Ashtead Group's share price pops on double-digit rental revenue and expectation of full-year results lift

Francesca Washtell
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Ashtead is a construction equipment provider (Source: Getty)

Construction equipment provider Ashtead Group's share price popped more than five per cent this morning after it delivered double-digit rental revenue and healthy profit growth.

The figures

Ashtead's rental revenue grew by 12 per cent to £660.8m in the first quarter ended 31 July.

Operating profit grew by four per cent to £183.6m, up from £160.7m in the first quarter of 2015, while the company pumped £328m of capital back into the business.

Read more: Ashtead's share price is on the up, building on a good set of results

Earnings per share also grew by a healthy four per cent, coming in at 24.2p.

Ashtead's share price was up more than five per cent in morning trading to 1,327p.

Ashtead Ashtead | mobile image

Why it's interesting

Ashtead said its reported results were positively impacted by the weaker pound to the tune of £17m, but this was "broadly balanced by the impact of lower gains on fleet disposals", at £12m, as the group reduced its replacement capital expenditure.

Good performance in both of its divisions, strong end-markets and the benefit of the weaker pound have all led Ashtead to upgrade its earnings forecast for the full-year, which is now expects to be ahead of expectations.

Read more: Ashtead shares pop on the back of US peer's strong results

Although the housing sector suffered in the immediate wake of June's Brexit vote, the sector has proved resilient.

Housebuilders' share prices rose again yesterday after big-hitter Berkeley Group said it would meet its £2bn profit target and Redrow posted record results.

What Ashtead said

Chief executive Geoff Drabble said:

The underlying performance of the business continues to benefit form a clear and consistent strategy of organic growth supplemented by bolt-on acquisitions.

We will continue to grow responsibly, adhering to the capital allocation priorities we have outlined. We have therefore invested £328m by way of capital expenditure and a further £64m on bolt-on acquisitions.