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CITY WHISPERS: Greggs gets a stock buy rating…and his pizza

CITY WHISPERS: Greggs gets a buy rating on stock… and its pizza, which ‘represents solid value for money’

Greggs will reveal how much the rising cost of ingredients is hurting profits and, crucially for Britain’s confectioners, whether the prices of its baked goods will also have to rise when it reports its annual results on Tuesday.

City forecasters estimate that revenue rose about a fifth last year, but profits were largely flat.

Analysts from one company, however, jumped at the opportunity to do their own quality control check on Greggs’ new takeout dishes, sold through JustEat.

Fast food: City forecasters estimate revenue rose about a fifth last year

Jefferies brokers tested the ‘Pizza Box, Large Wedges & 2 Drinks’ sharing offer at their offices, which according to a recent note ‘was a delight’ and ‘represented great value for money’ at £10.70 plus 50p service charge.

Along with a candid snapshot of takeout, analysts reiterated their ‘buy’ rating on Budget Baker’s stock – or is that their dine-in?

Virgin UK boss wants the best for Britain

Who should appear as a signatory to the latest statement from the pro-EU campaign group Best for Britain other than Peter Norris, Chairman of Virgin UK?

Now he can figure among the tenure ocracy with the likes of Dragons’ Den star Deborah Meaden and former BT chairman Sir Mike Rake.

But older readers will remember him as the head of Barings when rogue trader Nick Leeson wrecked the century-old bank.

Norris was subsequently barred from holding any directorship for four years.

But the world turns, and we believe in second chances.

Schreyer puts his foot down on Go-Ahead

Go-Ahead boss Christian Schreyer certainly put his foot down on the throttle in his first nine months in the transportation group.

The German took home a pay package of £976,000 in the year to July 2022, according to the latest annual report, including 98.2 per cent of his potential performance-related bonus.

In addition to being tied to monotonous measures like profit, it included starting train operations in Bavaria, which is where he went to college, by the way.

The 55-year-old is a keen cyclist, but perhaps he could use some of his excellent pay package to take advantage of UK-only bus fares out of London that are capped at £2 until the end of June.

There’s never a bad time for a staycation, Christian.

Serbian boost for Rio Tinto?

Rio Tinto suffered a major setback last year when Serbian officials revoked mining licenses for a huge lithium project.

The government’s decision, which at the time was gearing up for elections, followed environmental protests that garnered support from Serbian native tennis genius Novak Djokovic.

The Jadar mine received scant mention in the miner’s recent FTSE 100 annual report and results.

What was there was mostly limited to saying that Rio Tinto was in talks with “all interested parties” to get the project up and running again.

But are things looking up in Belgrade? US engineer Bechtel recently listed a series of job ads for positions such as ‘mine shaft access specialist’… at the Jadar mine, no less.