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3 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:

Davis and Henderson Corp.
This company provides technology for the financial services industry. It is expanding out of the traditional cheque-producing business through bolt-on acquisitions. The stock trades at 10 times earnings and has a 6.2 per cent dividend yield.

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Bank of America
Bank of America is one of the largest banks in the United States and holds 10 per cent of all deposits in the country. The bank continues to restructure by selling non-core assets and reducing cost by lowering head count. The company continues to improve its capital base. The stock trades at 0.5 times tangible book value and 10 times earnings.

Brookfield Asset Management Inc.
BAM is a global asset management company focused on property, infrastructure and renewable power. The company trades at 0.9 times net asset value, 1.3 times book value and has a yield of 1.7 per cent.

Past picks: Feb. 15, 2012

Microsoft Corp.
Then: $30.05
Now: $27.02
Total return: –8.11 per cent

Wells Fargo & Co.
Then: $30.17
Now: $34.21
Total return: +15.99 per cent

Goldman Sachs Group Inc.
Then: $113.17
Now: $126.58
Total return: +13.68 per cent

Total return average: +7.19 per cent

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Market outlook:

We believe the tremendous amount of outstanding sovereign debt 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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