Rolling coverage of the latest financial and economic news, following the release of US bank stress test results
Brits bought 60% more bikes in April as the nation turned to two-wheeled transport during the coronavirus lockdown, my colleague Sarah Butler writes.
Government advice to avoid public transport and to keep cars off the road led to a complete turnaround in the cycle market.
With administration looming, Intu shares have plunged nearly 60% today to record lows of around 1.7p.
The shopping owner’s share price has collapsed by more than 95% since January.
Many retail premises will not be able to reopen with the same capacity levels as before the pandemic and there will almost certainly be fewer customers in a number of sectors.
Some retailers have shut up shop for good already this year, and forecasts suggest that around 20,000 retail units could close by year end, with the vast majority on the high street or in shopping centres. Retail parks and standalone shops are relatively unscathed.
Tesco sales soared during lockdown as shoppers switched to buying online, in local stores as well as returning to big weekly shops at the supermarkets, my colleague Sarah Butler writes.
The UK’s biggest supermarket chain said UK sales at established stores rose 8.7% in the three months to 30 May with sales of food increasing by 12% while clothing sales dived by a fifth. Online sales rose by 48.5% and sales in convenience stores jumped 10%.
In the last three months the industry has changed beyond imagination.
A lot to catch up on this morning, including French consumer confidence, which rose more than expected in June.
The INSEE official statistics agency said the reading came in at 97, higher than expectations for a reading of 95 and higher than 93 in May.
Not great news for corporate gender diversity:
Karen Hubbard is stepping down from Card Factory after four years. This means there are now ZERO women at the top of any FTSE listed retailers. This is despite 60% of the 3m retail workforce being female & women making 80% of all purchasing decisions. https://t.co/TiT6xXfhcz
Karen and the board have agreed that this is an appropriate time to transition to new leadership committed to the longer term successful implementation of the next phase of the Group’s return to growth.
The board and Karen have therefore agreed that she will step down as CEO and from the board at the end of June and a search for a successor will commence immediately.
Intu Properties said on Friday it was likely to go into administration after the shopping centre owner failed to secure an agreement with its creditors, my colleague Zoe Wood writes.
The company, whose centres include Lakeside in Essex and the Trafford Centre in Manchester, has debts of more than £4.5bn and said it had been unable to persuade lenders to grant a debt repayment holiday before Friday night’s deadline. The company owns a total of 17 shopping centres across the UK.
Since that update, discussions have continued with the Intu Group’s creditors in relation to the terms of standstill-based agreements. Unfortunately, insufficient alignment and agreement has been achieved on such terms.
The board is therefore considering the position of Intu with a view to protecting the interests of its stakeholders. This is likely to involve the appointment of administrators.
And European markets are open for trading:
Good morning, and welcome to our rolling coverage of the world economy, the financial markets, the eurozone and business.
Equity investors in both Asia and Europe seem unfazed by the results from the US Federal Reserve’s much-anticipated bank stress tests, covering the country’s 34 largest lenders
The Fed will allow US banks to continuing paying dividends but they will be capped at their current levels, but there is chatter that dividends will be cut.
If banks want to pay dividends, they must have a formula that is connected to their earnings. The next round of the reporting season will be interesting as dividend polices and provisions for bad loans will be in focus.