SHARES in Johnston Press surged by more than eight per cent as it underlined the impact made by the i newspaper.

The company reported a marginal increase in revenues for the first quarter, while highlighting improving circulation volumes of key daily newspapers. But, signalling that bosses continues to take action to manage costs “tightly”, the publisher warned trading conditions remain tough.

Johnston, whose titles include The Scotsman and Yorkshire Post, said total revenues for the 17 weeks to April 30 were up 0.2 per cent. However excluding the contribution the i, which the company acquired from The Independent owner last year, revenues were down 12 per cent. Highlighting the impact of the i, Johnston said the newspaper grew circulation volumes 23 per cent.

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The board, which faces a vote on plans to revamp its remuneration policy at its annual meeting on Monday, expects full-year trading to be in line with expectations. Analyst Panmure Gordon said that forecast is broadly in line with its underlying earnings estimate of £40.9m. “Whilst the overall regional newspaper market in the UK remains challenging, the board is encouraged by the improving trends and cost control remains key to protect the margins,” the analyst said. Shares closed up 1.25p at 16p.