Transjamaican stock doubles in 2023

Transjamaican Highway stock closed trading on Wednesday with a gain of 105 percent at a record close of $2.87 on Wednesday and traded at a record $2.95, up 111 percent on Thursday morning, to be one of only two stocks on the Main Market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange to gain more than 100 percent for the year to date, the other being Ciboney up 139 percent.

New record high for the JSE Junior Market.

Investors in Transjamaican, the operators of Highway 2000 have much more to cheer about as the company raised the dividend to be paid in October by 118 percent to 18.66 cents up from 8.55 cents last year. The dividend adds another 13 percent to their return for 2023 based on the opening price for the year of $1.40. While the 2023 performance is a big reward for investors in the stock, it has been a long wait for early investors who bought in the IPO at $1.41 in February 2020, valued then at a PE ratio of 25 times, when the market was averaging 16 times. Critics of the value at the time indicated the serious overvaluation but supporters hailed it as reasonably priced. Now the stock is trading at less than 10 times 2023 earnings of 30 cents per share and buyers have been less than ecstatic about it, by slowly driving the share price to current levels over several months.

Transjamaican Highway

The stock’s performance is supported by an outstanding jump in profits for the six months to June over the similar period last year, with earnings of 14 cents per share versus just 3 cents for the same period last year, with the profit ballooning 338 percent for the June quarter to US$6 million and 442 percent to US$11 million for the half year. Revenues and profit rose as a result of the acquisition of its new subsidiary, Jamaican Infrastructure Operators which reduced cost considerably as well and the group benefitted from increased revenues from operating the toll road. The stock’s performance was also helped by the declaration of the substantial increase in dividend.

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