What was the highest ever AMP Ltd (ASX: AMP) share price? Good question. As most investors would probably guess, it was a very, very long time ago. But let’s dig into what has become a rather sad story of ASX life.
AMP is one of the oldest companies in Australia. It was founded way back in 1849 as the Australian Mutual Providence Society. Until 1998, it was a mutual society – owned by its members. But in 1998 AMP was ‘demutualised’ and listed on the ASX as a public company. A demutualisation process normally results in members receiving shares, which many AMP members and customers did.
But unfortunately, AMP’s life as an ASX share has proved to be the darkest chapter in its long history. The AMP of today is a vastly different beast from the venerated institution that was listed on the ASX in 1998.
The banking royal commission of 2018 was a landmark moment for the company. Alleged systemic rorts and fraudulent charges on customers arguably saw public trust in the company significantly diminish. Not to mention revelations that AMP had habitually misled the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC).
In the wake of the royal commission and these findings, AMP lost its chair, CEO and most of its board. Today, the company has sold off many of its ‘crown jewels’, such as its life insurance business and some of its AMP Capital (now called Colllimate) divisions.
At the time of writing, the company is trading at $1.15 a share, having bounced off a new 52-week low of just 86 cents a share that we saw earlier this year. But what of AMP’s highest ever share price?
When was the AMP share price’s all-time high?
Well, it’s been at least 20 years since we’ve seen it. It’s so long ago that is actually difficult to determine AMP’s exact highs from back in its early days. But let’s see what we can find.
According to an article from The Sydney Morning Herald in 2011, AMP shares “floated on the stock exchange for about $18.70 a share”. The company’s own corporate website indicates that the shares didn’t go much above that level. In fact, by 2003, AMP was getting pretty close to $3 a share, representing a loss of around 75% over the company’s first five years of life.
The company recovered to around $10 a share by 2007 but was again smashed with the onset of the global financial crisis in early 2008. It has been down, down for AMP shares ever since. The 86 cents share price we saw earlier this year was also an all-time low for the company.
No doubt shareholders will be hoping that it can only get better from here. But It’s certainly a long road back to this company’s glory days.
At the current AMP share price, this ASX 200 share has a market capitalisation of $3.73 billion.