Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 30th 2015 Contents AUGUST 30 • 2015 www.guardian.co.tt SUNDAY BUSINESS GUARDIAN
STOCKS | SBG11
Periodically, investors ask them-
selves how well they have done
over a specific period of time.
Typically, this time-frame may
be monthly, quarterly or annu-
ally. For the purpose of this arti-
cle the time-frame selected is that of the stew-
ardship of the current People s Partnership
government, which spanned sixty-three months.
This comparison excludes all cross listed enti-
ties as well as companies that do not trade reg-
ularly, such as, Berger Paints, Flavorite Foods
(soon to be privatised) and LJ Williams Ltd,
which has not yet released its audited results
for the year ended March 31, 2015.
Our winners are defined as those companies
that exhibited at least 100 per cent price appre-
ciation over the period considered.
Leading off the winners is Unilever Caribbean
Ltd, which share price rose by a robust 233.91
In 2010, sales at UCL were $495 million while
pre-tax profit was $70 million. As at its 2014
fiscal period, sales came in at $588 million and,
after peaking at $93 million in 2013, pre-tax
profit registered at $88 million.
The current period is proving to a very chal-
lenging one for this company; as at its half year
to June 2015, sales were $254.1 million (2014
half-year: $283.3 million). In addition, EPS con-
tracted to $0.70 from $1.17 in the 2014 period.
Much of the declines in both sales and profit
for the current period were attributed to the
delays in implementing a new IT platform.
Out of an abundance of caution, UCL has
restricted its interim dividend to $0.20 from
$0.32 last year. Based on difficulties in regional
economies and local elections distractions, the
company has moderate expectations for the
remainder of the year.
Our second placed candidate is WITCO,
which delivered a 219.96 per cent price appre-
ciation. This company is in the enviable position
where its customers, without any need to adver-
tise, continue to demand its products in ever
increasing amounts, almost irrespective of the
price charged per unit.
In addition, the government is at least as
highly addicted to the painless extraction of
excise and corporation taxes from its revenues
In 2010, WITCO s pre-tax profit was $371.9
million; this line item grew to $655.1 million in
2014. In a similar vein, dividends per share
climbed to $5.51 in 2014 from $2.84 in 2010.
For the first six months of 2015, after-tax
profit came in at $241.4 million versus $223.5
million for the 2014 half-year. Dividends per
share increased to $2.26 from last year s $2.18.
This result was achieved after paying $110
million in excise taxes and almost $86 million
in corporation taxes.
Many pension plans and mutual funds count
this share among their most popular, given its
regular price appreciation and consistently high
Our third candidate is Prestige Holdings Ltd,
which delivered a price appreciation of 182.57
This company underwent a period when it
purged itself of unprofitable operations in other
Caribbean territories. Once that exercise was
completed, year-on-year profits began to
Back in 2010, sales were $644 million and
registered at $922 million in 2014.
Profit attributable to shareholders was more
variable. This measure started at $24.3 million
in 2010, and then dropped to $7 million in the
following year. Profits recovered smartly in 2012
to $41.3 million, but slipped marginally in 2013
to $38 million. Profit for 2014 was $50.2 mil-
PHL s half-year results to May 2015 revealed
sales of $469.7 million and profit attributable
to shareholders of $23.94 million; this translated
into EPS of $0.385 (2014: $0.383).
In September, the company will release its
third quarter results for the period ending August
31, 2015 and declare an interim dividend.
Our fourth-placed company is National Flour
Mills Ltd (NFM), which delivered a 147.19 per
cent price appreciation; most of this gain was
registered in the last year or so.
Sales in 2010 were about $430 million and
have remained at about that level for some years;
in 2014, sales improved to $470 million.
NFM has had considerable internal problems,
which began to be adequately addressed starting
about two years ago.
Back in 2011, the company incurred a loss.
Its earnings and dividends have been anaemic
over most of this period.
In 2014, EPS came in at $0.18, which was an
improvement over the $0.15 for 2013.
