Thomas Cook starts life outside FTSE 250

Thomas Cook starts life outside FTSE 250

Thomas Cook suffered a fresh fall in its share price on its first day outside the FTSE 250 share index yesterday.

The group’s shares fell back below 15p to 14.83p, a decline of 1.53% on the day – a slightly greater drop than the 1.23% decline in the FTSE All Share index. It left the group with a market capitalisation of £130 million.

Thomas Cook dropped out of the FTSE 250 index of companies on Wednesday night following the collapse in its share price last month after it announced a delay in releasing annual results while it sought an extension of its banking facilities.

The company is due to present its results next Wednesday after securing an additional £200 million loan facility.

Cook’s shares were still trading as high as 70p-85p in late July after the group issued a profit warning that led to the resignation of its chief executive.

The group was in the FTSE 100 list of leading companies until June last year when it dropped into the FTSE 250. At the time of that drop the company was valued at £1.6 billion, with its shares priced at £1.90. In April 2010 the group’s shares were priced at £2.70.

The initial fall in share value last year was triggered by the volcanic ash crisis in April, but Thomas Cook subsequently issued three profit warnings during a 12-month period to this July.

Analysts appeared unconcerned at Cook’s fall from the FTSE 100, one pointing out: “It’s a complete irrelevance to Thomas Cook’s customers.”

However, the group’s fall from the FTSE 250 could have an impact as it seeks to recover. Analyst Douglas McNeill of Charles Stanley Securities said: “Some funds only invest in FTSE 100 companies. Other investors tend to focus on FTSE 250 companies.”

Thomas Cook has yet to appoint a new chief executive.


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