Good morning, it's Paul here with Friday's SCVR.

Update at 13:07 - Today's report is now finished.

I nodded off after lunch yesterday, so there's still a section missing on Cohort (LON:CHRT) . I've been through all the accounts, and taken notes, just need to write them up. So I'll catch up with that later, and indicate here when it's done. Now done - it's in today's report below.

UK retail sales for June have come in reasonably robust in the circumstances, down -1.6% year-on-year (better than -6.4% forecast).

UK PMI survey data (confidence) have just come out, and look surprisingly strong. Composite PMI (flash, for July) is 57.1, versus 47.7 in June. That's very reassuring indeed. Similarly strong PMI data has also come out today in France & Germany. Therefore, it looks like economic recovery in the UK and Europe's biggest economies, is well underway. That gives me more confidence to sit tight on my long positions, and that the time for shorting may have now passed? Possibly? Nobody knows, because markets anticipate these things, and hence often do the opposite of what we might expect.

Face masks in shops, etc, become supposedly compulsory today, but police say it's unenforceable. I'm finding it bearable, wearing a light, cloth face covering, that's reasonably comfortable. So it's really not a big deal, and can only help (ie. it can't make things worse).


French Connection (LON:FCCN)

Share price: 11.5p (up over 100% today, at 13:09)
No. shares: 96.6m
Market cap: £11.1m

(I'm long)


The RNS is actually called "Trading Statement", but I've renamed it to be more accurate!

This is a bit of a game changer. I was worried that FCCN might run out of cash, and go bust. However, that risk has now disappeared for the next 2 years, because it announces today a new £15m working capital facility with Hilco (restructuring experts). FCCN says this is sufficient for its needs. Hopefully Hilco might give FCCN a push to do a pre-pack administration on the moribund stores portfolio? FCCN did not qualify for Govt financing schemes, but hints that it has deferred tax and other payments, which will need to be paid sooner or later.

Collection of wholesale receivables (a substantial part of the balance sheet) better than expected during the lockdown period - good news.

Own website sales up 24%…

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