Ashtead (full-year earnings 7 March)
Ashtead seems ideally placed to benefit from Donald Trump’s stimulus programme in the US, even if we still have precious few details on the actual stimulus. Nonetheless, the firm’s big US operations have already fired up investor enthusiasm, with the shares surging since the election. The shares have delivered an increase in earnings in each of the last five years, while its strong record of dividends is matched by a dividend coverage ratio of four times earnings. Watch for further comment on the potential opportunities offered in the US as a consequence of the Trump stimulus.
The shares have barely stopped since the election, reaching a new all-time high at the beginning of March. We may see some profit-taking following the results, but so long as the price doesn’t breach £14 it seems likely Ashtead will remain an investor favourite. Some near-term support may be found at the 50-day simple moving average (SMA), currently £16.30.