Readers or Fundies: Who took the early lead?

Alex Cowie

With just six weeks of the year behind us, it may seem premature to be checking in on the 'most tipped stocks' and fundies #1 picks, but there are two things to consider here. Firstly, when we asked in our survey what Livewire could do more of, 3.6% of the 7,000 participants asked for more tracking of stock calls. Secondly, the performance of the stocks in question has, like last year, been well ahead of the market. 

Our friends at Sharesight have kindly built 'portfolios' tracking the lists of the most tipped big caps, most tipped small caps, and the fund managers' #1 picks, which they discussed in this blog last week

Given how far some of the stocks have moved already, and the request for more tracking, I wanted to provide a quick snapshot, and to find out whether it's the fund managers or the readers that have taken the early lead so far...

Most tipped big caps

The list of most tipped big caps is already comfortably ahead of the market, with an average gain of 7.7%, versus the ASX200 at 4.8%. 

Source: Sharesight

Afterpay is leading the pack (again) after adding $10 to its share price in six weeks, to set new highs and notch up an astonishing 31.3% gain already this year. The company reports on the 26th February, so look out for our coverage on the day from Simon Shields at Monash Investors (Click on the link and then hit follow to receive it directly). 

The big miners started the year strongly but tripped up on concerns from the impacts of the coronavirus on the Chinese economy, and now all sit at the back of the pack. If you missed it last week, Jun Bei Liu from Tribeca Investment Partners and Matt Williams of Airlie Funds Management discussed them in Income strategy: miners vs banks. 

Most tipped small caps

With an average gain of 16.4%, the most tipped small caps are well ahead of both the big caps and the index. 

Source: Sharesight

Paradigm (PAR) is leading at present with a gain of 42%. A few weeks ago, Scott Williams at Fiftyone Capital shared his current views on it in Our take on Paradigm

Biotech has rarely been an area of focus on Livewire, with the risk profile being outside most of our readers' comfort zones, but with biotechs (Paradigm, Mesoblast and Avita) taking three of the four leading spots on this table, clearly, the market now has the theme on its radar.  

Nearmap (NEA) has been the first casualty, falling sharply at the end of January. We ran the stock past Jun Bei Liu and Matt Williams in our first Buy Hold Sell of the year, and both had negative views (we recorded their comments before the price fall, so they called it right). 

#1 Stock Picks from the fundies

While the readers' most tipped small caps and big caps are both doing well, the fund managers' #1 picks for 2020 calls are well ahead with an average gain of 23.9%

Leading the pack by a country mile is David Allingham with a near doubling of his stock call, Wisr (ASX:WZR). David is the reigning champ from 2019 with his call on Alacer Gold (which nearly tripled) and has started this year displaying the same kind of form. 

The fundies beat the readers last year with a 59% average gain, versus a 50% gain, so perhaps history is repeating. With 45 weeks left of the year and reporting season upon us now, it's probably a bit early to be counting chickens. Anything could happen yet, and I'll update regularly through the year.  

Detailed quarterly update coming next

This wire is just to provide a quick snapshot of the current leaders and laggards, and to show you how you can track these and other stocks via Sharesight

As originally planned, I will also provide you with a far more detailed update of the stocks on each of these three lists toward the end of March, and each quarter thereafter. Click FOLLOW to receive these directly. 

Livewire's most tipped stocks for 2020 eBook

If you, or any of your investing friends, are not subscribed and missed the previous wires on the readers most tipped stocks and fundies' picks, we have rolled them up for you in a neat little eBook, which you can access here

A word of caution

These are to be taken as lists of stock ideas, and not as portfolios, and while last year's most tipped-lists, and fundie picks, put in strong returns, these likely may have been one-offs and I'd caution against expecting it to happen again! Last year's strong equity market provided a big tailwind, which likely won't repeat. As a disclosure, I have held Paradigm since mid-2019. 

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Alex Cowie
Alex Cowie
Content Director

Alex happily served as Livewire's Content Director for the last four years, using a decade of industry experience to deliver the most valuable, and readable, market insights to all Australian investors.

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