In late morning trade the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) has recovered from its poor start and is edging ever so slightly higher. At the time of writing, the benchmark index is up slightly to 6,677.8 points.
Four shares that have failed to follow the market higher today are listed below. Here’s why they are dropping lower:
G8 Education Ltd (ASX: GEM)
The G8 Education share price is down 5% to $1.22 following the release of a trading update. Although the childcare centre operator has experienced an increase in its occupancy, it is still down year on year. In addition to this, while G8 Education has delivered wage efficiencies, the decline in its occupancy means that its wage hours per booking metric is currently higher than the prior corresponding period. In addition to this, G8 revealed that it has been underpaying staff by mistake. Remediation costs are presently estimated to be in the range of $50 million to $80 million pretax over the period from 1 July 2014 to present.
Metcash Limited (ASX: MTS)
The Metcash share price is down almost 3% to $3.45. This appears to have been driven by a broker note out of UBS this morning. Although the broker was pleased with its better than expected first half profit, it doesn’t see enough upside in its shares at this level to maintain its buy rating. It has downgraded Metcash to a neutral rating with a $3.75 price target.
Woodside Petroleum Limited (ASX: WPL)
The Woodside share price is down over 1% to $22.89. This morning the energy producer announced the surprise retirement of its Chief Executive Officer, Peter Coleman, after 10 years at the helm. Mr Coleman advised that he believes this is the right time to retire and transition leadership. Woodside has commenced an internal and external search for the company’s next CEO.
Zip Co Ltd (ASX: Z1P)
The Zip share price has fallen 3% to $5.27. This decline may have been triggered by a broker note out of Ord Minnett this morning. The broker continues to see solid growth ahead for the company, particularly given lockdowns in the United States, and has held firm with its accumulate rating. However, it has trimmed its price target by 3% to $6.50.