Belfast Telegraph

Spending fears arise in grocers' results

By PA Reporters

Rising prices and fears of a consumer spending downturn are set to be key themes when supermarkets Sainsbury's and Morrisons report figures this week.

Under-pressure food sales will be in sharp focus when Sainsbury's kicks off with its full-year figures tomorrow.

The Big Four chain revealed a 0.5% fall in like-for-like supermarket sales, excluding fuel, in its fourth quarter to March 11, down from a rise of 0.1% in the previous three months.

While it said sales would have risen by 0.1% had it not been for the later Mother's Day and Easter this year, the group warned over "very competitive" trading and price pressures from the weak pound.

Overall sales were boosted by a robust performance from its recently acquired Argos chain, which notched up a 4.3% rise in like-for-like sales.

Meanwhile, Morrisons is expected to report steady sales growth when it releases first quarter results on Thursday, despite facing industry pressures including rising food prices linked to the post-Brexit vote collapse of the pound.

Belfast Telegraph