Company News in Brief

TJ Hughes, the discount department stores group based in Liverpool which made its stock market debut in May this year, increased pre-tax profits from pounds 114,000 to pounds 143,000 in the six months to 31 July. Sales improved to pounds 17.8m ( pounds 11.8m). Its maiden interim dividend is 0.75p.

North British Canadian Investment Company, which specialises in the smaller companies sector, declared a higher interim dividend of 0.94p (0.9p). Net asset value per share at the end of the six months to 31 August was lower at 95.9p (103.4p).

WB Industries, the troubled West Midlands engineering group that makes springs and pressings, deepened pre-tax losses from pounds 1.6m to pounds 1.9m in the year to 31 December, after a sharp fall in turnover from pounds 14.15 to pounds 9.7m.

London & St Lawrence Investment lifted pre-tax profits to pounds 1.2m ( pounds 1.1m) in the year to 31 August. Interim dividend is 3.84p.

Channel Holdings incurred pounds 19,000 ( pounds 1,300) pre-tax loss in the half year to 30 June. No dividend.