Updates from Tullow Oil and Burberry


A 10-point lift for the FTSE on Tuesday, climbing +0.14% to 6,766.8. BSkyB saw the biggest upwards drift, climbing 3.75% to 871p while Shire also climbed sharply, up 2.75%, to 2991p. Amec was the Board's biggest slumper, down 3.44% to 1067p following its new £1.9bn offer for Foster Wheeler.

The Dow Jones finished 115.9 points higher at 16,373.

We start with a trading update from Tullow Oil. Tullow's 2013 financial numbers are expected to deliver "strong" revenue and gross profit growth and operating cash flow of $1.9bn reflecting growth in production and stable oil and gas prices.

"Following a successful $650m debut bond issue in November 2013," says the exploration player, "Tullow's balance sheet is well-funded and the Group has unutilised debt capacity of $2.4bn."

Tullow has seen significant takeover speculation recently, causing a spike in it share price. However Tullow's share price has now drifted lower to 856.50p. Progress in Kenya, Ghana and Mauritania is being watched particularly closely.

Next, a look at Burberry's third quarter trading update. For the three months up to 31 December, the British fashion player claims retail revenues climb 14% to £528m. Comparable sales are up 12% says Burberry.

There's double-digit growth in Asia Pacific and mid-to-high single-digit growth in Americas and EMEIA. The company claims investments in digital, online sales helped the sales push with outerwear and leather goods doing particularly strongly over the Christmas trading period.

"In the all-important festive period," says Burberry boss Anegla Ahrendts, "we are pleased with our 12% comparable sales growth, which was in line with our expectations. This performance reflects continuing strong brand momentum and our team's intense focus on retail execution."

We finish with a full-year trading statement from house builder Taylor Wimpey. Total home completions increased 7% to 11,696, up from 10,886 in 2012, of which 18% were affordable housing completions (2012: 18%). Taylor Wimpey claims an "excellent" order book for 2014.

Average selling prices on private completions increased 7% to £210k (2012: £197k). This increase is the result of a shift to better quality locations, claims the company, and market sales price increases in line with inflation.

"Our overall average selling price has increased by 6% to £191k (2012: £181k). In current market conditions, we expect to be able to deliver further increases in the number of completions and average selling prices in 2014."