Stephen Bland's Value Portfolio

Published in Investing on 31 January 2011

Follow the progress of Stephen Bland's value portfolio.

The value portfolio was set up by Stephen Bland to track the performance of the shares highlighted in his weekly articles. 

The initial recommendation articles were published from May to December 2009. Then, in January 2010, it was decided to form a virtual portfolio (i.e. not backed by real money) from the 12 shares that had been highlighted to date, based on an investment of £5,000 per share. Although Stephen may own some of the shares mentioned (see the disclosure section at the end of each article for specific details), this feature is primarily intended as a demonstration portfolio. At times, the value portfolio may take very large percentage positions in individual shares which are unlikely to be appropriate for the vast majority of investors.

Purchase and sale transactions are reported as they are made (usually on the Value Shares board) and are put through at the respective offer and bid prices available in the market at that time, and with all costs included too. The tables shown in the regular portfolio updates are valued using bid prices. Up until January 2012, updates were produced on a monthly basis. Thereafter, updates were produced quarterly until Stephen stopped writing for the Fool in early 2013.

Although no formal benchmarking is made in the articles, the average value of the FTSE All-Share Total Return index was 3,207 on the dates that the first 12 shares were selected during the second half of 2009, so a rough comparison against the market can be using this figure.



20 Dec: My Value Portfolio Shows Another Big Rise

4 Oct: The Massively Improved Update

28 Jun: The Really Awful Portfolio Update 

29 Mar: Value Portfolio Sees Some Changes

1 Mar: Molins Still Has It

16 Feb: The King And Prince Of Value Ratios -- Persimmon sold, RBS topped up

26 Jan: Value Portfolio Leaps Over 20%



29 Dec: A Year Of Value

24 Nov: Value Portfolio Drops 18% -- C&W Worldwide sold, Aviva topped up

27 Oct: Value Portfolio Rallies 16%

29 Sep: Blood, Guts and Value Shares

25 Aug: Lower Prices, More Value

28 Jul: It's Not The End Of The World

30 Jun: 3 Trades in the Value Portfolio -- MS Int'l sold, Molins and RBS bought

2 Jun: The Value Portfolio Turns Two

28 Apr: Turn Of The Century

31 Mar: The Market's Wrong On C&W

24 Feb: Mucklow's Out -- Mucklow sold and Aviva topped up

27 Jan: I'm Still Underweight Aviva 



16 Dec: The Greatest Big Cap Value Play 

18 Nov: Big Changes For The Value Portfolio -- C&W Communications, Dart, Interserve and Moneysupermarket all sold to top up in Aviva

