Construction consultant James R Knowles has blamed a weak set of annual results on poor trading in Australia, Hong Kong and the USA.

The company, which is listed on the alternative investment market, reported pre-tax profit of £486,000 for the year ended 31 July, down 33% on the previous year.

Shares in the company fell 10% to 32p when the results were announced on Tuesday, despite the fact that the firm had issued a profit warning three weeks ago.

Roger Knowles, chairman of the company, said: “Despite the disappointing year’s results, the board is hopeful of a recovery in the coming year. The UK is expected to continue to produce satisfactory results, and with government spending on construction work already planned for a number of years ahead this seems set to continue.”

The company recommended a final dividend of 0.8p a share, the same as the half-year level, but 72% less than the final dividend of 2.9p a share paid out for the same period last year.