Why Bermudian investments matter to you

  • Everyday impact: Ascendant Group is one of many BSX-listed companies that have an impact on the daily lives of thousands of Bermudians (File photograph)

    Everyday impact: Ascendant Group is one of many BSX-listed companies that have an impact on the daily lives of thousands of Bermudians (File photograph)


Considering the role of Bermudian investments and their effect on you and your family. Your first thought: what! I don’t even have an investment account, so this type of article doesn’t affect me.

Wait. Read on.

Oh, yes investments influence you, indirectly, and directly from cradle to grave — every single day. As an infant at birth, you have no understanding of the such an impact, nor are you much more aware on your exit day, that consumerism choices made by you, or for you, shape your life.

The easy access to a multitude of businesses in Bermuda, in one format or another, has almost generated indifference to their role in our lives because we are so very comfortable having products, services, and ideas right at hand. Imagine if we did not?

Here is a list of an average Bermuda islander’s stock exposures on an average day.

Most of our Bermuda BSX-listed publicly traded companies are included, along with numerous international names. This is a partial list, you can only imagine how many more could be included.

Your activity: stock, stock identifier, stock exchange, dividend currency and amount per share.

• Morning arrives, lights on: Ascendant, AGL.BH, BSX, dividend = 45 cents per share, annually

• Special coffee or tea prepared: Starbucks, SBUX, Nasdaq, dividend = $1.44 per share, annually

• Shower: Watlington Waterworks, WWW.BH, BSX, dividend = 72 cents per share, annually

• Toothpaste, cleansing lotions: Proctor & Gamble, PG, NYSE, dividend = $3 per share, annually

• Breakfast cereal or toast: Kellog Company, K, NYSE, dividend = $2.24 per share, annually

• Make-up: Estée Lauder, brand owner of MAC, EL, NYSE, dividend = $1.72 per share, annually

• Briefcase, purse: Moet Hennessey Louis Vuitton, LVMH, OTC, dividend = $1.79 per share, annually

• Vehicle: Honda Motors, HMC, NYSE, dividend = $1.05 per share, annually

• Gas: Exxon, XOM, NYSE, dividend = $3.33, per share, annually

• Text, check in at office: One Communications, ONE.BH, BSX, dividend = estimate 12 cents to 15 cents per share, annually

• Charge phone: Apple, AAPL, Nasdaq, dividend = $2.96 per share, annually

• Winding down from work: internet social media: Facebook, FB, Nasdaq, dividend = N/A

• Park and walk: Nike, NKE, NYSE, dividend = 88 cents per share, annually

• Pick up daily newspaper: Bermuda Press (Holdings), BPH.BH, BSX, dividend = 28 cents per share, annually

• Car insurance: Argus Group Holdings, AGH.BH, BSX, dividend = 36 cents per share, annually

• ATM withdrawal: Bank of NT Butterfield, NTB.BH, BSX, dividend = $1.70 per share, annually

• Doctor visit for allergies: BF&M, BFM.BH, BSX, dividend = 90 cents per share, annually

• Pension review: Colonial, a private company, not traded on BSX.

• Call to investment adviser: LOM Financial, LOM.BH, BSX, dividend = four cents per share, annually

• End of day, shopping for weekend party: Bacardi, a private company, not traded on BSX

• Rebuilding patio: Cemex, CX, NYSE, dividend = five cents per share, annually

• Airport departure: Bermuda Aviation Services, BAS.BH, BSX, dividend = 20 cents per share, annually

Are you surprised at this list? How many more can you add?

The four basic investments are cash, stocks, bonds, and commodities (of the earth; precious metals, property, etc). Much more on derivations of these in later articles. Today, we focus on the most familiar — stocks in private and publicly traded companies.

In Bermuda, the most common forms of businesses are:

• Sole trader (proprietor), where an individual prints up a business card, loads up a van and heads mainstream to sell a product or a service. The business is solely owned by an individual who is responsible for all performance outcomes and liabilities, an important legal point. Sole proprietorship can be started on a whim, no legal documents needed, and just as quickly shut down.

• Partnership, two or more sole trader people combine their efforts and expertise as general partners, each of them with same business ownership, responsibilities, liabilities as sole proprietorships.

• Incorporation of a company, one person, very often a sole trader or a group, executes a legally prepared corporate document that establishes a company while issuing stock to each of the original individual investors in the company, generally.

Reasons to incorporate are many. Some important reasons are:

• Separating personal from corporate liability

• Stipulated contractual terms to define equity ownership and management of the company

• Establishes an stand-alone organisation with perpetual life

• Increased ability to obtain funding

• Certifiable credibility, eg competing for formal business contracts

Private versus public companies. In general, very, very small start-up companies are usually held privately, not open to public scrutiny, nor listed for sale or purchase on a securities exchange by investors accessing open capital markets. Even so, Many global companies never opt to go public.

Financing and capital infusions needs do arise as a company expands. Anticipating future growth, the original shareholders may decide to “go public” by launching an initial public offering of additional shares that will be bought by any person(s) wanting to own a piece of the company. Once launched, the new shares can be bought and sold at will on the secondary market.

The Bermuda Stock Exchange-listed 11 Domestic Main Board companies and two Domestic Small Cap companies are publicly traded.

You use our Bermuda companies’ products and services every day. Your consumerism is driving their success.

Why don’t you consider owning some of their shares. They earn a profit derived from your purchases; so will you, if you own their shares — in the form of a dividend payback to shareholders.

If you are interested in owning a piece of the rock, give one of the five registered broker trading members listing Bermuda company shares a call: Barrington Investments Ltd, Butterfield Securities Ltd, Clarien BSX Services Ltd, LOM Financial (Bermuda) Ltd, or HSBC Bank Bermuda Ltd.

Bermuda Stock Exchange was a sponsor of World Investor Week, which ran from September 30 to October 6 this year. Explore their website, in particular, their Digital Guide to Investing, published for the Bermuda market.

Sources

Investor Education Guide https://bsx.com/IEG/index.html

BSX Domestic Main Board companies, https://bsx.com/comp_domestic_company.php

BSX Domestic Small Cap companies, https://bsx.com/comp_domestic_small_cap_companies.php

Martha Harris Myron CPA CFP JSM: Masters of Law — international tax and financial services. Dual citizen: Bermudian/US. Pondstraddler Life, financial perspectives for Bermuda islanders and their globally mobile connections on the Great Atlantic Pond. Contact: martha.myron@gmail.com

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Published Oct 12, 2019 at 8:00 am (Updated Oct 13, 2019 at 4:31 pm)

Why Bermudian investments matter to you

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