One of the ways that some investors use to identify potential investment opportunities is to analyze the portfolios of many mutual funds and pick the companies that exist across many funds. This strategy basically confirms the most popular stocks among the various fund managers.Retail investors try to simply follow the fund managersâ€™ ideas by investing in these popular stocks.Based on the above idea, the following are the top 10 most popular stocks in the mutual funds(called Unit Trusts and OEIC Trusts) in the UK:
3 Royal Dutch Shell
6 BG Group
8 British American Tobacco
9 BHP Billiton
Not surprisingly just one of the companies in the above list is in the banking industry. HSBC Holdings Plc (HBC) is the only British bank that has held up well in the current credit crunch.Though the company acquired the sub-prime lender House International a few years ago in the US, the company was able to writedown most of the losses and prevent further losses in its mortgage portfolio by working with borrowers to modify the terms of the loan. Currently HBC offers a dividend yield of 6.78%.
BP (BP) is the top owned stock in most funds. BP is the third largest global energy company and the second largest component in the FTSE 100 Index.The current yield is 8.31% and the company pays dividends consistently year over year. Royal Dutch Shell, another global oil giant, trades in the US markets under two tickers RDS.A and RDS.B. Both have yields of over 7%.
Vodafone(VOD) is a global mobile telecom services provider.The current yield is 3.76% and the company had total revenues of over $55B last year.
AstraZeneca(AZA) and GlaxoSmithKline(GSK) are two of the large drug makers in the world. AZA and GSK pay a healthy dividend of about 8% and 6% currently. GlaxoSmithKline has a heavy presence in many developing countries.
BG Group is a natural gas distributor with operations in many countries. Their stock trades on the OTC exchange with ticker BRGYY.
British American Tobacco(BTI) is â€œan international tobacco company, with its brands sold in over 180 markets. Its four Global Drive Brands include Dunhill, Kent, Lucky Strike and Pall Mall.â€The current yield is 7.38%.BHP Billiton (BHP) is a diversified mining company with interests in aluminum, copper, energy (thermal) coal, iron ore, nickel, manganese, metallurgical coal, oil and gas and uranium, as well as gold, zinc, lead, silver and diamonds. This is a high beta stock.
Nestle(OTC:NSRGY) is the worldâ€™s largest food company based in Switzerland.The stock pays a dividend of 3.48%. Nestle is the owner of many top brands such as Dreyers Ice cream, Nescafe coffee,Maggi Noodles, etc.