FTSE 250 movers: Ocado falls as update misses expectations
Thu 20 Sep 2012
LONDON (SHARECAST) - Online grocer Ocado is on offer after an underwhelming trading update. Coming in below expectations, the firm said gross sales increased 9.9 per cent in the 12 weeks to August 5th and that it expects an increase in the rate of sale growth in the fourth quarter. This was the initial reaction frm traders at Spread Co.: "Spread Co.: Competition from established supermarkets, with their online shopping options, along with increasing competition from Waitrose itself, combined with problems achieving enough capacity to achieve any meaningful profit without needing fresh capital has meant that the outlook is uncertain for the stock. This is certainly reflected in the number of short sells reported from our dealers."
Food and drink wholesale group Booker Group has reported a 4.3% year-on-year rise in total sales in the 12 weeks to September 14th, with non-tobacco sales 3.9% higher, while tobacco sales rose by 5.1%. On a like-for-like (LFL) basis, total sales rose by 4.4%, non-tobacco sales by 3.8% and tobacco sales by 5.4%. Peel Hunt had forecast LFL non-tobacco sales growth of 4.0%, which might account for why the shares lost a little ground in the morning session.
Shares of Lonmin fell despite announcing that 77 per cent of its staff have reported for work today at Marikana. Some market commentary holds that in spite of this relatively good news the company´s financials will take a hit as a result of the latest wage agreement. Precisely in this regard, the FT´s Lex Column highlighted how labour makes up 40% of operating costs at Marikana. As well, the newspaper said that: "the miner could do with raising at least 600m dollars of equity."