Share indices in the week to 29 March 2002
The City was at its schoolmarmish best in the run-up to Easter when it dished out a whipping to an errant pupil and a couple of pats on the head for good work. Gleeson, usually such a conscientious student, had to sit on the naughty step last week when it issued its second profit warning of the year.

Gleeson's pre-tax profit for the six months to 31 December fell from £5.3m to £3.3m. The group says its profit for the year to 30 June will not meet market expectations and will be below last year's £18.9m. This will end a run of six years of profit growth.

Executive chairman Dermot Gleeson said the latest bout of bad news had become apparent during a strategic review of its housebuilding division. The division has suffered from a combination of cost overruns in the South-east and over-optimistic sales projections. The group's share price fell 6% to 1205p after the news.

But Barratt and Costain were the teacher's pets. Both firms' share prices improved 7% after reporting healthy results (see above and page 22).

M&E contractor Mears Group also posted strong results this week. Pre-tax profit stood at a record £2.5m – up 30% on last year.

Turnover was £70.6m.