Belfast Telegraph

H&M posts its poorest set of sales since 2013

By Roger Baird

High street fashion giant H&M posted its weakest monthly sales rise in almost two years in August, blaming unseasonably warm weather in many of its core European markets.

The Swedish group, which has around 250 stores across the UK, including eight in Northern Ireland, said its sales edged up by 1% last month, falling short of analysts' forecasts of 6% growth.

It was the poorest monthly sales growth figure that the group, which has 3,675 stores worldwide, has seen since March 2013 when sales shrank 4%.

The firm, which is the world's second-biggest fashion retailer after Zara owner Inditex, had posted double-digit growth over the previous 10 months.

"Sales in August were negatively affected by the unseasonably warm weather in many of the H&M group's large markets in Europe," it said.

However, H&M said over the three months to August 31, group sales met forecasts jumping 18.6% to 46bn krona (£3.61bn), due to stronger sales in June and July, and a weak Swedish currency.

The trading update comes after UK figures showed high street stores endured their worst month of falling sales since the financial crisis as August proved a washout.

Belfast Telegraph