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4 shares the pros are buying and selling

Our regular roundup of trades by professional investors, featuring Dunelm, Purplebricks, Countryside Properties and Kingspan.

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If you would like to receive news alerts on any of the stocks mentioned in The Expert View, click on the star icons below to add them to your favourites.

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Key stats
Market capitalisation£1,170m
No. of shares out202m
No. of shares floating96m
No. of common shareholdersnot stated
No. of employees5675
Trading volume (10 day avg.)m
Turnover£881m
Profit before tax£102m
Earnings per share50.33p
Cashflow per share62.78p
Cash per share7.38p

Dunelm Group

Citywire A-rated yield investor Martin Cholwill has pared his stake in troubled home furnishings business Dunelm Group (DNLM) as its shares continue to hover close to a five year low hit this month.

Cholwill reduced his holding to 4.9% of the business £58.7 million at a share price of 584p, down 31% over the last 12 months.

The position is held in his £1.8 billion Royal London UK Equity Income fund, the third largest holder of the stock and until recently an active buyer.

The City initially gave a thumbs-up to a mixed set of results at the beginning of July but sentiment has soured since with the shares hitting a post-2012 low of 545p.

While the business was upbeat on the recent acquisition of rival Worldstores, which strengthened online sales, it warned of tougher conditions as pre-tax profit fell from £129 million to £109 million.

Deutsche Bank reiterated its ‘hold’ rating and cut its price target from 730p to 665p.

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Key stats
Market capitalisation£1,356m
No. of shares out271m
No. of shares floating181m
No. of common shareholdersnot stated
No. of employees85
Trading volume (10 day avg.)1m
Turnover£47m
Profit before tax£-3m
Earnings per share-1.20p
Cashflow per share-0.98p
Cash per share26.36p

Purplebricks

Citywire AAA-rated mid-cap veteran Richard Watts has continued to take profit on a position in online estate agent Purplebricks (PURP) as its shares resume an upward climb to hit a fresh record high.

Watts cut his holding to 10.8% of the business from just under 12% of shares to 10.8% or 29 million worth £144 million at a share price of 498.5p, up 280% over the last 12 months.

The shares are held in his £2.8 billion Old Mutual UK Mid Cap fund, one of the largest holders of the stock, with a further stake held by AAA-rated colleague Luke Kerr’s UK Dynamic Equity fund.

Renewed momentum in Purplebricks has rapidly outpaced analysts’ ability to keep up, and left a median price target of 375p trailing far behind.

A scramble for growth this week pushed the valuation of the S&P 500 tech sector beyond the high water mark of its dotcom bubble peak more than 17 years ago.

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Key stats
Market capitalisation£1,634m
No. of shares out450m
No. of shares floating421m
No. of common shareholdersnot stated
No. of employees1087
Trading volume (10 day avg.)1m
Turnover£671m
Profit before tax£61m
Earnings per share13.57p
Cashflow per share14.05p
Cash per share8.51p

Countryside Properties

UK equity income giant Neil Woodford has taken his stake in property developer and regeneration specialist Countryside Properties (CSPC) to above 10% as its shares have rocketed to a record high.

Woodford increased his investment in the business to a stake worth £166 million at a price of 367p, up 53% over the last six months.

The shares are held in his £10 billion Woodford Equity Income fund. The stock was a new purchase for the portfolio in May as the manager bought into a series of domestic property stocks.

Shares in Countryside began to rerate sharply higher as it reported a 258% increase in earnings per share and a 53% increase in operating profit from £34 million to £53 million.

Barclays last week upped its target price on the stock from 558p to 630p, rated ‘buy’.

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Kingspan

Citywire AA-rated pan-European growth manager Thorsten Winkelmann has upped his stake in eco building materials supplier Kingspan (KSP) as its shares dip on profit taking from a recent record high.

Winkelmann increased his holding in the London and Dublin listed business from just over 5% to above 6%, a stake worth €309 million (£278 million) at a share price of €28.88

The stake is held in his €6.9 billion Allianz Europe Equity Growth fund, the largest holder of the stock, with a smaller position held by AA-rated colleague Matthias Born’s Euroland Equity Growth fund.

Kingspan has dipped from an all-time peak of €33 in early May. After a string of acquisitions in recent years the company said in April that its expanded product range was ‘bedding in well’ with sales in the first three months of the year 24% up on the same period of 2016 at €831 million.

Berenberg upped its target price from €32 to €33 at the end of June, on a ‘buy’ recommendation.

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