Week Ahead: Aggreko's issues are related to the cyclical nature of the market and not its problems

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The Independent Online

Temporary energy supplier Aggreko will be hoping it can power up its share price despite concerns about its fleet of machines and some signs of waning demand from customers.

It is due to release a trading update today and analysts at HSBC think concerns in the market have been overstated. HSBC argues Aggreko's issues are more related to the cyclical nature of the market than its problems and they advise investors to "await clearer signs of cyclical strength in its end-markets". They rate it neutral ahead of the trading statement.

In a largely quiet week in the run-up to Christmas, retailer Dixons and transport group National Express release figures tomorrow. Liberum Capital's experts are concerned that the coach operator faces "higher contract churn and lower margins" in certain overseas markets. It follows rivals Go-Ahead and FirstGroup, which updated last week. The transport sector faces risks from contract renewals and regulation which will weigh on National Express despite its steady US bus business.

On Wednesday the former owner of Comet, French electrical retailer Darty, will release its interim results. It has been having a tougher time of it as the consumer outlook in France remains difficult. But rival Dixons is likely to impress on Thursday. Investec's retail expert is keen on Dixons and expects its first-half results to be strong to reflect the "market consolidation" following the demise of rivals such as Best Buy and Comet. Investec's Kate Calvert said Dixons is "capable of delivering double-digit growth by reinforcing its leadership positions further". She forecasts pre-tax profit of £23.4m.

Things haven't been great for public-sector outsourcers amid a series of scandals and Serco has embarked on a reorganisation to try to start afresh.

Its chief executive Chris Hyman has left and on Thursday the government outsourcer will issue its trading statement. It is dealing with contract losses and the negative publicity relating to the fraud investigation into its electronic monitoring contracts. Numis' Mike Murphy said: "We continue to see weakness in the short term."