- Belfour Beatty reported Wednesday first-half profit jumped, as it cut costs and focused on better quality work to boost margins.

For the six months to 30 June, statutory pre-tax profit rose to £50m from £12m a year earlier, and total revenues fell to £3.22bn from £3.54bn a year earlier.

Revenues were pressured following a decision to cut lower-quality business, and a 13% downtick in construction services revenue amid an expected decline in the US.

Group revenue growth was expected to be flat in the second half of the year, the company said.

The company's order book increased 11% to £12.6bn in the first half of this year from £11.4bn a year earlier.

Balfour said it was confident that the group's full year earnings would meet expectations, prompting the company raise the interim dividend by 33% and plan to repay some outstanding convertible bonds this year.

The company recommended an interim dividend of 1.6p per share, up 33% from 1.2p a year earlier.

Balfour said it had not yet seen an impact from the UK's impending exit from the European Union but remained vigilant to respond to any changes in market conditions.

'All our businesses are now either achieving industry standard margins or on track to do so in the second half. The disciplines installed under Build to Last are also enabling us to increase the order book with key infrastructure projects to translate Balfour Beatty's expert capabilities into future profitable growth,' said Leo Quinn, Group Chief Executive. Story provided by