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Marks & Spencer second quarter sales to fall, Deutsche maintains 'hold'

Fri, 6th Oct 2017 16:49

(ShareCast News) - Marks & Spencer will report a fall in second quarter sales, Deutsche Bank forecast on Friday ahead of the retailer's half-year results on 8 November.

UK like-for-like sales will decline 0.7% and underlying pre-tax profit will fall 12% reflecting a mixed performance in an increasingly challenging UK market, the bank said.

Market share gains in food have faded, while the need to reintroduce promotions is likely to have weighed on margins, analysts reckoned.

In the clothing segment, full price share are seen swinging back into losses while total sales continue to be held back by the reduction in promotion and clearance volumes.

"One positive trend should be International where closure of loss-making countries and translational movements should drive a material boost."

But full year forecasts were mostly unchanged and a 'hold' recommendation was maintained, with a 345p share price target.

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