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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Countrywide share price slides but LSL bats off City downgrade

The share prices of Countrywide and LSL Property Services diverged yesterday in response to both agency groups being downgraded by influential City consultancy Jefferies.

The consultancy moved each of the agency groups from ‘Buy’ to ‘Hold’, citing a raft of what it called “strong headwinds” in the residential market - Brexit uncertainty, the falling pound, fall-out from stamp duty rising at the higher end of the market, and wider economic volatility likely in the coming year.

The announcement from Jefferies - carried on EAT yesterday - came in a note to investors shortly before trading started on the London Stock Exchange.

Within 20 minutes Countrywide’s price fell sharply to 187.1 - a drop of well over 10 points on its closing figure the previous day - and during the day slipped further. It eventually closed down 16 at 186.0.  

Just over two and a half years ago, Countrywide’s share price was valued at over 685.

LSL Property Services briefly rose by over one per cent in early trading but then slipped a little: even so, it closed down only 0.25 at 194.50.

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    Is it the market that is creating the problems for Countrywide? Or Is it being led to failure by misguided and ill conceived views of what this 'service industry' is and the shape it should take in the future? Does 'Jeffries' know what it is talking about or is it an apologist for poor management? Whether there is any affection for Countrywide or not there certainly has been is for a significant number of the brands that go to make it up. The regard these are held in however, will diminish no doubt as the quality of people doing the business at grass roots, leave the organisation. The middle management bods come and go. Few have much idea of what the job actually involves anymore, having been away from it for possibly, some considerable time. If the top bods have no idea either, then that's a problem. Hold your shares or sell them???

  • stephen beasley

    Is CW going to be the BHS of the property world one wonders.

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    No, BHS were liked

     
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