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Wednesday, 9 November 1983
Page: 2482

Mr LUSHER(12.40) —I want to make just one very brief comment in relation to the total lack of understanding on the part of the Minister Assisting the Treasurer (Mr Hurford) about the valuation of private companies. There is a myriad of examples of private companies that have been floated onto the stock exchange. The Minister would be aware of that. In relation to those companies, whatever evaluation they may have had in terms of accountants' valuations, net asset valuations and what have you, the price at which they were floated on the stock exchange and the day on which they were listed bear absolutely no relationship to any of the other valuations that have been used. Even in the case of-

Mr Hurford —That is irrelevant.

Mr LUSHER —It is not irrelevant. In many cases the underwriters who are charged with the responsibility of organising the flotation of those private companies assess a price at which the shares will be issued. In many cases it has been demonstrated when the shares actually hit the market that the valuation has been out either on the high side or on the low side. This simply demonstrates in a very clear and tangible way that private company valuations are not related to the net asset valuation. For the Minister, who is supposed to have some professional experience in these things, to try to indicate to this House in some serious way that there is only one way in which one can value a private company, is to evade the issue completely and totally miss the point. It emphasises the concern that the Opposition has in relation to private companies. There are and can easily be significant variations in valuations. The Minister ought to take that into account.

Amendment negatived.

Bill agreed to.

Bill reported without amendment; report adopted.