Social housing provider Lakehouse (LSE: LAKE) found itself heavily on the back foot in Tuesday trading following the release of half-year numbers.
The stock was last 6% lower on the day and dealing at three-month lows after advising that it had incurred a £3.6m pre-tax loss during October-March, reflecting the ongoing restructuring at its Property Services arm.
Despite these troubles, Lakehouse’s release was mostly reassuring, suggesting that today’s sell-off is a tad overdone. The Essex business advised that “we expect trading for the full year will remain in line with management expectations and aim to finalise the operational improvement process within Property Services during the second half.”
Indeed, there was many positives to take from today’s release. Lakehouse declared that “the core businesses of Compliance, Energy Services and Construction all performed well, posting underlying double digit EBITA growth.” Revenues across these divisions shot 14% higher during the first six months, the business announced.
And Lakehouse’s order book clocked in at a solid £580m as of March, up 7% year-on-year thanks to £267m worth of new business.
The City expects Lakehouse’s bottom line to endure another hefty hit following last year’s 62% drop — a 23% decline is currently anticipated for the 12 months ending September 2017.
Still, such profit problems are not expected to dent Lakehouse’s progressive dividend policy. A 2p per share reward is estimated for this year, up from 1.5p in fiscal 2016 and yielding a mighty 4.5%. And the yield strides to 5.7% for next year thanks to an anticipated 2.5p dividend.
Predicted dividends are covered two times by predicted earnings in the 2017, bang on the widely-regarded safety benchmark. And for next year coverage moves to an improved 2.1 times.
And the number crunchers expect earnings at Lakehouse to start moving in the right direction with a 30% advance next year. So while the business may be suffering some trouble right now, I reckon today’s weakness may prove a great time to latch onto the company’s promising turnaround plan.
Hard work pays off
Charles Taylor (LSE: CTR) is another great London-based dividend stock that could help you make a fortune.
For 2017 the firm is expected to pay an 11p per share dividend, up from 10.5p last year and yielding 4.6%. The good news does not cease there either, an 11.6p reward chalked in for 2018 yielding a terrific 4.9%.
Investors should be pretty confident in Charles Taylor meeting these generous projections too. A modest 1% earnings rise this year is enough to cover the dividend twice. And an estimated 5% bottom-line push for 2018 keeps coverage around this figure.
Charles Taylor’s share price has failed to move seriously skywards since March’s bubbly full-year release, and I reckon this provides an opportunity for eagle-eyed investors to pile in. The insurance-sector staffer advised back then that revenues soared 18.1% during 2016, to £169.3m, a result that powered adjusted pre-tax profit 4% higher to £14.8m.
And I fully expect it to keep on impressing. The business has spent huge sums on diversifying by both sector and geography via organic investment and M&A, including splashing out £30m last year on CEGA Group, which gives it a major leg-up in the technical medical assistance and travel claims management segment.
These moves should provide the foundation for exceptional earnings growth in the years ahead, in my opinion, and with it the facility for dividends to keep mashing the market average.
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Royston Wild has no position in any shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has no position in any of the shares mentioned. Views expressed on the companies mentioned in this article are those of the writer and therefore may differ from the official recommendations we make in our subscription services such as Share Advisor, Hidden Winners and Pro. Here at The Motley Fool we believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.