Wednesday preview: UK CPI, Berkeley Group in focus

updated: 16 June 2020 at 3:22pm Author: Alexander Bueso

(Sharecast News) - The spotlight in the middle of the week will fall on the latest consumer price data.

At 0930 BST, the Office for National Statistics is expected to publish figures showing a drop in the year-on-year rate of harmonised consumer prices from 0.9% for April to 0.7% in May.

Core CPI meanwhile is expected to drift lower by just one tenth of a percentage point to 1.3%.

Stateside, the flow of economic data will be more muted, with the main release being housing starts figures for May, at 1330 BST.

A final reading on euro area consumer prices in May are also scheduled for release at 1000 BST.

Berkeley Group Holdings is among the main corporates that are due to update markets on Wednesday.

UBS analyst Gregor Kuglitsch believes the homebuilder's outlook will be key after it suspended its medium-term guidance for the financial years 2020-25.

In particular, he stressed the importance of guidance on demand levels and for its ability to operate due to social distancing measures on construction sites.

For the 2021 year, Kuglitsch had penciled-in profits before tax of £384.0m.

He also expected that the company would post a 39% drop in full-year sales to £1,796.0m, although gross margins were seen three basis points stronger at 35%.

Thus, including joint-venture profits, profits before tax were seen coming in at £501.0m and ahead of the £475.0m that Berkeley had guided towards at the end of March, for earnings per share of 322.0p.

Berkeley was also expected to stay committed to returning £280.0m per year to shareholders but to avoid re-instating its larger £1bn capital return programme.

Wednesday 17 June


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