I have often said that, when considering your investing options, alongside the FTSE 100 you should also think about companies from the FTSE 250. The mid-cap index contains a treasure trove of firms that are often unknown and ignored, which means they are frequently undervalued compared with the more popular blue chips of the FTSE 100.
Scan the FTSE 250 and you will find a broad range of businesses at low P/E multiples, with high and rising dividend yields. Dig a little deeper and you will see that these are robust, profitable concerns that have just been neglected by investors.
And in this article I have picked 3 of what I feel are the current best mid-cap bargains.
Consistently churns out profits
Carillion(LSE:CLLN) is a building services company that is one of Britain's leading infrastructure firms. It employs 40,000 people, and has overseen a range of projects including the construction of the Tate Modern, Liverpool FC's Anfield stadium expansion, and Union Station, Toronto. It also builds roads, hospitals, and carries out track renewals for Network Rail.
What appeals to me about this business is that it consistently churns out profits year after year. Yet, despite this, its shares are undervalued, and have been on the slide recently.
Currently the P/E ratio is just 9.16, and the dividend yield is a stonking 7.43%, yet is well covered by profits. That makes Carillion a strong value and income play.
Flying under the radar
KCOM Group(LSE:KCOM) is a telecoms and IT services provider based in Kingston-Upon-Hull that serves UK residential and business customers.
Ever since the share price rocketed during the tech boom of the late nineties, this company has largely been flying under the radar. Yet it has been quietly making money and paying out dividends to its investors.
The share price has been edging gradually upwards since the Credit Crunch, and at the current level of 101p, it is on a P/E ratio of 16.73, with an annual income of 5.55%.
While we are not going to see rapid growth from this telecoms operator, a steady stream of dividend cheques should keep investors happy.
N Brown Group(LSE:BWNG) is a British shopping group based in Manchester. It owns retail names such as JD Williams, Jacamo and Simply Be, and many of its brands target women over 50.
It sounds a rather uninteresting company, but the reason it has caught my eye is the steep fall in its share price in recent years. After peaking at 591p in 2014, the shares now sell for just 186p.
Check the fundamentals and you will see how cheap this business is. The current P/E ratio is just 7.28, and the dividend yield is a massive 7.71%. The company's turnover of £866m is far higher than its market capitalisation of £577m.
Yet this is not a firm that is in trouble. Instead, it has been consistently profitable. That's why I think N Brown Group is worth a further look as a value and dividend play.
Read this if you are interested in other dividend opportunities
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Prabhat Sakya has no position in any shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has recommended KCOM Group. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.