Finance Friday – a brief look at this week’s finance and investor news from around the UK
Results for the 12 months to 30th June show revenue increasing 10% to £12.9bn. Half of this growth was due to the positive impact of currency moves, with half down to organic growth. The group added 686,000 new customers in the year, taking its total to 22.5m.
Group operating profit for the full year was down £6% to £1.5bn, as a result of the extra £629m of Premier League costs. However, following this investment, group fourth quarter profit was up 8% to £455m.
Lloyds has reported an 8% rise in underlying profits in the first half of 2017 to £4,492 million. Statutory profit before tax (after one-off items) rose 4% to £2,544 million, despite a hefty £1,050 million charge for PPI and £540 million of other misconduct charges, including the costs of the redress scheme for mortgage customers who fell into arrears, also announced today.
Total income rose 4% to £9,273 million, helped by a good performance in Lloyds’ commercial bank. Operating costs fell 1% to £4,018 million, and savings now total £1.2 billion of the £1.4 billion targeted by the end of 2017. The interim dividend has been increased 18% to 1p a share, ahead of expectations of a 12% rise. Shares fell 1% in early morning trading.
Domino’s Pizza Group
Domino’s Pizza Group delivered total sales of £546.5m in first half results, up 10.5% compared to last year. Underlying profits before tax grew 9%, with the dividend up 7%.
However, the shares dipped 6.5% in early trading, as investors digested disappointing like-for-like numbers, and a more difficult trading outlook.
Royal Dutch Shell
Royal Dutch Shell saw second quarter profits rise dramatically to $3.7bn on a current cost of supplies basis excluding identified items (Q216: $1.1bn). The dividend remains unchanged at $0.47 a share. The shares were broadly unmoved following the announcement.
In a brief trading update Ladbrokes Coral has confirmed trading is in-line with previous trends, and that it remains on course to meet expectations when half year results are released on 31 August. The group has also upgraded its expected synergies following the merger. It is now expecting £150m per annum of savings by 2019, more than double the original estimate. The shares rose 3.2% on the news.
Shares in AstraZeneca fell 16% in early trading as, alongside half year results, the group announced that the closely watched MYSTIC lung-cancer trial had failed to meet its target endpoints.
Second quarter results, which saw sales rise 3% at constant exchange rates (CER), were accompanied by comments from new CEO Emma Walmsley setting out her priorities for the business.
The group has affirmed its commitment to an 80p per share dividend in 2018, and will consider further growth once free cash flow coverage of the dividend is between 1.25 and 1.5 times. Guidance for the current year remains unchanged. The shares were down 1.4% following the announcement.
First half revenue hit $0.8bn at Tullow, with free cash flow of $205m. However, non-cash impairments, as a result of the low oil price, meant the group reported an overall loss for the half of $0.3bn. The shares rose 3.3% following the announcement.
Sales of £5.2bn in the first half represent growth of 15%. This was driven by favourable currency movements, with underlying growth of 5%. Underlying profits before tax rose 14% to £393m, while free cash flow surged to £116m (2016: £40m). The shares were broadly flat following the announcement.