Shares in Rolls-Royce were up in morning trading on the FTSE 100 after the group reported a rise in pre-tax profit of four per cent in the first half of the year to £465 million.

The group said that its order book was worth £58.4 billion, up marginally from £58.3 billion at the end of 2009.

Revenue in the first half also saw a slight increase from £5.1 billion in the first half last year to £5.4 billion. Services revenues also rose by eight per cent to £2.6 billion.

At the end of the first half Rolls-Royce said it had net cash of nearly £1.4 billion, up from £1.3 billion at the end of 2009.

The group said it would be raising its interim dividend by 6.7 per cent to 6.40 pence per share.

Sir John Rose, Chief Executive of Rolls-Royce, said, "Rolls-Royce delivered a robust performance despite the continuing uncertainty in the global economy. We continue to make progress with our development programmes and new facility construction; these investments are designed to underpin the growth embedded in our order book and achieve productivity improvements.

"We now expect underlying profit for the full-year to be modestly higher than 2009, mainly due to good cost control and a strong trading performance from our Marine business. We expect a modest cash inflow for the year and average net cash balances to remain at a similar level to the first-half."

Keith Bowman, Equity Analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown Stockbrokers commented,

"Against a difficult backdrop, these are solid results. Group strategy to reduce the volatility of earnings is again evident, with after-sales service revenues now nearing a third of group total. Furthermore, diversification is also playing its part - the marine business has made a valuable contribution, whilst like most companies, costs continue to be squeezed.

"On the downside, management have again underlined near term economic uncertainty, whilst comparatives over the second half are expected to become more challenging. In addition, despite management optimism, potential cuts in defence spending remain a concern.

"In all, the group's reputation for dependability has again been enhanced, whilst the company remains a leading role model for British industry and manufacturing. Nonetheless, with the debate over global economic strength and recovery now at fever pitch levels, the group, is for now, seen as no more than a hold."

By 10:40 shares in Rolls-Royce were up 0.51 per cent on the FTSE 100 to 590.50 pence per share.