Shares in British Airways owner IAG fell as investors appeared disappointed by its latest forecasts.
As part of its capital markets day, the FTSE 100 firm reiterated its outlook for this year but said it would not comment on ‘current and future trading’.
IAG instead chose to focus its attention over the medium-term, which included a promise to reinstate its dividend for the first time since the pandemic.
It vowed to do so once its ‘balance sheet and investment plans are secure’ though it offered no date as to when this will happen.
IAG also set a target for an operating margin of 12 per cent to 15 per cent.
Heavy turbulence: As part of its capital markets day, British Airways owner IAG reiterated its outlook for this year but said it would not comment on ‘current and future trading’
Stephen Furlong, an analyst at asset manager Davy, told Bloomberg: ‘Perhaps the market could have been expecting more near-term commentary rather than medium term.’
IAG’s shares slid 5 per cent, or 8.15p, to 155.45p.
The FTSE 100 fell 0.19 per cent, or 14.37 points, to 7481.99 and the FTSE 250 dropped 1.35 per cent, or 251.42 points, to 18,347.63.
Retailers are likely to enjoy a strong Christmas but the festive season could represent the ‘last hurrah of post-pandemic spending recovery’, according to Deutsche Bank Research. It said the industry is ‘generally in good shape’ with further recovery expected next year.
However, the broker warned that growth is likely to be ‘anaemic’.
Deutsche Bank Research urged clients to buy shares in three retailers that have undergone a drastic change in operations or are in the process of transforming their business.
Stock Watch – Intercede
Cybersecurity software company Intercede is cashing in on soaring demand from clients taking extra steps to protect themselves against data breaches.
The group’s MyID platform aims to reduce the likelihood of passwords being stolen by replacing them with a second layer of authentication.
Intercede expects its annual results for the year to the end of March to be ahead of market forecasts after record first-half revenues of £7million.
Shares surged 21.2 per cent, or 12.5p, to 71.5p.
This included Marks & Spencer, which is reaping the rewards of five years of changes, while B&M has set its sights on ‘ambitious’ store opening targets and fashion firm Asos is a ‘work in progress’ whose online sales should recover lost ground.
But the investment bank issued a ‘hold’ rating on Next, Kingfisher and Dunelm amid concerns over how their businesses and customers would fare if the economy came under further pressure.
Shares in M&S slid 0.1 per cent, or 0.2p, to 252.3p, B&M lost 0.4 per cent, or 2p, to 532.6p, Asos remained unchanged at 387.6p, Next fell 0.05 per cent, or 4p, to 7712p, Dunelm sank 3.5 per cent, or 38p, to 1048p and Kingfisher dropped 0.7 per cent, or 1.5p, to 230.6p.
Workspace endured a tough session after its property valuation slid 6.6 per cent to £2.5billion between the end of March and September.
As a result, the office space provider swung to a loss of £147.9million in the six months to the end of September, having made a £35.8million profit during the same period last year. Shares slumped 7.2 per cent, or 42.5p, to 547.5p.
Cranswick is gearing up to a busy Christmas as it cashed in on rising demand within its UK food business and further exposure to the pig farming sector.
The meat producer’s first-half revenues rose 12.3 per cent to £1.25billion while profit increased 23.6 per cent to £81.6million.
As a result, Cranswick expects its profit for the year to the end of March to be at the top end of the £153.2million and £160.8million range set by analysts. Shares jumped 1.9 per cent, or 68p, to 3712p.
Severfield, the structural steel group which is helping to build Everton football club’s new stadium, warned that business remained challenging in the UK and Europe as clients delay spending on projects. Shares were flat at 65p.
The joint chief executive of utility provider Telecom Plus is preparing to step down. Andrew Lindsay has been boss since 2010 and shared the role for the past two years with Stuart Burnett, who will become the sole chief executive next summer.
The update came as the group posted solid first-half results. Shares fell 7.1 per cent, or 120p, to 1582p.