Belfast Telegraph

Ted Baker expected to buck retail woes

Fashion chain Ted Baker is expected to buck woes among retail rivals when it posts half-year results on Tuesday showing higher profits and sales.

The group said retail sales rose 10.3% on a constant currency basis in its first quarter , while online transactions rocketed 32.3% and interims are expected to show another robust performance.

Analysts at Goldman Sachs are pencilling in a 13% hike in first half pre-tax profits to £20 million and for retail sales to have risen by 9.3%.

While sales are likely to have slowed a little, it will mark resilient growth amid a torrid past few months for high street clothing chains.

Next, John Lewis and House of Fraser have all warned over tough trading conditions in recent weeks amid a shift in consumer spending, while last month's unexpected heatwave caused chaos for clothing stores.

The latest BDO High Street Sales Tracker report showed the biggest fall in fashion sales since April, down 5.9% year-on-year in September.

Every week in September saw negative year-on-year sales for fashion, according to BDO.

As temperatures topped 34C, fashion sales dropped 8.4% year-on-year in the third week of the month on the same period in 2015, and 8.1% in the last week.

But analysts said Ted Baker has been outperforming its rivals, with experts at Exane BNP Paribas saying it "looks to have the ingredients for long-term global success".

Ted Baker's shares have fallen sharply in recent months, down around 28% since a high last November, on fears over the weakness of US department stores and challenging conditions in Asia, with the declines compounded recently by Brexit.

Exane BNP Paribas analysts said these fears "seem overdone".

They added: "Proven internationally and competing in the attractive and less crowded 'accessible luxury' space, we believe Ted looks well set to capture the global opportunity."