Dividend fall hits Mirrabooka profit
PROFIT at listed investment fund Mirrabooka fell 9 per cent in the latest half-year after a decline in dividend income and as its stake in Hastings Diversified Utilities Fund lost value.
Mirrabooka reported a net profit of $6.3 million for the six months to December 31, down from $6.9 million for the previous corresponding period.
The investment fund's portfolio return was 12 per cent for the half. In that time the S&P/ASX 200 Index rose 13.3 per cent.
Mirrabooka general manager Geoff Driver said the $270 million fund, which invests in small and mid-sized companies, was unfazed by the decline in dividend income given it had $24 million in cash to reinvest ahead of the upcoming reporting season.
"We do quite often change the mix of the portfolio, and sometimes that means that some dividend-paying stocks are sold off," he said.
"But we have cash to invest. So we'll be looking to put that back into the market.
"We'll see what the reporting season has to offer and make some further assessment from there."
In adjusting the portfolio through the period, Mirrabooka acquired new holdings in Vocus Communications, Bega Cheese, Brickworks, Seek, BlueScope Steel, Horizon Oil and JB Hi-Fi.
These were funded by major sales in Hastings Diversified, Little World Beverages and Acer Energy as a result of takeover activity, among others.
Mr Driver said the fund had acquired a new holding in JB Hi-Fi and BlueScope because they still represented reasonable value, despite recent troubles for both companies.
"They've been under a fair bit of pressure for different reasons over the last few months," he said.
"I think they're making adjustments in response to the environment they're operating in. They're facing a difficult environment, but we're still a comfortable investor at this point."
Mirrabooka's net operating result, which measures the underlying income generated by the portfolio, was down 4.4 per cent to $4.3 million.
Revenue from operating activities was $4.9 million, 7.7 per cent down from the same period last year.