Taking Stock

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Bruntcliffe Aggregates, where two possible predators have built share stakes, slipped 1.5p to 24.5p. Albert E Sharp is bullish. It believes the shares are undervalued, seeing profits of pounds 2m this year and pounds 2.25m next. Assets are 35p a share. The Bardon aggregates group has a 22.7 per cent interest and Bodfari, an unquoted North Wales gravel group, has 6.7 per cent.

Howden, an engineer, is planning to sell non-core operations but denies a bid approach. The shares, 68p in December, gained 9.5p to 93p.

Lorien, one of 10 AIM founder members, has moved to a full listing. Its shares held at 410p; a year ago they were 197.5p. A computer personnel group, it lifted profits last year by 52 per cent to pounds 1.48m.