Thursday preview: Next benefits from festive shopping sales

Hot off the heels of festive trading Next is scheduled to report a strong fourth quarter performance.

Hot off the heels of festive trading Next is scheduled to report a strong fourth quarter performance.

The UK's second-biggest clothing retailer will Thursday unveil its sales results for the Christmas period.

The full year profit before tax estimate was put at £598m by Nomura Equity Research.

The broker predicted the company would deliver full year brand sales of up to 4%, based on data which showed clothing sales were up 6% in November.

Next's trading update follows reports of average trading across the wider retail sector in the run up to Christmas.

Results were boosted by Boxing Day sales as an estimated 10m UK consumers scrambled get their hands on good deals. Next stores opened doors as early as 06:00 on December 26th to deal with demand.

Online sales also soared to unprecedented levels this year with shoppers searching for bargains on retail websites.

"The Next 'formula' is likely to continue - modest space growth, supplemented by good online sales, margin management and share buy-backs imply double-digit total shareholder returns, in our opinion," Nomura said.

FINALS

Sinclair (William) Holdings

TRADING ANNOUNCEMENTS

Next

INTERIM DIVIDEND PAYMENT DATE

Hogg Robinson Group, Homeserve, Sepura, VP

QUARTERLY PAYMENT DATE

GlaxoSmithKline

UK ECONOMIC ANNOUNCEMENTS

Consumer Credit (09:30)

M4 Money Supply (09:30)

M4 Sterling Lending (09:30)

Mortgage Approvals (09:30)

PMI Construction (09:30)

INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC ANNOUNCEMENTS

Unemployment Rate (GER) (08:55)

M3 Money Supply (EU) (09:00)

MBA Mortgage Applications (US) (12:00)

Continuing Claims (US) (13:30)

Initial Jobless Claims (US) (13:30)

Auto Sales (US) (15:00)

FOMC Interest Rate Minutes (US) (19:00)

RD

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