought may already be much higher than when I bought it, especially as I do not update every day. If you follow me blindly you may be buying at a much higher price and you may end up selling at a much lower one.
You should ALWAYS do your own research and come to your own decisions on share purchases. If you follow me into something and lose money, you only have yourself to blame and not me. You should learn about markets and understand what you are doing before entering them.
The most risky way of trading of all is spreadbetting, which I do quite a bit. You should carefully read all the warnings that the spread betting firms issue together with all the warnings in my books. And never, ever, play with money you cannot afford to lose.
The aim of this site is to entertain, and perhaps stimulate debate, and that is the condition of entry !I really hope you enjoy reading about my triumphs and mistakes, but please, just watch and enjoy my triumphs and learn from my mistakes. Consider this site as entertainment. If this is your first visit to the Nakedtrader website site, I thank you for visiting me, and hope you will find this site useful.
After reading and agreeing to the disclaimer, click the "I accept" button below. Please remember, I cannot give any specific advice, as to whether you should buy, hold or sell any individual share.
"The investments and other products referred to on the Naked Trader website should in no way be considered "advice" to buy or sell anything. Naked Trader information is given in general terms only and does not constitute personal advice to any individual. Investors are responsible for formulating and applying their own strategies based on their own personal circumstances. Naked Trader recommends that you obtain independent financial advice from an FSA-authorised intermediary before investing money. Information given in previous editions of Naked Trader daily updates may become outdated and should not be relied upon unless confirmed by recent comment
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