See all posts by Matthew Dumigan Renowned stock-picker Mark Rogers and his analyst team at The Motley Fool UK have named 6 shares that they believe UK investors should consider buying NOW.So if you’re looking for more stock ideas to try and best position your portfolio today, then it might be a good day for you. Because we’re offering a full 33% off your first year of membership to our flagship share-tipping service, backed by our ‘no quibbles’ 30-day subscription fee refund guarantee. Matthew Dumigan | Tuesday, 21st July, 2020 | More on: ASC Click here to claim your copy now — and we’ll tell you the name of this Top US Share… free of charge! Enter Your Email Address “This Stock Could Be Like Buying Amazon in 1997” In the months following the March stock market crash, the ASOS (LSE: ASC) share price has been on a tear. Its meteoric rise has massively outperformed the wider market and subsequently, has prompted fears over an inflated valuation. With that in mind, is now a good time to buy shares in ASOS?Wild share price rideAfter reaching an all-time high in February 2018, investor sentiment towards the business significantly deteriorated. However, this wasn’t a new experience for the company. Back in February 2014, ASOS’s valuation reached a similar peak before tumbling 77% in the following months.5G is here – and shares of this ‘sleeping giant’ could be a great way for you to potentially profit!According to one leading industry firm, the 5G boom could create a global industry worth US$12.3 TRILLION out of thin air…And if you click here we’ll show you something that could be key to unlocking 5G’s full potential…Founded in 2000, the online fashion and beauty retailer primarily targets a young adult audience. Over the years, the business has grown substantially, with the company’s website now selling over 850 brands as well as its own label.The impressive growth of ASOS is reflected in its share price appreciation. Despite the various peaks and troughs, those who bought the shares on day one would currently be sitting on around a 14,066% profit.With the shares down 55% from all-time highs, it’s evident that there could be a long-term buying opportunity here. But what about the company’s more recent performance?Exceptional performanceThe online-only retailer was naturally in a better place to ride out the pandemic than other businesses. Having no physical stores meant that the effects of worldwide lockdowns would most likely be minimal. Consequently, the company could focus its efforts on maintaining online revenues without worrying over the impact caused by store closures.A trading statement for the four months ended June 2020 suitably illustrates this. ASOS achieved a steady improvement in sales growth along with materially higher levels of profitability and cash generation. Total group revenue and retail sales both grew by 10% in what encapsulates an impressive performance amidst a global pandemic.That said, it’s worth noting that international sales predominantly drove the figures higher, with UK and US sales falling by 1% and 2% respectively. As a result, some analysts remain unimpressed by the update.Regardless, the company expects full-year profit to be towards the top end of market forecasts after a positive four months. What’s more, ASOS will continue to repay the support it received via the furlough scheme to the UK government.Future outlookLooking ahead, it seems too soon to say what the impact of Covid-19 will be on the business. Despite the fact that ASOS is undoubtedly better positioned than many of its competitors, it still faces challenges in the long run.For example, the group carries a substantial amount of debt, meaning that if profits struggle, servicing interest payments will become considerably more difficult. Overall however, the company’s balance sheet remains in reasonable shape.A key factor in the continued prosperity of the underlying business will be the retailer’s ability to continue expanding its consumer base. With the company’s mission “to become the world’s number-one online shopping destination for fashion-loving 20-somethings,” the news that its active consumer base increased by 16% year-on-year will be encouraging.Ultimately, a 12-month forward P/E ratio of 65.9 is hardly appealing to value investors. That said, if the online fashion market continues to boom and the company can successfully carry on growing earnings, the future looks bright in my eyes. As such, now could be an ideal time to buy into the ASOS share price. Matthew Dumigan has no position in any of the shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has recommended ASOS. Views expressed on the companies mentioned in this article are those of the writer and therefore may differ from the official recommendations we make in our subscription services such as Share Advisor, Hidden Winners and Pro. Here at The Motley Fool we believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Our 6 ‘Best Buys Now’ Shares I’m sure you’ll agree that’s quite the statement from Motley Fool Co-Founder Tom Gardner.But since our US analyst team first recommended shares in this unique tech stock back in 2016, the value has soared.What’s more, we firmly believe there’s still plenty of upside in its future. In fact, even throughout the current coronavirus crisis, its performance has been beating Wall St expectations.And right now, we’re giving you a chance to discover exactly what has got our analysts all fired up about this niche industry phenomenon, in our FREE special report, A Top US Share From The Motley Fool. 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News News Читать на русском / Read in RussianIn the complaint, international journalists seek to defend themselves against the powers granted to the German foreign intelligence agency, the BND, in the area of surveillance. The complainants are for the most part investigative journalists. Among these journalists is the winner of the Right Livelihood Award, Khadija Ismayilova from Azerbaijan, and the Mexican investigative journalist Raúl Olmos, who was a member of the international team of reporters that evaluated the Paradise Papers. The international organisation Reporters Without Borders, which is based in Paris, is also one of the complainants asserting before the German Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe that the right to freedom of the press and freedom of communication are being violated. “The law allows the foreign intelligence agency to spy on journalists abroad almost without restrictions and to share the information with other secret services. This is an unacceptable restriction of press freedom, which is why we are supporting the affected parties in their court action,” said the executive director of RSF Germany Christian Mihr. “Projects like the Paradise Papers show that investigative journalism is increasingly the result of international cooperation. When the BND spies on foreign