Excluding the impact of one-off events reported in those overseas markets, profit before tax is expected to be slightly ahead of the current market consensus for Inchcape of £127.7m. The tax rate will be lower than last year's as it benefits from a recent ruling in relation to a tax efficient financing structure. Inchcape's financial year ends 31 December, and its report to shareholders is due in March next year.
Following changes in case law Inchcape submitted a retrospective VAT claim in June this year for the recovery of overpaid VAT. Negotiations with HM Customs & Excise continue, and Inchcape says, “While progress has been made the claim has yet to be finalised”. Inchcape expects a final settlement of at least £30.0m, including interest, while admitting that the status of the negotiations is such that it is difficult to predict the final outcome with any certainty.