The market has performed fairly well over the last month, despite the uncertainties facing the UK economy and wider global markets. The SIF fund is showing a gain of about 4% for the month and several holdings have enjoyed a notable boost.  I hope your portfolios have done well too.

As it’s the end of the month, it’s time to review any stocks which have been in the portfolio for at least nine months. Two stocks qualify -- both popular names.

Mello 2019: Before I get started, just a quick reminder that the Mello 2019 investor show takes place in mid-May. I’m making the trip down south for the first time, so I hope to be able to put some faces to names and meet some of you.

An impressive line-up of expert speakers and companies have been confirmed for the show, so there should be something of interest for everyone.

Stocks for review

Two companies are up for review this month:

  • Bovis Homes Group (LON:BVS) - this FTSE 250 housebuilder is performing well, but cyclical and political risks are an ever-present concern.

  • Bloomsbury (LON:BMY) - Harry Potter publisher Bloomsbury still looks a wizard buy based on its StockRank of 95. But does this well-regarded small cap still pass all of my screening tests?

Here’s how these two firms’ shares have performed during their time in the portfolio:

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Bovis Homes Group (LON:BVS)

(Original coverage 11/07/2018)

Housebuilders have been priced like late-stage cyclical stocks for about three years now. But profits have been supported by a gravy train of cheap mortgages, inflationary government subsidies (Help to Buy) and apparently insatiable demand.

Even now, with prices said to be falling in London and the South East (according to the Nationwide House Price Index), builders’ profits appear to be holding up well.

The end result is that shareholders willing to sit on their hands have enjoyed some staggering cash returns. Dividend yields have hit 10% in some cases. This can’t continue forever, but when will things change? I’ve no idea.

Has Bovis delivered? When I added Bovis to the SIF folio last July, the firm was still in turnaround mode after production shortfalls and quality problems hit profits. However, boss Greg Fitzgerald seemed to have a good grip…

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