Shares rise.

Merchant shares buck the trend

Published:  24 July, 2009

LONDON: Shares in Galiform, owner of the Howden Joinery, surged 24% to 46.5p pence yesterday despite a 77% dive in first-half profits reported by the builders' merchant division.

Like-for-like sales at Howden dropped by 9.8% but the group said that it expected an improvement in the second half.

Matthew Ingle, chief executive, said: "We are encouraged by the resilient operating and performance of the business in a challenging environment."

The better than expected performance by Galiform also lifted Grafton Group's shares which rose 4.6% to 2.91 euros on the Irish stock exchange.

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