journalists it also undermines the confidentiality of sources in Germany.” The BND law was passed by the German Bundestag in October 2016 and came into effect at the start of 2017 (http://t1p.de/yecw). The ruling coalition in Germany had decided to make fundamental changes to the existing law after highly questionable BND practices came to light in the wake of the NSA scandal. Regarding its activities in the area of so-called strategic telecommunications surveillance in particular, the BND was clearly acting without a sufficient legal basis. In this particular form of mass surveillance the BND taps into major data transmission lines and filters the data using so-called “selectors”. These can be words or the telephone numbers and email addresses of individuals in whom the BND takes an interest. Numerous cases of the intelligence agency targeting journalists have already come to light in the past. In February 2017 a report in the German magazine Der Spiegel revealed that since 1999 the BND had apparently been deliberately targeting foreign journalists who worked for renowned media, including the BBC, Reuters and the New York Times, with its surveillance (http://t1p.de/el7d). Instead of restricting the BND’s activities, the German government legalised the practices in a new BND law. The law offers different degrees of protection against surveillance depending on a person’s nationality: the foreign intelligence service is not allowed to intercept the communications of German citizens, there are restrictions regarding the communications of EU citizens, and those of non-EU citizens can be intercepted provided the measure serves to protect “Germany’s capacity to act”. The latter is essentially an authorisation to filter communications on a mass scale outside the EU. Provisions protecting the rights of journalists like those set out in the related Article 10 Law or in the Code of Criminal Procedure are entirely lacking. The problems are compounded by the explicit authority granted to the BND to share the information with other intelligence services. This legalises a dangerous “exchange” process in which the BND could for example monitor the communications of the Washington Post and pass on the information to the NSA, and “in return” the latter taps the phones of German media. With their constitutional complaint the journalists are seeking to defend themselves against this. The complaint is the only remaining possibility to have the law overturned after the German government and the German Bundestag ignored massive criticism. Among others, three UN Special Rapporteurs had criticised Germany pointing out that the rules were incompatible with human rights standards (http://t1p.de/gwdl). COMPLAINANTS INVESTIGATING CORRUPTION AND HUMAN RIGHTS ABUSES The group of complainants includes the journalists Khadija Ismayilova (Azerbaijan), Paul van Gageldonk (the Netherlands), Richard Norton-Taylor (the UK), Blaz Zgaga (Slovenia), Raúl Olmos (Mexico) and Goran Lefkov (Macedonia). They all work as investigative journalists in their own countries, and most of them focus on topics like corruption, tax fraud, organised crime and human rights abuses in their countries. These very same topics are also the subject of the BND’s “investigative mission”. Yet conversations between colleagues or with sources are not protected under the BND law and can therefore be intercepted. The journalists’ mission of monitoring the activities of the state is rendered ineffective if these states are listening in on their conversations while they do their research. In addition, sources are deterred from contacting journalists with sensitive information. Other complainants are the German human rights lawyer Michael Mörth, who has lived and worked in Guatemala for the last 20 years, and the international organisation Reporters Sans Frontières. Based in Paris, Reporters Sans Frontières communicates extensively with journalists all over the world, and this communication also isn’t protected by the law. The goal of the complaint is to establish that the BND law is unconstitutional. The German government clearly regards the basic rights of press freedom and freedom of communication as exclusive German rights that it does not need to observe abroad. This, however, disregards the fact that these freedoms are protected as human rights, and that in international agreements like the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights Germany has undertaken to respect them. The Federal Constitutional Court could pass a judgment setting out instructions for amending the BND law to bring it into conformity with the Constitution, for example by ensuring that it also offers journalists and other persons bound to professional secrecy effective protection. Reporters Without Borders is part of an alliance that has worked for more than a year on the constitutional complaint project. The other partners in the alliance are the German Journalists Association (Deutscher Journalisten-Verband), the German Journalists Union (Deutsche Journalistinnen- und Journalisten- Union), Netzwerk Recherche, the journalist network n-ost, and the Gesellschaft für Freiheitsrechte. In another lawsuit RSF Germany had already lodged a complaint in 2015 with Germany’s Federal Administrative Court against unlawful BND surveillance practices. Part of this lawsuit is currently being processed by the European Court of Human rights (http://t1p.de/gia4), while in another part of it the Federal Administrative Court upheld RSF’s complaint. Since then the BND is no longer allowed to store the call detail records of RSF Germany phone calls in its metadata analysis system “VerAS” (http://t1p.de/srbn). Germany is currently ranked 16th among the 180 countries in the World Press Freedom Index. MORE INFORMATION: – FAQs on the BND Law: www.reporter-ohne-grenzen.de/themen/internetfreiheit/kritik-am-bnd-gesetz – More information on the situation of journalists in Germany: www.rsf.org/en/germany RSF asks Germany to let Myanmar journalist Mratt Kyaw Thu apply for asylum Organisation Use the Digital Services Act to make democracy prevail over platform interests, RSF tells EU GermanyEurope – Central Asia Protecting journalistsOnline freedoms Whistleblowers BND/ AFP January 29, 2018 – Updated on February 1, 2018 Reporters Without Borders: constitutional complaint lodged against the BND law Reporters Without Borders (RSF), together with five civil society organisations, has lodged a constitutional complaint against the Federal Intelligence Service Act, also known as the BND law. RSF_en June 2, 2021 Find out more Follow the news on Germany May 31, 2021 Find out more News Receive email alerts News Help by sharing this information GermanyEurope – Central Asia Protecting journalistsOnline freedoms Whistleblowers to go further German BND Act: A missed opportunity for press freedom March 30, 2021 Find out more
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