Week ahead

Oil price, FirstGroup and M&G trading in spotlight

TransPennine Express
FirstGroup lost the TransPennine franchise

Oil traders will kick off the week reflecting on the decision on Sunday by Opec+ producing countries to continue cutting production in a bid to shore up flagging prices.

Saudi Arabia said it would make cuts of a million barrels per day (bpd) in July and Opec+ said targets would drop by a further 1.4 million barrels per day from 2024.

Opec+ accounts for around 40% of the world’s crude oil and its decisions can have a major impact on oil prices.

Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman said the cut of one million bpd could be extended beyond July if needed.

Just how rail and bus operator FirstGroup has been affected by the spate of rail strikes and how it expects to perform after losing its TransPennine franchise will be outlined when the company unveils year end figures on Thursday.

The Aberdeen-based bus and rail group has faced a challenging few years, not least from the lockdown, but Michael Hewson of CMC Markets believes it is slowly clawing its way back.

He notes that in the second half its bus passenger volumes increased to 83% of pre-pandemic levels, while demand for its rail services during the same period was “stronger than anticipated”.

Both Hewson and analysts at UBS see revenue coming in at about £4.8bn (2022: £4.6bn), while pre-tax profit is forecast to rise to £65m.

Fund manager M&G is expected to reveal a positive update, says UBS, with the Swiss bank forecasting a significant increase in first-quarter net inflows into M&G’s wholesale (retail) asset management business.

UBS estimates net fund flows of £4.4bn during the first quarter compared to net inflows of £0.5bn over the whole of 2022.

Even allowing for a large institutional mandate, net inflows are still predicted to be £3bn by the broker, with total AUM to be £350bn.

The Bank of Canada could set the tone for the next round of interest rate decisions on Wednesday, a weejk before the US Federal Reserve meets to discuss a possible rate rise.

Also on Wednesday, Halifax’s monthly house price index is published after industry rival Nationwide last week reported the biggest drop in house prices for 14 years.

Nationwide reported that the average price of houses sold in May was 3.4% lower than a year ago, down from the 2.7% fall recorded in April.

There is also a big week ahead for the CBI whose new female director general, Rain Newton-Smith, has conceded that the vote on its prospectus is critical to its future.

On Wednesday Edinburgh trams will begin scheduled services on the extended route between the city centre and Newhaven and there is already talk about the next phase.


Monday 5 June

  • Full-year results from Sirius Real Estate
  • Services industry purchasing managers’ indices from Asia, Europe, the UK and USA
  • US factory orders

Tuesday 6 June

  • Full-year results from Speedy Hire and N Brown
  • First-half results from Chemring, Paragon Banking and Gooch & Housego
  • UK construction industry purchasing managers’ index

Wednesday 7 June

  • First-half results from Ramsdens
  • Halifax UK house price index
  • Bank of Canada interest rate decision

Thursday 8 June

  • Full-year results from Wizz Air, FirstGroup and Mitie
  • First half results from Crest Nicholson
  • Trading statement from M&G
  • US weekly unemployment claims

Friday 9 June

  • Chinese inflation figures

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked as *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.