Three things you need to know in the financial markets this morning from investment writer, Tony Cross.
Online fashion retailer boohoo [LON:BOO] has this morning confirmed that the cash call published just yesterday has been fully subscribed. The company sought a capital raise of just under £200m, at a price of 340p per share. That is however more than a 10p discount against yesterday’s closing price and although that’s a comparatively small adjustment, with the raise having only been announced after the market closed last night, the inclusive nature of these funding rounds risk being called into question again. The capital has been sourced to allow the company to snap up distressed assets – or as the company puts it ‘take advantage of numerous opportunities that are likely to emerge in the global fashion industry’- in the coming months.
National Express [LON:NEX] has issued a brief trading update today that may be sufficient to provide investors with some reassurance. Expectations had been that April’s revenue would be down by around 50% and that has indeed proved to be the case. What’s more the business is now starting to see the benefits of global lockdowns being gradually lifted across all territories. In line with government guidance, UK coach tickets are now going on sale from July 1st, albeit only on a limited basis.
William Hill [LON:WMH] has published a trading update for the 17 weeks to April 28th this morning. The numbers are split out to cover the periods either side of March 10th when the COVID-19 lockdown was seen as having taken effect. The company was already struggling on a like for like basis after the UK government imposed a £2 stake limit on betting terminals, whilst the collapse of the sports industry has added to investor woes. However the prospect of imminent returns for football and horse racing have given some cause for optimism, whilst a better understanding of cost savings combined with government support packages means that the monthly EBITDA impact of closed stores has been reduced by around 50%. Guidance has been suspended but even with revenues down 27% for the period, there may be some glimmers of light emerging.
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