Investment Oddity


So, we started buying into a large and well diversified Commercial Property Real Estate Investment Trust. It has been hit by some non-payment of rents and the general slowdown but actually is standing well in the face of this storm with not too much exposure to retail and leisure. However, latest results are optimistic and dividends are resuming this month to give investors income, so a good achievement.

It has some borrowings which are not causing it stress at the moment with lenders on side and it has a good cash reserve too, having sold some residential development land recently. Admittedly we started our acquisitions too soon and the shares kept falling but the latest results of this Trust show that the shares are trading at almost half of the underlying, much down-valued portfolio of assets! At the end of the day, investors become impatient and simply sell a stock which has fallen in value. Maybe we have to keep our patience and wait for that semblance of new normality to return and when investors will realise that most commercial property still performs exactly the same tasks as it did before and thus so, far too cheaply valued by investment institutions which have to take a pessimistic line at the moment.


Lloyds Bank announces yet more ‘impairments’ in its results and the shares drop yet again – to a paltry 26p.  Yet in the same breath, it announces how it wants to be one of the Country’s leading financial planning firms by 2023. I have to ask – who would trust an adviser which can’t put its own house in order, isn’t paying dividends (as we know no banks are so fair enough) and continues to limp along? If your financial adviser can’t manage his own finances what sort of message is that presenting to the prospective client… ‘ah but that’s different sir, you can trust the integrity of the decisions we shall be making with your money, it’s just that we aren’t very good with any of our own’.  Of course, I am being tongue-in-cheek and of course you can trust that your money is safe with the big banks but why don’t these firms realise that everything they do and say is a marketing exercise to their clientele? It sure wouldn’t be filling me with confidence to entrust my finances to entities with such awful records – and yes, we have all been suffering as a consequence of the Covid 19 issues and this isn’t that.  Maybe this organisation would do better putting its own finances into better order before preaching how well it would be able to put other people’s in good positions…!