Buy ITV and Marks & Spencer?

Tom Winnifrith Bearcast: Oily Piers gains from yellow journalism at the ES & is Amur about to go pop. Listen HERE

I've previously noted my appreciation of the business credentials of Carolyn McCall. She has not really delivered yet at ITV (ITV) but as I detailed at length at the time of the interim numbers in July I see some value, especially since the shares are now twenty pence lower than back then. The third quarter trading update has three elements to it in my view. The good news is that the company continues to win share of the family viewing/online viewing market and the studios business continues to go from strength to strength – I told you it did not need to spend large sums of money on silly purchases like Endemol. Organic revenue growth of 7% in studios spend was very decent and even though something called Snowpiercer getting pushed back into 2019 will hurt full year studios growth, the pipeline looks great with Love Island US and Sunday Night Takeaway (Australia) primed for launch.

Has Jug eared virtue signalling prick Gary Lineker got no shame? Backing the Quindell fraudsters AGAIN! Tom Winnifrith, The Sheriff of AIM, writes HERE

Less good however is the advertising environment which is expected to be 'broadly flat' for the full year despite a 2% rise in the first nine months. Well Bah Humbug for Christmas spend then... More seriously we know advertising spend is generally more compressed but at least it is not falling off a cliff. Finally the nod towards a healthy balance sheet is important. I see Carolyn is going to be reunited in a few months with her old easyJet CFO which no doubt will give her even more confidence about the numbers as she continues to evolve the business towards a creative/online focus. In the meantime that punchy 8p dividend is nice and affordable and equating to a 5.4% yield back here below a 150p share price. Overall, I am still a buyer.

Uh Oh….more bad news for Neil Woodford as Idex releases Q3 numbers. Read Nigel Somerville HERE

Now onto Marks & Spencer (MKS)Back in May, I wrote a piece on the turnaround plan concluding: 'Sub 3 quid a share equates to a bottom drawer call option i.e. buy it at or below this level and I think you have a sporting chance to make some money over (say) the next two or three years. The transformation programme is absolutely the right thing to do and thinking big and radical is the key as it is a really competitive world out there. But it is a bottom drawer stock - only one to blend into your portfolio after you have a holding in those eight or ten much more compelling total return FTSE-100 stocks out there currently'

Superdry – argues “significant progress in the first half”, a further 6%+ share price fall suggests otherwise says Steve Moore HERE

Amazingly the share price is pretty unchanged since then - and has basically gone in a sideways direction either side of three quid since I wrote the piece. That's classic bottom drawer stock behaviour. What did I think of the half-year numbers? They are the usual combination of lacklustre profits progression, ongoing cost cuts, patchy like-for-likes as store closures and pulling away from promotions occurred, squeezing cash flow with a benefit on net debt levels and the like. At least the core full year expectations were left untouched. We all know the issues - wonderfully captured by the stat in a Sunday press article that noted "a quarter of its (M&S') £4.2bn of lease obligations relate to shops with contracts that have more than 25 years to run" - and it immediately noted on the conference call that they are deep in 'restoring the basics'.

Will the fat lady soon be singing for Mowana - Cradle Arc looks screwed says Gary Newman HERE

The share price reflects that we all know the key structural issues here and the 6%+ dividend yield (currently covered by free cash flow) and x11 forward P/E says this. My view remains the same as back in May. This is a bottom drawer turnaround situation to have as a bit of a large cap punt after you have put together a bunch of other more prudent/sensible large cap plays. Online progress from a low base is fine, resonance with consumers is slowly rebuilding, it is finally embracing AI in-store and - more generally – it is a well-known name with (now) what appears a much better team and a big awareness things have got to change. The plan is 'three to five years to make M&S great again'. Given these attributes and a balance sheet which - unlike some other embattled sector peers - gives them half a chance, I would buy/hold some here below 300p a share in anticipation of some 2019-20 share price appreciation payoffs. In the meantime there is the dividend flow...and the fine range of lunchtime sandwiches 'natch too.

Burberry - moving further away from those chavtastic days. Read more from Chris Bailey HERE

Filed under: ITV, Marks & Spencer, Bearcast, Gary Lineker, Quindell, Idex, Superdry, Cradle Arc, Burberry

Atalaya Mining remains a buy after recent updates says Gary Newman

04/18/2019

A couple of ShareProphets share tips of the year updates

04/17/2019

Lessons from Plus500 and time to sell more Purplebricks. From Lucian Miers...

