...for a wet Wednesday. First the good news from Picton Property Income Trust (PCTN) which I wrote up at the start of 2014 and again in June when it had produced a 50% total return over 12 months for me. Since then this one has been more about the income as, in common with most property trusts and REITS, it has moved onto a premium to its NAV or book value which is one of the more important metrics for property related companies.
So the good news today is that they have announced a dividend policy review which will see the quarterly payout rise by 10% from 0.75p to 0.825p for a full year indicated dividend of 3.3p. At today's price of around 72p this will give it a gross yield (as it is based offshore) of 4.6%. This is on the back of them having raised a fair amount of new capital and having invested this successfully plus a reduction in their vacant or void properties in the portfolio. This has all helped to boost their income and cover the existing dividend, hence the rise today.
Meanwhile the bad news, as I had feared towards the end of last year, came from N.Brown (BWNG) who announced their Q4 trading statement for the 13 weeks to 28th February 2015 and effectively a profits warning. This came as they failed to secure sufficient sales in the 4th quarter to hit their targets and consensus forecasts. They blame this primarily on Financial Services revenue being weak, driven by measures to further improve the quality of the debtor book.
Thus they now say they expect full year 14/15 continuing profit before tax to be slightly below the range previously guided to and current market consensus of £88m. They have also taken a further write-off of £11 to £13m for closing something called the Gray & Osbourn catalogue business. In addition the guidance for the current year seems to be flagging quite a few potential negatives like possible gross margin decline, increasing costs and extra capital expenditure, but they say further details to come with the full year results and there is no mention of the dividend which I think may well be flat.
Overall I like the business here and mail order seems to be in the sweet spot of the internet age. However, I still have concerns about the newish Chief Executive and her strategy to open more stores and re-organize the mail order side. So far there has been lots of talk and action, but the effect on the bottom line has been mostly negative as far as I can see.
Thus I'll continue to watch this one from the sidelines for evidence that the new strategy and all the investment might be bearing fruit.
Finally, as regular reader know, I have a habit of including some music with my posts on occasions. In the past I have included tracks appropriate to the day like Blue Monday, Ruby Tuesday and Black Friday. That set me thinking that the only day I hadn't included a track for was Wednesday. Looking this up didn't give a great deal of choice, so rather than clog the post up with a video I'll provide some links below for you to check out if you like depending on your mood, or ignore if music is not your thing.
An Easy Listening Classic for Night Owls or early birds - Wednesday Morning 3 A.M.
Laid back - Wednesday Morning.
Rock on with - Spring, Summer and Wednesdays.
Or have you got the - Wednesday Evening Blues?