SEC’s X BTC hack, Sosandar Sales & Greggs proves it’s dough

Home > Analysis > SEC’s X BTC hack, Sosandar Sales & Greggs proves it’s dough

European markets were mixed this morning following weaker sessions in the US and Asia.

The FTSE 100 is flat on the day despite gains in the share price of miners Anglo American +1.33% and house builders Berkeley Group, which are up by +1.50%.

Persimmon (PSN) sales decline factored in

Berkley’s sector rival, Persimmon Group, posted a trading update today, that looks to have been well received. Though CEO Dean Finch referenced challenging conditions.

Ahead of its full-year results, Persimmon said it had sold 9,9925 homes at an average price of just under £256,000.

Sales volumes were down by -33.0% compared to 2022, however, asking prices rose by just +3.0%.

The company said that:

“The longer-term demand outlook for new homes remains favourable”  and that “Encouragingly, build costs continue to moderate which will benefit completions in 2024.”

The Persimmon share price was trading up by +2.99% earlier today.

J Sainsbury (SBRY) has a Christmas hangover

Supermarket group J Sainsbury also posted a trading update this morning which showed that Q3 grocery sales were up by +9.30% and Christmas sales by +8.60%.

However general merchandise sales were lower, with clothing sales falling by -6.0% over the festive period and fuel sales also fell, dropping by -7.20%.

Sainsbury said that it continues to expect pre-tax profits to come in between £670 and £700 million, with retail cash flow of at least £600 million for 2023/24.

The update appears to have disappointed investors and Sainsbury’s share price is down by -4.60% on the day.

Capita (CPI) gets downgraded

Outsourcing specialist Capita’s share price was down by almost -8.50% following a downgrade from RBC.

The Canadian broker highlighted a lack of catalysts at the company and slashed its target price on the stock from 42p to 21p, ahead of the arrival of a new CEO at the business on January 17th.

Capita shares have fallen by -46.00% over the last two years, as problems have beset the firm. Including a cyber attack in 2023, that cost it as much as £25.0 million.

Greggs (GRG) proving it can make dough

There was better news for the nation’s favourite baker, which gave an upbeat assessment of current and future trading, with like-for-like sales in 2023, proving the Greggs share price rise by +13.70%.

Greggs is now offering a delivery service from 710 of its locations, in partnership with Uber Eats. The firm opened 220 new stores last year and now has 2473 shops in operation.

CEO Roisin Currie said:

“2023 was a year of further progress by Greggs. I am proud of our teams, who did a fantastic job serving more customers as we continue to grow our shop estate and offer greater availability through digital channels and extended trading hours.”

Sosandar (SOS) small-cap sales success

Elsewhere, online and catalogue the women’s fashion sector saw a jump in the Sosandar share price jump by +10.50%, as they reported a record quarter for the 3 months to December 31st.
Sosander generated revenues of £14.30 million, an increase of +23.0% over the prior period.

Like-for-like gross margins also improved to 60.70% and the group finished 2023 with £7.70 million of net cash.

Fake News: SEC’s Bitcoin ETF Approval Tweet

Finally, let’s spare a thought for Gary Gensler, the chair of the US Securities and Exchange Commission, which has been wrestling with the question of whether to authorise spot Bitcoin ETFs.

Market commentators anticipated a decision this week, and it briefly looked like the greenlight had been given, following a tweet from the SEC last night.

However, Mr Gensler took to his X (Twitter) account a few moments later, to say that the regulator’s social media account had been hacked and the post had been made erroneously.

Red faces all around, not least because the SEC has recently been running a campaign about trusted sources of information.

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