Not so Smart news for building group

BUILDING and construction group J Smart yesterday unveiled the first loss in its history due to writedowns on the value of property.

Losses in the year to 31 July were 1.2 million compared to a profit last year of 5.9m. Stripping out writedowns, the Edinburgh-based group made an operating profit of 4.5m compared to 8.5m the year before. Figures were hit by "negligible" house sales. The firm is still paying a dividend of 13.85p.

Founded in 1965, J Smart listed on the main market in 1973. Shares in the company were up 9.3 per cent to 427.5p.