Company News in Brief

City Merchants High Yield Trust is paying 2.4p, making a 8.4p (7.875p) total payout for the year ended 31 December. Net asset value per share is 146.2p (105.7p). Taxable profits rose to pounds 2m ( pounds 1.95m).

Conrad, the leather clothing and leisurewear company and provider of sports ground security, reported pre-tax profits of pounds 23,000 for the six months to 30 June, compared with a pounds 341,000 taxable loss previously. Turnover declined to pounds 2.1m ( pounds 4.7m). Earnings per share are 0.04p (LPS 0.63p). No dividend.

Essex Furniture, the furniture maker and retailer, lifted pre-tax profits from pounds 619,000 to pounds 703,000 for the six months to 31 December, on a 44 per cent rise in sales from pounds 5.2m to pounds 7.5m. Earnings per share are 4.06p (3.73p). Interim dividend is 1.8p (1.5p).

Kynoch Group, the medical equipment supplier that also makes fabrics and rugs from natural fibres, revealed a sharp slump from pounds 958,000 pre-tax profit to pounds 644,000 taxable loss for the year ended 31 December. Turnover edged higher to pounds 15.9m ( pounds 15.2m). Loss per share is 1.9p (EPS 3.4p). No dividend.

London Industrial, the commercial property investment firm, reported a fall in pre-tax profits to pounds 182,000 ( pounds 363,000) in the three months to 31 December. Earnings per share dropped to 2.1p. No dividend.

Wills Group more than doubled pre-tax profits from pounds 287,000 to pounds 575,000 in the six months to 31 December. It was accompanied by a 44 per cent boost in turnover to pounds 11.5m ( pounds 8m). Earnings per share improved to 0.35p (0.24p). Interim dividend is 0.115p (0.1p).

Johnson Fry Utilities Trust, the investment trust introduced to the official list of the Stock Exchange last September, is to pay a 3.2p dividend for the first half to 31 January. Net asset value is 122.4p. Pre-tax profits were pounds 1.5m.

Rights & Issues Investment Trust is to pay a higher total dividend of 8.7p (8.3p) for the year ended 31 December. Net asset value per income share grew to 144.9p (109.4p).

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