Lack of storms and prolonged strikes put brakes on Ashtead
A relatively benign hurricane and wildfire season in the United States and the prolonged writers’ and actors’ strikes in Hollywood have cost Ashtead as much as $435 million in lost revenues and up to $150 million in profits.
The London-listed plant and machinery rental group has a reputation for not springing unpleasant surprises on its investors, so yesterday’s news sent its shares tumbling by as much as 15 per cent in early trading before they ended the day down 10.5 per cent, or 550p, at £46.94. That wiped more than £2 billion off the value of the FTSE 100 group, with its market capitalisation slipping below £21 billion.
Ashtead is a British company, but expansion in America has left its home market accounting for less