CITY WHISPERS: Greggs gets a buy rating on stocks… and his pizza

CITY WHISPERS: Greggs gets a buy rating on stocks… and his pizza, which ‘represents strong value for money’



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Greggs will reveal how much the rising cost of ingredients is eating away at profits and – crucially for UK pastry aficionados – whether the prices of its baked goods will have to rise too when it reports its annual results on Tuesday.

City forecasters estimate that revenues rose by about a fifth last year, but profits have remained almost flat.

Analysts at one firm, however, jumped at the chance to do their own quality control on Greggs’ new takeout dishes, sold through JustEat.

Fast food: City forecasters estimate revenues rose about a fifth last year

Fast food: City forecasters estimate revenues rose about a fifth last year

Jefferies brokers sampled the ‘Pizza Box, Large Wedges & 2 Drinks’ deal in their offices, which, according to a recent report, ‘went down a treat’ and ‘represented strong value for money’ at £10.70 plus a 50p service charge.

Along with a candid view of the takeaway, analysts reiterated their “buy” advice on the budget baker’s shares — or was that on their dinners?

Virgin’s British boss wants Best for Britain

Who should show up as a signatory to the latest release from the pro-EU campaign group Best for Britain than Virgin UK chairman Peter Norris.

He may now belong to the Remainocracy which includes Dragons’ Den hotshot Deborah Meaden and former BT chairman Sir Mike Rake.

But older readers will remember him as the boss of Barings when rogue trader Nick Leeson destroyed the century-old bank.

Norris was subsequently suspended from holding board positions for four years.

But the world turns – and we believe in second chances.

Schreyer kicks full throttle at Go-Ahead

Go-Ahead boss Christian Schreyer certainly kicked full throttle in his first nine months with the transport group.

The German took home a pay package of £976,000 in the year to July 2022, according to the latest annual report, including 98.2 per cent of his potential performance-related bonus.

Besides being related to everyday measures such as profit, it also included starting train operations in Bavaria, where he incidentally went to university.

The 55-year-old is an avid cyclist, but perhaps he could use some of his mammoth pay package to take advantage of Britain’s single bus fares outside London capped at £2 until the end of June.

There’s never a bad time for a staycation, Christian.

Serbia boost for Rio Tinto?

Rio Tinto suffered a major setback last year when Serbian officials revoked mining permits for a massive lithium project.

The decision by the government – which was preparing for elections at the time – followed environmental protests backed by Serbian tennis prodigy Novak Djokovic.

The Jadar mine was barely mentioned in the recent annual report and results of the FTSE 100 miner.

What was there was mostly limited to saying that Rio Tinto was in talks with “all stakeholders” to get the project going again.

But does it look good in Belgrade? The American engineer Bechtel recently posted a series of vacancies for positions as ‘mine shaft access specialist’… at none other than the Jadar mine.


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