Strong trading over Christmas has put Fuller, Smith & Turner on course to beat full-year expectations, but the beer and pub group gave a cautious outlook.

The London Pride brewer reported record beer volume sales for the 44 weeks to 30 January up 2% on the same period a year earlier.

It was boosted by record volume sales of own-brewed beer in December, although bad weather in January offset much of this.

Fuller's said that it expects to beat expectations for its full-year, which runs to 27 March.

However, it warned that the economic environment in the UK remains uncertain.

"We remain cautious about the UK economic outlook and the prospects for our customers for 2010 and beyond," said the group.

"With inflation set to increase and tax rises and spending cuts inevitable after the general election, we will have to compete even harder for our customers' business."

Earlier today, the British Beer & Pub Association said that the rate pub closures in the UK has slowed to 39 per week.

For the full announcement, click here.