Earnings season: Costco Wholesale, Allianz, CVS Health, Fiserv, Regeneron, Deutsche Post, Honda Motor, Ahold Delhaize, Flutter, Sampo and Continental are among companies reporting their results today.
A few results:
Ahold Delhaize: Second quarter sales grew 15.9% at constant exchange rates to €19.1 billion. Operating profit rose 78% to €1 billion. Net profit took the same trajectory at EUR 0.65 per share. This solid quarter allows the Belgian distributor with exposure to Europe and the United States to raise its 2020 forecast, expecting earnings per share growth of between 20 and 25% and free cash flow generation of at least €1.7 billion.
Allianz: the insurer posted an operating profit of €2.57 billion in the second quarter, slightly more than expected by analysts.
Atlantia: the infrastructure manager was in a deficit of €772 million in the first half of 2020, a loss made worse by the coronavirus and by the consequences of the collapse of the Genoa bridge two years ago. As for the project to transfer Italian motorways to the French Caisse des Dépôts, it would stumble over questions of valuation.
Beyond Meat: the meat-free burger maker posted sales of $113.3 million in the second quarter, higher than consensus expectations ($99 million).
BMW: the German premium carmaker reaffirmed its annual forecast after publishing slightly weaker than expected interim results. The automotive division should be able to generate an operating margin of between 0 and 3% this year.
Commerzbank: Germany’s second-largest bank is expecting a full-year deficit after publishing its second-quarter results.
CVS Health gained 4.6% in trading before the opening of the US markets, as the pharmacy chain raised its profit target for the year after a better than expected quarterly profit, boosted by its health insurance business.
Match group anticipates that sales for the current quarter will be above Wall Street’s expectations after better-than-expected sales for the three months ended June 30 as demand for its Tinder dating application rebounded during containment.
Thomson Reuters reported higher-than-expected quarterly earnings and confirmed its forecast for 2020 as a whole despite continued uncertainty in its markets.
Telecom Italia: the operator sees its quarterly net profit fall to €118 million, far from what was expected by consensus. In particular, it was penalized by the weakness of tourism in Italy this year. The operator has also suspended plans to sell a minority share of its terrestrial network to KKR, apparently under pressure from the government.
Walt Disney: the stock gained more than 4% post-season despite the publication of a quarterly net loss of $4.7 billion, mitigated by the success of the Disney+ offer, with more than 100 million paying subscribers, and the optimistic comments of management.
Wendy’s reported better-than-expected earnings with a recovery in sales in June and July with the gradual lifting of containment measures.
Mulan at home. Walt Disney is finally going to favor streaming for its latest feature film, Mulan, by offering it on Disney+ rather than in theatres, which is a major blow for movie exhibitors. Viewing will not be included in the subscription, as the film is expected to be billed to US subscribers at around $30. Rental costs will vary from country to country. The film will be released in theatres on September 4 in countries where the Disney+ platform is not available.
Finally promising. Novavax fell 30% off the market after mixed data for its Covid-19 vaccine, but subsequently turned upwards. The U.S. biotech company received $1.6 billion from the federal government to help develop its experimental vaccine. The published results are for a relatively small cohort of patients, 131 people. It took two doses for all vaccinated participants to develop neutralizing antibodies. The laboratory also reported usual but more severe adverse events after the second dose, although none were severe.
Better late than never. The German financial market watchdog, BaFin, is launching an audit of Wirecard’s 2017 to 2019 accounts. This operation should make it possible to strengthen the elements made available to the German public prosecutor’s office, which is currently investigating the company and its former managers. The BaFin has a lot to be forgiven in this case.
In other news. Tencent is working on creating a streaming giant. Jim Hackett, Ford’s chief executive officer, will retire in October and will be replaced by operations manager Jim Farley. The European Commission has opened an investigation into Google’s proposed $2.1bn takeover of Fitbit. Apple is promoting Greg Joswiak as marketing director, replacing Phil Schiller, who retains control of the App Store and Apple Events. S&P lowers the outlook for Siemens’ debt from stable to negative. The SEC is investigating Eastman Kodak’s disclosure of a government funding line obtained as part of a coronavirus contract, according to the Wall Street Journal.