Thu 5:26pm


Real Name: Roland Head

Occupation: Analyst, Blogger, Private Investor

Interests: Bonds, Commodities, European Markets, Interest Rates, Oil, Property, Stocks, US Market

Location: United Kingdom

Twitter: rolandhead

Fantasy Fund: Stock in Focus portfolio

About Me:

I'm a private investor and writer on stock markets, with a particular fondness for free cash flow, dividends and value. I also have a lingering interest in commodity stocks.

In earlier life, I worked as an engineer in telecoms and IT. The rules-based approach required for this kind of work undoubtedly influenced my investing style. I also learned a lot from seeing the tech bubble deflate in 2000-1, when I was working for a large and now defunct Canadian firm. 

My investment focus is increasingly on developing rules-based strategies such as my Stock in Focus portfolio. This reflects a significant part of my personal portfolio and is the subject of my weekly column here at Stockopedia.

Investment Strategy
I trade... monthly
I tend to buy... according to my system
I hold for... years
Diversification is ... essential to reduce risk

I run two portfolios: the first is a fairly traditional mixed-cap value portfolio with a bias towards income stocks and contrarian picks. I look for asset plays and good businesses going cheap due to short-term pressures.

My second portfolio is the Stock in Focus Portfolio (SIF), which I run as a Stockopedia Fantasy Fund. I write a weekly column about this portfolio for Stockopedia.


Freelance financial writer, offering news, investment and opinion articles covering primarily UK stocks. Particular interests are dividend and value investing, plus the oil and gas industry. I have the CFA UK Investment Management Certificate (IMC).

Web Address:

Address: North Yorkshire

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Roland Head's Latest Blogs

There are no new stocks I can buy from my SIF screen this week. So as we’re coming up to the SIF portfolio’s third birthday, I thought it would be a good time to take a look at what’s gone wrong over the last three years. In my experience, the importance of avoiding big losses is often overlooked and misunderstood by many private investors. I…

After last month’s round of sales, I’m on the hunt for new international stocks this month. My international SIF portfolio has been a pretty poor performer so far and has not matched the success of my UK SIF. But I haven’t given up hope just yet. Just 30 stocks in Stockopedia’s international universe qualified for my international SIF screen this week. Luckily, an unusually high…

Have we reached peak Brexit uncertainty? Let’s hope so. Regardless of the eventual outcome, it certainly feels like now could be a good time to add some overseas diversification to my rules-based SIF fund. Happily, my SIF screen has come up trumps this week and delivered a new stock for me to consider. I reckon this company is comfortably removed from the UK economy and…

It’s nearly the end of March, so this week I want to carry out my regular review of stocks that have been in the SIF folio for nine months or more. I don’t normally comment on newsflow from portfolio companies during their time in the portfolio, but I do want to make an exception for building services group Bilby (LON:BILB), which has been a complete…

I think it’s fair to say that many of us feared the worst when Staffline shares were suspended at the end of January. So it’s a welcome relief to be able to report positive news this week for this SIF folio stock. I’m also pleased to have a new stock to consider for the portfolio. Car dealership group Lookers is undoubtedly a contrarian choice at…

Roland Head's Latest Comments

Re. stop losses and risk management.Thanks to BH1991 & others who've suggested a stop loss and commented on risk management.I completely agree that some losses are inevitable - as with insurance they are a fact of life. BH1991 also makes a good point about 'overscreening' - a screen isn't a perfect filter and relies on volume and diversification to produce a good result in aggregate.…

@herbie47 One of the measures I'm thinking about is implementing a minimum operating margin rule. My only slight reservation is that some good businesses generate attractive returns on capital and free cash flow even though their margins are low. But excluding this small minority might be a price worth paying. Re. Go-Ahead (LON:GOG) -- agree. I think it's a decent business and I hold the…

Thanks for your kind words! Re. losses, I do expect losses and am happy to take them. But as a general rule I'd hope that good selections within my framework for this portfolio would mean that losses greater than about 20% are rare. So far, big losers have been fairly rare (seven >20% losses out of 61 closed positions). But I'm sure there's still room…

Re. selling after a profit warning. I've given this a lot of thought and I am tempted by this solution. There's plenty of evidence that profit warnings tend to lead to a prolonged period of poor performance. Stockopedia's excellent "Anatomy of a Profit Warning" guide gives the data on this and is a good read.My main problem in the context of this portfolio is that…

Hi Phil, I agree that there are good companies in the construction sector such as Morgan Sindall (LON:MGNS) and T Clarke (LON:CTO). But I previously thought that Keller (LON:KLR) fell into this category too, thanks to its high-end specialist skills. It probably does, but only on a very long-term view. I'm coming round to the view that construction firms are possibly not well suited to…

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