Humberts Group PLC said it expects a 'small' loss for the first quarter of the current year and an overall first-half loss on disappointing trading, and also announced the resignation of executive chairman Tim James and chief executive Max Ziff effective immediately, and that it would raise further funding.

It said that the results for the full year to Sept 30, 2007 are expected to be in line with market estimates, and named John McLean new executive chairman.

In a trading update, the company blamed the current year's first half expected loss on 'disappointing' trading in the core residential agency business since the end of the financial year, with volumes materially below its expectations.

'Given the current trading of the group and the deferred consideration which will become payable over the next few years under the terms of the recent acquisitions, the board consider it prudent to raise additional funding to strengthen the group's financial position,' the property company said, adding that talks with potential funders have started.

Humberts Group shares lost 42% of their value today falling 11-1/4 pence to 15-1/4 pence and led  a downturn of the FTSE Small Cap index which was 112.00 points back to 3,078.00 -- with its low today 3,069.90.