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Thread: WBC - Westpac

  1. #41
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    Default Buffett Test 3/ FY2016: ROE > 15% (one setback allowed)

    Westpac Group (WBC) FY2016 FY2015 FY2014 FY2013 FY2012
    Normalized Profit {A} $7,605m $7,527m $7,338m $6,792m $6,328m
    Shareholder Equity EOFY {B} $58,181m $53,915m $49,337m $47,537m $46,219m
    Return on Shareholder Equity {A}/{B} 13.1% 14.0% 14.9% 14.3% 13.7%

    We aren't far away from that 15% ROE hurdle in any of the last five years. But near enough is not good enough.

    Result: Fail Test

    SNOOPY
    Last edited by Snoopy; 19-06-2017 at 02:59 PM.
    Industry shorthand sees BNZ employees still called 'bankers' but ANZ employees now called 'anchors'. Westpac has opted out of banking industry shorthand...

  2. #42
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    Default Buffett Test 4/ FY2016: Ability to raise profit margin above inflation

    Westpac Group (WBC) FY2016 FY2015 FY2014 FY2013 FY2012
    Normalized Profit {A} $7,605m $7,527m $7,338m $6,792m $6,328m
    Gross Interest Revenue {B} $31,822m $32,215m $32,248m $33,009m $36,873m
    Net Profit Margin {A}/{B} 23.9% 23.3% 22.8% 20.6% 17.2%

    A 'steady with inflation increase in margins over the last three comparative figures, and a rather stronger rise before that.

    Result: Pass Test

    SNOOPY
    Last edited by Snoopy; 19-06-2017 at 03:10 PM.
    Industry shorthand sees BNZ employees still called 'bankers' but ANZ employees now called 'anchors'. Westpac has opted out of banking industry shorthand...

  3. #43
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    Default Buffett Growth Model Screening (FY2016 perspective): Overall Conclusion

    Warren Buffett's scanning of the 'growth potential' of a company can be summarized in four quick questions.

    Q1/ Does Westpac Group have a top three market position in the markets in which it chooses to operate? (Ref: my post 32)
    A1/ Yes

    Q2/ Does Westpac Group have a 'normalised profit' increasing 'earnings per share trend'? (Ref: my post 39)
    A2/ Yes

    Q3/ Does Westpac Group have a record of earning a superior ( >15% ) return on shareholder equity? (Ref: my post 41)
    A3/ No

    Q4/ Does Westpac Group have the capability of operating at increasing Net Profit margins? (Ref: my post 42)
    A4/ Yes

    Overall Conclusion

    Westpac is not able to satisfy all the requirements to apply Warren Buffett's compounding growth model. This does not mean that Westpac is necessarily a poor investment going forwards. It just means that Westpac must be analyzed in a different way. It might be sensible to regard Westpac as a pure 'dividend play' from here.

    SNOOPY
    Last edited by Snoopy; 19-06-2017 at 07:13 PM.
    Industry shorthand sees BNZ employees still called 'bankers' but ANZ employees now called 'anchors'. Westpac has opted out of banking industry shorthand...

  4. #44
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    I think you're right there, Snoopy. Indeed, that applies to all the Aussie banks at present, IMO.

  5. #45
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    Default WBC Forecast Dividend Scenario Analysis (based on FY2012 -16 data) Attempt 1 inputs

    Quote Originally Posted by Snoopy View Post
    It might be sensible to regard Westpac as a pure 'dividend play' from here.
    I now want to use the actual dividend data for FY2012 to FY2016 inclusive to build a 'scenario analysis' looking forwards.

    The basis for my model is that market conditions over the last five years are broadly representative of what we might expect over the next five years. Yet in recent times, the capital base of the company has been expanded, because of Basel 3 international banking standards requiring a greater capital base to support the existing bank loan book. The expansion of WBC's capital base has been as a result of a share issue, including a share purchase plan offer to existing shareholders and institutional share placement. Unfortunately for existing shareholders, this means that broadly the same income stream must now be distributed among the greater number of shares now on issue. In other words, unless there is a corresponding growth in profitability from the new share capital (there won't be, because the new capital is required to be used as a beefed up safety net), earnings per share can be expected to decrease in the future.

