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Three top stock picks from Avenue Investment’s Paul Harris

Paul Harris is a partner and portfolio manager at Avenue Investment Management. His focus is on North American and global equities.

Top Picks:

Regions Financial

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Regions is a commercial and retail bank in the south east united states. The stock trades at .7 times book value and at 10.6 times earnings. The company will benefit from a continuing improvement of the U.S. housing market and a continued reduction in cost.

Leon's Furniture

Leon's sell furniture and appliances. It is a great Canadian brand that has a 3.1-per-cent yield and trades at 10.5 times earnings. A conservative estimate of the property they own is $6 a share. The company purchase of the brick should lead to further growth in the next several years.

TD Bank

We believe TD's strategy of growing its retail operations in the U.S. will be very effective over the long run. Its recent purchases were astute and at a low valuation. The stock trades at 10.5 times earnings and 1.8 times P/BV and has a 3.710-per-cent yield.

Past Picks: September 12, 2012

Then: $20.12
Now: $25.21
Total return: +32.51 per cent

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Bank of America
Then: $8.97
Now: $14.24
Total return: +59.17 per cent

Then: $17.99
Now: $22.59
Total return: +28.26 per cent

Total return average: +40.98 per cent

Market outlook:

We believe the tremendous amount of sovereign debt outstanding globally will lead to slower growth around the world over the next several years. This will keep rates low for an extended period of time and inflation will be benign. In this environment, we look for companies with strong balance sheets and growing dividends.

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