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With areas of the economy continuing to come under pressure, stock market investors have been laser-focused on the share prices of some of the UK’s biggest companies - including Barclays (LON:BARC).
Barclays is one of just 200 UK-quoted stocks with a market capitalisation of more than £1 billion. In fact, the stock is currently valued at £28,139m. These top tier shares include some of the world’s best known companies. They have a huge presence in the investment funds and pension portfolios of millions of savers. They are also some of the biggest dividend payers.
So how have shares in Barclays performed? Well, over the past 12 months, the stock has seen an absolute return of -9.58%.
Given that economic uncertainty has rocked some industry sectors very badly, it’s also worth looking at how the shares have performed in relation to the overall market.
On a relative basis, shares in Barclays have moved by -11.8% over the past year and by -11.1% over the past six months.
But what now?
Do analysts rate it as a buy, sell or hold?
Regardless of recent performance, the main concern for investors is what the future holds. In uncertain economic conditions, it's often difficult to get an accurate view. The good news when it comes to the market's biggest stocks is that analysts know these businesses better than most, so they are best-placed to make accurate predictions. That shows up in their Buy, Hold and Sell recommendations.
Among the analysts covering Barclays, there are currently:
5 Buy recommendations
8 Hold recommendations
0 Sell recommendations
With this kind of information, it's possible to start forming a view about the outlook for any share. A combination of recent price performance and analyst recommendations gives you a flavour of whether the market is expecting a bright future - or whether there are causes for concern.
What does this mean for potential investors?
Barclays is one of the most closely watched shares in the market. But while price trends and broker recommendations can give you an idea about the sentiment around a stock, they can't tell you everything.
To get a better understanding of the overall investment case, it's worth doing some investigation yourself. Indeed, we've identified some areas of concern with Barclays that you can find out about here.