Updates from Intertek, Keller and Fidessa

Markets dip again with United Utilities under pressure after a Credit Suisse re-rating. Overall the FTSE 100 slips 110 points on the week


The FTSE 100 dipped almost 51 points on Friday, down 0.76% to 6,679.1. United Utilities and Severn Trent both took sharp hits, slipping 3.82% (to 856p) and 3% (to 1877p) respectively. On the other hand, Smith & Nephew climbed 3.8% to 1065p on a strong Q2 update.

Stateside there was more pressure too for a second day with the Dow Jones slipping almost 70 points to 16,493, down 0.42%.

We start with a half year update from testing operator Intertek. Revenues dip 5.6% to £1,024.3m at actual currency rates (though constant currency revenue is up 2.9%). At actual rates operating profit dips 3.8% to £152.3m.

Diluted earnings per share come under pressure, down 4.1% to 51.3p while the interim dividend climbs 6.7% to 16p. Good growth in Commercial & Electrical and Consumer divisions is claimed.

"Organic revenue growth," says boss Wolfhart Hauser, "for the Group will strengthen in the second half as one-off effects annualise and as we continue to see good growth in other areas of our portfolio."

Engineering specialist Keller says interim numbers for the last six months sees revenues climb 22% to £788.2m while operating profit climbs 24% to £35.5m. Pre-tax profits climb 21% to £32.5m. Earnings per share climb 5% to 29.5p.

The interim dividend rises 5% to 8.4p per share (2013: 8.0p). Cash generated from operations comes in at £31.9m (2013: £30.2m) while the operating margin is up to 4.5% (2013: 4.4%).

Chief exec Justin Atkinson expects Group's results for the full year to be in line with market expectations and he remains optimistic about the long-term.

Lastly, an interim from Fidessa. Revenues slip 2% to £137.1m due to currency gusts while operating profit dips 4% to £19.9m. Operating profit is also under pressure, down 4% to £19.5m. Diluted earnings per share slips 4% to 38p.

General improving market conditions have resulted in a reduction in the headwinds Fidessa has been suffering in recent years from consolidations, restructurings and closures in its customer base it says.

"Fidessa continued to be strongly cash generative, closing the period with a cash balance of £57.8 million and no debt."

Keller Group

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