Shares in Johnson Matthey were down on the FTSE 100 in afternoon trading ahead of the chemical company's half year results, expected tomorrow.

The group saw sales rise by over thirty per cent in its Environmental Technologies and Precious Metal Products Divisions in the first quarter.

Keith Bowman, analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, said of tomorrow's announcement, "A strong performance is expected, driven by recovery in the automotive markets and strength in the platinum price. Market consensus opinion currently denotes a strong hold ahead of the results."

By 16:35 shares in Johnson Matthey were down 1.92 per cent on the FTSE 100 to 1,842.00 pence per share.