MEPC shares rise as payout is maintained
The market was relieved that the payout, uncovered by earnings since 1992, was not cut. Having tapped shareholders for pounds 222m last year through a rights issue, MEPC is expected to maintain the full-year payout at 20p, offering an above-average yield of 5.5 per cent.
The shares have fallen a fifth since the beginning of the year, pushing them below forecasts of the underlying value of the company's net assets at the year-end of 514p, up from 416p last time.
James Tuckey, chief executive, warned that rents had hardly moved in the first six months. Despite the strength of the investor market, finding occupiers for MEPC's predominantly office portfolio was still tough.
Income edged up from pounds 108.6m to pounds 112.6m, but higher finance costs wiped out gains on investment disposals to leave profits only 9 per cent higher at pounds 47.6m. Earnings per share rose from 7.8p to 8.3p.
During the first half MEPC acquired two regional shopping centres in the US, one of which, in California, was almost immediately damaged by the recent earthquake in the state.
- 2 General Election 2015: 14-year-old boy asks Nick Clegg – 'can you kill Katie Hopkins?'
- 3 University student in court for allegedly covering housemates' food in window cleaner and spit
- 4 Ryan Gosling posts tribute to 'Ryan Gosling Won't Eat His Cereal' creator Ryan McHenry
Italian police 'reveal' what Jesus looked like as a young boy
Mysterious 'X-Files' sounds heard miles above the Earth
Garland shooting: Isis claims attack on Prophet Mohamed cartoon contest in Texas as its first action on US soil
Met Gala 2015: Beyoncé manages to out-skimp Rihanna, Miley and Kim Kardashian combined with near-naked ensemble
General Election 2015: Photographic history of Bullingdon Club tracked down - including new picture of David Cameron in his finery
In defence of liberal democracy
Over 50,000 families shipped out of London boroughs in the past three years due to welfare cuts and soaring rents
EU asylum policy is 'a direct threat to our civilisation', says Nigel Farage
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
General election live: SNP suspends two members for disrupting Labour rally
iJobs Money & Business
£20000 - £25000 per annum + Uncapped commission: SThree: Can you speak German,...
£25000 - £30000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: An exciting opportunity f...
£215 per day: Ashdown Group: Junior Project Manager (website, web application ...
£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software Engineer / Softw...