FTSE 100 and FTSE 250 shares – what to expect in the stock market next week

Among those currently scheduled to release results next week:

  • With the UK economy reopening, AG Barr’s half-year results look promising
  • We will see if United Utilities has managed to stave off inflationary pressures
  • boohoo will show if it managed to deliver revenue growth after a dismal first quarter

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FTSE 100, FTSE 250 and select other stocks to report next week:

26 Sept
No FTSE 350 reporters
28 Sept
boohh* half-year results
29 Sep
Next* half-year results

*Events we keep investors informed about.

AG Barr – Derren Nathan, Equity Analyst

British drinks group AG Barr’s hailed the reopening of hospitality and the ‘exceptional’ UK summer weather as the performance of its drinks catalog showed positive momentum. Coupled with successful pricing and marketing, the group expects sales to grow 16% year-on-year to £157m. Margins also looked strong, and last year’s growth hasn’t been an easy task in the current environment. Those higher margins will allow some headroom against rising costs, but management concedes they’re not immune, so further confirmation that expected full-year earnings will rise would offer investors some comfort.

Last year’s strong performance allowed the group to reintroduce the dividend after a suspension in 2020. A healthy cash position means investors will be watching for more dividend increases next week.

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United Utilities – Laura Hoy, Equity Analyst

United Utilities saw sales rise above pre-pandemic levels as non-residential demand returned, but unfortunately operating profits have not kept up. We expect United Utilities to issue further reports of similar issues. Higher material and labor costs should wipe out any sales gains this year, and the next price review won’t begin until 2025. Between the growing need to shore up leaky pipes and calls to keep customer bills down amid the cost-living crisis, the next regulatory cycle may not bring much relief anyway.

Investors will be thinking dividends — with a projected yield of over 4%, United Utilities is a winner. The group said it will increase its dividend in line with inflation. But given this environment, UU could have to borrow more to keep up with its dividend payments. However, remember that returns are variable and not a reliable indicator of future earnings.

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boohoo – Laura Hoy, equity analyst

The big question when boohoo reports is whether or not demand will hold up in the current environment. Supply chain shortages are an industry-wide concern, but they could seriously dampen boohoo’s growth plans. First-quarter results were lackluster at best, and given the company’s heavy investment in capacity expansion, demand is key to any US expansion.

After a sales decline in the first quarter, investors are looking for improved trading at the half-year point to help the group meet its guidance of single-digit growth for the full year. That’s a big challenge considering consumers are cashier than ever. While the group’s appeal to the younger generation remains questionable given tight budgets, the addition of new brands catering to diverse demographics has the potential to bring fresh growth through the door. We’d like an update on how acquisitions like Debenhams and Dorothy Perkins are performing under the Boohoo umbrella.

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Unless otherwise noted, estimates are a consensus of analyst forecasts provided by Refinitiv. These estimates are not a reliable indicator of future performance. Past performance is not a guide to the future. Investments go up and down in value, so investors can lose money.

This article is not advice or a recommendation to buy, sell or hold any investment. No opinion is expressed as to the present or future value or price of any investment and investors should form their own opinions on any proposed investment. This article has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements promoting the independence of investment research and constitutes a marketing communication. Non-independent research is not subject to FCA rules prohibiting trading prior to research, however HL has put in place controls (including trading restrictions, physical and informational barriers) to manage potential conflicts of interest arising from such trading. For more information, see our full non-independent research disclosure.

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