Interest Rate Bet

TOWER Small Shareholders Plan

Attentive readers will recall that I bought a very small parcel of TOWER shares once while I was demonstrating an online share-trading system.

TOWER has been exploring the idea of mopping these up to reduce the number of people on their share register. There are pros and cons. Fewer shareholders technically means less liquidity - but in practice these shares are not really 'in play' they are likely to be in parcels so small that they are forgotten about and are not being held as a result of any particular investment belief.

But I am sure it will cause debate. The other one which always exercises people is the matter of share splits and share consolidations. Air New Zealand's recent consolidation appeared crafted to return the typical share price to a level which looks broadly similar to that before the whole "September11/Singapore Airlines deal decline disaster" and subsequent bail-out by government.

Reaching further back I remember how advisers complained when Sovereign did a share split (and this was a long time before listing).

The effects of such things are subject to a lot of reasearch. Famous for having a huge share price is Berkshire Hathaway, yesterday's price was $84,500 US even after a lacklustre year. You don't need a PhD to figure out that this can make investing tricky for the smaller player. Their B shares trade a more palatable $2,824 US.

My TOWER shares definitely look small!


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