15 Oct: A Value Reshuffle Beckons 

16 Sep: A Valueport Update 

26 Aug: Persimmon Looks Fruitful -- BAE sold and Persimmon bought

12 Aug: A Share That's Just Too Cheap 

15 Jul: Another Value Portfolio Update 

17 Jun: Hydrocarbon Hell 

27 May: Dumping De La Rue -- De La Rue sold and BP bought

13 May: What Aviva Did Not Say 

6 May: A Post Shakeout Portfolio Update 

22 Apr: Dart's Volcano Erupts

15 Apr: Income Indolence Interred -- Dividends are added

8 Apr: Carillion Dumped, Aviva Pumped -- Carillion sold and Aviva topped up

1 Apr: A Portfolio Review

11 Mar: Interserve Does The Business

4 Mar: Aviva's Year Of Progress

18 Feb: BAE Systems Update

11 Feb: The Cash Goes In -- Aviva topped up

4 Feb: Value Portfolio Sells Anglo Pacific -- Anglo Pacific sold

21 Jan: Value Series Sells IG Group -- IG Group sold

7 Jan: Value's 2009 Scorecard -- All picks to date formalised as a portfolio



24 Dec: Look At Aviva, Ta, Kool -- Aviva bought

2 Dec: Dart Hits The Target -- Dart bought

26 Nov: Cheap P/E And Yield But… -- Interserve bought

13 Nov: Searching For Web Value -- Moneysupermarket bought

5 Nov: No Wrong Number For Cable & Wireless -- Cable & Wireless bought

8 Oct: In Defence Of BAE Systems -- BAE Systems bought

30 Sep: Value Pick: Carillion -- Carillion bought

16 Sep: Five Value Shares 

3 Sep: Mine Again -- Anglo Pacific bought

5 Aug: A Licence To Print Money -- De La Rue bought

8 Jul: Value Pick: MS International -- MS International bought

17 Jun: Value Pick: Where There's Mucklow... -- Mucklow bought

29 May: Value Pick: IG Group -- IG Group bought

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The opinions expressed here are those of the individual writers and are not representative of The Motley Fool. If you spot any comments that are unsuitable hit the flag to alert our moderators.

JamesParkin007 31 Jan 2011 , 6:41pm

This portfolio starts in May 2009 - at the lowest point following this bear market. If it hasn't gone up 70% since then I'd be amazed. It would be better if this had started in 2007 to give a real comparison over the course of the bust and boom. Let's see how it does over the next downturn as the results right now are massively skewed by loose monetary policy and an enormous bull market.

Luniversal 31 Jan 2011 , 11:59pm

Actually Feb./Mar. 2009 was the market's low point.

Why would it be 'better' if it had begun at some other point? I don't see why TMFPyad should be arraigned for catching a rising tide. If he agrees with you about a 'massively skewed' this and that, he can always sell everything. He's supposed to be showing his timing and picking skills, not mimicking a tracker.

JamesParkin007 01 Feb 2011 , 8:22am

Alright Luniversal, let's run the numbers:

1st May 2009 - FTSE 100 - 4,243.
27th Jan 2011 - FTSE 100 - 5,961.

Increase of 40.49%.

1st May 2009 - Bland's Portfolio - £60,000
27th Jan 2011 - Bland's Portfolio - £82,306

Increase of 37.17%.

Not only has Bland's portfolio underperformed the FTSE 100 by 3.3% over the period but now it's a highly geared gamble on just one stock. A FTSE 100 tracker would have done better.

TMFTigger 01 Feb 2011 , 9:50am

Sorry James, your calculations are incorrect. For starters the value portfolio includes dividends, so you need to use a Total Return index, not the basic FTSE 100 version you have quoted.

But the main problem is that the picks were made from 29 May 2009 to 24 Dec 2009 and they were only formalised as a portfolio in January 2010. As there was no virtual £60k in existence at the start of the exercise, you need to use the average value of the index at each of the pick dates, if you want to make a proper comparison.

As at 27 Jan 2011, the value portfolio was up 37% whereas the FTSE A/S Return Index was up 30%. But this is far too short a period of time to make any judgment of performance anyway.

dhorsley 01 Feb 2011 , 9:53am

The shares were purchased between May and Decemeber, not all in one go at the beginning of May. You are using the May start date for the whole portfolio to get a result you want, that pyad's value portfolio has underperformed.

If you want to say that the portfolio has under performed a tracker you need to do a comparison of buying the tracker at the same point in time as pyad made his share purchases - i think you will get a different result if you do!

drfuzz 01 Feb 2011 , 9:56am

To be fair, Stephen bought his initial 12 shares during all of 2009, so to do a fair comparison would require a complicated unitisation calculation, and would probably tell you his portfolio outperformed by around 5% (my guesstimate).

That said I've always been strongly against the gamble in one stock thing, but that's been discussed to death already. I do appreciate the fact he's bought some interesting stocks to our attention though, but a shame its 6 months since the last new stock...

M0byDick 01 Feb 2011 , 10:26am

If anyone is desperate to do a comparison with a benchmark, there's a how-to guide to unitisation here:
At the moment, though -- and it's too short a period to draw any meaningful conclusions -- doesn't it seem fairly clear from a cursory glance that Stephen's portfolio has outperformed the FTSE A/S?

Foolish best
MobyDick (G A Chester)

Gostev1e 02 Feb 2011 , 8:03am
TMFTigger 03 Feb 2011 , 9:54am

Thanks Gostevie. I hadn't spotted that one.

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