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22 Jul 2020 | 15:51

Thursday preview: Tesla, Sage in the spotlight

(Sharecast News) - Financial markets' focus on Thursday will be on the corporate updates out of US heavyweights Microsoft and Tesla, after the market close in New York. For the latter, investors will be keen to see whether the manufacturer clocks in with a fourth consecutive quarterly profit, which could pave the way for it to enter the ranks of the S&P 500.

They will also be keen to know more on the outlook for deliveries, not least given some analysts' warning that the shares had become "overheated".

Indeed, ahead of the company's latest numbers, Bank of America reiterated its 'underperform' recommendation on the stock, telling clients that "the $1,500+ stock price is not supported by fundamentals, with valuation driven largely by momentum and low rates.

"We maintain our Underperform rating as valuation appears overheated, although we recognize that data points and news flow could support the rally for now."

Indeed, their $800 target price for the shares was roughly half their present value.

Ahead of those updates, investors will be digesting the latest weekly US initial claims numbers and readings for consumer confidence in Germany and the euro area.

No major economic releases are scheduled in the UK.

Further afield, central bankers in South Africa and Turkey are due to meet to decide on policy.

Back on home shores, enterprise software developer Sage will update shareholders on its third quarter trading.

The company will benefit from easy comparables vis-a-vis a year ago, when revenues from software and software related services (SSRS) fell by 22%.

Nonetheless, in April the company reported that customer acquistion rates at about half their historical levels and that churn had ticked up slightly.

That, said UBS's Michael Briest, argued for a difficult third quarter and meant the focus would be on recurring sales and any commentary from management around margins.

Remember that the company pulled its guidance in April, Briest pointed out.

"With numerical contract churn last disclosed at 14% in 2017 (less by value), any comments management gives around churn trends will likely be seized upon although with many businesses receiving government support during lockdown it is possible the full impact of business disruption will not yet be evident," he added.

"We think recurring growth of 6-7% would probably be seen as in-line by the market, although with various government support initiatives in place, attrition may be more of an issue for the future than Q3 20."

Thursday 23 July


Beazley, Bodycote, Croda International, Getbusy, Howden Joinery Group, Group Ltd GDR (Reg S), Relx plc


Blackrock Income And Growth Investment Trust, Porvair


Brunner Inv Trust


JpMorgan China Growth & Income , M Winkworth


Continuing Claims (US) (13:30)

GFK Consumer Confidence (GER) (07:00)

Initial Jobless Claims (US) (13:30)

Q2 Group Ltd GDR (Reg S), Novolipetsk Steel GDS (Reg S)






C&C Group, Circassia Group , Clontarf Energy , Edinburgh Inv Trust, Fidelity China Special Situations , GETECH Group, Gusbourne, Helical, Immunodiagnostic Systems Holdings, Johnson Matthey, Live Company Group, Martin Currie Global Portfolio Trust, Mckay Securities, Mincon Group , Petards Group, Tate & Lyle, Telecom Plus, Triple Point Income VCT E, Valirx, VP, Weiss Korea Opportunity Fund Ltd


Petra Diamonds Ltd.(DI), Sage Group


CBI Industrial Trends Surveys (11:00)




CML Microsystems, Cranswick, D4T4 Solutions, Palace Capital , Pennon Group, SSE, Stenprop Limited

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