|Bid||2,182.00 x 0|
|Ask||2,184.00 x 0|
|Day's range||2,145.00 - 2,200.00|
|52-week range||2,011.00 - 2,659.00|
|Beta (3Y monthly)||1.17|
|PE ratio (TTM)||18.89|
|Earnings date||5 Nov 2019|
|Forward dividend & yield||0.45 (2.08%)|
|1y target est||2,786.87|
Confident it can crack the $300 billion U.S. clothing and shoes market where many other foreign retailers have failed, Britain's Primark is ready to raise its bet on the country by securing new sources of fast fashion in central America. Primark, whose trendy clothes at rock-bottom prices have taken UK shoppers by storm, opened in Boston in 2015 and now has nine stores in the northeast, all served by a warehouse in Pennsylvania that could still serve three times as many stores. It has invested 250 million pounds ($313 million) in the United States, achieved a critical mass of sales and has a four-year education under its belt on a crowded market that is battling to stay afloat in the face of rapid e-commerce growth.
Associated British Foods warned on Monday that profit margins at its Primark fashion business will fall in its new financial year as a weaker pound pushes up import costs. Shares in the group, which generates about half of its revenue and profit from Primark, were down 3.6% at 0836 GMT, paring gains for the year so far to 11%. AB Foods kept its overall group guidance for the year to Sept. 14 2019, with Primark's margins increasing.
Cold and rainy weather hit sales at Primark in May but the fashion retailer's profit margins are still growing, its parent Associated British Foods said on Thursday. The group, which also owns a major sugar business, food brands such as Ovaltine, Ryvita and Twinings, and agriculture and food ingredients businesses maintained its forecasts for its 2018-19 fiscal year. Shares in AB Foods, which is majority owned by the family of Chief Executive George Weston, rose as much as 1.4% after the news, extending their gains to 20% this year.
Britain's main equities index dropped on Wednesday as oil majors weakened amid signs that global markets remain adequately supplied, while telecom group KCOM sky-rocketed after agreeing to a takeover deal. The FTSE 100 index lost 0.7 percent on its worst day in a month, but the midcaps gained 0.4 percent with gold miner Centamin leading gains after a strong quarterly update. Shell, the most valued FTSE 100 component in terms of market cap, recorded its worst day in over a month, while BP suffered its biggest one-day drop since late January.
Britain's main equities index moved away from a near seven-month high as oil majors weakened amid signs that global markets remain adequately supplied, while miners were hit by concerns China will reduce its economic stimulus. The FTSE-100 index was down 0.6 percent at 0810 GMT, underperforming its European counterparts, and the midcaps were down 0.1 percent. Oil majors Shell and BP dropped from multi-month highs as crude prices retreated after having jumped to their 2019 highs this week as the United States pushed to tighten sanctions against Iran.
London's blue-chip index squeezed out gains on Monday as banks got a boost from comments about a possible Brexit delay, while housebuilders were hit by reports the government was worried about Persimmon's handling of a state house-funding scheme. The FTSE 100 closed 0.1 percent higher, lagging other major European bourses where investors took comfort from U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to delay raising tariffs on Chinese imports. Lloyd's of London insurer Hiscox, which recently joined the FTSE 100, added 3 percent after reporting a profit for the year that beat market expectations.
Investors in British stocks turned their focus from political to company developments on Thursday as results from software firm Sage, Primark owner ABF, and bookmaker GVC triggered big moves and weak house sales data dented shares in housebuilders. The FTSE 100 slid 0.5 percent by 0940 GMT, extending Wednesday's fall, while the mid-cap FTSE 250 fell 0.3 percent, in line with a slide in European stocks.
Prime Minister Theresa May will try on Thursday to break the impasse in Britain's political elite over how to leave the European Union by searching for an emergency exit deal, though there is so far little sign of compromise. If May fails to forge consensus, the world's fifth largest economy will drop out of the European Union on March 29 without a deal or will be forced to halt Brexit, possibly holding a national election or even another referendum. May has repeatedly refused to countenance another election and has warned that another referendum would be corrosive as it would undermine faith in democracy among the 17.4 million people who voted to leave the EU in the 2016 referendum.
Britain's last-minute scramble to shape an EU exit, its biggest policy upheaval in half a century, stalled on Thursday as Prime Minister Theresa May and opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn dug in their heels for competing visions. After May's two-year attempt to forge an amicable divorce with an independent trade policy was crushed by parliament in the biggest defeat for a British leader in modern history, May asked party leaders to forget self-interest to find a solution. May told Corbyn that was "an impossible condition" and urged him to join cross-party discussions.