Money Minute Thursday 16 January: a batch of company results

Today's Money Minute looks ahead to results from a host of UK companies, plus the latest unemployment figures from the US.

In the UK today, there’s not much by way of economic data, but several companies are due to report. Low-cost clothing group Primark is the latest retailer to give us an update on Christmas trading. The fashion chain, which is owned by international ingredients group Associated British Foods (yes we know – it’s an odd combination), has managed to continue growing its sales in the UK, but only through opening more branches. Other trading updates this morning come from leisure giant Whitbread and oil services group John Wood. 

This afternoon in the US, we get the latest weekly jobless figures. This is the most timely labour market information available in the States. After last week’s disappointing nonfarm payrolls figures, investors will be watching anxiously for any signs that America's solid employment picture is starting to fray at the edges. We also get the latest retail sales figures for December. The consumer is by far the most important economic force in the US economy. So, again, these figures will be watched closely for signs of weakness. 

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