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10 Feb 2021 | 18:52

Thursday preview: US jobless claims, AstraZeneca in the spotlight

(Sharecast News) - The economic calendar on Thursday will be exceedingly light with a reading on weekly US unemployment claims the only event that might easily move markets.



Consensus is expecting but a slight drop in the number of initial jobless claims from 779,000 for the week before to 769,000.

A speech from European Central Bank vice-president, Luis De Guindos, will also be worth monitoring.

No major economic releases are scheduled in the UK.

Further afield, rate-setters in Manila are due to meet to decide on policy.



For AstraZeneca's fourth quarter, UBS analyst Michael Leuchten has penciled sales of $7.22bn, putting him slightly ahead of the consensus which is at $7.16bn.

Core operating profits on the other hand were pegged to come in at $1.94bn (consensus: $2.02bn) for earnings per share of $1.04 (consensus: $1.09).

"Top-line momentum remains key for investors," he said, adding that he expected investors to focus their questions on the outfit's business in China, which accounts for approximately a fifth of its sales.

The analyst also broke down his sales forecasts for AstraZeneca's key treatments: Tagrisso ($1.15bn), Lynparza ($483m), Imfinzi ($532m) and Calquence ($157m).

Going forwards, Leuchten expected AstraZeneca would guide towards single-digit topline growth - excluding vaccines - and for mid-to-high teens growth in earnings per share, with the latter not including gains from the spin-out of Viela.

Thursday 11 February

INTERIMS

MJ Gleeson

INTERIM EX-DIVIDEND DATE

Hargreaves Lansdown, Henderson Smaller Companies Inv Trust, PZ Cussons, The Mission Group

QUARTERLY EX-DIVIDEND DATE

BMO Commercial Property Trust Limited, Chenavari Toro Income Fund Limited NPV, Custodian Reit , ICG Enterprise Trust, The Renewables Infrastructure Group Limited

INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC ANNOUNCEMENTS

Continuing Claims (US) (13:30)

Initial Jobless Claims (US) (13:30)

Q4

AstraZeneca

GMS

Coral Products, Tesco

FINALS

AstraZeneca, Coca-Cola European Partners (DI), Coca-Cola HBC AG (CDI), Relx plc, Yamana Gold Inc. NPV (CDI)

SPECIAL EX-DIVIDEND DATE

Anglo Asian Mining

EGMS

Glanbia, Law Debenture Corp.

AGMS

Euromoney Institutional Investor

UK ECONOMIC ANNOUNCEMENTS

RICS Housing Market Survey (00:01)

FINAL DIVIDEND PAYMENT DATE

Hargreave Hale AIM VCT , Sage Group, Unicorn AIM VCT

FINAL EX-DIVIDEND DATE

Aberforth Smaller Companies Trust, Avon Rubber, Blackrock Income And Growth Investment Trust, Northamber
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