NCB the stock to watch

NCB tis the stock to watch with big jump in profit from continuingh operations.

Investors in aggressive buying of NCB Financial shares in late 2018, pushed the group’s shares up to a record high of $161 on last day of November last, following full year’s results that were released earlier in the month.
If investors reacted so strongly to results that were telegraphed previously by the nine months results, it will be interesting to see how they react to the 29 percent hike in dividend and a 40 percent rise in profit before one-time income and taxation.
With profits from ongoing operations seeming set to rise to the $14 region this year, NCB Financial is clearly the stock to watch today.
The results could spark the start of the 2019 rally in the main market and push the price well beyond resistance around the $160 market and unto the next resistance around $200.
In pre market activity, the indication is that the stock will move higher than the $145 it last traded at on Thursday. With just over ten minutes to the start of trading, there are 20,300 units on the bid at $147 and ten at $145 to $145.01.

ICreate prospectus is here

The prospectus, for ICreate initial public offer of shares, is now out. The company seeks to raise $70 million to help fund expansion.
The offer opens on Thursday, January 31 and scheduled to close February 14, with 74,062,500 ordinary shares offered to the public at $1.01 each. The company will list on the Junior Market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange, if the issue is successful. Applications are to be made for a minimum of 1,000 shares and multiples of 100 thereafter. If the issue is successful, the share capital will be 197,592,500 units, with 123.5 million units owned by EMedia and Sagicor Investments.
iCreate says “it is a creative learning institute developed with the aim of filling the gap in skills training and development of creatives in the Caribbean and North America. We provide students with a wide range of career opportunities in the Creative Economy while being a key partner of the Advertising Industry, Film Production Companies, Animation and Gaming Companies, and Creative Outsourcing initiatives.”
Existing locations are Kingston, Montego Bay, and Miami. Kingston is currently the only location that offers the full suite of courses. In Montego Bay, the company currently offer our flagship course (Professional Diploma in Digital Marketing) with the remainder to come on board once they built out the infrastructure required to deliver the courses based on our iCreate standards. “Our projected timeline for this is by or before the end of the first quarter of 2019. Miami is in the early business development stage,” the company stated in the prospectus.
The company reported a loss of $4 million for the six months to September from revenues of $18 million and projects profit of $8 million from revenues of $147 million for the year to December 2019 with profit of $62 million from revenues of $250 million in 2020.  Shareholders equity is negative $1.3 million dollar at the end of September.
The company is small, has only recently started business and is at a risky stage of development. Investors need to bear this factor in mind. While the forecast for 2020 appears attractive, the income generated in 2018 does not show a trajectory to support the high income growth, that the above forecast reflects. The business will benefit from the exposure that the IPO and listing will bring and that could help drive revenues. The positive is that current operations show signs of profit with at least two quarters last year, enjoying a profit.
The board is extremely large with nine members for a small company when seven seems more appropriate. The board comprise, Sandra Glasgow, Chairman, Tyrone Wilson, Rhys Campbell, David Wan, Mischa Mcleod-Hines, Sheree Martin, Devon Lawrence, Dr. Jennifer Bailey and Kenneth Benjamin.
The majority shares are owned by EMedia Limited, with Sagicor Investments, holding a minority position. Broker to the deal is Sagicor Investments.

ICreate ipo opens January 31

The ICreate initial public offer of shares will open on Thursday, January 31.
The issue is scheduled to close on February 14, with the prospectus set to be released this week, word reaching IC reveals.
The issue is a sale of 74,062,500 ordinary shares to the public at $1.01 each. The shares will be listed on the Junior Market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange, if the issue is successful. Revenue is said to be running in the region of just under $50 million per annum with prospects for strong growth going forward. Already the company is making a small profit, IC gathers. The business is the training of students in graphic designs and animation.
The majority shares are owned by EMedia Limited, with Sagicor Investments, holding a minority position. Broker to the deal is Sagicor Investments.

More females employed

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Females accounted for 7,600 persons of the 7,800 persons between October 2017 and October 2018 to 261,800 persons employed as ‘Professionals, Senior Officials and Technicians’ that had the second largest increase in employment in the period in Jamaica, data from Statistical Institute of Jamaica (Statin) reported today.
The largest change in employment by industry group was in ‘Real Estate, Renting & Business Activities’ with an increase of 9,700 persons, (11.9 percent) moving from 81,700 in October 2017 to 91,400 in October 2018. Employment, however, decreased in ‘Transport, Storage and Communication’ by 7,500 persons (9.4 percent) to 72,000 over the same period.
Statin stated, “the unemployment rate was 8.7 percent in October last year and represented a reduction of 1.8 percentage points relative to 10.5 percent in October 2017”. There was an increase in the number of persons employed, particularly females in the industry group ‘Real Estate, Renting & Business Activities’
The Employed Labour Force for October 2018 was 1,219,700, 14,400 or 1.2 percent higher than in October 2017.

