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Murray Income Tst. (MUT)

  Print      Mail a friend       Annual reports

Monday 31 July, 2000

Murray Income Tst.

Final Results

Murray Income Trust PLC
31 July 2000


The board of directors of Murray Income Trust PLC announces the unaudited
results for the year to 30 June 2000.


- Net asset value total return of 7.6% against 0.3% for the benchmark index
  FTSE 350 Higher Yield 

- Top quartile over one year and first over three months (in net asset value


Following the appointment of Doug Thomson and the decision to rebalance the
portfolio so that it was more closely aligned to our benchmark index there has
been a significant improvement in performance during the past year, the agreed
target of beating the benchmark return by at least one percentage point once
the rebalancing of the portfolio was completed has been surpassed. 

Murray Income's ordinary shares moved steadily ahead during the second half of
the year producing for the year to 30 June 2000 a total return (with net
dividends reinvested) of 6.1% compared with a return of 0.3% on the benchmark,
the FTSE 350 Higher Yield Index. It was also ahead of the All-Share return of
5.2% which enjoyed the benefit of an advance in UK small capitalisation

Your company's performance was particularly strong over the three months to
end June 2000 over which period it was the top performing stock of all the 19
UK Income Growth investment trusts. In part this was due to market reaction to
the news of Chase Manhattan's takeover offer for Robert Fleming in which
Murray Income has a long-standing major investment. Additionally, during that
period investors sold off highly valued technology stocks and companies with
solid growth and earnings potential (which are represented in our portfolio)
returned to favour.

In net asset value per share terms the performance was equally encouraging
with a total return of 7.6%. 


At the last annual general meeting in October 1999 shareholders renewed the
authorisation of the company to buy back up to 14.99% of its own shares in the
market. Since then and to date the company has repurchased 7,849,500 shares
(9.23% of the issued ordinary share capital at 25 October 1999) at an average
price of 431.47p per share.  The buyback of 7,619,500 shares to 30 June 2000
contributed 8.8p per share to the net asset value. The authorisation will
expire at the conclusion of the next annual general meeting at which point
shareholders will be asked to renew it.

At 30 June 2000 the discount stood at 15.5%, a level in line with that of
comparable trusts in the UK Income Growth sub-sector.  Although the discount
has not significantly increased during the year, we are concerned with the
level and believe that the continued use of the buy back facility and the more
disciplined approach being adopted by the manager leading to an extended
period of consistent outperformance will produce the reductions in discount
that we are determined to achieve. 


For the year under review three interim dividends of 3.15 pence per share have
already been paid on 14 January, 14 April, and 14 July. The board now
recommends a final dividend of 6.3 pence per share making a total of 15.75
pence. This is equivalent to an increase of 2.6% on the dividend for the year
ending 30 June 1999 after allowing for the special component of the second
interim payment for that year. Shareholders are reminded that 0.75p of that
second interim dividend was to compensate for the lack of a tax credit on the
first interim, which had been paid as a Foreign Income Dividend.

For the current year the board has already forecast and now recommends three
interim dividends of 3.15p a share to be paid on 15 January, 16 April and 16
July 2001. 

'B' ordinary shareholders will receive a capitalisation issue in 'B' ordinary
share on 27 October 2000 based on their holding at the close of business on 6
October 2000 and equivalent in net asset value to the recommended final
dividend and the interim dividends for the current year.  As a share
repurchase scheme is in progress the number of shares to be received by each
'B' ordinary shareholder will be announced by 31 August 2000.

Shareholders will have noted the increasing tendency of UK companies to engage
in share buy-backs rather than to increase their dividends.  For an income
growth investment trust this is a concern, and we shall be monitoring this
development closely.


Economic growth in the UK should proceed at a modest pace and the
manufacturing sector will benefit as we anticipate that sterling will continue
to decline. Consensus is for 2.8% growth for 2000 but this could be
over-optimistic if there are further interest rate rises and consumers
continue to baulk at retail price rises. There remains a risk of imported
inflation should sterling fall back too far or too fast. 

