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It’s time to have a look at how our first stock picks performed. Just over two weeks ago we flagged up three stocks to watch in the weeks ahead.

AstraZeneca was our first buy, but that did poorly the first week out. While there was no bad news surrounding AstraZeneca shares, they were pulled down by the FTSE 100. They opened Tuesday 28th at 6025 but ended the first week well down on that, at 5812. However, they have now staged something of a recovery and are now up at 6104. We are keeping AZN on our buy list for the time being.

We also liked Diageo, although this was a more cautious buy. Diageo shares had a more volatile week of it than Astra Zenca. Tuesday morning after the May bank holiday they were trading at 3364, had a bumpy time on Tuesday and then took losses on Wednesday 29th.

DGE stock staged a bit of a recovery on Thursday 30th, but further selling caught them on Friday, leaving Diageo stock to close down for the week at 3300. Since then Diageo shares have come good. We entered the trade at 3364 and they closed today (10th June) at 3403. We continue to hold Diageo in expectation of more to come.

Our third buy, another cautious one, was GVC. These shares opened the week the most impressively. Signals were indicating the market was turning bullish on GVC over the weekend, but that bull market had run out of steam in the first week after the second bank holiday in May. We saw more buying towards the end of last week and that has translated into some good gains for GVC. The key to this trade seems to be one of holding out over the short term bumpy ride.

We came into GVC at 595 and the stock is now trading at 628. Our signals were indicating that GVC was a buy despite the much publicised shareholder revolt which occurred against the proposed pay package of its chief executive Kenny Alexander. Despite the Alexander rebellion, GVC shares have been performing well.

We will continue to update the readership on our progress with these stocks. Later in the week we will also look at how some of our short trades are doing. Remember: we are just focusing on the FTSE 100 stocks for this column. We are largely using proprietary signals rather than fundamental analysis. We welcome comments and thoughts both here and on our forums.

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Stuart Fieldhouse

Stuart Fieldhouse has spent over 20 years in journalism and financial communications, including six years as a wealth management correspondent for the Financial Times group, covering capital markets and international private banking, and as an investment banking correspondent for Euromoney in Hong Kong.

Stuart has worked as head of content at CMC Markets, supporting the re-launch of its global financial spread betting and CFD trading platforms. He is also the author of two books on trading, published by Financial Times Pearson. Stuart continues to work with hedge funds, private banks, stock exchanges and other financial institutions on their communications, data and marketing requirements.

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