ADRs End Higher; British American Tobacco, Royal Bank of Scotland and Telefonica Trade Actively
International stocks trading in New York closed higher on Thursday.
The BNY Mellon index of American depositary receipts rose 0.3% to 154.58. The European index increased 0.3% to 139.88. The Asian index rose 0.1% to 186.74. The Latin American index increased 1.3% to 279.38. And the emerging-markets index rose 0.3% to 346.45.
British American Tobacco PLC (BTI), Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC (RBS) and Telefonica SA (TEF) were among those with ADRs that traded actively.
While British American Tobacco PLC's combustible cigarette business is puffing along nicely, analysts are focused on the outlook for its new products that some say disappoint. Jefferies says the company's results lack the details to "build conviction" in heated tobacco and reduced risk product growth, an area in which the tobacco giant is seen as lagging rival Philip Morris International. BAT's next-generation product contribution of GBP500 million for the year is below the GBP550 million the street was expecting. The company is looking for GBP1 billion in contribution from these new products in fiscal 2018, which Jefferies says is a downgrade from the "over GBP1 billion" it previously mentioned. ADRs of BAT fell 2.1% to $60.41.
Conduct charges are likely to weigh on the full-year results of Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC when the U.K. bank reports on Friday. Hargreaves Lansdown notes that RBS is teetering on the brink of being in the black, having posted GBP1.3 billion of profits in the first nine months of 2017. However, analyst estimates are penciling in GBP2.2 billion of conduct charges in the fourth quarter, which is expected to push RBS into a loss of GBP592 million, its 10th consecutive year in the red, says HL's Laith Khalaf. Across the whole year, conduct charges are expected to total GBP2.7 billion, stemming mainly from an impending fine from the U.S. Department of Justice. ADRs of RBS rose 1.3% to $7.94.
Spain's Telefonica halted a downward subscriber trend in Mexico in 4Q, adding 532K wireless customers--including 58K postpaid--to end 2017 with 25.1M. The 13% increase in postpaid customers to 2.2M in 2017, along with higher average revenue per user and less aggressive pricing, contributed to 4Q revenues of EUR334M and operating income before depreciation and amortization of EUR78M, up 0.3% and 21% respectively after adjusting for currency moves and other one-off variables. Telefonica competes in Mexico with wireless market leader America Movil and with AT&T. ADRs rose 4.6% to $9.72.
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
February 22, 2018 19:12 ET (00:12 GMT)Copyright (c) 2018 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.