Meeting expectations: reassuring or boring?

Boring is good – well, at least it is reassuring. Predictability implies a lower risk of unpleasant surprises.So it is a matter of satisfaction that, in trading conditions that are far less than helpful, some Financials have just reported that results for calendar 2014 will be in line with expectations.
Fairpoint stated that: “Overall the Group’s adjusted results are expected to be in line with market expectations, with double digit growth in both revenues and profitability”. Despite a further fall in revenues in its core IVA market, further growth is thanks to diversification, with strong performances from both the new legal services division and from Debt Management Plans.
H&T reported that: “The board expects the full year profit before tax to be in line with current market consensus expectations”, which are for pre-tax profits of £5m and eps of 10.2p. Profits have been battered by excess competition and the fall in the gold price, but are gradually and progressively recovering. H&T is a well-run, profitable, dividend-paying company with a NAV 50% higher than its current share price.
Rathbones saw strong growth in AUM and revenue, most notably in its Unit Trusts whose strong performances attracted investors. The combination of outperformance and inflows increased FUM by 39% to £2.5bn in the year.

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