Could we finally be seeing a turnaround for Mediclinic? After three years of relentless selling that forced it out of the JSE’s top 40 index, the hospital group appears to have found something of a bottom and Wednesday’s trading update was met with a 6% rally in the stock. That’s notable because a mere 3.5% gain in full-year revenue and a 1.5% drop in earnings before interest tax depreciation and amortisation would not ordinarily cause a share to jump to such an extent.However, steady (read flat) sales and profit are better, clearly, than falling revenue and earnings and Mediclinic has now met its own guidance for the year to end-March, with profit margins holding steady at about 21%.Mediclinic, at one point, appeared to be battling on all fronts except its Southern African division. But its Swiss operation Hirslanden is emerging intact from a period of major regulatory change; and the Middle East has steadied with margins there expected to move up to 14% for 2020, from its current ...

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