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Why I’m still in love with Persimmon shares

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Today is 14 February, a day on which we celebrate love and romance. I’ve owned Persimmon (LSE:PSN) shares for several years now. Even after all this time, I don’t want to part company with my favourite shareholding.

Here’s an open letter to the (second) love of my life.

Foolishly in love

“Dear Persimmon shares,

Since we first met just over four years ago, I know we’ve had our ups and downs. I remember just before the pandemic shutdown, you were changing hands for twice as much as you are today. More recently, with the UK economy teetering on the edge of a recession, you have struggled.

I know things haven’t been the same since Aunty Liz and Uncle Kwasi changed jobs. Since then, in common with millions of others, the value of my home has started to fall. And, the cost of my mortgage has increased. But, with various economic forecasts suggesting that the downturn will be relatively short and shallow, I’m hopeful that the good times will return soon.

It‘s great that you usually send me a present twice a year. I always look forward to receiving your dividends which have historically been among the most generous in the FTSE 100. I know funds are going to be a lot tighter this year. But, even with a 50% cut (not yet confirmed) to last year’s gift, you are currently yielding close to 8%.

During our time together, I’ve always been faithful. Although I admit my eye has occasionally wandered, I’ve consistently come back to you. Yes, I did once consider investing in Taylor Wimpey, and (I admit) I have looked into the prospects for Barratt Developments. Both are likely to offer similar yields to you in 2023. And, like Persimmon, they have also reported downturns in their sales reservation rates and order books. However, I believe in monogamy and the benefits of a diversified portfolio, so I only want to have a relationship with the shares of one UK housebuilder at a time.

I know I can be honest with you. Some say that you are looking very cheap at the moment. I prefer to think of you as attractively valued. The forecast price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio for Persimmon is less than nine. This is well below the FTSE 100 average of around 14. Analysts’ expectations of future earnings may be wrong, but they are usually not too far off the mark.

All that remains for me to say to you on this special day, is that I continue to remain committed. I know that this year won’t be as prosperous as the last, but if we stick together for the long term, we can get through this. With a major event expected to be held before the end of 2024, I’m sure Uncle Rishi and Uncle Keir will soon start promising big things for young people looking to get on the housing ladder. I’m confident that the boom times will then return, and our relationship will continue to go from strength to strength.

With all my love.


The post Why I’m still in love with Persimmon shares appeared first on The Motley Fool UK.

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James Beard has positions in Persimmon Plc. The Motley Fool UK has no position in any of the shares mentioned. Views expressed on the companies mentioned in this article are those of the writer and therefore may differ from the official recommendations we make in our subscription services such as Share Advisor, Hidden Winners and Pro. Here at The Motley Fool we believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.