March 19 (Reuters) - British engineer Smiths Group Plc said first-half profit fell 3 percent due to pricing pressure in its second largest unit, and a strong pound that reduced the U.S.-dominant manufacturer’s margins.
The FTSE-100 company said that foreign exchange headwinds, at current rates, will increase in the second half, with a 4-5 percent impact on full-year earnings.
Headline operating profit dropped to 245 million pounds ($406.1 million) for the first half ended Jan. 31, from 253 million pounds a year earlier.
Smiths Group, which provides mechanical seals, threat and contraband-detection components and medical devices to customers ranging from governments to hospitals, petrochemical companies and equipment makers, said headline revenue for the period fell slightly to 1.44 billion pounds from 1.47 billion pounds a year earlier.
The company said it would pay a dividend of 12.75 pence to its shareholders compared with 12.50 pence interim dividend it paid in the previous year. ($1 = 0.6034 British Pounds) (Reporting by Aashika Jain in Bangalore; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier)