BOE Expected to Opt for Smaller Interest-Rate Increase at December Meeting

1227 GMT - The Bank of England is expected to scale down its interest-rate hiking pace at the December meeting and opt for an increase of 50 basis points, Oxford Economics chief U.K. economist Andrew Goodwin says in a note. Calmer financial markets, a stronger pound, and less generous energy support to households should tip the balance toward a smaller increase, he says. Still, inflation remains high and the labor market is tight, so further interest-rate increases are likely on the way even if the BOE believes the U.K. economy is already in a recession, Goodwin says. One or two members of the Monetary Policy Committee may favor an even smaller rise or even holding rates at the Dec. 15 meeting, he says. (

Companies News: 

Hipgnosis Songs 1H Loss Narrows on Streaming Growth

Hipgnosis Songs Fund Ltd. said Thursday that its first-half loss narrowed as revenue rose after strong growth from streaming.


S&U Sees FY 2023 Positive Performance Despite Challenging Backdrop

S&U PLC said Thursday that is performing well despite the macroeconomic uncertainty and it expects the current trend to continue for the remainder of the fiscal year.


Purplebricks 1H Pretax Loss Widens; Sees Recovery Plan Bearing Fruit in 2H

Purplebricks Group PLC said Thursday that its pretax loss for the first half of fiscal 2023 widened on lower revenue and higher operating costs, but backed its full-year guidance as it sees financial benefits of its recovery plan in the second half.


Tullow Oil Appoints Richard Miller as Permanent Chief Financial Officer

Tullow Oil PLC said Thursday that it has appointed Richard Miller as chief financial officer from Jan. 1, having held the role on an interim basis since April.


Balfour Beatty Sees Revenue Ahead on Year, Profit Ahead of Views

Balfour Beatty PLC said Thursday that full-year revenue is seen ahead on year and profit is seen ahead of market expectations.


In The Style Swung to 1H Pretax Loss on Rising Costs, Lower Revenue

In The Style Group PLC on Thursday reported a swing to pretax loss in the first half of fiscal 2023, driven by higher costs and lower revenue, as consumer sentiment deteriorated amid the uncertain macroeconomic outlook.


MyCelx Technologies Shares Jump as It Expects to Post in Line FY Results

Shares in MyCelx Technologies Corp. jumped 26% on Thursday after the company said that it expects to end 2022 in line with market expectations.


Trakm8 Swung to 1H Pretax Loss on Lower Sales, Higher Costs

Trakm8 Holdings PLC on Thursday reported a swing to a half-year pretax loss on the back of lower software sales and higher material costs, but said it is confident of meeting market expectations.


Thungela Sees 2022 Coal Production Below Views Due Rail Disruption

Thungela Resources Ltd. said Thursday that coal production for 2022 is expected to be below previous guidance, dragged by rail-transport disruptions.


On the Beach Shares Drop as CEO-Founder to Step Down; Swung to FY 2022 Pretax Profit

On the Beach Group PLC shares dropped 14% on Thursday after it said that founder and Chief Executive Simon Cooper will step down.


Mears Group Expects to Beat 2022 Forecasts After Strong Performance to Date

Mears Group PLC said Thursday that it has continued to experience strong trading since the half-year earnings report in August and therefore expects to beat full-year market forecasts for revenue and adjusted pretax profit.


Seraphine 1H Pretax Loss Narrowed; Expects Positive 2H Ebitda

Seraphine Group PLC on Thursday reported a narrowed pretax loss for the first half of fiscal 2023 despite lower revenue after booking an exceptional charge in its accounts last year, and said it expects the second half to be profitable on an Ebitda basis.


Netcall Says Solid FY 2022 Momentum Has Continued Into 1H

Netcall PLC said Thursday that the solid momentum experienced in fiscal 2022 has continued into the first half of the new year, with increasing demand for its cloud solutions.


Focusrite Shares Drop After FY 2022 Pretax Profit Fell Amid Increased Costs

Shares in Focusrite PLC slid 11% on Thursday after the company said pretax profit for fiscal 2022 fell as costs increased.


Falanx Shares Fall After 1H Pretax Loss Widened

Falanx Group Ltd. shares fell as much as 13% on Thursday after the company reported a widened pretax loss in the first half of fiscal 2023 on increased investments in sales and marketing designed to boost growth.


Vertu Motors Buys Helston Garages for GBP182 Mln

Vertu Motors PLC said Thursday that it is buying Helston Garages Group Ltd. for 182 million pounds ($222.2 million), as flagged last month.


Aferian Expects to Meet FY 2022 Expectations

Aferian PLC said Thursday that trading has finished the year in line with its expectations and it expects to announce full-year results consistent with the guidance ranges.


