Market Prognosis

A concise summary of the major macro events of the past 24 hours, and selected UK company-specific news.

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March 24, 2023

Spoons on the turn?

Macro & Overnight

Equity markets were mixed in the US and weaker in Asia. Banking worries continue to dominate.

The US$ has weakened, and bond yields have eased further.


UK Company News

Wetherspoon FY revenue +3% (5% l4l), EPS -97%, dividend -100% and FCF per share +91%. Over the last seven weeks, trading was 9.1% above FY19 and 14.9% above last year. Supply issues have mainly disappeared. Inflationary pressures in the pub industry have been ferocious. It is cautiously optimistic about further progress.

These results demonstrate how the best-managed and lowest-cost provider in a challenged industry reaches a turning point. Disregarding the Chairman’s usual rants (often passionate critiques of government policy), Tim Martin’s actions are worth following, having recently significantly increased his holding in the company he has managed for several decades. Wetherspoon is an example of what investor Andrew Hollingsworth describes as scale economies shared.   

Embedded computer supplier Concurrent Technologies announced the launch of a new product that delivers leading-edge products to market at an increasingly swift pace. Hermes is coordinated with the release of Intel’s launch cycle and provides an exciting foundation for future system-level solutions. It is a plug-in card for system integrators. Typical applications include situational awareness, command and control, mission computing and rugged storage.

James Fisher, the marine services provider, updated that there will be a delay to FY results. It is for several reasons, including the negotiation of its debt refinancing. Trading in the first two months of 2023 was in line with the Group’s expectations and ahead of the same period in the prior year. 

Gamesworkshop, the fantasy game IP company, declared a dividend delivering a total dividend of £4.15 per share (2021/22: £2.35 per share, as of March 2022), representing more than a 4% yield. 

Tribal, the software supplier to higher education, had FY results. The impact of the contract loss with Nanyang Technological University dominates the results. The company has reviewed its investment strategy and will reduce its capitalised product development in 2023.



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