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23 February 2022
By Maynard Paton
Recent market wobbles have prompted some ‘back to basics’ filtering.
Hence a new screen to identify companies that have strong balance sheets, robust margins and dividends that have defied the pandemic.
The exact filter criteria I applied for this ‘safe haven’ search were:
- Net borrowings less total leases of no more than 0 (i.e. a net cash position excluding IFRS 16 lease obligations);
- A trailing 12-month operating margin of 15% or more, and;
- A minimum five-year record of annual dividend improvements.
I ran the screen the other day and SharePad returned 23 matches:
I added an extra column to the screening results to sort the 23 on five-year share-price performance.
I selected James Halstead because its shares had improved only 9% since February 2017. Of the three weaker performers, two had already been subject to my SharePad microscope while the third — an obscure Kenyan agricultural business — did not quite fit the ‘safe haven’ approach.