Full Year Results 

Hill & Smith placates markets

Hill & Smith placates markets

Shares in Hill & Smith (HILS) were marked down 43 per cent peak-to-trough following last August’s profits warning, but market sentiment, though far from bullish, has improved of late. Whether the infrastructure specialist’s full-year figures will provide additional reassurance is open to question as top-line growth is set against a 120 basis point contraction in the operating margin. Acquisition expenses, the cost of servicing defined-benefit pension schemes and a steep rise in goodwill impairments contributed to a 12 per cent decline in operating profits, although it’s clear that performance strengthened over the closing months of 2018.

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