Monday, 18 February 2008

Monday 18 February

Fairly bright day this morning as the sun tries to break through the clouds.
Down in Madagascar, Tropical Cyclone Ivan has had a devastating impact. I'll post an article from one of the country's newspapers in the next entry. Western Australia is currently being buffeted by Nicholas, which is a category 1 hurricane, off Exmouth.

Up here in the north of Scotland, a woman had to be airlifted off the mountains of Glencoe after she fell 50 metres down Coire Odhar in Glen Etive, round the corner from Glencoe. She was taken to the Belford Hospital in Fort William for treatment. The lady was with a party of 14 climbers when the accident occurred.

The Northern Rock bank is to be taken over by the government. As a result, shareholders are likely to be left with precious little of the original £12 a piece shareprice. Such is the lot of the shareholder, you win some, you lose some. It is actually the bank's own fault, apparently, having adopted a business model unsuited to current market conditions. Aided and abetted by a dithering government, the UK taxpayer can now shell out several thousand pounds a head to keep this bank afloat.


  1. Goodness, that poor woman fell quite a long way ~ it is amazing she survived at all.  Too bad for the shareholders of the bank, but as you say such it the lot.

  2. The numerically largest group of NR shareholders are those members (and savers) who got (in general) 500 Ordinary shares as a quid pro quo when NR demutualised from a Bldg Soc to a bank.  Ordinary NR shares at that time were 25p each.  £12 was the highest value the shares reached during the period from demutualisation to the current pre-nationalisation suspension of business.  (If memory serves, NR dividends have returned circa 6%pa gross since demutualisation).  Those particular shareholders therefore have actually received approx £800 (pre tax) in dividends over that period for shares which cost them nothing.  It might appear that they've done well - but in making an assessment one has to realise that before demutualisation and since that time those people have actaully had a share in the ownership of NR - a company which still even now has more assets than liabilities.  By nationalising the govt have robbed them of their share in their own assets.  Or so it seems to me  :O)