Coming soon: Did BSkyB beat its rivals?

BSkyB investors are anxious to hear what impact online rivals such as Netflix and LoveFilm are having on its pay-TV business – and how its own cut-price web service Now TV, launched last summer, is performing.

Jeremy Darroch, the chief executive, has not released any numbers so far, but he will be under pressure to say more at Thursday's half-year stage.

The broker Jefferies believes that YouView, the new internet-enabled set-top box from BT, TalkTalk and others, is a threat; but Numis Securities counters that Sky is "structurally robust".

Sky, whose shows include The Following, starring Kevin Bacon, will report a jump in revenue for the first full quarter since an annual price rise came into effect, following a freeze for customers in 2011.

Numis forecasts a 16 per cent rise in earnings, with half-year profit at £600m.

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