Maitland/AMO Morning Monitor – Wednesday 15 January 2020

15th January 2020

In the news

  • The US and China are to sign a phase one trade deal in a ceremony at the white house today
  • The UK, France and Germany have triggered a dispute mechanism in the 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran
  • Airline Flybe has been saved from collapse after UK government reach an agreement on a rescue deal

Politics today

  • Boris Johnson is due to face Prime Minister's Questions in the Commons, followed by further debate on the Queen's Speech
  • Labour leadership candidate Lisa Nandy is to deliver a speech on the UK's international role post-Brexit at an event in London

Stock market moves

Corporate announcements

* Maitland Client

Persimmon PLC Trading Update
  • Total Group revenues for the year of £3.65bn (2018: £3.74bn).
  • New housing revenues reduced by 3.5% to £3.42bn (2018: £3.55bn).
  • New home legal completion volumes were 15,855 (2018: 16,449).
  • Average selling price of c. £215,700 was in line with last year (2018: £215,563).
  • Cash balances of c. £844m were held at 31 December 2019 (2018: £1,048m).
Vistry Group PLC Trading Update
  • Group expects to deliver another record year of profits, slightly ahead of market consensus.
  • Significant step up in average weekly sales rate to 0.58 for 2019.
  • Controlled period end with total completions up 3% to 3,867.
  • Good progress to date for Vistry Group following transformational acquisition of Linden Homes and Partnerships & Regeneration businesses completed on 3 January 2020.
  • Greg Fitzgerald, CEO, said: “The Group has made further operational progress over the past 12 months and for 2019 expects to deliver another year of record profit.  Building high quality new homes for our customers has been, and remains our priority, and I am confident we will finish the year as an HBF 5-star housebuilder. We completed the transformational acquisition of the Linden Homes and the renamed Vistry Partnerships at the start of this year; integration is well under way and we are fully focused on delivering the clear and significant benefits from this exciting combination as quickly as possible.”
Tullow Oil PLC Trading Statement & Operational Update
  • Group working interest oil production averaged 86,700 bopd in 2019 in line with expectations.
  • 2019 full year total revenue is expected to be c.$1.7bn; gross profit is expected to be c.$0.7bn.
  • Capital expenditure in 2019 was c.$490m.  
  • Free cash flow for the full year 2019 is expected to be c.$350m, with net debt reduced to c.$2.8bn.
  • Tullow expects to report pre-tax impairments and exploration write-offs of c.$1.5bn (c.$1.3bn post tax).
Ashmore Group PLC Trading Statement
  • Assets under management increased by US$6.5bn over the quarter, reflecting net inflows of US$3.3bn and investment performance of US$3.2bn.
  • External debt rose 0.5% to $19.7bn, corporate debt fell 0.2% to $14.2bn and blended debt rose 8.3% to $26.7bn.
  • The Group’s net inflows were broad-based by client type and geography and there continued to be a bias towards additional allocations to existing institutional mandates.
  • Mark Coombs, CEO, said: “Emerging Markets delivered strong returns in calendar 2019 with the main benchmark indices delivering double-digit returns and largely outperforming developed world markets. Ashmore’s value-driven investment processes took advantage of lower asset prices in the second half of the year and added risk, inevitably resulting in some weakness in short-term fixed income performance but also underpinning future outperformance.”
Provident Financial PLC Trading Update
  • The group has delivered results in line with internal plans during the fourth quarter of the year.
  • Vanquis Bank has delivered results modestly above expectations due to favourable delinquency and tight cost control.
  • Moneybarn has continued to deliver attractive receivables growth although performed modestly below internal plan as a result of higher impairment.
  • Malcolm Le May, CEO, said: “I am very pleased that the group has continued to perform well in the final quarter and we expect to report full-year results in line with market expectations. I am also delighted to announce that we have now agreed a bilateral securitisation facility to fund Moneybarn’s business flows, further diversifying our funding sources, reducing the group’s funding costs and supporting the group’s medium-term growth ambitions. We are well placed entering 2020 to continue to meet our customers’ needs and deliver against the targets set out at our Capital Markets Day in November.”
Diploma PLC Trading Statement
  • Reported Group revenues in the first quarter ended 31 December 2019 increased by 9%.
  • At constant exchange rates, Group revenues increased by 11%.
  • Acquisitions completed last year contributing 9% to revenue and underlying growth of 2%.
  • Life Sciences Sector revenues on a reported and underlying basis were up 2% and 3% respectively.
  • The Group invested a further ca. £14m in acquiring two businesses since the previous year.
  • Expectations for the full year remain positive and unchanged.