MARKET REPORT: Future is bright for shares in UK publisher

The latest trading update from magazine publisher Future proved compelling reading for investors as shares in the group soared.

The company, whose 250 titles include everything from Marie Claire, Homes and Gardens and Country Life to Four Four Two, Golf Monthly and Yachting World, said it was on course to hit its profit target for the year.

Future hailed a ‘resilient performance despite continued macroeconomic volatility’ and said reader numbers have ‘stabilised’ since April. Better still, it said there has been ‘positive month-on-month momentum’ since July.

There was a note of caution, however, with the group warning: ‘Overall trading conditions remained mixed, with challenges in consumer spending and the digital advertising market.’

But with revenues at its Go Compare price comparison website picking up over the past six months, shares jumped 24.4 per cent, or 174.5p, to 889p. The stock remains down around 30 per cent this year, however, and more than 75 per cent since its pandemic peak two years ago.

With revisions to official figures showing the economy fared far better than previously thought since Covid struck – recovering faster than France and Germany – the London stock market ended the month on a high.

The FTSE 100 rose 0.08 per cent, or 6.23 points, to 7608.08 and the FTSE 250 gained 1 per cent, or 180.74 points, to 18279.42.

A bumper set of figures from US sportswear giant Nike on Thursday put a spring in the step of JD Sports, whose shares rose 4.8 per cent, or 6.85p, to 149.7p. Other retailers on the march included Marks & Spencer after an upgrade from analysts at JP Morgan. M&S added 0.6 per cent, or 1.3p, to 236.6p – its highest level since January last year.

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Source of data and images: dailymail

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