Computershare’s stock hit as 2013 profits fall

Computershare Ltd (ASX: CPU) today reported net profit after tax slipped 9% in 2013, although “management” earnings per share rose 11.7% to 54.85 cents per share. Total revenues grew 11.4% to over $2 billion, driven largely by acquisitions. Profit margins were flat as transactional revenues remained weak.

The market was unimpressed with the result, sending the shares down over 5% to $9.85 in early afternoon trading.

Looking ahead, in a challenging operating environment, Computershare is anticipating earnings per share to be around 5% higher in 2014. No wonder the shares are down, given they already trade on a P/E of 18.

The company will pay a final dividend of 14 cents, 20% franked, to shareholders on the register on August 26, flat on last year.

Computershare shares have risen 22% over the past 12 months, but can hardly be considered good value today.

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