The most recent bright spot was its half-year
results to June 2015. These results show a stellar
improvement in EPS to $0.17 from $0.05 for
the comparative 2014 period.
This strong performance was attributed to
"the implementation of strategies in grain pur-
chasing, management of our working capital
and overall plant productivity." It is this result
that seems to have given new life to its share
price, especially in the last few months.
Ranking at number 5 on our list is Angostura
Holdings Ltd, which recorded a 102.90 per cent
Resulting from CLF s plunder of its treasury,
AHL s equity had shrunk to a negative $300
million in 2009; consistently hard work by its
directors and staff has now restored it to a
positive $805.3 million as at June 2015.
Back in 2010, sales totalled $621 million and
its adjusted net income was $117 million. In
2014, these figures were $672.2 million in rev-
enues and an after-tax profit of $153.4 million.
Significantly higher profits were recorded for
both 2013 and 2012; those higher figures resulted
from sizeable one-off transactions, such as sales
of assets and gains attributable to debt settle-
Since 2009, AHL has made a provision of
$984.6 million (original figure: $974.2 million)
for receivables due from its major shareholder,
CL Financial Ltd. This matter appears to be
in the final stage of being settled, which will
redound to the benefit of its shareholders.
As part of the CLF/Clico resolution plan, a
valuation of the company is being done. Upon
completion, changes in the ownership structure
will be effected; this will involve Clico CL
World Brands, the Government and CLF.
Thereafter, it is expected that CLF s ownership
will increase to (at least) 51 per cent while
Clico s ownership will decline (probably to
zero); either a third (unnamed) party or Gov-
ernment could end up with the remainder,
while public ownership should be stable at
about 22.5 per cent.
Based on its June 2015 half-year profit of
$63.3 million (2014 half-year: $59.2 million),
AHL will pay an interim dividend of $0.10 on
September 4, 2015.
The second tier gainers
None of our second tier companies registered
price appreciation above 80 per cent.
This segment includes our two largest com-
mercial banks, Scotiabank and Republic Bank;
First Citizens was not a public company back
We recall that Scotiabank s price traded at
$73.11 on January 24, 2014; consequently, it still
has some way to go to return to that price!
Similarly, in mid-July 2014, Republic Bank
shares traded above $122.00 for a few days.
Thereafter, they began a slow decline, which
has, in recent weeks, accelerated into something
of a "free fall". Why is this happening?
These declines may have something to do
with the pending sale of large blocks of shares
that are owned by Clico-related entities, includ-
ing Clico Investment Bank, which is in receiver-
ship. Potential buyers want to get the best
(lowest) price for any new investment.
On a positive note, the recent increases by
most banks in the prime lending rates should
help improve their profit in the coming year
Observe the high rates that recent large (TCL
and Sagicor) bonds have fetched; as those bonds
find their way into income funds, savers should
be next in line to start getting measurable increas-
es via their holding in those collective schemes.
Some of the "also rans"
Of the remaining seven companies (not
shown), only three companies recorded a pos-
itive price appreciation, that is, Massy Holdings
Ltd (up by 39.9 per cent to $63.01), One
Caribbean Media (up by 27.5 per cent to $22.31)
and ANSA Merchant Bank (up by 23.65 per
cent to $38.95).
The four residual companies posted lower
prices last Monday that what obtained on May
24, 2010. Guardian Media declined from $21.87
to $19.76 while Guardian Holdings contracted
to $12.90 from $15.00.
Not surprisingly, Trinidad Cement s price
of $2.90 was below its May 2010 price of $3.75.
Bringing up the rear, PLIPDECO had the dis-
honour of declining from $6.00 to $4.00; this
was a 33.33 per cent contraction.
Who do you think will be the "winners"
over the next five years?
Will TCL attain a price of $10.00?
Will Agostini s Ltd share price reach $40.00?
How will the conglomerates and financial
How well have investors done over
the 63 months of the PP government?
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