- Educational publishing house Pearson swung to a first-half profit after it benefited from the proceeds of asset sales and cut costs.

Pre-tax profit for the six months through June amounted to £202m, compared to a £10m loss a year earlier, with the improvement driven by the sales of Wall Street English and Utel.

Revenue fell 9% due the asset sales but grew 2% on an underlying basis, while underlying adjusted operating profit rose 46% thanks, in part, to savings from a restructuring programme.

The company said it still expected to grow its underlying profit for the full year.

'US higher education courseware revenue grew modestly in the first half helped by lower returns, as expected,' Pearson said.

'However, in line with our full year guidance for this segment, we continue to expect a decline in net sales in the second half as gross sales continue to be impacted by ongoing underlying market pressures.'

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