There is a sequence in things. Take Interserve (LON:IRV) which announced a general cock-up on Thursday last. The shares tanked to 55p at which point I sold short. The following day IRV announced a contract win with DWP. The shares closed at 75p on the Friday. Today IRV announce a contract win at the BBC. There has been hardly any effect on the share price.
We are in essence asked to believe that these contracts had not been finalised by the point at which the board had decided to announce the general disaster. I do not so believe. Further, these contracts contain clauses such as “in the event of – in this case IRV – showing signs of insolvency we (insert DWP or BBC, as you will) reserve the right to withdraw.” In short, I think the market is mistaken to presume that the contracts must have been finalised the day after cock-up declaration day. I am a trusting fellow. But not that trusting.
IRV faces huge losses and accounting policy rules which must be adverse. TNAV is already heavily negative. I think that there is a fair chance that, pursuant to the review going on in IRV right now, a massive write down of existing shareholders’ interests will very probably follow. It is not impossible that administration beckons.
Until Saturday morning I had never heard of Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. the Ethiopian boss of the WHO. Actually I still have not other than forming the opinion that he is either an idiot or on the take. Guessing that he is not an idiot supposes that he now has to send the money back to Robert Mugabe. Oh Dearie Dearie me.
Saturday’s Daily Mail carried a shocking article by an Angela Epstein, a British Jew, describing why she feels she may have to emigrate to Israel rather than face the emergence of anti-semitism in this country. I hope she does not. However, I equally hope that the Labour Party can grow up and suppress the anti-semitic nonsense emanating from its own ranks. It may be a feature of a mere party of loons. However, it is essentially a feature of the degradation of civilisation.
Finally, I announced that Bonneval was a retirement jobby in the Caulfield Cup. I should have added that the retirement would be mine from tipping race winners.
Separately in the world of racing I have recommended John Gosden for a knighthood. I hope my endorsement does not damage his chances. It certainly shouldn’t.