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M&S clothing sales decline accelerates

Marks & Spencer has seen sales at its general merchandise arm decline yet again, according to an analyst note by Nomura, citing Kantar data.

Nomura analyst Fraser Ramzan said the data, which is not generally available, said divisional sales fell 2% in the 12 weeks to October 27, accelerating the 0.1% decline seen in the 12 weeks to September 28.

Nomura is reducing its third-quarter like-for-like forecast by a “precautionary” one percentage point as a result.

The sales decline came as M&S brought forward its mid-season Sale to September in order to make room for its new collection, as chief executive Marc Bolland continues to bid for a turnaround in the performance of womenswear. M&S has recorded nine consecutive quarters of like-for-like declines in its general merchandise arm.  

In its last update to the City, M&S said this had fallen 1.5% over the 26 weeks to September 28.

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