Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Year-end window-dressing for I-Remit?

Today was an unusual day for I-Remit. Normally having a very low trading value of less than 100,000 Pesos, today, total trades amounted to 31 million Pesos for the company. The unusually high volume of trades caused the share price of the company to jump 17% for the day. Refer to Figure 1 for a 1-year graph of the share price of the company.

Figure 1. 2008 Share price graph of I-Remit

Notice the sudden surge in share price at the last trading day of the year. Could this be a classical case of window-dressing? It could be that the company bought some of its own shares so that it could show a more attractive, healthier company to its investors in its annual report. But what is queer is that last year, December 2007, no window-dressing was done?

I-Remit could be classified as one of the more resilient stock companies in the Philippines for this year. Given that the stock prices of most companies for this year have been crashing down to record lows unseen for perhaps decades, I-Remit’s stock price displayed strength and potential moving on into the new year of 2009. Compare the graph in Figure 1 against the graph in Figure 2 which shows the Philippine stock exchange index for the same time span of the year of 2008.

Figure 2. 2008 graph of Philippine Stock Exchange Index (PSEi)

In Figure 2, the PSEi is in a clear downfall throughout the year going to lower and lower levels. The graph of I-Remit is similar for the first half of the year down-skidding. But on the second-half of the year, a sudden surge of investor excitement pipes in, pushing the price upwards.

As to why I-Remit’s price buoyed up in the second-half of the year of 2008, I still don’t know.

Notice also that for the same last trading day of the year, the share price of the TKC Steel company also jumps significantly by 12% -- an unusual behavior. Since TKC and I-Remit are related in that they are both owned by the Ben Tiu family, this must be a classical case of window-dressing.