The Week Ahead: Dairy Crest's cheesy ads win City friends

Today

What do cheese and pop stars have in common? Dairy Crest has had a habit of using singers to promote its brands. First there was Johnny Rotten's Country Life ads, now there is "up and coming" singer Ed Prosek singing Paul Simon's "Homeward Bound" in its Cathedral City telly ads.

The commercials are going down well, we are told. And so is the company's strategy. Now the group has flogged its French spreads brand St Hubert, analysts think it is in good shape. Its food business is doing rather well, in contrast to milk, which has been at the centre of the milk pricing scandal.

The Jefferies scribe Alex Howson rates the cheese to butter business a buy, ahead of its trading update today, and gives its shares a price target of 400p, up from 370p. He thinks its key food brands have maintained encouraging growth, but the milk business remains challenged. But he argues that there is "scope for management to restore Dairies profitability mid-term" and Mr Howson remains "positive" on the company. He expects profit before tax for the full year to come in at £49.1m.

Results/Updates: AG Barr, China Food Company, DDD Group, EKF Diagnostics, Lighthouse Group, Manganese Bronze, Michelmersh Brick Holdings, Personal Group, RGI International, VPhase, Finsbury Food, Petra Diamonds, Aberdeen Asset Management, QinetiQ.

Tomorrow

There is no indication how much money Daily Mail owner Daily Mail & General Trust makes from the most-visited newspaper website in the world: Mail Online. But despite this still unknown fact, scribes at Investec rate DMGT a buy, ahead of its pre-close trading update tomorrow. It has sold the US-based Evanta conference business for £58m, and earlier this year sold its Australian radio joint venture. Investec analysts think both the sales produced a good lot of cash to be re-invested. Investec's analyst Steve Liechti said: "Management continues to refocus the portfolio to concentrate on core growth and drive a higher ultimate rating" and he reiterated his share price target of 578p.

Results/Updates: Albemarle & Bond, Augean, Bond International Software, InternetQ, Judges Scientific, KBC Advanced Technologies, PhotonStar LED Group, Close Brothers, CVS, Hargreaves Services, Netcall, Regenersis.

Wednesday

Last month house repair and insurance group Homeserve got traders spooked that the Financial Services Authority was set to release the results of its investigation into the group. But the rumours were wide of the mark and there are still no signs of the FSA report ahead of Homeserve's trading update on Wednesday. Analysts at Liberum Capital think the update will be "unexciting" and "unlikely – although not impossible – that there will be any clarification from the FSA." But the bid speculation that emerged earlier this year could resurface. Liberum did not "rule out an eventual bid from private equity" but said that any potential bidder would need greater clarification on Homeserve's business going forward after the FSA report into mis-selling.

Results/Updates: ACTA, Dillistone, Domino's Pizza, IQE, HMV, Icap, London Stock Exchange, S&U, Scisys.

Thursday

Feeding canteen food to overseas miners, schoolchildren and the Army is still a pretty good business. Simon French at the broker Panmure Gordon said Compass Group offers "attractive investment qualities given its defensive, predominantly non-UK earnings". Panmure, which rates the stock a buy, raised its share price target for the company from 785p to 820p ahead of its trading update on Thursday. The pre-tax profit consensus for the group is £1.089bn.

Results/Updates: Fairpoint, Inditherm, Nationwide Accident Repair Services, SimiGon, Straight, WANdisco, Hansard Global, Indigovision, Pan African Resources, Euromoney Institutional Investor, Tate & Lyle, TUI Travel, Trinity Biotech.

Friday

Investors will be hoping there aren't any more own goals for five-a-side football operator Goals Soccer Centres on Friday. Shareholders did not approve the planned takeover by one of Canada's biggest pension funds, Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan, last month. Goals accepted a £73.1m bid, but then surprised the market by announcing that not enough independent shareholders passed the motion.

Goals, which operates 43 outdoor centres in the UK and one in the US, will update the market on its half-year results on Friday. It is also set for a windfall after winning an appeal against a tax ruling by HMRC earlier this month.

Results/Updates: Harvey Nash, Orchid Developments, Helphire, Electrocomponents, Hyder Consulting, Thomas Cook.

Economics Diary

Today German retail sales, import prices and business climate update.

Tomorrow BBA house purchase loans.

Wednesday CBI reported sales.

Thursday GDP (Q2 final revision); Current account (Q2); total business investment.

Friday GfK consumer confidence (September); Index of services.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooks
ebooksA celebration of British elections
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey/ South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey / South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Recruitment Genius: Claims Administrator

£16000 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an excellent opportunit...

Recruitment Genius: Senior SEO Executive

£24000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Senior SEO Executive is requi...

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before