Next rallies and Interserve crashes as investors digest latest plc updates
StockMarketWire.com - Next's (NXT) first half sales and profits were in line with its cautious expectations after a difficult six months. Pre-tax profits fell by 9.5% to £309.4m and total sales were 2.2% down at £1,914.0m. 'While the external environment looks set to remain difficult, from where we stand today our prospects going forward appear somewhat less challenging than they did six months ago.' Its shares jumped 9.3% to £48.28.
Interserve (IRV) crashed 48.4% to 78.5p on a major profit warning caused by disappointing UK trading in July and August.
Allied Minds (ALM) rose 15.5% to 171.75p as subsidiary Federated Wireless raised $42m from new investors. Excitement surrounding Federated Wireless' launch of the wireless industry's first spectrum controller, enabling government and commercial users to securely share the same spectrum band without impacting quality of service, was also behind the share price rise.
Bradford-based grocer Morrisons (MRW) was marked down 2.6% to 238.7p as investors took profits following a good run for the shares. Half year results showed strong progress with CEO David Potts' turnaround. The supermarket's seventh consecutive quarter of positive like-for-like sales growth, up 2.6% before fuel and VAT, enabled Morrisons to report profit growth on growth for the first time in the turnaround.
GVC Holdings (GVC) advanced 5.1% to 840.5p after saying adjusted pre-tax profit rose by 99% to €101.9m in the six months to the end of June. Net gaming revenues of €486.2m were up 10% (+12% in constant currency) vs pro forma H1 2016 and clean EBITDA of €133.9m rose by 28% vs pro forma H1 2016 (€104.4m).
Spire Healthcare (SPI) slumped 12.5% to 271.3p after it revealed significantly lower than anticipated revenues in July and August and this trend in performance appeared to be continuing into early September.
Ricardo's (RCDO) underlying pre-tax profits rose by 2% to £38.3m in the year to the end of June. Revenues were up 6% at £352m and the group's order book increased by 7% to a record £248m. Its shares were flat at 754p.
Safestore (SAFE) saw continuing positive trading across the group in the third quarter with particularly strong momentum in its Paris business. Group revenues rose to £32.9m - up 12.5% at constant exchange rates - with like-for-like revenues up 3.2% at constant currencies. Its shares rose 1% to 412.9p.
(LON:ALM) Allied Minds PLC share price was +19.75p at 168.5p
(LON:GVC) GVC Holdings Plc share price was +31.25p at 830.75p
(LON:IRV) Interserve PLC share price was -67.25p at 85p
(LON:MRW) Morrison Wm Supermarkets PLC share price was -10.8p at 234.2p
(LON:NXT) Next PLC share price was +497p at 4914p
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