Pendragon (LSE: PDG)
Pendragon could well be a name you’re not familiar with, but it’s the UK’s largest retailer of cars – both new and second hand. The business also works in the after sales market and supplies technology to other car retailers. No surprises then that the fragile economic outlook is dragging on new car sales but despite the company’s diversification, full year profits are struggling, too. The numbers aren’t without bright spots – leasing revenues up 39%, used car sales up 15% and so on, but operating profits have fallen by 9%. Investors are probably expecting better than this.
Hogg Robinson (LSE: HRG)
Interesting to note that Hogg Robinson, the travel agent which was the subject of an agreed bid from American Express last week, has seen major shareholders starting to sell down their holdings. An organisation called Telios Capital Partners owned 14.3% of the company – that’s a level that requires disclosure to the market when you buy or sell more shares. The sale brings their holding down to a still impressive 13.2%, but as an agreed sale, the decision to cash out now is more likely driven by internal rules at Telios rather than a suspicion the deal may not complete.
BHP Billiton (LSE: BLT)
We have a note from the mining giant BHP Billiton this morning over the impact of President Trump’s tax reforms on the company. The initial impact will be a tax bill of $1.8 billion, although in the longer term the changes are set to be positive in terms of reducing the tax liability on profits generated in the US.