World Cup 2018: Stock market winners

For 3 years and 11 months, football fanatics have been waiting for the 2018 World Cup....and it’s almost kick-off time!

Article updated: 1 June 2018 at 12:00pm Author: Ian Forrest

But it’s not just fans and players that have been patiently waiting for the big event, many companies expect to get a piece of the sporting frenzy as well. We've highlighted three stocks that may benefit from the upcoming 2018 FIFA World Cup.

International Consolidated Airlines Group

Millions of people are expected to watch the 2018 World Cup matches on television but with 32 countries qualified for the World Cup and over 3m tickets sold, football fans from all over the world will be travelling to Russia for that ultimate FIFA World Cup experience. International Airlines Group is in a strong position to benefit from this increased passenger traffic; subsidiaries include British Airways, Iberia and Aer Lingus. An iconic British brand, British Airways is likely to be a popular choice for fans flying their patriotic colours to Russia.

We currently list International Consolidated Airlines Group as a BUY


Those football fans that don’t travel may well go to the pub to watch England matches. Operating over 1500 pubs in the UK, Marston’s is hoping to entice football fans to visit its establishments during the World Cup period. Following a recent knock in sales due to the Beast from the East, the pub group said recently that trading at its drinks-led taverns had been strong and it expects to deliver growth in revenue and underlying pre-tax profits in 2018. With a dividend yield of 7.5% it will especially appeal to medium to higher risk income-seeking investors.

We currently list Marston's as a BUY

William Hill

While betting on England at the World Cup can never be seen as a “safe bet”, bookmakers such as William Hill may benefit as fans place their bets. The team is at around 16/1 to win and with billions wagered during the last World Cup, this spending could rise. The global appeal of events William Hill covers means they are involved with most major sporting events and investors should acknowledge that with the World Cup taking place in Russia, as well as other events this summer such as the Ryder Cup, the group could benefit. While the government’s decision to lower the maximum stake on fixed odds betting machines to £2 will hit the group it may also benefit from the recent US Supreme Court decision to allow individual states to regulate sports betting.

We currently list William Hill as a BUY

All information given including prices, yields and our opinion is correct at the time of publication. Our opinions on investments can change at any time and for our latest view please go to To understand how our Investment research team arrive at their views please read our Investment Research Policy.

Ian Forrest portrait photo
Ian Forrest

Investment Research Analyst

Ian’s background in investments, financial journalism and research has seen him advising private investors on equities and helping to manage portfolios. His qualifications include the Certificate in Financial Planning and the Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment’s Investment Advice Diploma.