Ask most JSE stock market wags about bellwether stocks and they would traditionally mention Afrox, Hudaco and Invicta — companies whose products and services ensured that the engines of the mining and manufacturing sectors kept humming.All three stocks for many years were consistent performers and delivered good returns to shareholders.However, over the past years that linkage has been broken as the domestic economy faltered.It’s been tricky for industrial conglomerates to adapt.Invicta’s headline earnings peaked in March 2015 at 609c a share and have tanked since then to the 126c recorded in the 2019 financial year. The share price, which traded as high as R104 at the start of 2015, followed earnings lower to recently register a new low of R17.70. The share has recovered to R21 at time of writingExacerbating Invicta’s earnings troubles was a simmering tax concern over a BEE structure that the group undertook nearly a decade ago.The complex structure always drew the scrutiny of the ...

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