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

Ocado [LON:OCDO]

Half year numbers from Ocado are out this morning, with the online grocery solutions provider continuing to make progress. Despite the fire at its Andover facility, the company has still seen sales increase by 9.7%. Fees to solution partners are up by 36% to £122 million and the business sees itself at a turning point. International operations are now making for a far more significant part of the business, whilst the recently agreed joint venture with Marks and Spencer is being heralded as transformational for online grocery shopping in the UK.

Bovis Homes [LON:BVS]

Bovis Homes has published a half year trading statement this morning, showing that it continues to fare well in the housing market. Transaction volumes are up 4%, average selling prices are up 3% and the company enjoys a HBF 5 star rating. This is significant given the concerns that have been cited over the quality of some new build properties. Whilst acknowledging Brexit uncertainty, the company notes it has a strong forward sales position and is confident that full year expectations will be met.

Sports Direct [LON:SPD]

The bid by Sports Direct to buy Game Digital has gone unconditional this morning, after the acquiring party announced it had gained the support of more than 50% of shareholders. Mike Ashley’s firm did have a decent head start, having amassed a 38.5% position in the target and thereby triggering a cash offer as per the takeover code. The High Street’s evolution shows no sign of relenting.

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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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