I'm not making a buying case for either ULVR at this point or RYA btw!!. Even though RYA is highly cyclical (that is a big understatement) and extraordinarily volatile it generates bags of excess cash which it uses to rapidly reduce the share count.
Next plc, which I hold a small amount of, has done this more or else beautifully over the past decade plus. Neither would I make a buy case for Next at this point, just for clarity.
BT and ULVR are very different businesses, however there is on particularly salient difference and that's free cash flow. Unilever generates enough free cashflow to cover CAPEX, dividends, pension contributions, with plenty left over, year on year. BT does not not - which is why net debt is increasing. Note the increase in interest costs that BT reported at their last update.
Investors often confuse cash flow with free cash flow, they are different. In other words on my take BT is not even covering it's running costs atm, when dividends and pension contributions are factored in.
So there is no mystery why the BT share price is where it is.
Hi Sage, I'm in good form today. Doubled up on my PRU holding at 1383 on today's XD. I can't really recommend PRU as it will get whacked on any amp up of trade tensions - weak China sentiment weighs on the SP. And wider equity weakness.
If anyone does not favour buy backs then don't look at CFX (I hold a small amount) they are the unofficial king of share count reductions!.