The FTSE 100, the UK’s main stock market index, has ridden a rocky road over the past five years. In mid-June 2016, prior to the UK’s Brexit referendum, the blue-chip index hovered around 6,000 points. In both January and May 2018, it surged above 7,775 points, hitting an all-time closing high of 7,877.45 on 22 May 2018. So far, so good.

The FTSE 100 crashes 35%

The index then drifted up and down until 17 January 2020, when it closed at nearly 7,675 points. But then catastrophe arrived as the Covid-19 virus spread. As global infections rose, the Footsie crashed spectacularly, plunging to close at 4,993.89 on ‘Meltdown Monday’ (23 March 2020). The index lost over 2,680 points in two months, collapsing more than a third (34.9%). However, in the subsequent 16 months, the index recovered much of its losses and currently trades around 7,139.55 points. That’s a capital … Read more

I reckon FTSE 100 stocks remain one of the best ways to build serious long-term wealth for my future, for one simple reason. Dividends.

The index of top British blue-chips pays some of the most generous dividends in the world, and could help me get rich enough to retire with a degree of comfort, although I know this isn’t ever guaranteed.

Many investors underestimate the power of dividends. They fail to see how those apparently small payouts add up over time. New research from Interactive Investor confirms what I’ve believed for years. Reinvesting dividends from FTSE 100 stocks is a winner

Some will look at the FTSE 100’s headline level and think it hasn’t done much for two decades. The index spiked to 6,930 on 31 December 1999, at the height of the tech boom, and trades only slightly higher at around 7,125 today. In growth terms, it appears to … Read more

The FTSE 250 can be a very good index for finding UK shares with high yields and the potential to grow. Here are three I like, but at the moment, one really stands out to me.

Investing in renewables

I like the look of is Renewables Infrastructure Group (LSE: TRIG). It’s an investment trust dedicated to assets generating electricity from renewable sources. With increasingly ambitious net zero targets, I think there are long-term tailwinds behind companies that invest in renewables.

The key, however, is to have a management team that can avoid buying assets at inflated prices. Overpaying is a big risk now that oil majors, for example, are starting to develop green assets.

Established in 2013, the Renewables Infrastructure Group has a headstart on other companies. Its team is also much more specialised and has more experience.

Its assets are mostly in the UK and Northern Europe/Germany, … Read more

Royal Mail (LSE: RMG) shares have solid momentum. Over the last 12 months, the Royal Mail share price has risen over 200%. In just the last three months the shares have gone from around 519p to 606p at the time of writing.

What’s driving the share price up?

There have been a few catalysts for the improvement in the Royal Mail share price. Plans to double profits at its international arm, GLS by 2025 no doubt pleased investors. The share price performance has been strong since that announcement at the end of March this year. Even better it was accompanied by plans for a special dividend to shareholders.

An investor, Czech businessman Daniel Kretinsky, has also built a significant stake of at least 15% in the postal group. That will have helped the share price and perhaps have motivated other investors to buy in to Royal Mail’s recovery.

Media regulator … Read more

Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) shares have underperformed this year. While major stock market indexes such as the S&P 500 and the FTSE 100 have climbed higher, Amazon’s share price has actually fallen.

Is now a good time to buy Amazon shares? Here’s my take.

Why Amazon’s share price has stalled

Amazon’s share price weakness this year is not so surprising. For starters, the stock delivered huge gains last year, rising from $1,848 to $3,257. After that kind of performance, a pullback, or period of consolidation, was always a possibility.

Secondly, with Covid-19 vaccines being rolled out, all the attention is on reopening stocks such as airlines right now. Big Tech stocks that did well during the pandemic generally aren’t so popular.

Buying opportunity

I’m looking at the current share price weakness as a buying opportunity. Amazon’s recent first-quarter 2021 results were very strong and smashed Wall Street’s expectations. For the quarter, … Read more