Sep 1, 2014

Mayne: 170 business losers take out the trash

Some companies like to wait until the last possible minute to take out the (financial) garbage.

Stephen Mayne — Journalist and Founder

Stephen Mayne

Journalist and Founder

The earnings reporting season officially finished last Friday, and that great tradition of a deluge of last-day losers continued as usual. With reduced resources and earlier deadlines, the mainstream newspapers have not captured the magnitude of what unfolded on Friday when about 170 listed companies revealed losses for the latest period up until June 30. The evidence of this will disappear at midnight tonight when the chronological outline of Friday’s ASX announcements will roll over to today’s. Check out the ASX’s “previous trading day” announcements feed while you can. First things first, let’s name all 23 companies that waited until the last possible day to take out their garbage -- meaning a loss exceeding $10 million -- hoping that no one would notice in the deluge: Bathurst Resources: $188.9 million Silver Lake Resources: $170.4 million Kingsgate Consolidated: $96.3 million AJ Lucas: $91.7 million Crowe Horwath: $88.2 million Unilife Corp: $62 million BSA Ltd: $54.85 million Opus Group: $47 million loss OM Holdings: $18.8 million ADG Global Supply: $18 million MOKO Social Media: $13.47 million Prana Biotechnology: $13.33 million Decimal Software: $13.2 million SubZero Group: $13 million Digital CC: $11.91 million Finders Resources: $11.49 million Australian New Agribusiness and Chemical Company: $11.88 million Quickstep Holdings: $11.18 million Hudson Investments: $11 million KBL Mining: $10.4 million Isonea Ltd: $10.3 million Genetic Technologies: $10.13 million Even worse are the companies that declared losses after the deadline today, thereby running the risk of being suspended by the ASX. There are still some that haven’t reported at all, and they are expected to be named, shamed and suspended by the ASX over the course of this week. In terms of the breakdown between profits and losses, this is how it unfolded after the market had closed at 4pm on Friday: 4-5pm: 11 profits and 31 losses 5-6pm: 11 profits and 18 losses 6-7pm: 10 profits and 20 losses After 7pm: three profits and 10 losses And within that cohort, there are plenty of interesting tiddlers, such as the following fabulous five:
  • Yellow Brick Road: the latest Mark Bouris mortgage vehicle is battling away, revealing an $8.68 million loss at 4.13pm.
  • Haoma Mining: the Gary Morgan-controlled mining concern revealed an $8.63 million loss at 3.58pm. Loans and accumulated interest owing to Chairman Morgan are now through $50 million.
  • Australian Bauxite: former federal treasurer John Dawkins recently passed the chairmanship to former Tasmanian premier Paul Lennon. Alas, the aspiring bauxite miner near Launceston announced a $1.64 million loss at 3.57pm.
  • Yowie Group: as The Australian Financial Review’s Street Talk column noted today, those dominant chocolate-coated animals famous in the 1990s have lost their lustre. A $6.44 million loss was revealed at 5.25pm.
  • Primary Opinion: was called Jumbuck Entertainment until recently and features one Jeffrey Gibb Kennett as a backer and director. Announced a $2.34 million loss at 6.21pm.
Another novelty of Friday’s deluge is some of the sorry figures released by companies with grand-sounding names. “Success Resources Global Ltd” dribbled out an $8.78 million loss at 4.56pm. Maybe it should be renamed “Failing Local Miner”. That’s the most characteristic of companies which choose to join the last-day laggards' club each year. *Stephen Mayne is Policy and Engagement Coordinator for the Australian Shareholders’ Association.

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