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Compass, Paragon, United Utilities: U.K., Irish Equity Preview

Nov. 24 (Bloomberg) -- The following is a list of companies whose shares may have unusual price changes in U.K. and Irish markets. Stock symbols are in parentheses and prices are from the last market close.

The benchmark FTSE 100 Index fell 99.55, or 1.8 percent, to 5,581.28. The FTSE All-Share Index declined 1.7 percent, while Ireland’s ISEQ Index lost 3.4 percent.

Compass Group Plc (CPG LN): The world’s biggest catering company said full-year profit rose 15 percent, beating analysts’ estimates, after it exited some unprofitable contracts and cut costs at acquired businesses. The shares retreated 2.1 percent to 527.5 pence.

Healthcare Locums Plc (HLO LN): Healthcare Locums said it’s in exclusive talks with Healthcare Australia Holdings Pty Ltd., which may or may not lead to a significant acquisition. The shares rose 0.7 percent to 103.3 pence.

Johnson Matthey Plc (JMAT LN): The producer of a third of the world’s autocatalysts said half-yearly sales rose to 4.56 billion pounds ($7.22 billion) from 3.6 billion pounds a year earlier. The company posted net income for the first six months of the year of 104.7 million pounds. The shares fell 2 percent to 1,840 pence.

London & Stamford Property Ltd. (LSP LN): The company set up in November 2007 to take advantage of the U.K. real estate market slump said first-half profit rose 2.5 percent on acquisitions and increasing real estate values. The shares slid 0.2 percent to 119 pence.

Paragon Group Cos. (PAG LN): The provider of mortgages to British landlords reported pretax profit of 71.8 million pounds for the year ended Sept. 30. The shares declined 0.3 percent to 159.5 pence.

United Utilities Group Plc (UU/ LN): The U.K.’s largest publicly traded water company said first-half profit after taxation dropped 29 percent to 133.1 million pounds as sales dropped from a year earlier. The company will pay an interim dividend of 10 pence and intends to pay a full-year dividend of 30 pence. The stock slipped 1.5 percent to 617.5 pence.

To contact the reporters responsible for this story: Blanche Gatt in London at bgatt@bloomberg.net; Julie Cruz in Frankfurt at jcruz6@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editors responsible for this story: David Merritt at dmerritt1@bloomberg.net.

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