Huge 44% drop in Jamaicans murdered

Murders in Jamaica have plummeted by a huge 44 percent in the first 14 days of 2019, compared to the similar period in 2018.
According to Radio Jamaica murders for the first 14 days of 2018 is 37. In 2018, Television Jamaica reported in 2018, that Police Crime Statistics reported that Jamaica recorded 61 murders between January 1 and 13, last year. When the data is adjusted to reflect similar number of days, the rate of decline  over last year is an incredible 44 percent and now places murders below 1,000 per annum if the trend should hold. The data is for just a few days of the year and may or may not hold but the dramatic decline is worth watching.
RJR was reporting on an increase in murders in Trinidad and Tobago, with homicides hitting 20 as of Wednesday morning and compares to Jamaica with a population twice the size of Trinidad and Tobago that recorded 37 murders as at January 14.

Prices in Jamaica plunged for December

Prices in Jamaica on average, fell sharply by 1 percent in December last, bringing inflation as measured by the country’s Consumer Price Index to 2.4 percent for the calendar year. The fall in inflation for December occurred across several main categories of goods and services.
The movement in the index for the fiscal year-to-date was 2.7 percent. The rate of increase on average is well below the target set by the government for the central bank to aim at, for the fiscal year of 4 to 6 percent. Had it not been for a spike in the rate of exchange between April and September last year, the rate for the year would have been even lower than the final numbers reported.
Food and Non Alcoholic Beverages and the Transport division declined by 1.5 percent. The fall in Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages resulted from a decline of 6.2 percent in Vegetables, Starchy Foods due to increased supplies of agricultural produce the Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN) stated. The decrease in the Transport was due to lower prices for petrol, while Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels fell by 1.3 percent, due mainly to reduced rates for electricity, sewage and water rates.

Heavy demand for Fontana shares

Fontana shares are now listed on the Junior Market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange with bids now in to purchase 7.7 million shares up $2.50 prior to the opening of trading. There is just one offer at $4 to sell 4,500 shares.
The heavy demand in in keeping with heavy over subscription the IPO received. A number of investors in the stock are not pleased that the company varied the terms of the allocation of shares to persons in the general pool from the stated treatments included in the prospectus that stated that multiple applications would be merged and treated as one.
The share issue attracted 2,770 applicants for shares in the company. The order book on the buy side is shown in the accompanying chart with orders at 10 am.
The PE based on last year’s earnings is a low 8, suggesting that a price in the mid $4 region or higher is likely, once it can trade at those levels. Subsequent to the time the attached chart was created, the highest bid is now at $2.60 to buy 130,000 units with total bids in the syetem to purchase 17.7 million shares. One more offer at $3.77 to sell 30,610 units was posted after trading commenced. The maximum price the stock can trade at today is $2.44, 30 percent above the IPO price of $1.88.

Fontana lists today

Fontana Waterloo Road

Fontana shares will list on the Junior Market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange and will commence trading on Tuesday.
The shares that were well sort after will be in high demand with the price expected to jump sharply in a few days. A number of investors in the stock are not pleased that the company varied the terms of the allocation of shares to persons in the general pool from the stated treatments included in the prospectus that stated that multiple applications would be merged and treated as one.
Scotia Investments advised that they are currently in the process of disbursing refunds to applicants via transfers to each broker for their clients and expects to complete the majority of refunds during the week of January 7th.
The share issue attracted 2,770 applicants for shares in the company. Fontana brings to 38, companies listed on the Junior Market. In December, Eppley that was listed on the Junior Market moved over to the main market.

Stock trading disrupted across Caribbean

Trading has not commenced on either the Trinidad or Jamaica Stock exchanges up to 1 PM, Jamaica time.
Based on a release from the Trinidad and Tobago Stock Exchange, (TTSE) a systemic problem affected the trading activity in allof the three exchanges in Jamaica, Trinidad and Barbados is the reason for the lack of trading earlier in the day.
The TTSE issued a release earlier today as follows, “TTSE wishes to advise all our valued stakeholders of a delay in trading on January 4th, 2019 due to a technical infrastructure issue experienced by one of our service providers which has impacted all three (3) major regional exchanges and is beyond the control of the TTSE. While our service providers are working expeditiously to resolve this issue, we have activated our business continuity process and advise that trading will commence later today. We thank you for your patience and cooperation at this time.”
The Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE) advised no one of the problem, while a check on the Barbados Stock Exchange website revealed no information on trading for the day.

Marlene Street Forrest, Managing Director of the JSE.

The JSE has clients who utilize their trading platform but not even those persons have been advised about the problem and given an indication whether trading will occur or not for the day.
IC had previously indicated that the problem was with the current trading platform that was installed at the start of 2016, has been plagued with several problems. Marlene Street Forrest, Managing Directors of the JSE advised that the problem was not with the platform but was a connectivity issue that impacted the system that prevented trading from taking place.

Big gains for JSE Monday

The main market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange surged 11,391.32 points on the All Jamaica Composite index (AJI) with nearly 2 hours of trading on Monday with the index at 417,227.47 points but pulled back from the day’s high of 421,063.54 points earlier after rising 15,227.39 points.
The JSE Index climbed 10,378.78 points to 380,141.40 but the Junior Market Index rose 47.45 points to 3,229.84.
NCB Financial traded at $150, Barita Investments traded at a new high of $55, Grace Kennedy at $68.50 and Sagicor Real Estate Fund jumped to $13.93.