LONDON — May was a less bullish month for FTSE 100 companies than the previous couple of months, with caution creeping back for the final two weeks. We still saw a number of companies whose shares did well over the month, but the big question is which of them look like they have further to go.
I’ve chosen five that gained during May and that I think still have more to give to shareholders over the long run:
Marks & Spencer
After a few years of going nowhere, the Marks and Spencer Group Plc (LON:MKS) share price was always going to recover, right? Well, it has been rising in recent months, but it took on fresh impetus after the company’s annual results on May 21. Over the whole of the month, the shares gained 62 pence (15%) to end on 471 pence.
Pre-tax profit did fall 14% with earnings per share down 10%, but that was pretty much as expected, and overall sales were up 1.3%, with that all-important multichannel sales figure up 17%. Business seems to be picking up overseas, too, with international sales up 4.5% — businesses owned in China and India did well. There’s earnings growth forecast for the next two years, with the shares on a forward price-to-earnings ratio of 14 for 2014, and a dividend yield of 3.8% is expected. May might just have been the turnaround month.
TUI Travel PLC (LON:TT) shares gained 45 pence (14%) during May to end the month on 359 pence — and they’ve more than doubled over the past 12 months. Emerging from the depths of the financial crisis, TUI Travel PLC (LON:TT) turned in two years of earnings growth in 2011 and 2012, and analysts are forecasting a further 10% per year for the next two years, putting the shares on a forward P/E for this year of 12.5 — it falls to 11.5 for 2014. The dividend has been rising, too, with a yield of 3.6% expected this year.
The future? Well, TUI Travel PLC (LON:TT) this week announced a commitment to invest $12 billion in buying new Boeing aircraft, which are more fuel efficient and environmentally friendly.
Talking of planes, easyJet plc (LON:EZJ) has had another great month, with its share price climbing another 149 pence (13%) to 1,266 pence. And again, easyJet looks to be facing the future with enthusiasm, snapping up 25 pairs of arrival and departure slots at Gatwick airport from Flybe Group for 20 million pounds.