- CEPS reported Friday that it would propose to renew its annual dividend payment after pre-tax profit rose in the year to the end of December.

Profit before tax rose £902,000 in 2017 from £146,000 the previous year, while revenue fell 3% to £23.60m from £24.32m.

Operating profit more than doubled to £1.10m from £536,00 the previous year, while group costs rose to £322,000 from £308,000.

'The combination of a tightening labour supply market and the introduction of the Minimum Wage, Auto Enrolment and the Apprentice Levy have all led to significant increases in the cost of employing people' the firm said.

The firm said trading in the current year was marginally behind the board's expectations but added that it expected the group to make progress through the year.

At 8:49am: [LON:CEPS] CEPS PLC share price was -2p at 37.5p

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