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Tough third quarter for Next as full-price sales tumble

Total sales at Next were down 3.5% in the third quarter after a subdued August and September forced it to slash prices on more of its product.

Next oxford st (13)

Retail sales were down 5.9% year on year in the third quarter, while Next Directory sales were flat.

Full-price sales fell 7% in August and 5.1% in September, but rose 1.3% in October.

The retailer said sales ”improved significantly” last month and it has made cost savings. As a result, its full-year central profit forecast remains unchanged.

“In September we gave guidance that trading in the third quarter would be difficult. In August full-price sales were subdued following the much larger end-of-season Sale in July, and in September we traded against our best month last year,” the company explained.

“October sales improved significantly, as comparative weeks last year became less challenging.”

In the year to date, markdown sales have grown faster than full-price sales due to the extended end-of-season Sale. Full-price sales are down 1.5%.

Retail sales have fallen 4.7% in the year to date, while Next Directory sales are up 3.2%.

Total sales for the year to date are up 0.4% on last year.

Next has lowered its sales guidance for the full year to between -1.75% and +1.25%, compared to a previous range of -2.5% to +2.5%.

While its central profit forecast remains unchanged at £805m, it has revised its group pre-tax profit range down to between £785m and £825m, lower than the £775m to £845m forecast earlier this year.



Readers' comments (1)

  • If this is Next, how woeful will results be at Marks and Spencer?

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