Updates from G4S, Boeing and Witan
Overnight, Asian stocks returned recent gains with the Nikkei currently down -0.61% and the Hang Seng down -0.97%.
Despite the drubbing it got from the London Olympics, private security operator G4S has published a 10% hike in revenues. Full turnover for the year lifts to £7,501m while profits climbed 6% to £516m. Yesterday G4S shares closed at 307.5p (they have risen almost 30% since last summer).
There's organic growth of 10% in developing markets with revenue of £2,387m (33% of group total and targeting 50% by 2019), claims the company. Adjusted earnings per share increases +3.4% to 21.2p.
Change, too, at the G4S top table. Trevor Dighton quits his position as Chief Financial Officer on 30 April and from the board of G4S plc. Dighton is replaced by Ashley Almanza, former CFO of BG Group.
Next, the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has approved Boeing's set of battery fixes for its Boeing 787 Dreamliner. Currently 50 Dreamliners are grounded. Two limited test flights have been approved to test improvements to the Dreamliner's lithium ion batteries.
Boeing's worries commenced in early January after a battery pack fire was experienced by a Japan Airlines 787 in Boston; the incident quickly saw the new fuel-efficient plane grounded. There will be a series of 20 tests before the FAA finally dispenses approval.
If all goes to plan, the Dreamliner could be back in the air by April. Boeing shares have proved remarkably resilient during the Dreamliner debacle; its share price has climbed to more than $84 since its $74 end of January low.
Finally, Witan Investment Trust has reported a NAV total return of 15.6% outperforming the benchmark's return of 13%, it claims. NAV total return over last five years was 18.7%, 3.7% ahead of the benchmark with the dividend increasing by 10%, 7% ahead of the rate of inflation.
The rise in 2012 more than made up for the fall in 2011, Witan says, despite volatile expectations for economic growth and weaker trends in corporate profits. It was also able to increase the dividend by 10%.
"Although the world appears some way from a return to robust economic growth, sentiment is less fearful, as evidenced by the inflows into equity funds in recent months," said the company, "2013 seems likely to be a further year of convalescence for the world economy."