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Three things you need to know in the financial markets this morning from investment writer, Tony Cross

Smiths Group

The diversified engineering business, Smiths Group, has today published half year results. Revenues for the period are slightly higher, although margins have come under pressure from the company’s medical division. This was anticipated as a result of ongoing disruption stemming from a change with service providers in the medical division. The company has simultaneously announced this morning that the unit is to be split out from the rest of the business, which may help offset shareholder angst over the impact on earnings.

Henry Boot

Property investor Henry Boot plc has published its full year results, which shows what could be considered some surprising weakness in a sector that has seen rampant growth of late. Revenues, pre-tax profits and earnings per share are all lower, although a 12% uptick in the net asset value may be sufficient to placate investors. The company envisages further challenges in the year ahead as the UK attempts to extract itself from the EU.

Directorate Changes

Being Friday, news is a little thin in the ground but a couple of FTSE-100 companies have announced directorate changes. Keith Williams is to succeed Les Owen as the Chairman of Royal Mail, which has simultaneously trigger an announcement from Aviva that Mr Williams will stand down from his position as Chair of its Audit Committee. These changes take effect from the end of May.

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Please note this article does not constitute investment advice. Investors are encouraged to do their own research beforehand or consult a professional advisor.

Tony Cross

Tony Cross

Tony Cross is a market commentator with over 15 years of experience, producing compelling, insightful copy for journalists and investors alike. Focusing on macroeconomics, UK blue chip equities and inter market analysis, Cross's commentary is well regarded for its clarity and ability to cut through the waffle. He has been quoted in publications as diverse as The Financial Times, The Times, The Guardian and The Sun. He has also been a regular guest on both Share Radio and TipTV.

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