HSS Hire Group HSS invested in growth in 2015 and saw profits plunge. Not to be put off by this minor quirk of fate the board decided that it would plough on with the same objectives which were the correct ones, despite profitability for the year to 26th December being lower than expected. Indeed the second half did see something of a turnround with revenue growth of 10%, well ahead of market growth of only 1.5%. Like for like growth for the year came in at 8%. Revenue growth in the first half had been a lowly 4.7%.
Nonetheless reported operating profit was savaged, down from £23.6m to £6.8m and the previous years earnings per share of 8.6p were transformed into a loss per share of 9.9p. A final dividend of 0.57p brings the full year dividends to 1.4p. and all will be much better this year as last years cost cutting programme is expected to bring cost savings of £10m.
Styles & Wood STY Profit before tax shot up by 309% and basic earnings per share by 694% as refinancing and additions to the board appear to have worked wonders in the year to the end of December. Net debt was slashed from £11.76m to £1.43m
easyJet EZJ could the original budget airline be losing out to Ryanair? easyJets load factor appears to have been rising month by month virtually for ever but last months statistics saw a shock fall of 1.3 points, despite the number of passengers rising by 4.3%. Over the past 12 months load factor has risen by only 0.66 points which is perhaps what happens when a budget airline becomes a non budget airline.
UK Mail Group UKM has, believe it or not, suffered from a continued mix effect. That at least is the reason it expects us to believe for the 1% fall in revenue which it is likely to have suffered in the year to the end of March. Mail volume rose by 5% but mail revenue fell by 3%, whilst parcels volume showed growth of 4%.