Bluebird Merchant Ventures Raises GBP230,000 to Fund Korean Gold Mine

Bluebird Merchant Ventures Ltd. said Thursday that it raised 230,000 pounds ($280,761) through a share issue, which will be used to fund a permit to develop its Kochang gold and silver mine in South Korea.


Aukett Swanke CEO Nicholas Thompson to Retire Dec. 31; Robert Fry Named Successor

Aukett Swanke Group PLC said Thursday that Chief Executive Officer Nicholas Thompson is retiring on Dec. 31 after 17 years in the role, and will be replaced by Robert Fry from Jan. 1.

Market Talk: 

Euro, Sterling Vulnerable Amid Europe's Energy Crisis

1110 GMT - The euro and sterling look vulnerable due to Europe's energy supply issues as the Ukraine war persists, Legal & General Investment Management says. "I think we have to be a bit more cautious and humble with euro and sterling simply because of the direct impact still of the energy crisis and the geopolitical situation," LGIM chief investment officer Sonja Laud says in a webinar. This may change to some extent throughout 2023 but for now the outlook is uncertain, she says. GBP/USD falls 0.3% to 1.2160, EUR/GBP rises 0.3% to 0.8636 and EUR/USD drops 0.1% to 1.0500. (


DS Smith Seen as Performing Well in Challenging Environment

1128 GMT - DS Smith's first-half update was solid overall against a challenging backdrop, with the primary driver of performance being increased pricing, Goodbody's David O'Brien says in a research note. The packaging company's key takeaways were challenges in Northern Europe amid lower organic box volumes--the U.K. and Germany showed lower levels of decline--and Southern Europe being more resilient, though it did experience some decline, he says. Goodbody has a buy recommendation on the stock. Shares trade up 1.3% at 321.10 pence. (


Tackling Climate Change Has Inflationary Impact

1142 GMT - The transition that is essential to tackle climate change is likely to be inflationary, and the same is true for de-globalization, says Sonja Laud, chief investment officer at Legal & General Investment Management, in a webinar. "All else equal, we know that globalisation was in fact disinflationary," she says, adding that this was linked to the efficiency of global supply chains and a global labor force. "We have to assume that all else equal, de-globalization will be inflationary," she says. The U.K. and Europe will suffer the most from the energy crisis, which is hitting consumers very directly, she says, adding that recession is imminent. (


Sterling Unlikely to Benefit Much if Dollar Falls

1201 GMT - Sterling may not benefit materially from potential seasonal weakness in the dollar in December given evidence of a weakening U.K. economy, ING says. A Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors survey on Thursday showed respondents are the most negative on the outlook for U.K. house prices since May 2020, which isn't surprising given the cost of living crisis and tightening of fiscal and monetary policy, ING analyst Chris Turner says in a note. "Despite seasonal weakness in the dollar, we really struggle to see GBP/USD trading much higher and for those corporates with USD needs or GBP receivables, we see these 1.22-1.23 levels as perhaps the best GBP/USD levels for the next three to six months." GBP/USD falls 0.2% to 1.2169. (


Balfour Beatty Looks a Winner Given Share Price Growth

1214 GMT - Balfour Beatty has proven itself to be a stock market winner this year, defying market turmoil and macroeconomic headwinds to stage a share price rally of more than 25% year-to-date, Interactive Investor says. The house builder's share price took a hit in early 2022, reflecting geopolitical uncertainty caused by Putin's invasion of Ukraine, but since the March trough, shares have been enjoying an impressive uptrend, Interactive Investor head of investment Victoria Scholar says in a market comment. "Balfour Beatty has benefited from a weaker pound, positive net interest income thanks to the rising rate environment and smaller tax charges, [and] it has also won a number of key contracts in the U.K., the U.S. and in Hong Kong," Scholar says. Shares are up 3.7% at 343.8 pence. (


Frasers's Backdrop Uncertainties Could Have Prompted Share Drop

1225 GMT - Frasers's shares are down 9.7%, becoming Thursday's worst performer on the FTSE 100 as its comments about uncertainties regarding macroeconomic challenges could be weighing on investors sentiment, head of investment at Interactive Investor Victoria Scholar says in a note. However, the U.K. sports-fashion company's strategy of key partnerships with strong brands seems to be positioning Frasers as one of the winners in a struggling sector, she notes. "Although Frasers group's shares had a difficult first half of the year, since mid-October when investor risk appetite returned, shares have staged an impressive surge of almost 50% off the intraday lows," Scholar highlights. On a year-to-date basis, Frasers shares are up 4.8%. (


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(END) Dow Jones Newswires

December 08, 2022 08:22 ET (13:22 GMT)

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