Here are three things you need to know in the financial markets this morning from investment writer, Tony Cross.
#1. Wickes Group full year profits to come in at the upper end of market expectations
Hardware store Wickes Group [LON:WIX] has published half year results this morning for the 6 months to 26th June. Revenues are up 33% on a year ago – a period which was marred by lockdowns – but improved by an equally impressive 22% from the 2019 figure. Pre-tax profits for the period are sitting just ahead of guidance and the full year number is set to come in towards the upper end of market expectations. A shortage of tradespeople means that there’s also a backlog of installations, which is set to flatter the 2022 figures, too, with the company adding that strong supplier relationships are helping manage both inflationary pressures and raw material constraints.
#2. Ryanair new aircraft operational performance exceeding expectations
Ryanair [LON:RYA] has issued a short – but customarily punchy – trading update ahead of their AGM today. The company notes it is on course to take delivery of 210 new aircraft over the next five years and expects to carry more than 225 million ‘guests’ by 2026. – 50% higher than pre-pandemic levels. The new planes are also more fuel efficient and produce less CO2, with the first of the fleet having been delivered over the summer with operational performance already exceeding expectations.
#3. ASOS direct operations to be carbon net zero by 2025
There’s a note out from ASOS [LON:ASC] this morning, underlining the company’s ESG goals as it tries to move away from that fast-fashion genre that has the potential to look increasingly damaging in the future. Direct ops are to be carbon net zero by 2025 and it has set the same target for the entire value chain by 2030. Transparency and diversity are also highlighted here. Obviously, it’s important that companies are held to account over pledges like this, but progress here is being aligned with the CEO incentive scheme, which so long as this component is sufficiently lucrative would seem to be another step in the right direction.