Wednesday preview: BoJ, Burberry Group, Antofagasta in focus

updated: 22 January 2019 at 1:56pm Author: Alexander Bueso

(Sharecast News) - The market spotlight will shift towards central banks on Wednesday, as rate-setters in Tokyo meet to decide on policy.
Following recent strong volatility in stockmarkets around the world, and financial tensions more generally, expectations are that the Bank of Japan will be forced to mark-down its projection for the economy to expand by 1.5% in Japanese fiscal year 2018.

However, for now Bank of America-Merrill Lynch believes that policymakers are likely to leave their GDP forecasts for the following two years unchanged at 0.8% in both cases.

Their projections for FY 2019-2020 for core consumer prices on the other hand are expected to come down on the back of the drop in crude oil prices.

Significantly, financial markets, as reflected in overnight index swap rates, have reversed course and were no longer pricing-in an accelerated pace of normalisation by the BoJ, such that no rate hikes were now foreseen over the next three years - but they may be mistaken.

"Given the busy domestic calendar in 2H19, market consensus appears to be moving toward the conclusion that the BoJ has missed the opportunity for further policy adjustments in 2019, if not this cycle," BofA-ML said.

"Our own forecast (unchanged for now), has the BoJ making a small, one-off adjustment to its rates targets in 3Q20 (base case: July), when the board can gain some visibility on the economy after the planned 1 October consumption tax increase."

Sticking with the central bank theme, especially in this hemisphere (London), markets will also be waiting on the European Central Bank's policy meeting the next day.

Also scheduled for Thursday are policy meetings in South Korea, Malaysia and Norway.

Stateside meanwhile, corporate results will continue to front and centre on investors radars, with Ford, Procter&Gamble, Texas Instruments and United Technologies all set to publish quarterly updates.

In the UK, the ongoing debates in Parliament and Sterling's course will likely be the main talking point.

However, at 100 GMT the Confederation of British Industry is set to publish its latest Industrial Trends Survey referencing the month of January.

Among the corporates that are set to update markets today is Burberry Group.

UBS analyst Francesca DiPasquantonio expects the luxury retailer to post third quarter sales of £274m, in-line with the consensus.

Like-for-like growth in Retail will likely consolidate at up by around 2% over the remainder of the year, following the surprise rise of 3% seen during the first six months of the year, she said.

By regions, DiPasquantonio expected Europe to be the laggard, underperforming both Asia and the Americas.

The analyst also highlighted positive trends for Burberry on Instagram and Google in th wake of Riccardo Tisci's SS19 fashion show.

But the new range of collections would only be available in Autumn.

Even so, in a research note sent to clients she also cautioned that: "Efficiency and cost saving programmes were confirmed to be on track in November; however, FY19 and 20 are transition years and Burberry remains a wait-and-see story, trading on 20.6x cal 19 PE vs. luxury peers on 18.8x."

For Antofagasta, which is also due out with a trading statement, Peel Hunt expects the miner to reveal fourth quarter copper output of 203,000 tonnes, for 2018 production of 708,000 tonnes, on the back of improved grades and ore throughput, especially at Centinela.

In a research note sent to clients, analysts Peter Mallin and Tim Huff said they expected a similar improvement in gold output.

After by-product credits, increased fourth quarter volumes were expected to have pushed unit costs down to $1.23 per pound.

Looking out to 2019, "much better" grades at Esperanza were expected to drive a large increase in copper output to 782,000 tonnes.

Wednesday January 23


Joules Group


Crude Oil Inventories (US) (15:30)


Burberry Group


Harwood Wealth Management Group


AXA Property Trust Limited


Edinburgh Worldwide Inv Trust, Feedback, Marston's, McCarthy & Stone, Redx Pharma, Schroder Asia Pacific Fund, Troy Income & Growth Trust, WH Smith


Antofagasta, Brewin Dolphin Holdings, Burberry Group, Computacenter, Fresnillo, Great Portland Estates, Petropavlovsk, Wetherspoon (J.D.), WH Smith


Diploma, Majedie Investments