Britain's second biggest supermarket group, J Sainsbury, posted annual pre-tax profits up 14% to £627m (US$917m) today [Wednesday], beating analysts' expectations of £618-625m and keeping pace behind sector leader Tesco. For the 52 weeks to 30 March, revenue rose by 7.4% to £18.2bn on a comparable asset basis, and UK supermarket sales were up 6.3% on a like-for-like basis. Earnings per share were up 14% to 21.5p. Overall pre-tax profits rose by 31% to £571m.