(From South China Morning Post)
Esprit, French for liveliness of mind or spirit, has certainly cut a dash as the Hong Kong-listed fashion retailer again beat predictions with strong results. Even the most bullish of market forecasts appeared to be surpassed and the share price did not disappoint, reaching new highs - now doubling in the past two years.
But with a high share price comes a demanding forward price-earnings ratio of more than 20 times, especially so when controlling shareholders have now cashed out more than $2 billion of shares in the past nine months - the latest after the 2004 interim results. Are things really as good as they seem?