Company News in Brief

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TJ Hughes, the department stores operator, more than doubled pre-tax profits to pounds 333,000 ( pounds 115,000) in the six months to 31 July on pounds 21.1m ( pounds 18.6m) sales. Earnings per share are 1.11p (0.39p). Dividend is 0.8p (0.75p).

Year to 30 June

Waterman Partnership Holdings, the consulting engineers, reported higher pre-tax profits of pounds 200,000 ( pounds 124,000), benefiting from increased activity in the property and construction sectors. Turnover grew from pounds 6.9m to pounds 8.5m. The company said investment in new and more powerful computer-aided design facilities significantly improved productivity. Earnings per share jumped to 0.3p (0.1p). Total dividend is held at 1p.

Fortnum & Mason, the department store, increased pre-tax profits to pounds 2.3m ( pounds 2m) on higher sales of pounds 27.6m ( pounds 24.7m). Earnings per share climbed to 368p (311p). Final dividend is 24p, making 110p (100p).

Half-year to 30 June

Ash & Lacy, maker of perforated and expanded metal, lifted pre-tax profits 25 per cent to pounds 2m ( pounds 1.6m). Turnover increased to pounds 30.6m ( pounds 28.7m). Earnings per share are 5.2p (3.77p). Dividend is held at 2.5p.

Atlas Converting Equipment, which makes slitting and rewinding machines and vacuum furnaces, achieved higher pre-tax profits of pounds 1.9m ( pounds 1.4m). Earnings per share are 11.86p (10.01p). Dividend is held at 7p.

James Fisher & Sons, the shipowner and chartering firm, hoisted pre-tax profits from pounds 304,000 to pounds 851,000. Turnover rose to pounds 12.7m ( pounds 12.3m). Earnings per share are 2.51p (1p). No dividend.

Six months to 31 August

Darby Group, maker of specialist glass products, announced an increase of 49 per cent in pre-tax profits from pounds 379,000 to pounds 565,000. It pointed to a slower than expected rate of growth within its industry, but saw increased volumes of business in England and Wales. Sales of pounds 8.3m were 6.7 per cent ahead of the same period previously. Earnings per share improved to 2.67p (2.2p). Dividend is 0.9p, up from 0.5p previously.

TDS Circuits, the printed circuit boards maker, reduced taxable losses from pounds 196,000 to pounds 175,000. Loss per share was cut to 3.61p (3.84p). No dividend.