City File: Seeking solace

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The Independent Online
THE market will need a powerfully reassuring message from Cyril Stein, chairman of Ladbroke Group, when he announces interim results next Thursday, to avoid a further sell-off in the shares. Already the highest-yielding stock in the FT-SE 100 index at nearly 7 per cent, the shares were last week rated a sell by Nomura, which said only large disposals of property, hotels and/or the Texas Homecare chain could justify a prospective earnings multiple of 20 for 1994.

Though interim pre-tax profits are likely to be nearer pounds 65m than the pounds 62m predicted by Nomura, and the interim dividend is virtually certain to be held, there are persistent worries about the level of cash outflow from the group.