Market conditions seem to be changing. The number of stocks qualifying for my Stock in Focus screen has fallen steadily recently and is now down to just 14. Several of these are already in the portfolio, or would be ruled out due to duplication issues.

If this continues, then the SIF portfolio may move steadily into cash until more attractive opportunities emerge. I’m not overly concerned about this, as I don’t believe you need to be fully invested all the time. Indeed, I think that’s one of the advantages private investors have over most fund managers, who have little choice but to deploy cash when it’s made available to them.

In any case, I’m not looking to add any new stocks to the portfolio this week. It’s the end of another month, which means it’s time to take a look at stocks which have been in the SIF portfolio for nine months or more.

Do they still qualify for my screen, or is it time to jettison these shares and free up some virtual cash for new opportunities?

The situation is quite interesting. But before I get started, I’d like to flag up my article from last week. I’ve launched a new international version of the SIF portfolio, which uses a modified version of my screen to select stocks from all the countries covered by Stockopedia.

I’ll be including monthly updates to the International SIF from now on, so I’d be interested to hear more about your experiences investing overseas. We had some interesting comments last week regarding the impact of dealing costs and foreign exchange.

A 44% total return

Here’s a summary of the three stocks up for review this month, and their performance to date:

A quick look at the Fantasy Fund page suggests these stocks have delivered a cracking performance for the portfolio, especially Morgan Sindall:

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Including dividends, the average total return from these three holdings has been 44%.

Notwithstanding this, all of these stocks will have to be sold this week unless they continue to qualify for the Stock in Focus screen.

Morgan Sindall

Construction and services group Morgan Sindall has proved to…

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