Dividend suspended at MDIS

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Investors in the troubled McDonnell Douglas Information Systems company were dealt another blow yesterday, as the shares dived 7p to 54p on worse- than-expected half-year losses of pounds 9.4m and news that the interim dividend was being scrapped.

The computer services firm also warned that it did not expect the previously announced restructuring of its operations to yield any benefits until 1997.

MDIS has made several profit warnings since its shares were floated at 260p each on the stock market in March 1994. The latest results compare with a pounds 1.67m profit in the first half of last year. Half-year turnover fell from pounds 79m to pounds 60.5m, in part reflecting the disposal of non-core businesses last year.

"The directors planned for 1996 to be a turnaround year leading to scope for improved financial performance in 1997 and subsequent years," a MDIS spokesman said yesterday.

"In the short term, trading conditions continue to be difficult and the benefits of the restructuring are unlikely to be evident until 1997."