Power play National Grid(LSE: NG) has seen its share price grind solidly-if-unspectacularly higher in recent weeks as a consequence of the political tumult still developing across the US and Europe.
The stock touched its highest since early November at the end of last week. And I reckon National Grid's attractive valuations leave plenty of room for fresh strength.
Whilst fractional earnings rises are expected in the years to March 2017 and 2018, these figures produce P/E ratios of 15.2 times and 15.1 times respectively, in line with the FTSE 100 prospective average. This is splendid value given that National Grid is one of the best defensive stocks on the bourse.
And the network operator is an even-more scintillating pick on the dividend front. Its excellent earnings visibility -- and well-stated aim of raising rewards at least in line with RPI inflation -- are expected to drive the payout from 43.34p per share last year to 44.4p in fiscal 2017, and to 45.7p the following year. These projections yield 4.6% and 4.7%.
National Grid's stranglehold on the UK transmission scene protects it from the competitive pressures putting Centrica and SSE under sustained assault. And the business is growing its asset base by around 6% per annum to keep the bottom line ticking higher.
National Grid a great 'buy-and-forget' share in normal circumstances. But with political uncertainty likely to keep safe-haven demand for the stock bubbling, I reckon now could prove a shrewd time to pile-in.
Slipping into top gear
Like National Grid, engineering star GKN (LSE: GKN) has also careered skywards in recent months, a bubbly trading statement in late February sending the stock to its toppiest for two years.
However, this share price strength is not a new phenomenon, the company having gained 23% in value in just three months. And I believe it could be argued that GKN is still being overlooked by share investors.
An anticipated 7% earnings rise at GKN in 2017 creates a P/E rating of just 11.2 times. And this moves to 10.8 times in 2018 thanks to a predicted 5% bottom-line charge.
GKN announced last month that group sales galloped 22% higher during 2016, to £9.4bn, a result that shoved pre-tax profit 12% higher to £678m.
While sales at GKN Driveline once again shone (organic revenues at the auto division rose 6% last year, again ahead of the wider market) its expertise in the aerospace market also shone through. A 3% rise in the commercial segment represented a very-decent result in still-bumpy trading conditions.
And the 2015 acquisition of Fokker also provided plenty of encouragement for the Redditch firm looking ahead, with takings and margins here running ahead of expectations.
With the auto and aero markets expected to keep on growing, I reckon GKN represents a great selection for long-term investors and that now is a tasty time to consider snapping up some of the stock.
These tips could make you rich
But whether or not you share my bullish take on GKN and National Grid, I strongly recommend you check out this special Fool report that could help you become a stock market genius.
Our 10 Steps To Making A Million In The Market report reveals a flurry of wise investment themes and strategies to help investors avoid heavy losses and make a fortune from their investments.
Click here to enjoy this exclusive wealth report. It's 100% free and comes with no obligation.
Royston Wild has no position in any shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK owns shares of GKN. The Motley Fool UK has recommended Centrica. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.