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Bottom Line: Easy to swallow

YATES Brothers Wine Lodges' placing has been pitched at 140p a share, cheaper than a pint and low enough for the institutions to swallow the pounds 10m issue even in volatile markets.

Regent Inns and JD Wetherspoon, two successful pub retailers with young public lives, offer the nearest comparison to Yates, which decks its bars out in Victorian splendour with the emphasis on drinking.

At 140p, Yates shares would be on a historic p/e of 18.9 and carry a yield of 2.7 per cent. This is at a slight discount to Regent and Wetherspoon. The same can be said looking forward, with Yates' p/e falling to about 15.5.

That said, Yates will have to make a cash call, probably within three years, to satisfy the company's aspirations to double its outlets to 100 by the turn of the century.