Paving slab group Marshalls hints at full-year earnings beat

After a 14% jump in first-half profits and a “strong” start to the second half, chief executive Martyn Coffey and his team are “increasingly confident of at least achieving its expectations for 2019”

Marshalls - Paving slab group Marshalls hints it could beat forecasts this year
Marshalls is outperforming the market at the moment

Paving slab maker Marshalls PLC (LON:MSLH) has hinted it could beat forecasts this year after posting a double-digit rise in first-half sales and profits.

Despite the poor weather in June, revenue climbed 15% to £280.1mln (H1 18: £244.3mln) in the six months ended 30 June,, while pre-tax profits jumped by a similar percentage to £37.1mln (H1 18: £32.5mln).

READ: Marshalls’ shares dented as Berenberg cuts its rating for the paving group

Public sector and commercial sales – which account for two-thirds of revenues – were up 21% year-on-year, including an 11% boost from the Edenhall concrete brick acquisition.

Chief executive Martyn Coffey said the first-half performance, coupled with a “strong” start to the second half, means the board “is increasingly confident of at least achieving its expectations for 2019”.

He added: “The group continues to outperform the Construction Products Association's ("CPA") growth figures, despite ongoing political and Brexit uncertainty.

The CPA's recent Summer Forecast predicts a decrease in UK market volumes of 0.3 per cent in 2019, followed by an increase of 1.0 per cent in 2020, while the underlying indicators in the New Build Housing, Road, Rail and Water Management markets remain supportive.”

Shares were up 1% to 621p in early deals on Thursday.

Quick facts: Marshalls

Price: 797.5 GBX

Market: LSE
Market Cap: £1.6 billion

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