Stock Advice from Questor: The Best and Worst Predictions for 2022

Questor's best and worst stock
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Our yearly evaluation of the results of our suggestions is fast becoming a holiday tradition on par with mince pies and reindeer sweaters.

We have to be clean right now and say that this has been a terrible year.

A total of 36 equities that were recommended as buys for the first time in 2022 across all of our formats have underperformed, falling by an average of 4.7 percentage points. On a like-for-like basis, the FTSE 100 has fallen by 0.3%. Of the 15 winners, just 6 had gains in the double digits, while 11 of the 21 losers had declines of 10% or more.

Winners in Questor’s Contest

The oil equipment and services specialist Hunting was our top pick for 2022, and its stock price has increased by 63% since the beginning of the year, thanks in large part to the shift in public opinion toward oil exploration that followed the invasion of Ukraine and Vladimir Putin’s use of energy supplies as a weapon.

Beazley, a “catastrophe” insurance, has seen its stock price rise by 39 percent since we recommended it in May. As we said yesterday, the market’s inability to absorb the costs of the invasion of Ukraine, Hurricane Ian, and other climate-related calamities may have been worse.

The next three winners are all financial companies: Impax Asset Management (26% gain since our tip in July), AJ Bell (14% gain since March), and London Stock Exchange (10% gain since February). The fourth winner is Diploma (13% gain since our tip in October), a supplier of specialized technical products like wiring, cable, seals, and gaskets.

Anglo American (+9.4 percentage points since August), IBM (+6.8 percentage points since August), Haleon (+6.7 percentage points since the beginning of this month), BHP (+5.7 percentage points since January), P&G (+5.7 percentage points since June), Just Group (+2.8 percentage points since last week), Spectris (+1.3 percentage points since last month), Cadence Design Systems (+0.4 percentage points since July), and Lloyds Banking Group (+0.4 percentage points since July) also saw gains (0.1pc since May).

Disappointment for Questor

In July of 2022, we recommended Inspecs, a specialist in eyeglasses, for our Inheritance Tax Portfolio. Although there were encouraging signals, such as the CEO buying £200,000 worth of shares in the weeks before our tip, our investment in the firm has already lost a devastating 82% of its value.

When we recommended that readers acquire shares of the modest Scottish homebuilder Springfield Properties in January, we noted the company looked to have sound roots. Since then, the stock has fallen by half.

Despite our prediction that “supply [of gold] is all but certain to decline and demand [is] likely to climb,” our subscribers have lost 36 percent on paper since we supported Dr. Martens in February and 30 percent on Newmont in June.

Medtronic, which produces medical devices including insulin pumps, heart valves, and defibrillators, was our recommendation of the year in January, but the stock has since dropped by 28 percent.

Despite being predicted to gain from energy shortages due to its innovative floating LNG processing units, Golar has seen its share price drop by 20% since September. Since we funded the animal therapies firm in July, both Golar, a US stock that featured under our “Questor in America” banner, and Zoetis have lost us 20 percent.

We also recommended American company Tyler Technologies in August because of its dominant position in the government software market in the United States. And now we’re down 17% because of that.

Aside from these, we also saw declines in Impact Healthcare Reit (16%), (15%), Kering (14% since last month), National Grid (9.5% since February), Severn Trent (8.7% since May), United Utilities (6.7% since March), Somero Enterprises (5.6%), Renishaw (4.5%), Breedon (3.9%), Oxford Instruments (2.7%), Cranswick (1.6%), Mastercard (1.4%), and a few others (since July (0.4pc since August).

Share prices as of 12.30 pm on Tuesday were used for all calculations.


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