Shares in engineering company Goodwin (LSE: GDWN) have soared by around 15% today after the release of its third quarter interim management statement. The update was rather mixed. On the one hand, a challenging oil and gas industry meant that the financial performance of the company deteriorated compared to the previous year, with revenue falling from £109m in the first nine months of the prior year to just £88m this year. This has caused pre-tax profit to decline from £17m to just £9m during the same period.

Starting to look up

However, the company now expects the next financial year not to be as difficult as it had once feared, and this seems to have buoyed investor confidence in the stock. The key reason for this is that the order input for the company has increased by 15% versus the prior year, being helped in part by the refractory engineering division continuing to grow. Furthermore, Goodwin’s antenna systems company, Easat, now has a record order book for primary and secondary radar, with Goodwin also recording substantial valve orders for LNG terminals across the Middle East.

So, while the past has been challenging, things are starting to look up for Goodwin and today’s share price rise means that it has now fallen by 15% in the last year. Looking ahead, Goodwin’s shares could continue their rise since investor sentiment could improve further in the near term. However, with uncertainty still being high in the oil and gas industry, it may be prudent to await confirmation that the company’s financial performance is on the up before buying a slice of it. That’s especially the case when a number of other oil and gas-focused businesses are trading on low valuations.

Well received

Also among the major movers today is Sareum Holdings (LSE: SAR), with the specialist cancer drug development company recording a fall of 8% in its share price. Its shares have been hugely volatile of late and their movement even caused the company to issue an announcement stating that it was unaware of any reason as to why this was the case.

Of course, Sareum’s interim results were well received by the market, with it reporting a narrowed pre-tax loss for the first-half of the year. It also announced the completion of preclinical studies for the CHK1 clinical development candidate, in preparation for two planned clinical trials in cancer patients. Furthermore, following the end of the reporting period, a £200,000 milestone payment to Sareum was triggered due to the CHK1 Clinical Trials Application submissions which was made at the end of January.

Due to the company’s update, investor sentiment has been upbeat in recent weeks, with Sareum’s shares rising by 62% since the release of its interim results. Clearly, it remains a high risk play owing to its size, the uncertainty surrounding future news flow and its loss-making position. However, it has the potential to continue to make gains and could be worth a closer look for less risk averse investors.

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Peter Stephens has no position in any shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has no position in any of the shares mentioned. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.