Ten weeks is a long time in a crisis. But it's how long shareholders of Johnson Matthey have had to wait since the FTSE 100 company's last update on the impact of the coronavirus crisis on its business.
Back then it said it expected a profit hit of about £50million to its annual results for the year ended March.
Those results were delayed because of the ongoing shutdown which forced Johnson Matthey to close most of its plants that make catalytic converters for cars.
Johnson Matthey was forced to close most of its plants that make catalytic converters for cars
Around one in three cars worldwide have Johnson Matthey catalytic converters fitted.
The results are due out on Thursday and the company will then give investors a full look under the bonnet of the business.
The size of its debt pile will be a key number to look at. Analysts reckon net debt will be about £1.4billion and that could determine what happens to the dividend.
Scribblers are pencilling in a full-year dividend of 68.3p, according to analysis by AJ Bell. That would be down from 85.5p last year and suggests that they feel a dividend cut is going to be inevitable.
Another company which is on dividend watch is Aveva, the industrial software firm which releases its annual results on Tuesday.
Some companies have been criticised for paying dividends while taking taxpayer money.
But Aveva said in April that it had no plans to use Government support. UBS scribblers say if that remains the case, a dividend is likely to be paid, pointing out that majority shareholder Schneider Electric has also paid its own dividend.
One of the targets Aveva set itself in 2018 was to lift profit margins to above 30 per cent by 2022 so any confirmation of that goal will also reassure investors.
Small cap intrigue
There's intrigue at the smaller end of the market. Oil rig supplier Gulf Marine Services managed to fend off an unsolicited £26million takeover approach from Dutch rival Seafox last month.
Now Seafox is unable to make another offer for at least six months under UK takeover laws. So small-cap fanatics were intrigued to see Seafox, which is Gulf Marine's largest shareholder, lift its stake last week...not once, but twice.
The second increase to 29 per cent – just below the threshold that requires a full takeover offer – was disclosed just minutes before the market closed for the weekend.
Remember Urban Exposure? A few weeks ago we revealed how an activist fund run by Christopher Mills had secretly built a stake in the AIM-listed residential property development finance firm.
Now City sources say a mystery bidder is looking at launching a tender offer for some or all of Urban Exposure at between 55p and 65p a share, meaning they would take a large chunk or possibly all of the shares.
The move comes after the Wellesley Group, run by Graham Wellesley, the Earl of Cowley, submitted a takeover proposal for Urban Exposure that was rejected by the company.