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Investors turning to copper and oil

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30/05/2008

TD Waterhouse’s weekly best buy list shows that its retail investors are turning to copper and oil providers.

UK banking stocks are also proving popular, accounting for 71% of all trades this week.

Angus Rigby, chief executive of TD Waterhouse, said: “Antofagasta has entered our top 10 buys this week as our trading customers saw the opportunity to snap up its shares at a cheap price, ahead of the company’s 2008 interims due out this week. Share price in the Chilean copper miner dropped by 6.3% on last week, but if speculation over steady output rings true the company could push ahead of two of the world’s largest copper producers, fellow Chilean Escondida and London-listed Kazakhstan-based Kazakhmys.

“Both companies have recently been affected by production problems and reported a lower output for the first quarter. This undersupply has pushed copper prices higher, inverting last year’s trend. This was exacerbated by Goldman Sachs last week who raised price targets across the mining sector on expectations of ever increasing copper, nickel and coal prices.

“Oil also seems to be firmly on our investors’ radar, which notched up another record recently after surpassing the $130 a barrel level. However, things started to reverse the following day, with a 5% price loss for the week that followed. TD trading customers moved in to profit on this share fall, looking to Nighthawk Energy, the US-based gas and oil explorer, which is sitting on 17 million barrels of proven oil reserves in Colorado USA. Nighthawk enters in as seventh top buy and sixth top sell in this week’s TD Waterhouse trades as company share value raised by 5.5% on the week and profit-takers sought an opportunity to beat the market.

“Finally, our customers continue to have a hotspot for banks, which are again the most heavily traded stock with Barclays ranking first and second respectively on our top 10 buys and sells. During its first quarter trading update in mid-May the bank unveiled that it had decided not to raise fresh capital despite a further £1.7bn in new credit-crunch related write-downs. It also announced that it would pay shareholder dividends in cash, unlike its competitors RBS, HBOS and Bradford & Bingley who opted for right issues, and paid their dividends in stock.”

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