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

SSE

There’s a rather bleak trading statement out from SSE this morning. Warm, dry weather over the summer has kept demand for energy low, gas prices have been high and the regulator’s implementation of a price cap is going to hit future profits.

There may be some solace for investors in so far as the company at least expects to be able to still deliver against its five year dividend plan laid out earlier this year.

Profits for the six months to end of September are now expected to be around half what was posted for the same period last year.

Sports Direct

A very brief trading update from Sports Direct today, ahead of the company’s AGM. Trading is reportedly currently in line with expectations to improve EBITDA by between 5% and 15% for the year.

The AGM may not run smoothly with shareholders being urged to vote against Mike Ashley’s reappointment regarding poor governance, although it’s reported that Mr Ashley – who owns 61% of the business – won’t be there in person to hear these objections.

Dunelm Group

More good news from the world of retail with a full year statement from Dunelm Group being published. Total revenue broke through the £1 billion mark, although margin erosion and the impact of an acquisition has pushed full year underlying profits down.

Online sales continue to progress well too, with home delivery up by almost 40%. The company’s share price remains under long term pressure – do numbers like this warrant a rethink?

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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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