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The composite euro-zone PMI clicked back into growth for the first time in 18 months in July, posting a 50.4 reading – readings above 50 indicates growth, while the UK economy is expected to grow by 0.6 per cent in the second, official data is expected to reveal today.

IC TIP UPDATES:

Shares in Rolls-Royce Holdings (RR.) were up on news that the UK engineering giant had posted a 34 per cent rise in half-year profits.

UK contractor ISG (ISG) has struck a deal worth £2.2m for the controlling stake in German office fit-out specialist Tecton Engineering.

The summer heatwave has boosted UK pub chain Marston’s (MARS) summer sales after a poor start to the year. Like-for-like sales in destination and premium pubs was up 6 per cent over the 10 weeks to July 20. Over a 42 week period sales were up 2.1 per cent.

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UK directories publisher Hibu (HIBU) has reached an agreement with a co-ordinating committee of creditors for them to take control of the company, ending a near two-year struggle to pare-back net debt.

Sepura (SEPU) handset provider to the emergency services industry, has acquired the Finnish applications developer, Portalify OY, for €1m (£860m) with a further €5m payable. This follows the recent acquisition of 3T Communications.

DDD Group (DDD) has renewed its licence agreement with Samsung Electronics to include DDD’s TriDef 2D to 3D technologies with Samsung’s 3D video processing chips. The agreement has been extended until the end of 2015, an additional two and a half years.

In a trading update ahead of its AGM, energy group SSE (SSE) revealed a fall in customer numbers and electricity demand since the start of its new financial year. Electricity and gas customer numbers across the UK and Ireland dipped to 9.46m during the three months to the end of June, from 9.47m a year ago.

European telecoms provider Colt Group SA (COLT) reported a 49.7 per cent fall in pre-tax profit due to a fall in its voice revenues at the half-year stage.

OTHER COMPANY NEWS:

Barclays (BARC) is close to a deal with the BoE’s Prudential Regulation Authority unit that would see it comply with a new regulatory leverage requirement by December next year – a year lare than that originally envisaged by former Bank of England governor Lord King.

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