Pub operator JD Wetherspoon has posted an increase in like-for-like sales of 6.7% for the second-quarter, first 12 weeks to 19 January 2014.
The pre-close statement (ahead of the closed period statement for the six month ending 26 January 2014) also showed total sales to have increased by 9%.
However, margin for the half year ending 26 January 2014 is expected to be 0.2% lower than last year (at 8.1%) due to increased investment in IT, training and personnel.
It concluded: "Assuming reasonable sales growth, the company is targeting a reasonable outcome for the current financial year."
The operator also took the opportunity to call business rates and pub industry VAT "unfair" in comparison to rates paid by supermarkets, and urged the government to address the tax system amid significant pub closures in the past ten years.
JD Wetherspoon runs over 800 pubs across the UK, each of which trades under individual names but sells food and drink from the Wetherspoon menu. It other brands include Lloyds No.1 Bar and Wetherspoon Hotels.
It most recently opened the first motorway-side pub, on the M40 near Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire.