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Alex RuusTibor Kolley/The Globe and Mail

Alex Ruus is portfolio manager at Arrow Capital Management. His focus is on North American equities.

Top Picks:

WellPoint (WLP NYSE)

WellPoint is the largest health care insurer in the U.S. and is one of the solutions to helping consumers control health care costs. The company trades at an attractive valuation of only 12 times earnings, pays an attractive and growing dividend and has a record of increasing earnings.

Gilead Sciences (GILD NASDAQ)

Gilead is the world leader in providing pharmaceuticals for the treatment of HIV and hepatitis. The company has just launched a revolutionary new treatment for hepatitis, which looks to be the most successful new drug launch in history. The company trades at an attractive valuation of 11 times earnings and is growing rapidly.

Neptune Technologies & Bioressources (NTB TSX)

Neptune is an emerging neutraceutical/pharmaceutical company producing Neptune Krill Oil (NKO), a proprietary omega-3 phospholipid. The company is substantially undervalued and the stock is poised to outperform as its new manufacturing plant has recently come into production and its potentially revolutionary new drug, CaPre, approaches release of critical Phase 2 clinical trial results.

Past Picks: December 6, 2013

Alaris Royalty (AD TSX)

Then: $34.25; Now: $32.76 -4.35%; Total return: -0.67%

Magna International (MG TSX)

Then: $85.81; Now: $122.71 +43.00%; Total return: +44.58%

LyondellBasell Industries (LYB NYSE)

Then: $76.55; Now: $133.45 +48.20%; Total return: +51.29%

Total return average: +31.73%

Market outlook:

The global economy continues its slow, steady recovery from the "Great Recession" of 2008-09. This provides a perfect economic backdrop for leading companies with sustainable competitive advantage to thrive and grow shareholder value. Current equity markets are modestly undervalued with large divergences in valuations between companies providing excellent opportunities for disciplined investment funds like Exemplar Leaders and Northern Rivers Conservative Growth LP to continue to build client wealth.