The Myer promoters can’t take a trick: last week the final pricing was caught up by the sharp fall on Thursday in local markets, resulting in a less than expected issue price of $4.10.

Today, the local market’s catch up to the sharp, 2% plus sell off in all overseas markets Friday night caught the company as trading started in the shares on a deferred basis at Noon (normal trading starts in the middle of next week).

The shares listed under the issue price of $4.10, opening at $3.88 on the ASX, falling to a low of $3.87, with over 50 million sold in the first 25 minutes after trading started at midday.

The opening price was a discount of 5.4% to the issue and a reminder that timing is everything.

Two weeks ago, when the global rally looked firm, the private equity owners, led by the US group, TPG, might have got a higher price and a better opening. As it is they are still taking out mega bucks.

The $4.10 a share price was at the lower end of the indicative price range of $3.90 to $4.90. Some analysts took that to mean that shareholders taking up the offer would make a better return, and those selling today are mostly professional investors who have borrowed the money to buy the shares, will settle this week and will probably make a nice return with very little actual cash outlaid.

Myer said it will have about 581 million shares on issue, a market capitalisation of about $2.4 billion and an enterprise value of $2.8 billion. That will only be a little less than David Jones $2.6 billion, and yet DJs is a more profitable business.

Smaller retailer, Kathmandu is next up to be floated by its private equity owners. Will the sell down and the less than stellar start for Myer cool investor demand for its shares?

David Jones shares fell in the 2% sell off, falling 12 cents, or 2.2% to $5.24.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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