Three things you need to know in the financial markets today from investment writer, Tony Cross.
#1. BT’s 9 month trading update gives no cause for concern
BT Group [LON:BT.A] has issued a trading update for the nine months to 31st December, painting a “steady as she goes” picture and reaffirming full year guidance, despite inflationary pressures. Revenues are off 1%, pre-tax profits are down 15% as a result of increased depreciation, but the post tax figure is up by almost 50%.
- Three Quick Facts: Cranswick, AO, Capita
- Three Quick Facts: BT, Imperial Brands, Vodafone
- FTSE 100 at the close: Shell, Ocado and BT
#2. Solid run into Christmas for Cranswick
Food producer Cranswick [LON:CWK] has issued a Q3 trading statement, covering the 13 weeks to 24th December. Trading in the run up to Christmas was noted as being particularly robust across all categories and the report notes that the Avian flu outbreak had limited impact on its poultry lines. Exports to the Far East were ahead of comparatives, too. The full year outlook remains unchanged.
#3. Bumper profits from Shell, another $4bn share buyback promised
Oil producer Shell [LON:SHEL] published its Q4 update today, conveying the news that it had posted its largest ever full year profit of $39.9bn, more than doubling last year’s $19.29bn. That’s despite an estimated Q4 hit of $2bn in additional taxes to the UK and EU, and will also be supported by another potentially controversial $4bn share buyback. The numbers are certainly eye-catching and the expectation has to be that many of the news headlines will be just as acerbic.