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Caribbean Global Market Update

Alitalia Receives Two Binding Bids, Willis Towers Reaffirms Outlook

Author: Sarla Buch
Last Update: 12:42 PM EDT November 02 2018

4:00 PM Frankfurt – Alitalia confirmed receiving two binding bids. International Consolidated Airlines lifted operating profit forecast for fiscal years between 2019 and 2023.Paddy Power Betfair reported strong third-quarter results. Willis Towers Watson reaffirmed fiscal forecast.

In London trading, FTSE 100 index edged down 0.41 to 7,114.25 and in Frankfurt the DAX index jumped 107.10 or 0.9% to 11,575.64.

In Paris, CAC 40 index advanced 28.60 or 0.5% to 5,114.38.

Alitalia, the Italian state-appointed administrators confirmed that it had received two binding bids for the troubled airliner.

EasyJet had submitted its revised expression of interest on “existing strategy for Italy” and the U.S.-based Delta Air.

Delta reportedly intends to invest in the struggling Alitalia and directly compete with Qatar Airways who also controls about 49% stake in Italian airline Air Italy.

International Consolidated Airlines Group, S.A advanced 2.9% to 635.60 pence after the U.K.-based airline operator updated its long-term planning goals for 2019-2023.

IAG lifted fiscal operating profit forecast to about €7.2 billion per year from the earlier estimate of €6.5 billion, an average for fiscal 2018-2022.

However, the British Airways parent revised higher average net capital expense of about €2.6 billion from the earlier estimate for average of €2.1 billion per year for fiscal 2018-2022.

Paddy Power Betfair Plc gained 1.9% to 7,045 pence after the U.K.-based sports betting and gaming operator said revenues in the third-quarter ending in September jumped 10% from a year ago to £483 million but operating profit plunged 16% to £101 million.

The betting operator said online revenues soared 15% to £248 million and revenues in the U.S. surged 22% but retail revenues fell 4%. Revenues in the U.K. retail locations slid 1%; and revenues in Ireland-based shops declined 6% impacted by weaker margin.

Paddy Power Betfair lifted fiscal 2018 operating profit forecast to between £465 million and £480 million from the earlier estimate of £460 million to £480 million.

Willis Towers Watson Plc jumped 4.9% to 150.07 pence after the insurance brokerage and advisory services provider said revenues in the nine-month period ending in September jumped 6% from a year ago to $6.1 billion.

Net income in the period fell 1.9% to $317 million from $323 million in the same period a year ago and diluted earnings per share dropped to $2.39 from $2.36.

Willis Towers Watson reaffirmed fiscal 2018 revenue growth of about 3% to 4% and diluted earnings per share in the range of $10.12 to $10.32.