Midland property firm A&J Mucklow has seen a 19 per cent rise in pre-tax profits in the first six months of its financial year as it approaches its 50th year of trading.

During the second half of 2011 the Halesowen-based company saw the value of its assets slip slightly to £184.3 million but its occupancy rates rose by nearly one per cent to 93.5 per cent with rental income rising from £8.5 million to £9.7 million.

The interim dividend has risen by 3 per cent to 8.52p per share.

The company floated on the London Stock Exchange in 1962 and has seen the ordinary dividend increase in 45 of the past 50 years with £1,000 of shares at its original float now worth around £1.6 million.

Chairman Robert Mucklow said: “We are entering our second half century as a listed company in very good shape. We are not anticipating any

significant change in occupancy levels during the next six months and remain on target for another satisfactory year to 30 June 2012.

“Property values may fluctuate a little during these uncertain times, but current market conditions provide us with opportunities to acquire modern investment properties on attractive yields and allow us to continue to maximise income and value from our other assets.”