Interactive Investor

FTSE 250 round-up: four shares fighting back

10th May 2022 15:54

Graeme Evans from interactive investor

The mid-cap index has massively underperformed the FTSE 100 in 2022 so far, but these stocks are heading higher after the recent slump.

Industrial threads business Coats (LSE:COA) and the cyber security firm NCC (LSE:NCC) provided key support today as the FTSE 250 index put back a chunk of Monday’s hefty 500-point loss.

Coats, which traces its stock market history as far back as 1890, rose 2.8p to 68p after investors welcomed a deal to offload its loss-making operations in Brazil and Argentina.

NCC, meanwhile, added another 12.70p to 204.5p as the security software provider continues to benefit from yesterday’s reassuring trading update and appointment of a new boss.

The FTSE 250 index had recovered to 19,559 by mid-afternoon, a rise of 258 points as bargain-hunting investors also snapped up heavily sold stocks including technology pair, Baltic Classifieds Group (LSE:BCG) and Bytes Technology Group (LSE:BYIT).

The UK-focused benchmark remains 18% lower over the year to date, a performance more in keeping with Wall Street than London’s FTSE 100 index, which is down by around 3% due to its greater exposure to the energy, financial and commodity sectors.

Dollar earners also support the topflight at a time of sterling weakness, while the FTSE 250 has more domestic companies vulnerable to inflation and cost of living pressures.

Today’s outperformance also included a gain of 2.6p to 135.4p for Marks & Spencer (LSE:MKS), a level that compares with 257p in January this year. Digital publisher Future (LSE:FUTR) is another stock seeing a dramatic reversal of fortunes, falling from 3,816p at the start of this year to below 2,000p.

The company rose 34p to 1,976p after it acquired WhoWhatWear, a women’s lifestyle publisher based in the US, from Clique Brands. The deal makes Future the sixth-largest beauty and fashion publisher in the US and comes ahead of its interim results next week.

Peel Hunt, which expects further bolt-on deals, said shares were now “excellent value” on a forward multiple of 12 times earnings. The broker has a target price of 4,500p.

Other stocks on the FTSE 250 risers board included the Ukraine-based iron ore pellet producer Ferrexpo (LSE:FXPO), which recovered a third of yesterday’s losses by adding 6.3p to 143p.

Monday’s market sell-off meant a delayed share price reaction to NCC’s strong trading update, which showed second half revenues substantially higher than both the prior year period and the first half on a constant currency basis.

The company, which was created out of the National Computing Centre in 1999 and listed on AIM five years later, also expects revenues momentum to continue in the new financial year.

There was further cheer for investors after it emerged that Mike Maddison, EY’s head of cyber security, will replace Adam Palser who is standing down as chief executive after more than four and a half years in the role.

Analysts at Jefferies welcomed the “neat CEO changeover” as they backed NCC with a price target of 300p.

These articles are provided for information purposes only.  Occasionally, an opinion about whether to buy or sell a specific investment may be provided by third parties.  The content is not intended to be a personal recommendation to buy or sell any financial instrument or product, or to adopt any investment strategy as it is not provided based on an assessment of your investing knowledge and experience, your financial situation or your investment objectives. The value of your investments, and the income derived from them, may go down as well as up. You may not get back all the money that you invest. The investments referred to in this article may not be suitable for all investors, and if in doubt, an investor should seek advice from a qualified investment adviser.

Full performance can be found on the company or index summary page on the interactive investor website. Simply click on the company's or index name highlighted in the article.

Related Categories

    UK shares
    Consumer goods and services
    Cyber security