    The following table shows what would have happened if the number of shares on issue today was constant over the previous five years. I have left out the 'special dividends' (10c paid in the second half of FY2013 and 10c paid in the first half of FY2014) because these payments were made when Westpac had an excess of capital. Subsequent to these payments, late in CY2015, Westpac had to raise more capital in their plan to fulfill Basel 3 capital requirement standards. Had they known this at the time, those special dividends probably wouldn't have been paid out. Westpac do not currently claim to have excess capital. So it would be inappropriate to use historic 'excess capital' dividend payments for my present day dividend payment modelling.

    FY2012 FY2013 FY2014 FY2015 FY2016
    'Cash Profit' as reported {A} $6,564m $7,063m $7,628m $7820m $7,822m
    Gross Annual Dividend: (final) + (interim) as reported {B} $4,924m $5,429m $5,527m $5,752m $6,128m
    Normal Dividend Payout ratio {A}/{B} 75.0% 76.9% 72.5% 73.6% 78.3%
    Gross Annual Dividend (NZ Perspective *) 'cps' (final) + (interim) $1.69.6 $1.86.1 $1.91.5 $1.96.4 $2.00.4
    Actual Number of Shares on Issue EOFY 3,043m 3,087m 3,114m 3,140m 3,313m
    Scenario Number of Shares on Issue EOFY 3,313m 3,313m 3,313m 3,313m 3,313m
    Scenario Adjusted Gross Annual Dividend (NZ Perspective *) 'cps' (final) + (interim) $1.55.8 $1.73.4 $1.80.0 $1.86.1 $2.00.4


    * In this instance "NZ Perspective" means dividends continue to be expressed in $A, but the $A dividend is a 'gross dividend' because NZ does not recognize Australian Franking Credits. In addition 'NZ Imputation Credits' are added to the $A dividend using the exchange rate $NZ1 = $A0.95.

    SNOOPY
    Last edited by Snoopy; 21-06-2017 at 03:22 PM.
    Industry shorthand sees BNZ employees still called 'bankers' but ANZ employees now called 'anchors'. Westpac has opted out of banking industry shorthand...

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snoopy View Post
    Westpac run a wealth management business where they manage fund based share portfolios on behalf of clients. Despite only holding a minority stake in what used to be a fully owned wealth management subsidiary, BT, BT is still classed as a 'related corporate body' to Westpac (apparently!). Thus if BT make changes to their clients portfolios, then Westpac must report this to the NZX. All these funds will be in trust for clients. So I expect that selling 30m ATM shares will make not one jot of difference to shareholders in 'Westpac Group'. It was probably a smart move on BT's part though. I don't think that the A2 company will be able to get hold of enough 'A2 milk raw product' to drive the volumes of sales and future profits that an A2 share price nearing $4 implies.

    SNOOPY
    I remember that same talking point from a few on A2 milk back at $1.

  7. #47
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    One has to think that banks on this side of the world have been a bit 'reckless' with their lending of late

    http://www.smh.com.au/business/the-e...19-gwufh4.html
    “Just consider that maybe the probability of you being wrong is higher than you think.”

  8. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by winner69 View Post
    One has to think that banks on this side of the world have been a bit 'reckless' with their lending of late

    http://www.smh.com.au/business/the-e...19-gwufh4.html
    Interesting article. The one thing I would add is that 'those that buy in just before the crash are the ones that get into the most trouble'.

    "The proportion of the highest loan-to-value mortgages has been steadily decreasing as the major banks have toughened up on loans to buyers seeking to borrow for more than 90 per cent of the value of their home."

    Sounds good to me

    "However, soaring house prices and stagnant wage growth mean that most new business is still being written in the 60 to 80 per cent loan-to-value range."

