Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 9th 2014 Contents Part IIFor the 12 months
31, 2013, the T&T
advanced by 120.07
points to close at
1,185.05; this represented a gain of
11.3 per cent.
For the All-Trinidad-based index
only, the change was more dra-
matic, moving from 1,694.27 as at
year-end 2012 to 1,993.72 as at
December 31, 2013, which is an
increase of 17.7 per cent. The cross-
listed index was the sole declining
measure on the local stock market.
In this case, the index fell to 49.43
from 56.33 at the start of 2013,
representing a contraction of 12.2
These headline changes mask
opportunities that some investors
would have capitalised upon at
different times of the year to buy
or sell different securities according
to their medium-term goals or
penchant for risk.
We now turn to the companies
grouped under the broad heading
of manufacturing. Angostura Hold-
ings Ltd started the year at a price
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of $8.99 and closed 2013 at $12.47. On
February, 26, 2013 AHL s share price
fell to $7.80, its lowest point for the
year. From this base it slowly recovered
to the $9.00 level in late April. It
remained at the $9.00 to $9.50 price
range until September 2.
From September 9 to October 23, we
witnessed a rapid escalation in AHL s
share price. Starting at $9.61 the price
shot up to a year s peak of $13.50. From
that apex, it began a slow decline and
closed at $12.47 at year s end.
We might speculate that one reason
for the price escalation was an expec-
tation that the CL Financial matter was
nearing a final resolution; this expec-
tation has now been deferred to the
middle of 2014.
Berger Paints Trinidad Ltd experi-
enced a nominal increase in its share
price over the last 12 months. In this
case, the move was from $3.55 at the
start of the year to $3.60 at year s end.
Stating at $8.35, Flavorite Foods share
price peaked at $8.41 on February 21
before closing the year at $8.21.
In 2013, the share price of Guardian
Media increased by $0.55. Starting at
$18.95 the price recorded a high point
of $19.75 on April 4. The price remained
firm until September 30 when 510
shares traded at $19.50, at which level
it closed the year.
After starting the year at a price of
$0.60, the price of National Flour Mills
Ltd bounced around the range of $0.60
to $0.66 for the first few months of
the year. Starting on April 4, the price
began a quick rally during which it
moved from $0.68 up to a peak of $0.86
on May 13. But by May 29, the share
price was back down to $0.66.
Thereafter, the share price bounced
around within a narrow range. It was
not until September 27 that the price
of $0.86 was once again attained. On
October 16, the share price peaked at
$0.97. For the next few months it traded
within a narrow range of $0.95 to $0.97
and closed 2013 at $0.95.
A last-minute government
announcement that the price of a few
company-produced products would be
reduced by 20 per cent for two days
saw the share price first spike up to
$0.97 then, as common sense prevailed,
declined to $0.95.
This share is frequently traded and
NFM has often been perceived as being
a victim of government interference.
For example, how do the minority
shareholders view the 20 per cent dis-
counting of some of the company s
products for a two-day period? How
was this decision made? Is there an
arrangement between the company and
the relevant government agency to
reimburse NFM for the cost of this dis-
Alternatively, is this action being per-
ceived in some quarters as a marketing
gimmick to help reduce excess stock?
Certainly, NFM should be obligated to
clear the air on these matters! Do other
state-controlled listed companies face
the prospect of similar interference in
The price of One Caribbean Media
started the year at $15.83 and exhibited
early signs of upward momentum. By
January 22, it was traded at $16.25.
Then, on February 2, it experienced a
steep fall to $15.12. Despite a quick rally,
it was again traded at $15.12 on March
12. Thereafter, OCM s price began a
slow recovery and reached $17.00 on
May 9. By July 24, the price was quoted
at $18.00. Thereafter, it continued to
improve and closed at $18.50 on
Only five shares of Readymix (West
Indies) Ltd, a subsidiary of Trinidad
Cement Ltd, traded during 2013. The
share opened at $22.48 and closed at
In contrast, Trinidad Cement Ltd
experiences regular and sometimes huge
volumes of trading activity. For example,
on December 13, 2.78 million shares of
TCL traded at $2.13. TCL s share price
started 2013 at a modest $1.49 and
ended the year at a more respectable
$2.20. For the first four months of the
year this share experienced severe selling
pressure. The low point was reached
on May 2, when TCL traded at $0.95.
The price stayed below $1.00 until
July 5, when 50,000 shares traded at
that price. From this base we see a
steady climb in the share price. On
August 22, the price shot past the $2.00
level. By August 30, the price peaked
at $2.94. Very quickly, we see a sharp
reversal. By September 9 we see 361,100
shares trade at $1.95. By October 17 the
price is again on the move upwards,
closing at $2.35. By year s end, the mar-
ket gives up some more steam and TCL
closes at $2.20.
The sharp swings in TCL s share price
seems to have something to do with
various interest groups trying to position
themselves for some sort of confronta-
tional activity in the near future, either
in the courts or at an upcoming AGM.
Investors should remember that, despite
relatively good recent results, the
prospect of a dividend payment is some
years into the future.
Unilever Caribbean Ltd is one of
those few shares that only went up in
2013. Starting at $47.15 the share price
rose steadily and continually closing
2013 at $56.20.
In a similar vein, but with an occa-
sional hiccup, the price of West Indian
Tobacco Company opened in 2013 at
$85.00 and closed the year at $120.01.
Witco s price peaked at $121.47 on
Returns and volatility in 2013
The sharp swings in TCL's
share price seems to have
something to do with
various interest groups
trying to position
themselves for some sort
of confrontational activity
in the near future, either in
the courts or at an
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