Track the companies that matter to you. It's FREE! Click one of these fan favorites to get started: Apple; Google; Ford.



5 FTSE 100 Shares You Should Have Bought in April

Watch stocks you care about

The single, easiest way to keep track of all the stocks that matter...

Your own personalized stock watchlist!

It's a 100% FREE Motley Fool service...

Click Here Now

LONDON -- Some of our top FTSE 100 shares had a very good April, with some impressive rises being seen. But which of them deserved their successes and are likely to carry on rewarding their shareholders into the future?

That's a harder question to answer, but I think the following five stand a good chance of going on to even better things:

Vodafone Group  (LSE: VOD  ) was one of my picks last month, and it makes it again with a further gain of 9.6 pence (5.1%) to end April on 196 pence. But that in itself is not the main reason for my choice -- it is the possibility of Vodafone's tie-up with Verizon Communications providing something nice for shareholders going forward.

Whether there's a full merger of the two companies or a transfer of ownership of Vodafone's 45% stake in Verizon Wireless, something is pretty much certain to happen, and it will most likely be at a nice price for Vodafone.

A number of news items have boosted Lloyds Banking Group  (LSE: LLOY  ) shares by 5.6 pence (11.5%) in April to 54.3 pence. First, we heard that Lloyds is to split off 632 branches and relaunch them as a newly floated TSB Bank -- that came after confirmation that the Co-operative had withdrawn from a planned deal to buy the branches. We also heard that the bank's Spanish retail operations are to be sold to Banco Sabadell.

But the major news is the return to big earnings, with Lloyds turing in a pre-tax profit of 2.04 billion pounds in its first quarter this year. That's a massive rise from the 280 million pounds recorded a year previously, though that quarter was hit by mis-selling costs.

A first-quarter surge in profits helped ARM Holdings  (LSE: ARM  ) shares up 75 pence (8.1%) to end the month on 996 pence (and they're up a further 15 pence to 1,011 pence as I write these words). The chip designer saw earnings per share soar by 58%, after it saw a 35% rise in the number of ARM-based chips shipped, to 2.6 billion.

ARM's growth comes at a price, and that's a forward price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio of nearly 50, so there is clearly a lot more expected growth built in to today's share price. Of course, everyone knows that no company can keep growing forever, but for now at least, there's no sign of the wheels coming off for ARM.

Shares of Royal Dutch Shell  (LSE: RDSB  ) picked up 68 pence (3.1%) to 2,253 pence, ahead of a first-quarter earnings update scheduled for tomorrow. Shell, the biggest company in the FTSE with a market capitalization of 141 billion pounds, looks remarkably cheap to me, sitting on a forward P/E of around 8.5 and with a dividend yield of more than 5% forecast.

There's no earnings growth expected over the next couple of years, but the dividend should be well covered and with demand for oil and gas extremely unlikely to be dropping off anytime soon, it must be one of the safest around too (barring any disasters, of course).

Some of our mining companies have been making a bit of a comeback, with shares of Eurasian Natural Resources (LSE: ENRC  ) rebounding by 28 pence (11.5%) to 274 pence. Others enjoyed rises too, though slightly disappointing economic figures from China kept fears alive that its economic growth is slowing.

But after a year that saw the Eurasian share price plunge by more than 50%, and with forecasts suggesting earnings growth for this year and next, Eurasian shares could be looking cheap now on a forward P/E of 8.5 (falling to under 7 for 2014 forecasts).

Finally, if you're looking for top quality investments in the U.K.'s biggest and best companies, which should take you all the way to a comfortable retirement, I recommend the Fool's special new report detailing five blue-chip shares. They'll be familiar names to many, and they've already provided investors with decades of profits.

But the report will only be available for a limited period, so click here to get your hands on these great ideas -- they could set you on the road to long-term riches.


Read/Post Comments (0) | Recommend This Article (0)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

Be the first one to comment on this article.

Compare Brokers

Fool Disclosure

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 2402409, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 10/21/2016 9:59:13 PM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...

Today's Market

updated 43 minutes ago Sponsored by:
DOW 18,145.71 -16.64 -0.09%
S&P 500 2,141.16 -0.18 -0.01%
NASD 5,257.40 15.57 0.30%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes

Related Tickers

12/31/1969 7:00 PM
ARM $0.00 Down +0.00 +0.00%
ARM Holdings CAPS Rating: No stars
ENRC $0.00 Down +0.00 +0.00%
Eurasian Natural R… CAPS Rating: No stars
LLOY $55.31 Down -0.25 -0.45%
Lloyds Banking Gro… CAPS Rating: No stars
RDSB $2169.62 Down -4.88 -0.22%
Royal Dutch Shell… CAPS Rating: No stars
VOD $222.97 Down -0.53 -0.24%
Vodafone CAPS Rating: No stars