The March/April shake-out in world technology markets may have run its course
but it is clear that investors will now prove much more discriminating in
terms of what constitutes real profit potential within the sector. Growth
stocks will continue to be favoured though, now that the peak in interest
rates looks to be close if not already reached in the UK, selective cyclical
shares may win support. 

The primary risk is that recent signs of slowing growth in the US will prove
illusory and prompt further dollar interest rate rises and a consequent
retreat by equities worldwide. However, that particular risk may be receding
and we remain fairly confident that the UK market will provide good returns
for the rest of this year once current volatility dies down and markets revive
after the summer lull.
With the proceeds due from the sale of Robert Fleming in August we will be
well positioned to take advantage of opportunities as they arise.

By order of the Board 
Murray Johnstone Limited
31 July 2000

for the year ended 30 June 2000
                                  2000               (Restated)
                        Revenue Capital  Total Revenue Capital   Total
                           £000    £000   £000    £000    £000    £000

Gains (losses) on 
 investments                  -  12,678  12,678      -  (6,629) (6,629)
 Income from investments 15,117       -  15,117 16,243       -  16,243
 Other income                93       -      93    147       -     147
Investment management
 fees                    (1,358) (1,358) (2,716)(1,307) (1,307) (2,614)
Other expenses           (1,001)   (263) (1,264)  (753)    (84)   (837)
Net return before finance
costs and taxation       12,851  11,057  23,908 14,330  (8,020)  6,310 
Finance costs of 
 borrowing                 (700)   (700) (1,400)  (829)   (829) (1,658)
Return on ordinary
 activities before tax   12,151  10,357  22,508 13,501  (8,849)  4,652

Tax on ordinary 
 activities                   -       -       -      -     337     337 
Return on ordinary
activities after tax
for financial year       12,151  10,357  22,508 13,501  (8,512)  4,989

Preference dividends         (8)      -      (8)   (44)      -     (44)

Return attributable to  -----------------------------------------------
equity shareholders      12,143  10,357  22,500 13,457  (8,512)  4,945

Ordinary dividends on
 equity shares          (12,453)      - (12,453)(13,803)     - (13,803)

Transfer (from) to reserves 
(after aggregate dividends paid
 and proposed of £12,461,000
- 1999 £13,847,000)     -----------------------------------------------
                           (310) 10,357  10,047    (346) (8,512) (8,858)

Return per ordinary share 14.7p 12.6p    27.3p   15.7p   (9.9p)   5.8p

Return per ordinary share
assuming conversion of the
'B' ordinary shares       14.6p 12.5p    27.1p   15.6p   (9.9p)   5.7p 

as at 30 June 2000 
                                     2000       2000        1999        1999
                                     £000       £000        £000        £000

Fixed assets
Investments                                  505,811                 482,975
Current assets
Debtors                             2,043                 29,217   
Cash and short term deposits          727                  5,052
                                  -------                -------
                                    2,770                 34,269

Amounts falling due within 
 one year                          16,250                 23,529
                                  -------                -------

Net current (liabilities) assets             (13,480)                 10,740
                                             -------                 -------

Total assets less current 
 liabilities                                 492,331                 493,715

Amounts falling due after more
than one year                                 50,049                  24,254
                                             -------                 -------
                                             442,282                 469,461
                                             =======                 =======

Capital and reserves 
Non-equity shareholders' 
 preference called up share capital                -                   1,040
Equity shareholders'
 ordinary called up share capital  19,502                 21,590
 share premium                      7,955                  7,955
 capital redemption reserve         3,132                      -
 realised capital gains           275,893                277,001
 unrealised capital gains         127,238                153,003
 revenue reserve                    8,562                  8,872
                                  -------                -------
                                             442,282                468,421   
                                              -------                -------
                                             442,282                469,461
                                             =======                =======

Net asset value per ordinary                          
and 'B' ordinary share                       567.0p                542.4p


                                           2000               1999 
                                           ----               ---- 

EQUITY SHAREHOLDERS' INTEREST          £442,282,000       £468,421,000

'B' ORDINARY SHARE OF 25p                 567.0p             542.4p

Dividends on ordinary shares                         
                                           2000             1999
                                           £000             £000
 Interim of 9.45p (1999 - 10.2p)
 3.15p paid 14 January 2000               2,617             2,700
 3.15p paid 14 April 2000                 2,532             3,343
 3.15p payable 14 July 2000               2,456             2,700
 Proposed final of 6.30p 
  (1999 - 5.90p)                          4,880             5,060
Over accrual of previous years 
proposed final dividend due to
share buybacks                              (32)                -
                                         ------            ------
                                         12,453            13,803
                                         ======            ======

The results stated above for the year ended 30 June 1999 are abridged from the
full accounts for that year, which received an unqualified report from the
auditors and has been filed with the Registrar of Companies.

