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Three things you need to know in the financial markets this morning from investment writer, Tony Cross


Full year numbers from the packaging specialist Mondi have revealed something of a mixed bag this morning. Headline revenues may be a shade lower than consensus forecasts but earnings per share beat expectations by around 5%. The company notes that pricing going forward remains varied, with some products seeing better market conditions than others Obviously a business like this is reliant on demand, but they believe the structural growth drivers in the packaging market will help ride out any macroeconomic uncertainty.

Bovis Homes

Full year numbers from Bovis Homes are out today, too. They may look modest at the top of the sheet, with revenues up a mere 3% and average selling prices virtually unchanged, but pre-tax profits have jumped almost 50% and shareholders will be rewarded with a more than doubled dividend. This stems from improved operating margins of almost 4% and progress looks solid for the first half of 2019, too. Investors are likely to applaud the news this morning.

Merlin Entertainments

And more full year numbers from theme park and attraction operator, Merlin. They’ve posted another uptick in visitor numbers, although revenues appear to be a little short of expectations. The company continues to cycle into hotel accommodation, turning theme parks into resorts and this is boosting income. Current trading is said to be in line with expectations, although there are few clues as to how the company would manage any broader downturn. Geographical diversification – which they do have – is however clearly beneficial in such circumstances.

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Please note this article does not constitute investment advice. Investors are encouraged to do their own research beforehand or consult a professional advisor.

Tony Cross

Tony Cross

Tony Cross is a market commentator with over 15 years of experience, producing compelling, insightful copy for journalists and investors alike. Focusing on macroeconomics, UK blue chip equities and inter market analysis, Cross's commentary is well regarded for its clarity and ability to cut through the waffle. He has been quoted in publications as diverse as The Financial Times, The Times, The Guardian and The Sun. He has also been a regular guest on both Share Radio and TipTV.

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