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Three top stock picks from Contra The Heard’s Benj Gallander

Benj Gallander.

Tibor Kolley/The Globe & Mail

Benj Gallander is president of Contra The Heard Investment Letter. His focus is on contrarian investing.

Top Picks:

Orange

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Telecoms in Europe have been thrashed. Orange seems to be one of the strongest. It also pays a lovely dividend, which management has stated they wish to keep in place through 2014.

AgJunction

Agjunction has been undergoing an enormous turnaround under the new management. Costs have been taken out of the business. Headcount has been dramatically reduced. The company has refocused solely on agriculture, an essential sector.

Cash

When tax loss season is on, there is normally the opportunity to purchase some value positions at reduced rates. This time is approaching.

Past Picks: July 16, 2012

Bombardier
Then: $3.89
Now: $4.87
Total return: +28.71 per cent

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Bank of America
Then: $7.81
Now: $14.41
Total return: +85.22 per cent

Alpha Pro Tech
Then: $1.42
Now: $1.57
Total return: +10.78 per cent

Total return average: +41.57 per cent

Market outlook:

The U.S. economy and markets are having a delightful run and that is attracting more money. This makes it difficult to bet against a further uptrend. That also helps the Canadian economy. However, in reality, many of the problems that got the global system into trouble remain and there does not seem to be the political will to attack the difficulties.

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