Friday preview: Hikma has chance to 'refocus'
(ShareCast News) - Outside of Iran, where citizens head to the polls to pick the next president, Friday should be very quiet on the macroeconomic front and fairly relaxed on the company news calendar, though Hikma Pharmaceuticals has a chance to reassure investors after its recent US regulatory disappointment.
For the UK the only data point will be the CBI industrial trends survey, due at 11:00 BST.
The consent forecast is for relatively decent manufacturing activity in May, with a total order balance rising to +5 from +4 in April after the two-year high of +8 in both March and February.
Pantheon Macroeconomics predicted demand for consumer goods will have weakened in response to rising prices, so thinks the balance will be as low as +2.
Howard Archer at IHS Markit noted that survey evidence for the manufacturing sector has tended to be markedly more upbeat than the hard data from the Office for National Statistics, and he predicted a balance of +4.
"It is clear that the manufacturing sector does face significant challenges, that may well intensify over the coming months," he said.
"Increased prices for capital goods and big-ticket consumer durable goods, diminishing consumer purchasing power and likely increasing business concerns and uncertainties over the economy look likely to increasingly hamper manufacturers."
No major macro data readings are scheduled, with German producer prices preceding a sedate afternoon lineup including European consumer confidence, Federal Reserve speaker James Bullard, Canadian inflation data and retail sales, and the Baker Hughes oil rig count.
Corporate news also includes interim results from landlord Grainger and publishing and events group Future, and trading updates from Close Brothers, Intertek and Hikma.
Shares in Hikma have been knocked down but not out by the news last week that US regulatory approval of its generic version of GSK's Advair asthma drug was being delayed but not kyboshed. Big downgrades have followed from the likes of JP Morgan and Jefferies, however.
Broker Numis, advisor to the company, noted after the announcement that the FDA approval process will add a minimum 12-month delay.
Friday gives Hikma a chance to emphasise how well its core injectables, generics and branded divisions are all doing and, said Numis, "help refocus attention".
Grainger, which owns and manages a portfolio of UK and German residential property and looks to gain from the significant reversion between acquisition price and vacant possession valuation, is expected by Numis to give a robust update for the half-year.
"We expect a broadly stable sales performance against the strong comparative last year and forecast these to have been achieved ahead of September 2016 valuations," which were up 1.5% in January, while the rental portfolio is expected to have maintained its steady progress from the 3.4% in like-for-like rents in January.
Close Brothers will report a trading update for the third quarter of its financial year to July.
The statement is typically short and contains an update on loan book growth for the period, which Barclays forecast at 1.5% to £6.7bn. "We expect Winterfloods performance to be good in the quarter with higher trading activity. Within the Asset Management division we expect AUM to increase 1% in the quarter to £10.3bn," analysts wrote.
Share Centre on
Intertek provided an update as its shares hit an all-tie high on Wednesday, following the strong sales and earnings growth both organically and through acquisitions reported in March's annual result.
The global quality assurance market continues to grow as a result of increasing regulatory, quality and safety standards in both developed and developing markets.
"Consensus expectations are that last year's momentum has followed through in the first quarter and we will continue to the see the benefits of sterling's weakness," said analysts at the Share Centre.
"The Resource division however faced a tough year so it will be interesting to see if there has been any improvement in infrastructure investments in the commodity sector."
Friday 19 May
INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC ANNOUNCEMENTS
Current Account (EU) (09:00)
Producer Price Index (GER) (07:00)
UK ECONOMIC ANNOUNCEMENTS
CBI Industrial Trends Surveys (11:00)
Future, Grainger, LightwaveRF
Close Brothers Group
INTERIM DIVIDEND PAYMENT DATE
AB Dynamics, Barratt Developments, Kier Group
SPECIAL DIVIDEND PAYMENT DATE
Henderson Group, Sherborne Investors (Guernsey) 'B' Limited
Acencia Debt Strategies Ltd., Aminex, Asian Growth Properties Ltd Com Shs (DI), Cairn Energy, CPP Group, Cronin Group , Derwent London, Eurocell , Greggs, Hikma Pharmaceuticals, Hunters Property , Hygea VCT, John Laing Infrastructure Fund Ltd, Moss Bros Group, SafeCharge International Group Limited (DI), Volga Gas
FINAL DIVIDEND PAYMENT DATE
BBA Aviation, Bovis Homes Group, Capital Drilling Ltd. (DI), Costain Group, Fidelity European Values, Gulf Marine Services, Henderson Group, Highland Gold Mining Ltd., IMI, John Laing Group , Kerry Group 'A' Shares, National Express Group, Novae Group, Petrofac Ltd., Prudential, RPS Group, STV Group, Taylor Wimpey, Tyman, Unite Group, Vesuvius, Vitec Group.