MARKETS LIVE: Investors buoyed by Federal Reserve minutes

09:36
WH Smith is on the up and up still thanks to airports

From the PA –

WH Smith has revealed that sales from its shops in train stations and airports have overtaken high street stores for the first time as it posted a 7% hike in annual profits.

The retailer said its burgeoning travel arm is now the largest part of the group by both sales and profit, notching up a 10% surge in annual earnings to £96 million and accounting for nearly two-thirds of group trading profits.

This helped offset ongoing pressure on the high street chain, which saw trading profits remain flat at £62 million and like-for-like sales fall 4% in the year to August 31, despite a boost from spoof humour books such as Bruno Vincent’s Enid Blyton for grown-ups title, Five On Brexit Island.

Chief executive Stephen Clarke hailed a ‘good performance’ across the group as overall pre-tax profits rose to £140 million from £131 million.

08:56
The FTSE 100 is flat for the session at 7,532

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