04/16/2019

Polymetal - all that glistens can be gold says Chris Bailey

04/15/2019

Central Asia Metals produces another good set of results and remains a buy says Gary Newman

04/12/2019

Barclays - a low sentiment today to a mid-range sentiment tomorrow play suggests Chris Bailey

04/11/2019

Sosandar - are the shares expensive or cheap after trading update? Nigel Somerville reviews...

04/10/2019

Quilter - a buy if you are a bull on the UK market says Chris Bailey

04/09/2019

Coro Energy - enough potential reward from here for a speculative investment considers Gary Newman

04/08/2019

Sosandar slides again back towards IPO price - time to buy back in? Tom Winnifrith reviews...

04/05/2019

Tern - placing at just 8.5p and an excuse that just does not wash says Nigel Somerville

04/04/2019

Versarien and its shocking new American Appointment. A sell from Lucian Miers

04/03/2019

easyJet slides again but time to pull back on the share purchasing throttle?

04/02/2019

A German Teutonic train ratio tells you that FirstGroup remains cheap suggests Chris Bailey

04/01/2019

Petra Diamonds could add some sparkle to your portfolio suggests Gary Newman

03/29/2019

Accesso - still a sell suggests Steve Moore

03/28/2019

Union Jack Oil - funding at a not great price... but look at the potential of the projects it is for

03/27/2019

If Royal Dutch Shell is going to be a utility giant it has got to buy big says Chris Bailey

03/26/2019

IQE - a good opportunity for bears with patience says Lucian Miers

03/25/2019

Next - if you want an annuity large cap core non-food retailer...

03/22/2019

Argo Blockchain - now a buy?

03/21/2019

Wood Group - chill out despite fall on results?

03/20/2019

Prudential - snaffling a few shares a suitable compromise? Chris Bailey writes...

03/19/2019

Anglo Asian Mining - long term buy and hold says Gary Newman

03/18/2019

Dignity: still worrying about competition in death warns Chris Bailey

03/15/2019

Concepta - signs up with Boots: Game ON. From HotStockRockets

03/14/2019

Further short term dips in Avesoro Resources will offer a good buying opportunity says Gary Newman

03/13/2019

Telit Communications - patience will reward those who are short at these levels says Lucian Miers

03/12/2019

Is it worth taking a gamble on the Guyana drill of Eco Atlantic? Gary Newman reviews...

03/11/2019

SDX Energy should perform well in 2019 and beyond says Gary Newman

03/08/2019

Synectics - results subdued, but confident of good progress from here

03/07/2019

A Turbulent Week at Tesla - sell before it is too late says Lucian Miers

03/06/2019

Abcam - review of a clever, innovative (but also fat cat pay) company by Chris Bailey

03/05/2019

Dividend Munchers Update by Nigel Somerville

03/04/2019

Centamin - the market has vastly over-reacted argues Gary Newman

03/01/2019

RNS potpourri - M&S and Ocado, GVC, ITV, Taylor Wimpey...and badboy Metro Bank from Chris Bailey

02/28/2019

Tesla - shorters patience will be rewarded in 2019 says Lucian Miers

02/27/2019

Reach4Entertainment - I am going to be honest ref. placing and acquisition. From Tom Winnifrith

02/25/2019

Purplebricks - catastrophic warning: target price 0p says Tom Winnifrith

02/22/2019

Lloyds - you cannot eat relative performance... but still bet on the black horse says Chris Bailey

02/21/2019

Yourgene - debt cleared; this is an amazing deal (plus comment on Hardman) from Tom Winnifrith

02/20/2019

Whitbread has a plan and Restaurant Group patently does not says Chris Bailey

02/15/2019

Thoughts on The US Market Juggernaut - and Tesla & IQE - from Lucian Miers

02/14/2019

Ariana Resources - Nigel Somerville updates on buy tip for 2019

02/13/2019

Is the Petrofac share price collapse a good buying or trading opportunity? Gary Newman reviews...

02/12/2019

Red Rock Resources – updates on Congo progress, Buy to almost double says Tom Winnifrith

02/11/2019

Thomas Cook - not buying its holidays but still liking its shares says Chris Bailey

02/08/2019

Union Jack Oil - various potential share price catalysts by HotStockRockets

02/07/2019

Centrica - good total return value? Chris Bailey reviews

02/06/2019

Tesla Q4 earnings call - One More Thing. From Lucian Miers

02/05/2019

Reach4Entertainment - 2018 significantly ahead & also expects 2019 ahead; Buy

02/04/2019

Is Rank really so dank? Chris Bailey reviews

02/01/2019

Dominos Pizza, Crest Nicholson, Royal Mail & PZ Cussons - any buys amongst them?

