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3 top stock picks from JC Clark’s Colin Stewart

Colin Stewart is chief executive officer and portfolio manager at JC Clark Investments Ltd. His focus is on long and short strategies and North American large caps.

Top picks:

Corus Entertainment Inc.
This leading media and content provider owns valuable radio and specialty television assets, provides attractive free cash flow generation, and offers a 4-per-cent dividend yield.

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Martinrea International Inc.
This Tier 1 supplier of automotive parts will benefit from improving North American auto sales and a replacement cycle driven by an aging vehicle fleet. New mandates temporarily depressed earnings but should drive growth in 2013. It trades at an attractive price-earnings ratio of only 7 times.

ShawCor Ltd.
This global oil and gas services company is benefiting from the need for increased pipeline capacity. Attractive growth, strong cash-flow generation and the recently announced elimination of the dual-class share structure make Shawcor a compelling opportunity.

Past picks: Feb. 7, 2012

Canada Bread Co. Ltd.
Then: $44.96
Now: $51.59
Total return: +18.98 per cent

Google Inc.
Then: $606.77
Now: $752.17
Total return: +23.96 per cent

Ford Motor Co.
Then: $12.88
Now: $13.76
Total return: +9.13 per cent

Total return average: +17.36 per cent

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Market outlook:

We remain modestly more net-long than normal, predicated on the view that high-quality U.S. and Canadian equities are cheap and investor pessimism is elevated. Attractive equity valuations (particularly relative to government bonds), coupled with healthy fundamentals continue to create opportunities to deploy cash. Despite this view and the recent "mini-deal" announced at year-end surrounding the "fiscal cliff," we are concerned that market volatility could be elevated over the next few months as lawmakers work through other critical issues such as the debt ceiling and sequestration.

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