Business Information Service: This Week

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The Independent Online
MONDAY: Final figures from Aerospace Engineering, and interims from Holmes Protection and Guinness Peat Group.

TUESDAY: The first quarter was tough for Graseby's three core operations - medical, environment and product monitoring - but a pick-up in the past three months should push interims to pounds 4.7m, up 3 per cent. Analysts expect gearing to be high, due to the dividend payment in June, but cash flow is in line with forecasts and at the year end should be lower than last year at pounds 21m.

Other interims from Invesco, Medeva and Wace Group.

WEDNESDAY: Good figures from WH Smith's distribution arm will not compensate for a flat retail performance and almost doubled losses at Do It All. Final group profits are expected to fall about 6 per cent to pounds 106m, with the net dividend held at 13.4p. Distribution profits should hit pounds 32.5m, with retail at pounds 90m. Expect about a pounds 12m loss at Do It All. With the Budget and MMC referrals to contend with, the recent upward trend in WH Smith's share price is likely to be short lived.

Other interims from The Telegraph, Hickson International and James Wilkes.

THURSDAY: Interim results from GRE should confirm that the solid improvements in the second half of 1992 were no fluke. For the first time, GRE will quote a headline pre-tax profit that includes investment gains. Profits of pounds 140m include investment gains of pounds 90m. Based on the old formula, profits will be about pounds 50m, against a first-half loss of pounds 39m last time. The dividend should rise to about 2.65p, up 6 per cent. GRE's German subsidiary will incur continuing heavy losses, but remaining overseas businesses should remain in profit. UK results will improve. Analysts say GRE is the cheapest composite insurer.

Weir Group has said its 1993 results will be weighted towards the second half, so expect only a modest rise at the interim stage to about pounds 20m. Order intake is picking up, though demand in the engineering services division and for spares remains below normal. Earnings should rise to 8.8p (8.2p), with the dividend raised about 14 per cent to 2p.

Finals from Scottish & Newcastle and Oceonics Group. Interims from Rentokil, Hambro Countrywide, Alfred McAlpine, and Pentland.

FRIDAY: The CBI monthly industrial trends survey is expected to confirm doubts about economic recovery.

Interims from British Assets Trust (Q3), Coutts Consulting and Scottish Investment Trust (Q3).

Results: NatWest Securities. Median economic forecasts: MMS International.

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