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Week ahead: Morrisons | TSB | FTSE 100

Morrisons CEO Dalton Philips. Picture: Contributed

Morrisons CEO Dalton Philips. Picture: Contributed

  • by DOMINIC JEFF
 

HIGH street chains will stage their own “super Thursday” this week as a raft of retailers update the market.

Retail analyst Nick Bubb said: “There is a veritable plethora of news, with interim results from Morrisons, Next and the John Lewis Partnership, as well as finals from Dunelm and trading updates from Home Retail, Ocado and Darty.”

Their results follow months of improving retail sales figures, but there are likely to have been losers as well as winners from the early summer heatwave. It is thought to have favoured clothing and food shops, but was bad news for those selling electrical items and home furnishings.

Monday

• Murgitroyd

The Glasgow-based patent attorney publishes annual results which it promised last month would be “broadly in line with market expectations”. The Aim-quoted firm said earlier this year that it was considering the expansion of its operations in France and the United States.

• TSB

The 200-year-old bank is reborn as a spin-off from Lloyds Banking Group with 4.5 million customers, £1 billion in savings accounts and 8,500 staff. It will launch a £30 million marketing campaign.

Tuesday

• Marks & Spencer

The high street retailer is presenting its autumn fashion range at its “Pantheon” store on London’s Oxford Street.

• Rics housing survey

Figures are expected to confirm Britain’s housing market recovery gained momentum in August, with prices rising at the fastest rate since the financial crisis.

Wednesday

• Kingfisher

First-half results from B&Q’s parent company should show the top-line benefit of an early summer heatwave and the recovering housing market.

But a poor first quarter means analysts on average expect the retailer to post adjusted pre-tax profits of £365m for the six months to the start of August, which is 2 per cent lower than last year.

• FTSE 100 quarterly review

Retailer Sports Direct has top-flight ambitions in the latest reshuffle. Aberdeen’s Wood Group teeters on the brink.

• UK unemployment figures

Labour market statistics have taken on a new significance since the Bank of England tied its policy to the ILO unemployment rate. Investec expects the latest figures to show the jobless rate ticked down from 7.8 per cent to 7.7 per cent.

Thursday

• John Lewis Partnership

The employee-owned group is expected to reveal a modest rise in operating profits in its financial first half, to around £173m.

• Hillington Park, Glasgow

The trading estate celebrates its 75th anniversary at the Innovation Centre.

• NIESR Scotland

The National Institute of Economic and Social Research presents its paper on currency options for an independent Scotland. An eight-minute animation outlining the possibilities will be posted on YouTube.

• Next

Fine weather and recovering household spending are expected to help the clothing giant report buoyant recent trading after the freezing start to the year.

Friday

• Construction output

Official figures for July will give an indication of how much the sector is likely to contribute to third-quarter growth in the UK.

Spotlight – Dalton Philips

The chief executive of Morrisons, Dalton Philips, will get another chance to persuade a sceptical City that convenience stores and online grocery shopping can restore the group’s fortunes when it publishes first-half results on Thursday.

Philips admitted this summer that Britain’s fourth-biggest grocer had fallen behind its rivals Tesco and Sainsbury’s, but insisted the business was now “fit for the future” after a £300 million infrastructure revamp.

He plans to launch online operations following a deal with Ocado, and is rolling out smaller M-Local outlets in an attempt to halt the loss of market share to discounters Aldi and Lidl. Store openings are expected to help the chain grow first half sales 0.6 per cent to almost £9 billion.

 

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