27th January 2014
More than two fifths of investors believe the FTSE 100 will break 7000 this year, according to the latest Halifax Share Dealing Market Tracker.
With the FTSE 100 rising more than 14% in 2013 and hitting an eight month peak early in 2014 after a series of positive economic announcements, 82.4% of those surveyed predict the FTSE 100 will end 2014 higher than it began.
Damian Stansfield, managing director of Halifax Share Dealing, says: “There has been a strong rise in employer confidence and this is filtering through the markets. The FTSE ended 2013 strongly and investors are reporting they think this will carry on during 2014.
“In terms of sectors, many investors are still holding energy & mining, and financial services stocks; however both have seen a decrease in terms of investor numbers in the last year. Conversely, consumer services and particularly computers, IT & internet stocks have seen greater numbers of investors holding stocks here.”
Strong increase in Computers, IT & Internet in 2013
|Top five holdings in October 2013 by number of investors holding stocks in this sector||January 2013||January 2014||% change|
|Energy & mining: gas & oil etc||66.4%||59.2%||-10.84%|
|Financial services: banks, insurance, property services, investment companies etc||65.8%||55.3%||-15.96%|
|Consumer services: retailers, leisure, entertainment, media, transport etc||41.2%||45.6%||10.68%|
|Computers, information technology & internet e.g: computer hardware, software, telecommunications||35.8%||42.1%||17.60%|
|Consumer & retail products: beverages, health, tobacco, pharmaceuticals etc||45.8%||40.4%||-11.79%|
Source: Halifax Share Dealing Market Tracker
Halifax says that despite rising prices and profitability among some of the biggest players, energy & mining firms have seen a degree of negative media coverage in the last year, and the percentage of retail investors holding of energy and mining stocks fell more than 10% in the last 12 months. Similarly, holdings of Financial Services shares were down almost 16% on the year.
The biggest year-on-year increases were seen in Computers, IT & Internet stocks up nearly 18% and Consumer Services up nearly 11%.
Looking back and future forecasts
Almost three quarters of investors (73.9%) said the value of their portfolio has increased in the last six months, compared to just 8.3% who say it has decreased and 17.9% who say it has stayed around the same.
Looking ahead at the next six months and 41.9% of investors say they are looking to invest in energy and mining stocks, ahead of the 41.4% who say they are looking to invest in Computers, IT & Internet shares and the 40.1% planning to invest in financial services stocks.