I reasoned that it was a big, solid company whose share price had been badly knocked by the eurozone crisis, and looked ripe for a re-rating.
The share price didntbudge for a couple of years, but I wasnt complaining, because it was pocketinga mighty 8.1% yield at the time.
I had money in a savings account earning just 2%, and nobody was going to re-rate that (quite the reverse, as it turned out).
The Wilson Years
I admired new chief executive Mark Wilsons attempts to turn the ship around, slashing internal debt, offloading non-core underperforming assets, slashing middle management, and boosting sales in the UK, Turkey and Asia.
Wilson has delivereda cash generative, financially healthy business, while Ive enjoyed a60% increase in the share price over the past two years.
Mybet has paid off, but I reckon there is more to come. Aviva still has some catching up to do with runaway rivals L&G and Prudential. With cash flow up 65% and the dividend hiked 30%, it finally has momentum on its side.
Lloyds Should Motor
Although I wouldnt buy Lloyds expecting runaway share price growth, those days seemed to be over for the banking sector.
Lloyds has turned its back on the flash side of the industry, investment banking, in favour of the more reliable, if humdrum, UK retail banking sector. If this was a car, it would be a Ford Focus.
Nothing wrong with that if it gets you from A to B.
Lloyds still needs some fine tuning, with 24% of the bank still held by the taxpayer, worth 13.5bn. Theshare price should have a bit more poke when that weight has been offloaded.
Its bodywork is in far better condition than before, now that it has repaired its capital position and met its regulatory targets.
And with a dividend yield predicted to go from 0% to 5.2% between now and the end of next year, this bank still has plenty miles in the tank.
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