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The Independent Online
London-listed US motor parts distributor Mid-States returned to the dividend list for the first time in three years after posting second quarter pre-tax profits 17 per cent higher at pounds 1.63m. Dermot Desmond, the Irish entrepreneur who recently bought London City airport, has built up an 18 per cent stake. The shares ended 2.5p higher at 20.5p.

Sports retailer Blacks Leisure closed 2p lower at 168p. The shares have dipped since a recent agm statement said underlying sales growth of 24 per cent in the first 20 weeks would not be repeated in the second half. But house broker Williams de Broe thinks the drop is overdone and has raised its pre-tax estimates for the year to February 1997 from pounds 11.7m to pounds 14.7m, implying a prospective p/e ratio of 11.