Saturday, 29 December 2018

Kier Group ownership changes

Following the mess that was Kier Group's rights issue last week there are some interesting regulatory filings that provide some idea of what is going on under the surface.

Here is Aberdeen Standard increasing its holding (relatively speaking) to become (after some other moves) the largest shareholder with 15.85%. And here is Woodford's holding coming down to 13.58%, presumably because it didn't take up its full allocation under the rights issue. 

More interesting is Peel Hunt - one of the underwriters that was left on the hook after the rights issue flopped. Left with unshifted stock on their hands they briefly ended up with 17% of issued shares on the 20th, only to dump them on the 21st, reportedly for 360p.

There's a nice bit by Alistair Osborne here (though the total shorts in Kier Group were - I am told - more than double the level if you add up those disclosed by the FCA).

And talking about those shorts, the FCA list now shows a total of just 4.62% - a big drop after the rights issue as you would expect. BlackRock's short position - which had been at 2.73% up till last Wednesday was reduced to 0.76% on Friday. (graph below nicked from Shorttracker - only FCA data in this tho).

I imagine that the combination of underwriters dumping of a large block of stock on the cheap and the need to close out short positions means that some of these folks made out pretty well last week. 

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