    What they don't say is that 'soaring house prices' will strengthen the equity position of all those home owners who bought two or more years ago, thus decreasing the risk of the property loan portfolio as a whole. And if new loans are being made at 80% of loan value, that means property prices in Sydney and Melbourne will have to fall 20% before these customers get into a negative equity position. This lending sounds more conservative than what is going on in the New Zealand market?

    SNOOPY
    Last edited by Snoopy; 20-06-2017 at 07:34 PM.
    Industry shorthand sees BNZ employees still called 'bankers' but ANZ employees now called 'anchors'. Westpac has opted out of banking industry shorthand...

  9. #49
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    Default Westpac Dividend Policy

    Quote Originally Posted by Snoopy View Post
    It might be sensible to regard Westpac as a pure 'dividend play' from here.
    Unlike the ANZ, Westpac do not pin down their dividend policy to a preferred payout ratio. Yet, the Chairman has had the following to say:

    From Lindsay Maxsted's Chairmans address in AR2016

    "We recognise the importance of dividends for shareholders, and the franking credits attached to those dividends. Our approach is to continue to make dividend payments that are
    sustainable in the long-term; that is, ensuring we retain enough of our earnings to hold our capital levels while also retaining sufficient capital for growth. It is also about maximising the payment to distribute franking credits. We are prepared to wear some volatility in the payout ratio to give shareholders some consistency in dividend payments but we must continue to anchor our decision to a long-term sustainable position."

    From Lindsay Maxsted's Chairmans address in AR2015

    "While dividends have increased, because of our capital initiatives, the path of increases has slowed with a one cent per share rise over the last two halves. We continue to pay out a high portion of profits as dividends to distribute franking credits that are valued by shareholders. It is important to highlight that despite increasing capital, we have maintained our dividend approach of steadily
    increasing dividends within a sustainable pay-out ratio."

    Make of that what you will. To me it sounds like Westpac doesn't want to cut dividends. But it doesn't sound like the small increases in 'dps' that shareholders have been lead to expect every year is a given either.

    SNOOPY
    Last edited by Snoopy; 20-06-2017 at 07:51 PM.
    Industry shorthand sees BNZ employees still called 'bankers' but ANZ employees now called 'anchors'. Westpac has opted out of banking industry shorthand...

  10. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snoopy View Post
    Unlike the ANZ, Westpac do not pin down their dividend policy to a preferred payout ratio. Yet, the Chairman has had the following to say:

    From Lindsay Maxsted's Chairmans address in AR2016

    "We recognise the importance of dividends for shareholders, and the franking credits attached to those dividends. Our approach is to continue to make dividend payments that are
    sustainable in the long-term; that is, ensuring we retain enough of our earnings to hold our capital levels while also retaining sufficient capital for growth. It is also about maximising the payment to distribute franking credits. We are prepared to wear some volatility in the payout ratio to give shareholders some consistency in dividend payments but we must continue to anchor our decision to a long-term sustainable position."

    From Lindsay Maxsted's Chairmans address in AR2015

    "While dividends have increased, because of our capital initiatives, the path of increases has slowed with a one cent per share rise over the last two halves. We continue to pay out a high portion of profits as dividends to distribute franking credits that are valued by shareholders. It is important to highlight that despite increasing capital, we have maintained our dividend approach of steadily
    increasing dividends within a sustainable pay-out ratio."

    Make of that what you will. To me it sounds like Westpac doesn't want to cut dividends. But it doesn't sound like the small increases in 'dps' that shareholders have been lead to expect every year is a given either.

    SNOOPY

    Considering entering at current levels for long term dividend stream.

    P/E back to around 13 which is about average over the last 10 years for Westpac.

    Are we now around fair value? Or is there potential for short term upside given the drop we've had over the last two months (to add to the attractive yield)?

    Or, alternatively, are current levels a bit high given heightened risk of property volatility in Aus?

  11. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by dela47 View Post
    Considering entering at current levels for long term dividend stream.

