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Softcat performs well in April quarter, Unilever CFO announces retirement plans

By Josh White

Date: Tuesday 30 May 2023

(Sharecast News) - London open

The FTSE 100 is expected to open eight points higher on Tuesday, having closed up 0.74% at 7,627,20 before the long weekend on Friday.
Stocks to watch

IT infrastructure technology and services provider Softcat said it expected full-year trading to be in line with expectations after performing well in the three months to April 30. The company said it delivered further year-on-year growth in gross invoiced income, gross profit and operating profit.

Unilever announced on Tuesday that chief financial officer Graeme Pitkethly plans to retire by the end of May 2024. The consumer goods giant said the board will now proceed with a formal internal and external search for his successor. Chief executive Alan Jope said: "I would like to thank Graeme for his tremendous contribution to Unilever over the last 21 years. As CFO, he has brought great leadership to our company and been instrumental in sharpening our strategy and driving a step-up in our operational performance."

Newspaper round-up

More prospective house sellers are returning to the UK's property market, pushing agreed home sales to their highest point of the year in May, according to Zoopla, although it warned that the rebound in activity could be knocked by rising mortgage rates. House prices have fallen by 1.3% nationally over the past six months, the property website found, but the speed of price falls has been decreasing as buyer confidence slowly improves. - Guardian

British households will be asked to voluntarily cut their electricity usage again as Europe faces up to another winter without Russian gas supplies. John Pettigrew, chief executive of National Grid, said he expected the so-called demand flexibility service would return in the coming heating season, in a sign that the energy crisis has not fully abated yet. - Telegraph

Amazon has parachuted in Evri to assist with deliveries as Royal Mail grapples with poor performance in the wake of a long-running industrial dispute. The US tech giant has added Evri - formerly known as Hermes - alongside Royal Mail and DPD to deliver goods on behalf of businesses that sell on Amazon's website. - Telegraph

Energy suppliers are on course to file a record number of winding-up petitions against business customers this year as companies struggle with soaring energy costs. There have been more than 400 attempts by suppliers to shut down companies to reclaim their energy debts over the past decade, according to court filings. The vast majority were made by British Gas, Eon and npower, now part of Eon. - The Times

India's foremost investigative agency has filed a criminal complaint against Rolls-Royce and BAE Systems over historic deals to supply fighter jets to the country. The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) alleged that, between 2003 and 2012, the two British firms had engaged in "criminal conspiracy" to "cheat" the government of India over deals to manufacture dozens of BAE Hawk 115 aircraft, which used Rolls-Royce engines. - The Times

US close

Stock markets on Wall Street were closed on Monday, for the Memorial Day federal holiday, although they had closed in the green on Friday, when the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 1% at 33,093.34.

The S&P 500 added 1.3% to 4,205.45, and the Nasdaq Composite was ahead 2.19% at 12,975.69.


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