Nov 4, 2021

Sainsbury’s warns of Christmas shortages as supply constraints hit Argos

The boss of J Sainsbury said there would be less choice of some product lines over Christmas and refused to rule out rising prices in the new year as retailers face inflationary pressure and supply chain problems. Its sales in the first half were down 7.3 per cent year on year in the 28 weeks to September 18, "Impacted by supply challenges, unseasonal weather and lower demand for home office equipment and technology in the second quarter". Grocery sales in the first half rose 0.8 per cent compared with a period last year when demand was high because of the UK's first national lockdown. Underlying group pre-tax profit was £371m, up from £301m last year and £238m the year before as costs fell, while the interim dividend was 3.2p a share. Sainsbury's continued to expect underlying pre-tax profit of at least £660m in the year to March 2022.

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