Jan 8, 2020

Sainsbury’s helpful prices may yet hinder margin

With store space unchanged, that implied like-for-like sales were also up 0.4 per cent - well ahead of Wm Morrison's -1.7 per cent, and in a food market where there has been almost no inflation. Online grocery sales rose faster, by 7.3 per cent, helping to lift digital transactions to one-fifth of the group total. Its weaker trading in the last quarter led to a 3.9 per cent fall in general merchandise sales. Mr Coupe boasted that Argos achieved record digital sales on Black Friday, in November, when retailers vie to offer the lowest prices. Of research firm Retail Economics, saw the downside: "Consumers are likely to have pulled forward spending at the expense of Christmas trading. . . margins are likely to have been eroded even further." With so many sales coalescing around that one day, no wonder Hargreaves Lansdown's analyst saw no sign of a sales bounce after the December 12 general election.

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