Chemicals company Johnson Matthey saw annual profits soar, driven by 'strong' growth in its clean air division.

For the 12 months ended 31 March, reported pre-tax profits increased 53% to £488m and revenues rose 5% to £10.74bn.

Sales grew 10% and underlying operating profit grew 8% at constant rates, driven by 'strong performance in its clean air division, which saw sales grow 11%, thanks to double digit growth in both light and heavy duty catalysts.

The company recommended an increase of 7% in the final dividend to 62.25, taking the total dividend for the year to 85.5p up from 80.0p las year.

Looking ahead to the fiscal year 2019/2020, the company expected growth in operating performance at constant rates to be within its medium term guidance of 'mid to high single digit growth.'

But adverse foreign exchange movements were expected to hurt sales and underlying operating profit by £6m and £2m, respectively.