|Bid||2,442.00 x 0|
|Ask||2,443.00 x 0|
|Day's Range||2,422.00 - 2,444.00|
|52 Week Range||2,011.00 - 2,587.00|
|Beta (3Y Monthly)||0.44|
|PE Ratio (TTM)||21.98|
|Earnings Date||Nov. 5, 2019|
|Forward Dividend & Yield||0.46 (1.88%)|
|1y Target Est||2,786.87|
Associated British Foods forecast earnings growth in its new financial year on Tuesday, with anticipated progress in its sugar and grocery businesses supplementing the further expansion of its Primark fashion chain. Analysts at Shore Capital said they expected to upgrade their forecasts. The main swing factor in the AB Food's performance in the 2019-2020 year is likely to be sugar.
Investing.com -- Here are the highlights of the regulatory releases from the London Stock Exchanges on Tuesday, 5th November.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- British retailers begging Santa for a Brexit deal for Christmas may be getting what they asked for.The crucial holiday shopping period, which accounts for a large proportion of their annual profit, is always nail-biting for store chains. This year, it is inextricably linked to Britain’s departure from the European Union.With a Brexit divorce deal in hand, fears of a no-deal split have receded. Crashing out on Oct. 31 would have been disastrous. By contrast, a deal – assuming it gets through the U.K. parliament – has the potential to bring a feel-good factor for retailers. It could unleash some pent up demand, particularly for big ticket items, such as fitted kitchens and sofas. Consumers have held back from splurging on such things, even though wage growth has been outpacing inflation. Demand has already picked up this month, thanks largely to colder weather compared with a year ago. That may bode well.But, there’s still plenty of uncertainly that could weigh down the festivities, including the possibility of the current deal collapsing, a referendum to confirm it or a general election being hastily called. For the past couple of years, consumers’ anxiety over Brexit hasn’t been at a constant level. It has ebbed and flowed with the sense of crisis in government.In September, the volatility was so extreme that some retailers could even predict their sales based on that day’s headlines. The collapse of Thomas Cook, another jolt to the consumer sector, didn’t help either. Any election campaigning on crucial shopping days would be equally distracting, particularly for affluent Britons fearful of a Labour government led by Jeremy Corbyn. But all year the British high street has been battling cautious consumers, as well as the rise of online shopping. Even internet-based retailer Asos Plc has been hurt by nimbler rivals.Whatever happens with Brexit, the prime holiday shopping period will fall late. Christmas is on a Wednesday this year, providing a full extra weekend in December to shop ahead of the holiday.Black Friday, the crazy U.S. shopping tradition that’s taken the world by storm, is at the end of November, a week later than in 2018. Over the past five years, the price-slashing event has sucked forward about 2 billion pounds ($2.6 billion) of spending from December into November, according to Richard Hyman, the independent retail analyst. It is always hard for stores that have discounted over the Black Friday weekend to return to full price for Christmas. This year’s timing makes it virtually impossible. Even if demand isn’t disrupted by another Brexit hiatus or an election, there is the potential for discounts running from the end of November through to the holiday. It’s going to be hard for chains to hold their nerve.Brexit means forecasting Christmas sales is even more difficult than usual. But Hyman estimates that non-food sales will fall by 1%, while food sales will be flat, both a deceleration from last year. If he’s right, it would be the first drop December non-food sales since the referendum. Given that the level of discounting is likely to be intense wherever sales land, they are likely to be less profitable.Amid this environment, what is certain is that the discount sector will do well, in food and fashion. The U.K. arms of the German discounters Aldi and Lidl are making efforts once more to prevent customers defecting to one of the big British supermarkets for their main holiday shopping. Upmarket and vegan food products will be a particular feature of their festive offering. Associated British Foods Plc’s Primark, which has been elevating its gift selection and party dresses over the past few years, should also do well.Mid-market chains, such as Marks & Spencer Group Plc could find life tougher, even as some of their competitors are weakened. The privately owned John Lewis Partnership is preparing for even its more financially comfortable customers to be cautious, with plenty of gifts under 20 pounds such as Fever-Tree gin &tonic Christmas crackers and so-called experiences, such as personal shopping and spa days. Although they are more expensive, at about 100 pounds, consumers may feel they are getting more for their money than when they buy traditional gifts.And even if Christmas does turn out to be better than expected – because a Brexit deal has been struck and an election delayed until 2020 — that doesn’t mean plain sailing from now on. The political wrangling is far from over. What’s more, three years of uncertainty have taken their toll on business investment. Britain shed jobs over the summer for the first time in two years. And let’s not forget any impact from a global slowdown in 2020. Consumers make the most drastic changes to their spending when they are made redundant or they see friends leaving the workforce.British retailers should extend their Christmas wish list to what happens in the New Year too.\--With assistance from Therese Raphael.To contact the author of this story: Andrea Felsted at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Melissa Pozsgay at email@example.comThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Andrea Felsted is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering the consumer and retail industries. She previously worked at the Financial Times.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
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Confident it can crack the $300 billion U.S. clothing and shoes market where many other foreign retailers have failed, Britain's Primark is ready to raise its bet on the country by securing new sources of fast fashion in central America. Primark, whose trendy clothes at rock-bottom prices have taken UK shoppers by storm, opened in Boston in 2015 and now has nine stores in the northeast, all served by a warehouse in Pennsylvania that could still serve three times as many stores. It has invested 250 million pounds in the United States, achieved a critical mass of sales and has a four-year education under its belt on a crowded market that is battling to stay afloat in the face of rapid e-commerce growth.
