The Week Ahead: Pig meat producer Cranswick can bring home the bacon


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The Independent Online

Investors will be hoping the pig meat producer Cranswick can bring home the bacon when it reveals first-half results.

Higher meat costs have been a concern despite strong sales growth. If Cranswick has been able to pass on raw costs to retailers, its results shouldn’t look too bad. Numis expects pre-tax profit of £22.2m.

The property company Quintain will also deliver a first-half update today. The Wembley specialist is expected to report a solid increase in property values. Barclays notes the stock trades at a 30 per cent discount to the bank’s “sum-of-the-parts price target”, and predicts: “London residential prices will continue to drive higher.” Peel Hunt thinks values will have risen but expects earnings to remain low given the high costs of running its development sites, which produce limited income for now.

Britvic unveils full-year results tomorrow. The maker of Robinsons, Fruit Shoot and J2O is expected to report an operating profit above its most recent guidance of around £131m. Panmure Gordon’s analysts expect a 19 per cent rise in operating profit growth to £134m, and they think Britvic will deliver “further strong earnings growth from a combination of good revenue momentum and cost savings”.

Most of the pub companies updated last week, but it is Punch Taverns’ turn on Wednesday. Panmure Gordon expects that first-quarter sales will be flat. The pubs group plans to start a capital restructuring but Panmure is concerned there is “too much risk to warrant owning the shares at the current price”. It rates the shares a sell with a 7p target price ahead of the update.

On Thursday, DIY retailer Kingfisher will report its trading update, and analysts at Jefferies expect its UK business to be holding up well while its French arm is struggling. Jefferies predicts the third quarter will show year-on-year trading profit growth of 6 per cent with a boost from a “stronger UK housing backdrop”. It also points out that “macroeconomically little has changed in France” so its trading is unlikely to have improved. But its Polish business should have made “decent progress”.