These results have been restated to comply with Financial Reporting Standard
16 'Current Tax'.  The effect of the restatement is as follows:

                                                            Year to
                                                          30 June 1999

    Income from listed dividends                             (2451)
    Tax on ordinary activities 
    -   imputed tax credits                                   2451

A summary of investment changes during the year and the twenty largest
investments as at 30 June 2000 are attached.

The next date for conversion of 'B' ordinary shares to ordinary shares is 31
December 2000.  The last date for receipt of certificates with the conversion
notice signed on the reverse is 23 December 2000.

If approved, (1) the final dividend will be paid on 27 October 2000 to holders
of Ordinary shares on the register at the close of business on 6 October 2000,
(2) in respect of the year ending 30 June 2001, three interim dividends of
3.15p per share each on the Ordinary shares of the Company in issue on 15
December 2000 will be paid on 15 January 2001, 16 April 2001, and 16 July 2001
respectively to the persons who at the close of business on 15 December 2000,
16 March 2001, and 15 June 2001 respectively, are the holders of such shares,
and (3) definitive certificates in respect of the B Ordinary capitalisation
issue will be posted on 27 October 2000 to B Ordinary shareholders on the
register at the close of business on 6 October 2000.

Copies of this announcement will be available to the public at the registered
office of the Company at 7 West Nile Street, Glasgow.

The annual general meeting will be held on 25 October 2000 at 12.30 p.m.



31 July 2000   


                      Valuation     Trans-  (Deprec-    Valuation
                        30/6/99    actions   iation)     30/6/00
                     £000      %     £000     £000     £000     %
United Kingdom
Equities            471,439 100.6   11,075  13,325  495,839  112.1 
Fixed Income         11,536   2.5     (917)   (647)   9,972    2.2 
                    ------- ------  ------  ------  -------  ------
Total investments   482,975 103.1   10,158  12,678  505,811  114.3 
                    ------- ------  ------  ------  -------  ------

Other net assets/
 (liabilities)       10,740   2.3  (24,426)    206  (13,480)  (3.0)
Prior capital &
 borrowings         (25,294) (5.4) (24,755)      -  (50,049) (11.3)
Equity shareholders'-------  ------ ------  ------  -------  ------
interest            468,421  100.0 (39,023) 12,884  442,282  100.0 
                    =======  ====== ======  ======  =======  ======


In the above summary convertible securities are classified as equities and
preference shares issued by the company are included at nominal value as prior



                                        Valuation   % of    
Security                                  £000      Fund      

BP Amoco                                 70,239     15.9     
*Robert Fleming Holdings                 52,700     11.9         
HSBC Holdings                            36,264      8.2         
Shell Transport & Trading                27,575      6.2        
Barclays                                 20,953      4.7         
Royal Bank of Scotland Group             18,802      4.3         
CGNU                                     16,794      3.8         
Anglo American                           12,680      2.9        
Abbey National                           11,850      2.7          
Lloyds TSB                               11,035      2.5         
Diageo                                    8,895      2.0         
Rio Tinto                                 7,560      1.7         
Sainsbury (J)                             7,500      1.7        
Autonomy                                  7,499      1.7        
Vodafone AirTouch                         6,640      1.5         
SMG                                       6,274      1.4
P & O                                     6,225      1.4        
Pearson                                   5,775      1.3         
British American Tobacco                  5,479      1.2        
Standard Chartered                        5,410      1.2   
                                        -------     ----
                                        346,149     78.3
                                        =======     ====


All investments are in ordinary shares unless otherwise stated.

* Unlisted investment at latest directors' valuation.