    P/E back to around 13 which is about average over the last 10 years for Westpac.

    Are we now around fair value? Or is there potential for short term upside given the drop we've had over the last two months (to add to the attractive yield)?

    Or, alternatively, are current levels a bit high given heightened risk of property volatility in Aus?
    I can't see life getting any easier for the Australian Banks over the next few years.
    Strong headwinds.
    Take care.

  12. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by dela47 View Post
    Are current levels a bit high given heightened risk of property volatility in Aus?
    I am not sure that 'property volatility' is the issue in Australia, any more than property in Vancouver, London, San Francisco or any other city where the property market is being supported by historically low interest rates. I think the issue is more property volatility overlaid on what seems to be a massive overexposure of the total Australian bank loan portfolio to 'Residential Property'.

    The graph in Winner's referenced SMH article that caught my eye was the 'Loan Concentration' share, showing "Australian residential property" making up over 60% of the total bank loan book. At the opposite end of the scale was Hong Kong with residential property there representing just 15% of the local bank's loan book. The problem with that kind of comparison is that a lot of 'Hong Kong residential' is in apartment buildings which would have a lot less room for development and real value enhancement than the Oz quarter acre section. Also Hong Kong, being the 'trading capital of the world' and also a springboard for investment in to China, means there will be proportionately more 'business opportunities' out there where banks, forged on a history of trade, are likely to see as investment opportunities.

    Put simply, Australian residential investment is likely to be overall a better quality investment, in terms of a bank recovering their money in a downturn, than a Hong Kong apartment might be. Australian Banks are not so keen, in relative terms, on investment in small businesses. So many small business owners take out a mortgage on their house to develop their business. Because if they borrowed from the bank to develop a business, the 'business borrowing rate' would be more expensive. Thus despite the bare statistics seeming to show a gross over-allocation of funds to the Australian residential property market, many of these loans are funding businesses, not property speculation as that bare bar graph, if studied alone, might picture the situation.

    SNOOPY
    Last edited by Snoopy; 21-06-2017 at 03:15 PM.
    Industry shorthand sees BNZ employees still called 'bankers' but ANZ employees now called 'anchors'. Westpac has opted out of banking industry shorthand...

  13. #53
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    I would prefer to own a Hong Kong appartment than a quarter acre in Toowoomba.
    Plenty of buyers with real money in Hong Kong.

  14. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by percy View Post
    I would prefer to own a Hong Kong apartment than a quarter acre in Toowoomba.
    Plenty of buyers with real money in Hong Kong.
    I agree that I would rather own a quarter acre section in Sydney than Toowoomba.

    Percy's post illustrates another point I forgot to mention. There are lots of millionaires in Hong Kong, and across the border in China. Despite the high apartment prices in HK, many of these people may just pay cash for their high priced Hong Kong apartments, so bypassing the need to use a bank at all for property purchases.

    SNOOPY
    Industry shorthand sees BNZ employees still called 'bankers' but ANZ employees now called 'anchors'. Westpac has opted out of banking industry shorthand...

  15. #55
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    It's true, snoopy, that many of these residential loans are funding businesses. Many such business loans are difficult to secure from a lender's viewpoint, especially where the premises are leased; charges held over vehicles and stock etc. Proprietors' residential properties are often the only tangible security available to a bank.

  16. #56
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    Default WBC Forecast Dividend Scenario Analysis (based on FY2012 -16 data) Attempt 1 calc.

    Quote Originally Posted by dela47 View Post
    Are we now around fair value? Or is there potential for short term upside given the drop we've had over the last two months (to add to the attractive yield)?
    Let's see what a 'capitalised dividend value' calculation says about this. Using data from my post 45:

    Scenario FY2012 Scenario FY2013 Scenario FY2014 Scenario FY2015 Scenario FY2016 Five Year Average
    Scenario Adjusted Gross Annual Dividend (NZ Perspective *) 'cps' (final) + (interim) $1.55.8 $1.73.4 $1.80.0 $1.86.1 $2.00.4 $1.79.1

    The other key figure in this calculation a bit more subjective, and you as an investor need to answer the question.

