Investment: Identity crisis at Hambro
Wednesday 26 August 1998
Should shareholders care? Part of the company's identity crisis may stem from a desire to disassociate itself from the housing market. Between 1993 and 1996 its shares underperformed the market by up to 40 per cent as the effects of the downturn hit. As the housing market picked up between 1995 and 1997, so did its shares. Yesterday, its price was marked down by more than 5 per cent, from 96p to 90.5p, as the City digested a fall in revenues from housing transactions.
The company has deliberately looked askance at a desperate battle for market share among some agents, which have dropped fees on house sales to as low as pounds 500. Hambro Countrywide, keeping its fees at around pounds 1,400, conducted transactions on just 40,568 properties in the first six months, a 10 per cent fall. But most of Hambro Countrywide's profits come from other financial services - selling life insurance and pensions through its estate agency.
The trouble is, few people go into an estate agent to buy life insurance unless they are also buying a house. So even this business is vulnerable to the housing cycle.
Analysts forecast earnings per share for 1998 of 10p, giving a forward p/e of nine on yesterday's close. For housing pessimists, though, this still looks unattractive.
peopleContenders for Time magazine's Person of the Year are a mixture of the good, the bad and the holy
tvSteven Moffat reveals the actor was dying to take on the role of the Time Lord and says he is excited to see what he will do with the character
sportBayern Munich 2 Manchester City 3: City come from two down to beat reigning European Champions
newsAs the world remembers Mandela the hero, the prison where he spent 27 years seems all the more brutal
arts + ents... and a chance to paint Booker Prize winning author Hilary Mantel
danceUnder Tamara Rojo's inspired direction, it seems possible that it could challenge the dominance of the Royal Ballet. We meet some established names and rising stars
travelDiscover Uruguay's jet-set beach resort, an Atlantic enclave with plenty of art and culture to explore on the side
- 1 Mountain goats' miraculous escape from avalanche captured in dramatic video footage
- 2 Gurdwaras-turned-food banks: Sikh temples are catering for rise in Britain’s hungry
- 3 Kenyan politician Mike Sonko left red-faced after photoshopping himself next to Nelson Mandela
- 4 Government delays EU immigration report because it is too positive
- 5 'I'm experiencing austerity as well', says Princess Michael of Kent
- < Previous
- Next >
iJobs Money & Business
£45000 - £70000 per annum + Bonus + Benefits: Harrington Starr: Technical Impl...
£65000 - £90000 per annum + Bonus + Benefits: Harrington Starr: Rogue Trading ...
£35000 - £45000 per annum + BONUS + BENEFITS: Harrington Starr: A leading, Cit...
£40000 - £50000 per annum + benefits + bonus: Harrington Starr: Data Analyst -...