Stockpickers in the small cap arena are 'spoilt for choice,' according to UK fund manager John Dodd....
Stockpickers in the small cap arena are 'spoilt for choice,' according to UK fund manager John Dodd.
The Artemis UK Smaller Companies manager believes the stock market's general decline has caused a tremendous amount of fundamentally sound companies to fall back into the small-cap sector.
In a seminar given to the Investment Week Markets Forum 2003 audience, Dodd talked of dream opportunities.
'Everyone thinks the world has ended,' he said. 'There is so much aversion to risk. It is possible to find great value in some areas.'
Now is a time expert stockpickers should be able to focus in on overlooked growth opportunities, added Dodd, who with his investment team last year picked up the Bloomberg Money Best UK Growth Fund Award.
Recommending specific buys, Dodd said: 'People have lost direction at the moment, they are not very sure. There is so much uncertainty but a year ago we repositioned the portfolio to take advantage of oil exploration, defence and insurance and we see absolutely no reason to change that now. There is great value to be had.'
Premier Oil, currently undergoing a restructuring, and high tech defence specialist Ultra Electronics are two of Dodd's current favourites.
Premier has a strong exploration programme, said Dodd, while Ultra has a strong order book for the next six years. Meanwhile, in the specialist insurance sector, many firms are offering good earnings certainty, reporting very strong ratings value increases.
Dodd also likes the prospects of the restructured nursing homes specialist NHP, which he sees as well-positioned to become a leading beneficiary of the rolling out of new government policies.
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