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Three Quick Facts: DS Smith, Frasers, Chapel Down

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

#1. Sluggish H1 from DS Smith as customers destock

DS Smith [LON:SMDS] has this morning issued half year results which paint a rather downbeat picture across headline stats. Noting H1 as being challenging, management believe they are still on track to deliver against full year expectations. Sales have been sluggish but this is seen as a consequence of customers having been savvy in reducing their own inventory. With this destocking phase now over, signs of volume improvement are now emerging. Despite the headwinds, an interim dividend of 6p is being maintained.

#2. Frasers: strong momentum as key sales period approaches

Interims are out from Frasers Group [LON:FRAS] this morning as well, noting group revenue advancing 4.4% with international retail seeing some notable outperformance. Margin improvement is also notable and the CEO comments that trading momentum is strong as the business moves into the key trading season. A robust performance is now expected through to FY25 and beyond, with key priorities such as reduced inventories via automation and investment in high profile brands contributing.

#3. Chapel Down arrives on AIM

Chapel Down [LON:CDGP] the UK largest winemaker perhaps best known for its sparkling range, has this morning announced the transfer of trading from Aquis to AIM has completed. Management note that the company has benefitted significantly from its Aquis listing over the last 20 years, with this move reflecting both its growth plans and the maturity of the business. Such an orderly progression through the ranks is probably to be welcomed in a market that is increasingly trapped in the de-equitization movement.

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This article does not constitute investment advice. Do your own research or consult a professional advisor.

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