Supermarkets and the first of the week’s bookies and housebuilders in focus on Tuesday


Tuesday will see the monthly Kantar sales data on the supermarket sector and the first of the week’s flurry of results from the gambling and housebuilding sectors.

Paddy Power and Betfair owner Flutter Entertainment PLC (LON:FLTR) is scheduled to report final numbers for the past year.

With online betting having boomed during the pandemic, Flutter has upped its profit forecasts for the full year as the resumption of sport and the reopening of betting shops (at least temporarily) boosted its business.

The bookmaker estimated that it managed to draw in around half of the bets made on football league matches, so investors will likely be hoping the online segment and this boom has managed to offset the effects of lockdown measures on the retail estate.

There will also be a focus on margins to see if promotional offers have eaten into profits, as well as any updates on the looming spectre of stricter regulation in the UK.

Meanwhile, there will also be keen interest in the growing US market, where more states are expected to legalise sports betting, opening up lucrative markets for the sector.

The week’s first housebuilder to report is Taylor Wimpey PLC (LON:TW.), ahead of Persimmon PLC (LON:PSN) and Vistry Group PLC (LON:VTY) the following days.

The sector is facing challenges related to the revamped Help to Buy scheme and the end of the Stamp Duty Holiday, which buoyed purchases during the pandemic.

Sales rate may also be normalising by now after the second half of the year benefited from pent-up demand.

Analysts at UBS expect Taylor Wimpey to post revenues of GBP2.8bn and a 3.8p final dividend, after guiding for GBP293mln of underlying earnings (EBIT).

As for the supermarkets, the Kantar update at the start of last month revealed take-home grocery sales rose 12.2% to GBP29.25bn during the 12 weeks to January 24, which was an acceleration on the growth seen in the Christmas period.

Ocado Group PLC‘s (LON:OCDO) joint venture with Marks and Spencer Group PLC (LON:MKS) was again the best performing of the listed grocery businesses, with 12-week sales up 36.6% to GBP397mln.

Wm Morrisons Supermarkets PLC (LON:MRW) did best of the Big Four grocers, with sales jumping 14.3% to almost GBP3bn; followed by Tesco PLC (LON:TSCO), up 12.2% to just under GBP8bn; and J Sainsbury PLC (LON:SBRY) rising 12% to GBP4.6bn for the three-month period, all faster than the growth reported a month ago.

With many families home-schooling during the current lockdown, Kantar said the average family spent GBP50 more on groceries in the month of January than they did last year, a trend that is likely to have continued in the past four weeks.

Significant announcements expected on Tuesday March 2:

Trading announcements: Ashtead Group PLC (LON:AHT)

Finals: Flutter Entertainment PLC (LON:FLTR), Taylor Wimpey PLC (LON:TW.), Travis Perkins PLC (LON:TPK), Fresnillo PLC (LON:FRES), Croda International PLC (LON:CRDA), Apax Global Alpha Limited (LON:APAX), Dalata Hotel Group Plc (LON:DAL), Devro PLC (LON:DVO), James Fisher & Sons PLC (LON:FSJ), Intertek Group PLC (LON:ITRK), IWG PLC (LON:IWG), PPHE Hotel Group Ltd (LON:PPH), Robert Walters PLC (LON:RWA), Rotork PLC (LON:ROR), Signature Aviation PLC (LON:SIG), Synectics PLC (LON:SNX), Uniphar PLC (LON:UPR), XP Power Ltd (LON:XPP), Man Group PLC (LON:EMG), Weir Group PLC (LON:WEIR)

Interims: Hotel Chocolat Group PLC (LON:HOTC), Bluefield Solar Income Fund Limited (LON:BSIF), Supermarket Income REIT PLC (LON:SUPR)


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