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BS&T fiscal position improves

Natasha Beckles

BS&T fiscal position improves

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EXCLUDING the discontinued operations of Warrens Motors, the Barbados Shipping & Trading (BS&T) group recorded a five per cent increase in revenue for the first quarter of this financial year.
Financial highlights for the three months ended December 31, 2010, show group third-party revenue at $221.6 million compared to $210.5 million for the comparable period in 2009.
Chairman Gervase Warner and chief executive officer Anthony King said gains were achieved across the group with some decline at Dacosta Mannings due to Christmas sales being lower than in the prior year.
They attributed the reduction in profits from the group’s subsidiaries primarily to substantial claims at United Insurance arising from Tropical Storms Richard and Tomas along with the reduced Christmas sales at Dacosta Mannings Inc.
Profits in other subsidiaries were generally higher than in the prior year, the directors said.
 “Associated companies’ results, however, improved materially having disposed of our investment in Bahamas Supermarkets together with the benefit of reduced losses at our Almond Associates,” Warner and King said.
The loss from discontinued operations amounted to $821 000 compared to $3 million in 2009.
Net income declined by 10.4 per cent to $9.3 million compared to the $10.4 million recorded in 2009.
BS&T had total assets of $1.3 billion, current assets of $562.2 million, and current liabilities of $334.2 million.
The directors noted that while current assets normally increase over balances held at September due to seasonal trading, the growth mainly occurred at United Insurance where substantial sums were due from reinsurers in respect of the aforementioned claims.
Warner and King added that some measure of economic growth occurred during the quarter, but consumer discretionary spending fell since the beginning of December.
“We shall continue to pay attention to cost controls and credit management as we keep an eye on signs of improvement in the economy,” they said.
Earnings per share attributed to shareholders from continuing operations declined from 14.8 cents in 2009 to 10 cents.