Tesco to say turnaround nearly done | City & Business | Finance



Aside from announcing the payout hike, City analysts believe that chief executive Dave Lewis will say that Tesco’s half year pre-tax profits have shot up 66.7 per cent to £937million. 

Additionally, revenues for the six months to the end of August are forecast to be up 8.9 per cent at £30.9billion thanks to its recovering sales. 

The supermarket giant resumed dividend payments to shareholders 12 months ago, having axed them in 2014 as it struggled to get to grips with poor trading, loss-making businesses and an accounting scandal. 

At the results, Lewis is expected to face extended questioning by analysts and investors about the performance of Jack’s, the discount chain it launched earlier this month.

Jack’s is the latest move from Tesco in its battle to wrest back market share from German discount chains Aldi and Lidl. 

It currently has two branches of Jack’s but plans to open 13 more over the next year. 

One potential fly in the ointment is that the supermarket giant may announce that it has had to set aside £30 million to cover a potential fine from the City regulator, the Financial ­Conduct Authority, for an “unprecedented and serious” cyber attack that affected thousands of Tesco Bank customers two years ago. 

Hackers broke into and stole money from Tesco Bank customers’ accounts, which forced it to shut down services for two days. 

Tesco Bank and the FCA are believed to be in the final stages of agreeing the size of the fine. 

Clive Black, head of research at broker Shore Capital, said that fine is unlikely to derail the recovery at Tesco. “While annoying and far from irrelevant for shareholders, it would not notably adjust our financial forecasts or change our positive stance on Tesco shares,” he said.


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