Pubs and brewing group Marston's could almost more accurately be referred to as a restaurant chain these days, such is its pell-mell pursuit of the dining pound.
It issues a trading update for a 23 week period, covering the bulk of the first half of its financial year, on Wednesday.
It is not expected to keep up the 5.0% growth in like-for-like sales it reported for the 16 week period to January 21st. Peel Hunt suggests that for the 23 week period, the growth rate will ease back to around 3%, which would merely indicate that the early Spring period has been flat for sales.
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"The same effect should leave tenanted and franchised pubs around 2% ahead, back to the levels they were at for the first eight weeks to November," Peel Hunt predicts.
"These undramatic but solid results should show Marston's still focusing hard on the value market with an increasing emphasis on service," the broker added.
Building products distributor SIG recently indicated that its full year pre-tax profits should be a little above expectations. At the time of the announcement, the upper end of the range of analyst forecasts was £80.4m. The median figure in the range is now £80.5m so investment analysts have obviously reacted to the guidance and nudged up their estimates.
Earnings per share are seen rising to 9.47p and the return to dividend payments should be sealed with a 2.29p full year payment.
"Following recent disposals the group now has three core markets of insulation & energy management, interior fit out and roofing. We would expect further market share gains to be achieved. The current year outlook remains tough with volumes under pressure from a weakening macro backdrop and softening €," notes Panmure Gordon.
CVS Group, EpiStem Holdings, IndigoVision Group, Smiths Group
INTERIM EX-DIVIDEND DATE
Cash Converters International Ltd, Downing Absolute Income VCT 1, Genus, Hargreaves Lansdown, Interior Services Group, Tracsis, Wilmington Group
QUARTERLY EX-DIVIDEND DATE
Land Securities Group, XP Power Ltd. (DI)
INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC ANNOUNCEMENTS
Balance of Payments (US) (13:30)
Consumer Price Index (EU) (10:00)
Crude Oil Inventories (US) (15:30)
Current Account (US) (13:30)
Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices (EU) (10:00)
Import and Export Price Indexes (US) (13:30)
Industrial Production (EU) (10:00)
MBA Mortgage Applications (US) (12:00)
Ferrexpo, French Connection Group, Greggs, Hellenic Carriers Ltd., Hikma Pharmaceuticals, Mecom Group, MirLand Development Corp., Modern Water, OJSC Cherkizovo Group GDR (Reg S), SIG, SocialGO, StatPro Group, Tullow Oil, Yule Catto & Co
Amec, New World Resources A Shares
Invista Foundation Property Trust Ltd.
UK ECONOMIC ANNOUNCEMENTS
Claimant Count Rate (09:30)
Unemployment Rate (09:30)
FINAL EX-DIVIDEND DATE
Access Intelligence, Brewin Dolphin Holdings, British Polythene Industries, CQS Rig Finance Fund Ltd., Dairy Farm International Holdings Ltd. (Singapore), FBD Holdings, Fidelity European Values, Goldenport Holdings Inc., Hammerson, Hongkong Land Holding Ltd. (Bermuda), Hongkong Land Holding Ltd. (Jersey), Hongkong Land Holding Ltd. (Singapore), Jardine Matheson Holdingd Ltd. (Bermuda), Jardine Matheson Holdingd Ltd. (Jersey), Jardine Matheson Holdings Ltd (Singapore), Jardine Strategic Holdingd Ltd. (Bermuda), Jardine Strategic Holdingd Ltd. (Singapore), Ladbrokes, Lancashire Holdings, Mandarin Oriental International (Singapore), Meggitt, Paddy Power, Quadnetics Group, RM, Safestore Holdings, Temple Bar Inv Trust
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