“Buy and hold” is a sensible long-term strategy but not one synonymous with quick profits. It came as a surprise to the two most recent Fantasy Fund Manager weekly prize winners that over the Christmas period this strategy netted them each a £100 prize.
Matt Gardiner, a 49-year-old from Dunfermline, took the top spot last week after his portfolio – Dunfermline 0 – turned £100,854 into £105,208.
The short trading period and lack of market movement during this time will have undoubtedly helped the stock picker, who has yet to make a trade in the game.
His portfolio, which is identical to his final portfolio in the previous competition, includes African telecommunications firm Airtel Africa, energy companies Centrica and Energean, and recruitment firm FDM.
“I thought, with the pandemic, lots of people staying at home would mean they use more energy, while communications and services like recruitment would be used more as businesses optimise for the future,” he said.
The previous week, David Evans, a former investment specialist for insurance giant Prudential, won the weekly prize with his own buy-and-hold strategy. His Lionsheart F portfolio turned £102,083 into £115,599. boosted by a big rise in oil firm Cairn Energy’s share price.
“It won a large legal challenge against India, and so the shares did well, but I have swapped it out now,” he said. While Mr Evans expects oil and energy companies to recover post-pandemic, the latest lockdown means this is likely to be pushed back until after the competition finishes.
He has also moved on from global investment trust Scottish Mortgage, choosing to pick up gold miners, which could do well if Joe Biden, the US president-elect, rolls out his expansive fiscal stimulus – something that should lead to inflation, he said.
The rest of his portfolio is in supermarket chain Sainsbury’s, retailer Dixons Carphone, pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca and retirement specialist Just Group.
There are two weeks left to enter the Telegraph competition, open exclusively to subscribers, to be in with a chance of winning the £10,000 top prize.