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

SAGA

Hot on the heels of numbers from the AA, SAGA has published its interims this morning. A modest uptick in profit before tax has been recorded with everything apparently running to plan.

A solid increase in customer numbers, notably in home and motor insurance, has reversed a decline in client numbers which was seen in the latter part of 2017, but falling insurance premiums are already being tipped to hit performance in H2 ’18.

The interim dividend is being maintained.

888

Online gaming and gambling group 888 has published numbers this morning for the first half of the year.

Direct consumer business is rising, especially in online casinos and sports betting, but the company’s white labelled B2B operations are contracting.

Changes in sports betting in the USA hold great potential, especially on the B2B side, but it will take some time for this to be realised. Earnings per share are up around 2%.

IG Group

Change at the top at IG Group this morning, with the departure of Chief Executive Peter Hetheringon being announced.

Under Peter’s three year tenure, the pre-tax profit and earnings per share have both risen by over 65% and a successor is yet to be announced. Markets frequently react badly to news like this.

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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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