5 Killer Stats Not To Have Missed This Week

January 5, 2018

1.     £62 million wiped off the value of Debenhams. The high street retailer revealed it had another torrid Christmas trading season after the release of its seasonal update. Heavy discounting helped boost sales, but it has taken a toll on profit margins and even suggestions that the company could make a further £20 million in cost savings have failed to impress investors. 


2.     129 million passengers for Ryanair in 2017. The airline might have been blighted by the pilot rostering issue of the autumn and the threat of pre-Christmas strikes (which didn’t materialise), but it hasn’t stopped the budget airline’s passenger numbers from impressing. That’s a 10% increase on the 2016 figure and the December load factor stood at 95% - don’t go getting on board hoping to find an empty seat next to you!


3.     £725 million profit expected for Next in 2017. Another high street stalwart reported festive sales figures but the fashion retailer clearly had a better Christmas than some of its peers. A big uplift in online sales more than covered any downturn on the high street and with full price sales set to improve in the year ahead, investors were quick to applaud the news with the shares rising almost 10%.


4.     $10 billion added to Nvidia’s share proce. This week saw some shock news that microchips from Intel, one of the world’s biggest chip makers, appear to have a serious security flaw. Although Intel could be seen as too big to fail, the issue is seen as a huge opportunity for the company’s competitors - like Nvidia. Investors have been quick to jump on the opportunity. 


5.     £205.8 billion worth of unsecured debt in the UK. Borrowing on credit cards and bank loans hit a fresh all-time high, although the Bank of England’s concern over the situation does appear to have been noted by lenders. Evidence that the total amount of credit available is reducing - and the fact banks are making it harder to get loans - is seen as a positive in managing debt, although at the same time it does risk stubbing out any growth in consumer spending.