The cost of closing its textile manufacturing businesses caused Leeds Group Plc to post a first-half loss of £4.14 million compared with a profit of £22,000 in the year-earlier period. Sales dropped 42 per cent to £19.55 million. The group, which sells yarn and dyes fabrics, said the performance of its remaining textile businesses, and particularly the Italian subsidiary Nemesis, continued to decline. Competition from Asian suppliers with lower labour costs dented profit.