Profit boost for Royal Mail

Royal Mail said first-half operating earnings have more than trebled as higher profit from branch and express parcel operations offset persistent losses on letter delivery. The state-owned group, which the government is hoping to privatise, increased operating profit to £67m from £22m the year before. Royal Mail, which delivers around 59m items each day, said operating losses on letters and parcels fell 25 per cent to £41m in the six months to 25 September.