Today the Merchants Trust declared its final results for the year ended 31 January 2019. The company’s NAV return was -5.2%, compared with the benchmark total return of -3.8%, due to the impact of gearing in a falling market.
The year-end gearing level was 20.5%, compared to last year’s 17.9%, while the final dividend, which will be paid on 22 May 2019, will sit at 6.6p. This results in a total dividend for the year of 26.0p, an increase of 4.8% compared to last year.
For the year, loss per ordinary share, basic and diluted, was 29.37p, compared with EPS of 68.79p for 2018. Cash and cash equivalents at the end of the year were £22,951,619. The company claims that, despite macroeconomic risk, the fundamentals of most of the companies in its portfolio remain robust, with a resilient outlook for profits and dividends.