Shareholders must watch out for options fish hooks

Saturday 24 July 2004

Let's talk about options. Fisher & Paykel Appliances plans to issue 6.3 million of them to its employees this year if shareholders pass a resolution on August 16.

By The Landlord

That is on top of a previous 7.9 million.

As well, a company share plan issues fully paid shares to employees at a discount of 20 per cent to the market price.

So far, 1.7 million shares have been issued under this plan.

Add them all up and you get to more than 6.1 per cent of the shares on issue in the company - a level that harks back to the bygone era of option largess in the United States which was a critical catalyst in the 1999 crash.

The New Zealand market bounced back from 1999 and is in better shape than most international markets.

One reason is that we never adopted the US option culture.

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