Associated British Foods warned on Monday that profit margins at its Primark fashion business will fall in its new financial year as a weaker pound pushes up import costs. Shares in the group, which generates about half of its revenue and profit from Primark, were down 3.6% at 0836 GMT, paring gains for the year so far to 11%. AB Foods kept its overall group guidance for the year to Sept. 14 2019, with Primark's margins increasing.
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Cold and rainy weather hit sales at Primark in May but the fashion retailer's profit margins are still growing, its parent Associated British Foods said on Thursday. The group, which also owns a major sugar business, food brands such as Ovaltine, Ryvita and Twinings, and agriculture and food ingredients businesses maintained its forecasts for its 2018-19 fiscal year. Shares in AB Foods, which is majority owned by the family of Chief Executive George Weston, rose as much as 1.4% after the news, extending their gains to 20% this year.
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(Bloomberg Opinion) -- That pile of unsold clothes at Hennes & Mauritz AB just keeps on growing.The retailer said its inventory level reached $4.4 billion on May 31, up from $3.9 billion a year ago.But look past all those unwanted off-the-shoulder dresses and denim cut-offs, and the drop in pre-tax profit, which reflected the strength of the U.S. dollar and investments in stores and online. H&M is finally showing signs of going in the right direction.Firstly, that inventory pile is becoming more manageable. It was 18.3% of sales at the end of the second quarter, compared with 18.6% at the end of the first quarter. In fact, H&M said that the reduced need to discount to offload excess stock should add 1.5 percentage point to its gross margin in the third quarter.Secondly, the changes that H&M is making, such as upgrading its namesake chain to be more like its Arket and & Other Stories outlets, appear to be chiming with customers.The company said it expected local currency sales this month to be 12% higher than a year ago. That sent the shares up about 10%.But there are challenges. Investors are at risk of getting ahead of themselves.It must sustain the recent increase in demand. That may be possible if the current heatwave continues, but it is not guaranteed.Analysts at RBC also point out that sales may be have been flattered by comparisons with the year-earlier period, when the company suffered from disruption as it implemented a new logistics system.The company also faces risks from the foreign exchange environment, given that its current stock was purchased when the U.S. dollar was stronger. H&M is more at risk from the currency escalating than rival Inditex, because it sources more of its products from Asia.And the competitive landscape is not getting any easier. Associated British Foods Plc’s Primark is continuing to expand across Europe and the U.S. and when it does so, it is opening ever more sophisticated stores.H&M’s shares are up 25% so far this year, and trade on a forward price earnings multiple close to that of Inditex.As I have argued, H&M is doing all the right things. Investment in its emerging brands is necessary to expand the top line, while the group is also now giving more attention to its core chain, which is squeezed between Primark at the low end, and Zara at the more premium level.There is also always the possibility of a buyout lurking in the background, given that chairman Stefan Persson and his family own about half of the shares.Sales growth must be sustained, and inventory shrunk substantially to demonstrate that H&M is finally out of the fashion wilderness.To contact the author of this story: Andrea Felsted at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Jennifer Ryan at email@example.comThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Andrea Felsted is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering the consumer and retail industries. She previously worked at the Financial Times.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
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Britain's main equities index dropped on Wednesday as oil majors weakened amid signs that global markets remain adequately supplied, while telecom group KCOM sky-rocketed after agreeing to a takeover deal. The FTSE 100 index lost 0.7 percent on its worst day in a month, but the midcaps gained 0.4 percent with gold miner Centamin leading gains after a strong quarterly update. Shell, the most valued FTSE 100 component in terms of market cap, recorded its worst day in over a month, while BP suffered its biggest one-day drop since late January.
Britain's main equities index moved away from a near seven-month high as oil majors weakened amid signs that global markets remain adequately supplied, while miners were hit by concerns China will reduce its economic stimulus. The FTSE-100 index was down 0.6 percent at 0810 GMT, underperforming its European counterparts, and the midcaps were down 0.1 percent. Oil majors Shell and BP dropped from multi-month highs as crude prices retreated after having jumped to their 2019 highs this week as the United States pushed to tighten sanctions against Iran.
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