01/31/2019

IQE - sell the rally says Lucian Miers

01/30/2019

Is Tesco talking sense? Chris Bailey reviews

01/29/2019

Bluebird Merchant Ventures - rapid progress to positive cash flow?

01/28/2019

Obtala - Long Term Incentive Plan announcement... but no need for shareholder anger here

01/25/2019

I told you Metro Bank was dodgy...and not to underestimate Chinese chavs re. Burberry

01/24/2019

KAZ Minerals has the potential to become a copper mining giant in the future considers Gary Newman

01/23/2019

Character Group - reassuring AGM trading update, a speculative buy?

01/22/2019

Update on Flybe - Short Term Lifeline for the Retail Punter from Lucian Miers

01/21/2019

Obtala - quarterly update, now supercharging development. From HotStockRockets

01/18/2019

Headlam - time to buy? Chris Bailey considers...

01/17/2019

Telit - auto sale on track, but trading statement is a load of cobblers. Sell says Tom Winnifrith

01/16/2019

Shoe Zone - a value proposition suited to the challenging consumer environment?

01/15/2019

Flybe put out of its misery for 1p. Next up for near wipeout is Interserve says Lucian Miers

01/14/2019

Sosander - Q3 trading statement update from Nigel Somerville

01/11/2019

Union Jack Oil - Biscathorpe-2 well spud, let the excitement commence…

01/10/2019

Christmas trading update time - Morrisons, Greene King or Joules a buy?

01/09/2019

Bowleven - time for a small drop of Ouzo as 15p special dividend is announced says Nigel Somerville

01/08/2019

KEFI Minerals - shares slightly lower on Tulu Kapi project update, BUT...

01/07/2019

Next - no profits growth... but that is fine argues Chris Bailey

01/04/2019

Five slam-dunk shares to sell for 2019 by Nigel Somerville

01/03/2019

A share tip of the year for 2019 from Tom Winnifrith

01/02/2019

Rockhopper Exploration - a long term buy at the current price?

01/01/2019

Highland Gold is well worth considering says Gary Newman

12/31/2018

A share tip of the year for 2019 from Gary Newman of ShareProphets

12/28/2018

Investment is all about passion...not passion investments says Chris Bailey

12/27/2018

Professor Malcolm Stacey with his World Famous Christmas Lecture...

12/24/2018

What looks interesting in the FTSE 100? Chris Bailey reviews...

12/21/2018

Optibiotix - board strengthened, still a buy?

12/20/2018

Boohoo vs ASOS - could one unravel very soon indeed?

12/19/2018

Retail & SSE plc omnishambles, but some value in the sectors? Chris Bailey reviews...

12/18/2018

Lessons from AA plc. Lucian Miers writes...

12/17/2018

PZ Cussons - time for a research trip to Nigeria? Chris Bailey writes...

12/14/2018

Wood Group, Superdry, Dixons Carphone & DP Poland - any buys from a busy RNS day?

12/13/2018

KEFI Minerals - positive regulatory consent news in the coming weeks?

12/12/2018

Thoughts on Thomas Cook - stay away, Short Flybe instead says Lucian Miers

12/11/2018

Petropavlovsk - POX Hub processing milestone, Buy

12/10/2018

Yourgene - Premaitha as was - interim numbers not impressive, but still a strong buy?

12/07/2018

Numis statement shows why the finnCap IPO is such a stinker says Tom Winnifrith

12/06/2018

Synectics - remains a recovery buy say Tom Winnifrith & Steve Moore

12/04/2018

Blue Prism Group - argues it is pleased in trading update, but shares still a sell?

11/29/2018

Greencore & Ibstock - a tale of two disposals from Chris Bailey

11/28/2018

Premier Oil could see a swift rise when oil bounces considers Gary Newman

11/27/2018

Optibiotix - Greek deal news via Adam Reynolds keyboard, but better to come. Buy.

11/26/2018

Updated thoughts on Tesla - stay short says Lucian Miers

11/23/2018

Three larger cap buy ideas from Chris Bailey

11/22/2018

AO World - interims argue remains confident, but can high growth rating really be justified?

11/21/2018

Dividend stocks & what to make of the Brexit omnishambles from Nigel Somerville

11/20/2018

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