Trading in this uncertain market – my latest portfolio additions

In line with my stated strategy for investing through this turbulent market I’ve been buying since I last updated on my trades around five weeks ago. This is not because I have huge confidence that things won’t get worse before they get better. Rather it’s my way of dealing with the ups and downs and quite often the sheer madness that is the stock market. For example, what does the stock market do on news of record unemployment in the US? That’s right, it rises.

I’m not trying to second guess the market, that’s in my view near impossible to do consistently. Instead, I just want to keep earning dividends and drip in my investments. This is why I’ve been picking up a few new positions.

The buys

I’ve been buying shares for my ISA, LISA and SIPP. Purchases in the ISA are Persimmon (LSE: PSN), Lloyds (LSE: LLOY) and Intermediate Capital Group (LSE: ICP). The former two appeal more to my value instincts and I’m gutted Lloyds was strong-armed into scrapping its dividend. It’s less of a surprise that Persimmon had to take the same action to preserve cash. Intermediate Capital Group has performed well and has risen by over 20% by the start of this week. I bought the shares though for the income potential and will hold onto them. The track record of the company is strong and I like its prospects.

In the LISA I’ve added Admiral (LSE: ADM) for income, Moneysupermarket (LSE: MONY) for growth, Diageo (LSE: DGE) for quality and for its international brands and Schroder UK Mid Cap (LSE: SCP) investment trust for diversification and its sustainable and high dividend yield.

In the SIPP I added a modest amount to my Reckitt Benckiser (LSE: RB) holding which has performed well through the recent volatility. I also took new positions in two investment trusts which I intend to hold for a long time and both of which are contributing well. First Scottish Investment Trust (LSE: SCIN) which has become increasingly defensive and invested in gold miners. Also has Tesco as a big holding. The other is high-yielding Murray International (LSE: MYI) which holds many international companies and was unusually trading at a discount to its net asset value.

This table summarises the size of the investments and gives more information on the timings of the purchases. Ordered by portfolio, so starting with the ISA, then LISA and lastly the SIPP.

Date No of shares Company
12/03 44 Persimmon
12/03 3151 Lloyds
01/04 141 Intermediate Capital Group
01/04 60 Persimmon
12/03 50 Admiral
31/03 22 Admiral
31/03 250 Moneysupermarket
01/04 68 Diageo
01/04 330 Schroder UK Mid Cap
12/03 7 Reckitt Benckiser
01/04 126 Scottish Investment Trust
02/04 57 Murray International

What next for my portfolio

It’s unlikely now I’ll buy any more shares until early-to-mid May to allow things to change. It may be that I can benefit from averaging down if the market falls, or the investors may have more certainty on what might happen next if I wait a while longer. I definitely won’t sell any shares. If the market has a really bad day, so where it falls by more than 5%, I may be tempted to pick up more shares in some of my favourite companies. I’m in this for the long-run. Then again, I don’t want to give all my money to Hargreaves Lansdown. Their fees are quite something and I’ll probably move to another platform very soon. So I’ll balance adding to my holdings with avoiding overtrading.

With this in mind, it’ll be a case of buying slowly but surely. With a focus likely moving towards buying high-quality companies at a lower price and trying to add or buy new positions on companies that may sustain their dividends. This will likely mean I’ll add to my positions in investment trusts which tend to have a strong record of maintaining their payouts to shareholders.

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