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Tuesday newspaper share tips: Wait and see whether Scottish Investment Trust improves

By Edward Swift

Date: Tuesday 08 Dec 2015

Tuesday newspaper share tips: Wait and see whether Scottish Investment Trust improves

(ShareCast News) - Investors of Scottish Investment Trust are being told to sit pretty and wait to see if its new manager can bring in some returns.
The company, which aims to provide investors over the longer term with above-average returns through a diversified portfolio of international equities and to achieve dividend growth ahead of UK inflation, said on Monday that the net asset value per share total return in the 12 months to the end of October was 4%.

Earnings per share were up 38.2%at 15.91p, mainly due to a higher level of income generation from the portfolio but also to a greater use of the company's borrowings throughout the year, higher special dividends and successful tax reclaims relating to historic overseas dividends.

The Times' Tempus noted that the company feels "sleepy and unexciting", a company that is as unchanging as an Edinburgh castle but appears to avoid any major "wealth-destroying mistakes".

It noted that Alasdair McKinnon, the relatively new manager, is starting to make his mark by tending to make investment decisions that differentiate itself from the competition.

He has also kept costs down, with the firm's charges ratio down from 0.68% to 0.52%.

Tempus said it is too early to judge whether this new manager and his new approach will improve returns, especially as it lags behind competitor Alliance Trust.

It advised to 'hold' while the new manager tried to improve things with an untested approach.

Meanwhile in The Telegraph, Questor was keeping an eye on Walker Greenback after it told the market that one of its factories has been flooded by Storm Desmond.

The luxury interior furnishings group cautioned that its profit will take a hit as the factory of Standfast & Barracks, its printing business in Lancaster, suffered substantial flooding during the heavy rain brought on at the weekend.

The company, whose brands include Sanderson, Harlequin and Morris & Co, said it is carrying out an urgent assessment of the effects of the flooding and expects a period of disrupted production at the factory as well an adverse impact on machinery, stock and profits.

"The company has a comprehensive insurance policy, which covers flood damage and business interruption, and a claim has already been logged."

The news sent the share price down on Monday to close 2% lower.

Questor noted that side of the company made up a fifth of the total group's sales as it prints designs onto fabric for luxury brands including Burberry and Ted Baker.

The rest of the company manufactures high-end wall coverings with complex designs and textured paper and are sold through four main brands.

It said the company was expected to post a 13% increase in adjusted pre-tax profit to £8.8m, however the flooding will hit that and the forecast is expected to be downgraded once the damage is fully assessed.

With the shares now trading on 19 times forecast earnings, Questor said it backed the company to bounce back and advised traders to hold.

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