Oct 28, 2020

Next: on message

Simon Wolfson, who heads up high street fashion chain Next, carries it out with aplomb. The upgrade also vindicates Next's response to the pandemic, both on the balance sheet and operationally. The trouble now - for Next - is that borrowers are paying off their credit bills. Next expects higher payment rates will keep interest income down some 16 per cent in the fourth quarter. Next is dialling back on the pessimism but only marginally: its best-case scenario is for sales to remain flat in the fourth quarter; worst case, it anticipates a 20 per cent drop.

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