    "For a bank such as WBC, what is the gross yield that would feel comfortable with?"

    You could say that banks are a quasi-utility, that will be there 'through thick and thin'. I use a 6.0% figure for those.

    Yet the WBC, like all the big 4 Aussie banks, has an ivory tower institutional division that does all sorts of high powered stuff with currencies, futures and options. Regular bank customers on the street would go into shock if they found out if they found out their safe solid bank was doing this stuff. Luckily it is so incomprehensible that even half the people who work in the WBC institutional division do not understand what is going on. So no-one worries about it. Very occasionally it all blows up with dramatic effect, such as in the GFC. Boring bank shares I would accept a 6% yield from. But with 'institutional stuff' going on behind the scenes I would add in a further 0.5% 'risk factor' to the WBC.

    So my answer to the question I posed is 6.5%:

    Divide 'return' by 'the yield' and you get the share price that I would feel comfortable paying:

    $A1.79.1 / 0.065 = $A27.55 or in NZ dollar terms

    $A27.55 / 0.95 = $NZ29.00

    Current share price on the NZX as I write this is $NZ31.40, which is 8.2% above my 'comfortable valuation'. So this means I should sell down, or does it?

    SNOOPY
    Last edited by Snoopy; 21-06-2017 at 03:35 PM.
    Industry shorthand sees BNZ employees still called 'bankers' but ANZ employees now called 'anchors'. Westpac has opted out of banking industry shorthand...

  17. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snoopy View Post
    I agree that I would rather own a quarter acre section in Sydney than Toowoomba.

    Percy's post illustrates another point I forgot to mention. There are lots of millionaires in Hong Kong, and across the border in China. Despite the high apartment prices in HK, many of these people may just pay cash for their high priced Hong Kong apartments, so bypassing the need to use a bank at all for property purchases.

    SNOOPY
    This is correct. Both the HK banking environment and the HK property market are very different from Australia's (and New Zealand's for that matter). Due to a combination of factors, equity levels in HK properties are extremely high by just about any standard you could reasonably apply - almost all mortgages are P+I, the HKMA imposes very high LTV requirements and there are a reasonable number of cash buyers (either locally or from the Mainland) but not as many as the media and rumour sometimes suggest. Put this way, during the period from the 1997 peak to the 2003 low, property prices fell around 60% and were were no bank failures (one small bank was given a soft bail out). The bank's direct exposure to the risk of a property downturn is considerably lower today than it was in 1997.

    However, the banks have indirect exposure in two ways which do not show up in the 15% exposure. The first is that the banks lend to property developers who offer second mortgage financing to people who buy off the plans. Given that most HK developers have very strong balance sheets, I doubt if the banks would be at any significant risk from developers collapsing - no developer of any significance went under last time the HK property market crashed. The second is that the HKMA's LTV restrictions have driven cash-poor buyers to borrow from non-bank lenders which are not regulated by the HKMA (and only very lightly regulated under other regulations). The banks' exposure to non-bank lenders has been rising and the HKMA has recently introduced some tightening regulations in this area. Getting precise figures on the size of this sector of the property financing market has been difficult, but given that HK incorporated banks have high capital levels, I have almost no concerns about banks getting into difficulty no matter how bad the next property downturn is.

    Mortgagee sales have been ultra-rare over the last decade or so. There were a tiny handful after the GFC (and, if you blinked, you would have missed them). So long as title deeds are available, the process of enforcing a mortgage is quite smooth.

    Since at least some of these factors are not present in the Australian market, I query whether a comparison of the risk exposure of Australian banks and HK banks is terribly useful.

    As for whether it is better to own property in one place or another - YMMV.

    As far as Westpac is concerned, I've held it since it was listed as Westpac Trust, largely because I wanted a steady flow of dividends to cover NZ bills while I am living overseas. It's been a great investment in that respect and I'm struggling to see a reason to sell.

