Skip to main content

Michael Sprung is president of Sprung Investment Management Inc.

Michael Sprung is president, Sprung Investment Management. His focus is Canadian large caps.

Top Picks:

Manulife Financial (MFC-TSX)

Story continues below advertisement

Manulife is a leading Canadian-based financial services group with operations in Asia, Canada and the United States. Over the past five years, the company has made tremendous strides in de-risking the balance sheet and improving profitability through increasing wealth management operations as well as redirecting the mix of products sold. The insurance companies will be amongst the beneficiaries should interest rates start to rise. MFC has one of the strongest capital bases in the industry. Going forward, we anticipate that core earnings growth will continue to stem from the Asian operations as well as from initiatives in the U.S. and Canada. With its strong capital base and improving profitability, dividend increases are likely within the next few quarters. Manulife will be reporting earnings on May 7.

AGT Food and Ingredients (AGT-TSX)

AGT is a leader in pulse processing for export and domestic markets. The company has had notable success in diversifying into food ingredients, an area that is facing increasing global demand. 2016 has been declared by the United Nations to be the International Year of the Pulse. This designation will serve to highlight the opportunities for AGT as demand for pulse ingredients expands.

New Flyer Industries (NFI-TSX)

New Flyer Industries manufactures and assembles transit buses in Canada and the U.S. as well as providing after-market services. The company has been a consolidator in North America and is well positioned to participate in fleet renewals. Pricing has been improving and the company's backlog has been expanding. New Flyer will be a beneficiary of the improving economy in the U.S. and the strong U.S. dollar as about 80 per cent of their revenues stem from the U.S.

Past Picks: May 8, 2014

Alaris Royalty (AD-TSX)

Story continues below advertisement

Then: $28.40; Now: $35.24 +24.08%; Total return: +29.94%

Cascades (CAS-TSX)

Then: $6.08; Now: $6.97 +14.64%; Total return: +17.46%

George Weston (WN-TSX)

Then: $81.11; Now: $102.04 +25.80%; Total return: +28.16%

Total return average: +25.19%

Story continues below advertisement

Disclosure:

Personal

Family

Portfolio/Fund

AD

N

N

Y

CAS

N

N

Y

WN

N

N

Y

Market outlook:

Global stock markets continue to advance despite investors' concerns with respect to geopolitical turmoil in Asia, the Middle East and Eastern Europe. Since the financial crisis in 2008, total global debt has increased by over 40 per cent, or $57-trillion. This massive increase in debt has been a consequence of the low interest rate environment and various programs of quantitative easing by a number of central banks. In Canada, consumer debt levels have been highlighted as a concern by government officials and the fallout of lower energy prices continues to reverberate through the economy. Advancing markets have resulted in higher valuation levels. Investors should be cautious in this environment but be prepared to take advantage of any pullbacks in the market.

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Tickers mentioned in this story
Unchecking box will stop auto data updates
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

Cannabis pro newsletter
To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies