May 22, 2018 / 6:23 AM / a year ago

UK's Halfords warns profit to be flat in 2018-19

LONDON, May 22 (Reuters) - British bicycles to car parts retailer Halfords warned on Tuesday that profit for the current year would be flat after reporting a 5 percent fall for 2017-18, saying it would step-up investment in the business.

For the year to March 30, Halfords made an underlying pretax profit of 71.6 million pounds ($96.1 million)- in line with analysts’ forecasts but down from 75.4 million pounds made in 2016-17.

Halfords said it anticipated the motoring market would remain robust and it continued to see good growth prospects for the cycling market although it did not expect prices to rise in cycling this year as in the previous year.

“Given this, the phasing of our remaining foreign exchange mitigation actions and decisions to accelerate investment in services and customer capabilities, we currently anticipate FY19 underlying profit before tax to be broadly in line with FY18,” it said.

Analysts’ average forecast had been 76.5 million pounds. ($1 = 0.7450 pounds) (Reporting by James Davey, Editing by Paul Sandle)

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