A company’s earnings (profit) divided by the number of ordinary shares usually expressed as a number of cents per share. The earnings per share (EPS) includes all the companies incomes and expenses – even if they are once-off and non-recurring. So for example, if the company makes an exceptional profit by getting an insurance payout or selling a property that would be included. Such a profit would be excluded from headline earnings per share (HEPS). The objective of HEPS is to show the profitability of the company’s underlying businesses excluding extraneous and once-off incomes and expenses. Both HEPS and EPS can be “fully diluted” which means that they are calculated using the number of shares at the end of the accounting period rather than the average number of shares in issue during the entire period.

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