  18. #58
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    Does your 6.5% "comfortable" gross yield vary, depending on prevailing interest rates, Snoopy? What about an RBNZ base rate of, say, 10? or 1%? I assume the 6.5% rate is what you would accept in current circumstances?

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    Quote Originally Posted by macduffy View Post
    Does your 6.5% "comfortable" gross yield vary, depending on prevailing interest rates, Snoopy? What about an RBNZ base rate of, say, 10? or 1%? I assume the 6.5% rate is what you would accept in current circumstances?
    Great question Macduffy. I am old enough to remember the days of 20% mortgage rates, and remain astonished at low mortgage rates can go as evidenced by what is available today. When setting an 'acceptable return' for a business I tend to look through these extremes. I take a 'whole of interest rate cycle view' if you like. I would regard 6.5% as a little high for current circumstances. But I do expect interest rates to rise. As an investor, I tend to look out three to five years on the interest rate horizon.

    I would not be comfortable buying an investment that has a 'fair value' return of 5.5% today if I knew that the fair value return in as short as a year's time might be 6.5%. To answer your question directly Macduffy. I don't think that 6.5% for a top tier bank investment is fair in current circumstances. My instinct would be to accept a lower return than that. But because I expect interest rates to rise, I do expect that 6.5% will be fair given my current interest rate horizon. You might consider that my valuation has a built in safety factor to account for interest rate rises in the forseeable future.

    SNOOPY
    Last edited by Snoopy; 22-06-2017 at 10:30 AM.
    Industry shorthand sees BNZ employees still called 'bankers' but ANZ employees now called 'anchors'. Westpac has opted out of banking industry shorthand...

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    Default WBC Forecast Dividend Scenario Analysis (based on FY2012 -16 data) Attempt 2 inputs

    Quote Originally Posted by Snoopy View Post
    I now want to use the actual dividend data for FY2012 to FY2016 inclusive to build a 'scenario analysis' looking forwards.
    I now wish to consider Westpac from the Australian investor's perspective. WBC is listed on the NZX. But as New Zealand investors, we would be overestimating our power on the listed markets if we were to assume that our locally traded shares would do anything other than follow the Australian market lead. This means that how WBC looks to Australian investors on the ASX will be the primary driver of what happens to WBC on the NZX.

    All dollar figures below in table are in Australian dollars.

    FY2012 FY2013 FY2014 FY2015 FY2016
    'Cash Profit' as reported {A} $6,564m $7,063m $7,628m $7820m $7,822m
    Annual Dividend: (final) + (interim) as reported {B} $4,924m $5,429m $5,527m $5,752m $6,128m
    Normal Dividend Payout ratio {A}/{B} 75.0% 76.9% 72.5% 73.6% 78.3%
    Annual Dividend (Aus Perspective *) 'cps' (final) + (interim) 80c+82c= $1.62 84c+86c=$1.70 88c+90c=$1.98 92c+ 93c= $1.85 94c+94c=$1.88
    Actual Number of Shares on Issue EOFY 3,043m 3,087m 3,114m 3,140m 3,313m
    Scenario Number of Shares on Issue EOFY 3,313m 3,313m 3,313m 3,313m 3,313m
    Scenario Adjusted Annual Dividend (Aus Perspective *) 'cps' (final) + (interim) {C} $1.48.8 $1.58.4 $1.67.3 $1.75.3 $1.88
    Scenario Adjusted Gross Annual Dividend (30% tax rate) {C}/0.7 $2.12.6 $2.26.3 $2.39.0 $2.50.4 $2.68.6

    * Aus Perspective excludes NZ imputation credits and AUS franking credits in this instance. Historic Special dividends have been excluded, because they are not representative of likely future payouts under the current capital structure.

    SNOOPY
    Last edited by Snoopy; 22-06-2017 at 10:56 AM.
    Industry shorthand sees BNZ employees still called 'bankers' but ANZ employees now called 'anchors'. Westpac has opted out of banking industry shorthand...

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