The Week Ahead: Sainsbury’s shows signs of a more progressive strategy to maintain sales growth


Laura Chesters
Monday 11 November 2013 01:37

We have heard quite a bit from the housebuilders recently, but this week it is the big property groups’ turn – the developers of great chunks of offices and shopping centres across the land.

First up is Hammerson, with a third-quarter trading update today. Now the group is solely focused on retail, investors will be keen to hear about updates on its joint venture developments in Croydon with Westfield and with Standard Life at Brent Cross.

Analysts at Numis think the Bullring shopping centre owner has performed strongly over the past year compared with some peers. Numis expects the strong income flow to have continued and there should be further letting progress for the quarter.

Land Securities and British Land come tomorrow and Wednesday, while Covent Garden owner Capital Counties is saved until Friday, but the week isn’t all about bricks and mortar.

Vodafone’s half-year results come in tomorrow. Investors will have been rather pleased with the recent share price rise following news of the Verizon US joint-venture deal while recent speculation that US giant AT&T is eyeing the group pushed its share price even higher. But tomorrow the City expects not everything to be so rosy. Oriel Securities questions whether its £6bn investment is enough to “compete successfully in 4G”.

On Wednesday, supermarket Sainsbury’s follows rivals who updated last week. Its first half is expected to have outperformed the wider market. Analysts at Cantor Fitzgerald said it shows “signs of a more progressive strategy to maintain sales and profits growth” and they predict pre-tax profit at £400m, ahead of consensus at £392m.

Thursday is the turn of luxury goods group Burberry to strut its interim figures. After the news that chief executive Angela Ahrendts will leave for Apple next year, these half-year results will need to show she is leaving it in good shape. It has already announced sales for the six months at £1.031bn and analysts at Berenberg predict retail/wholesale earnings of £146.4m with a margin of 14.8 per cent.

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