Tim Martin, the chairman of Wetherspoonis there again. In the pub group’s preliminary annual results this morning, he railed about the government’s response to the coronavirus.
“The current environment of lockdowns, curfews and ever-changing regulations and announcements threatens not just pub businesses, but the entire economy,” says Martin.
He contrasts the “unpredictable” approach of Boris Johnson’s government with the “comparatively successful” policy of the Swedes.
“The unpredictable British government is jumping from pillar to pillar and tightening and tinkering with the regulations,” he says.
His most caustic remarks are against the government’s 10pm curfew, which he believes has few supporters other than “the narrow cloisters of Downing Street and SAGE meetings.”
The background to this attack on government policy is the annual results, which show the group fell to a pre-tax loss of £ 34.1 million for the year ended July 26th after a profit of £ 102.5 million. GBP in 2019. On a like-for-like basis over the same period, it fell almost 30 percent to 1.26 billion GBP. Free cash flow per share was down nearly 160 percent and there will be no dividend this fiscal year.
Eye catcherThe dealership group released a third quarter trading update this morning. Trading in the three months to September 30 was better than expected, which was helped by the release of pent-up demand during the lockdown. Robust trading in the third quarter should offset the losses in the first half. New car sales rose by 27 percent and used car sales by 6 percent compared to the same period last year.
Facebook IrelandThe company that operates Instagram in the UK announced this morning that it is making a number of changes to combat hidden advertising on the photo and video sharing platform following an investigation by the competition and market authority. The CMA was concerned that too many social media influencers were posting content about companies without making it clear where they were paid or motivated to do it, and that the platform was not doing enough to address the problem.
SercoThe outsourcing firm also released a trading update today that saw strong sales growth in the third quarter. The unexpectedly strong growth prompted the group to improve its sales forecast. Total annual sales are now expected to be around £ 3.9 billion and underlying profit of £ 160 million to £ 165 million, growth of 15% and 30% respectively.
Miner’s third quarter results are also known today Rio Tinto, a trading update from Hedge Fund Man Group and a commercial declaration from Jupiter Asset Management.
Job is moving
Super dry, the fashion chain, announced the exit of Nick Gresham, Finance Director, this morning with immediate effect. No replacement has been announced.
Beyond the Square Mile
Four years ago, Eric Ben-Artzi was awarded $ 8.25 million by the Securities and Exchange Commission for detecting incorrect accounting records Deutsche Bank. However, the 48-year-old former risk manager, a nephew of the wife of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, refused to take the money and wrote in the Financial Times that it was taken from “the shareholders of the Germans instead of the responsible managers.” Well, Mr. Ben-Artzi goes broke.
The US Department of Justice has brought charges Robert Brockman, the Houston software billionaire, with tax evasion for allegedly hiding $ 2 billion from the government in what prosecutors called the greatest case ever against an American citizen. The Justice Department also confirmed Thursday that Robert Smith, founder of Vista Equity Partners, would pay $ 140 million to conceal income offshore over a 15-year period under a non-law enforcement agreement. The head of the tax department of the Internal Revenue Service described the alleged behavior of the two men as “brazen”, “deliberate” and underlined by “greed”.
Of France LVMH returned his biggest business double-digit sales growth in the third quarter, when strong demand for Louis Vuitton and Dior helped offset sharp declines elsewhere caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Sales in the fashion and leather goods sector rose by 12 percent to 5.9 billion euros, well above the 1 percent decline expected by analysts.
However, on a comparable basis, the weak sales in duty-free retail stores, cosmetics as well as watches and jewelery meant that the group’s total sales fell by 7 percent to EUR 11.96 billion in the third quarter.
Important comment before you go
Ownership – or pension? It’s a savings dilemma that divides the younger generation. Politicians want the answer to be “both” but allow first-time buyers raiding their retirement pots won’t solve the affordability problem for long.
The high price that Rolls-Royce is now paying to income-hungry investors To get its bonds off the ground, it may be worth paying a price to underpin future cash flows.
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