Updates from Tullow Oil, Taylor Wimpey and Carillion
Filed under: Investing
Markets rose higher again yesterday; the FTSE 100 finished at 5,687 points, an +0.83% lift. The biggest gainer was Vedanta Resources, up +6.07% while Aberdeen Asset Management was the Board's biggest faller, slipping -3.66%.
Overnight in Asia, the demand for commodities continued with the Nikkei rising 0.4% while Hong Kong's Hang Seng was more cautious, adding 0.1%.
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We commence with an H1 trading update from Tullow Oil; Tullow claims 1H 2012 revenues of $1.15 billion with net debt at 30 June of approximately $0.7 billion. Its Uganda farm-down proceeds have transformed the balance sheet it says with pre-tax profits of approximately $700 million.
"We have also," said chief exec Aidan Heavey, "made good progress on our development projects in Ghana and Uganda. The on-going remediation of the Jubilee field is progressing well and significant exploration wells are planned for the East African Rift basins, the West African Transform Margin and the twin basins in South America in the second half of 2012."
Next, house builder Taylor Wimpey. Business is stable it says with underlying pricing unchanged over the first half of 2012. Mortgage lending continues to be restricted, although the company has been encouraged by the introduction of higher loan to value products since the start of the year under the NewBuy scheme.
It completed a total of 5,083 homes during the first half of 2012 (H1 2011: 4,707), of which 4,137 were private completions (H1 2011: 3,675), 893 were affordable completions (H1 2011: 1,004) and 53 were its share of joint venture completions (H1 2011: 28). The overall average selling price of completions increased to circa £175k (H1 2011: £168k).
"We have maintained our strong sales performance during the first half of this year, achieving an average private net reservation rate of 0.60 sales per outlet per week (H1 2011: 0.56). This rate includes a total of 201 home reservations under the NewBuy scheme since its launch in March 2012, representing around one-third of overall industry reservations."
Lastly, support services group Carillion. First-half trading is in line with expectations Carillion claims. The planned re-scaling of UK construction, together with the timing of project starts in the Middle East, means total revenue will be lower than in the first half of 2011. However total operating margin is expected to increase.
A further £20m of equity in Public Private Partnership (PPP) projects has been sold with total first-half new orders and probable orders worth up to £2.2bn.
"Despite market conditions remaining challenging, we are on track to deliver full-year results in line with expectations," said the company. "Furthermore, given the strength of our business model, order book and pipeline of contract opportunities, our medium-term targets remain unchanged."