Tesco puts Big Four rivals in the shade after delivering its fifth Christmas in a row of sales growth
Tesco bemoaned ‘subdued’ consumer spending as it eked out a 0.1 per cent rise in UK sales over Christmas.
The UK’s biggest supermarket said it outperformed in a ‘challenging’ market in the six weeks to January 4, delivering its fifth Christmas in a row of sales growth.
Chief executive Dave Lewis, who will step down in the summer, said: ‘This Christmas we had the biggest-ever day of UK food sales in our history. I’ve never seen the UK business running better than it was this Christmas.’
Tesco said it outperformed in a ‘challenging’ market in the six weeks to January 4, delivering its fifth Christmas in a row of sales growth
Gammon from the premium Finest range sold out, while Prosecco, turkey and seasonal ranges also performed well.
The figures see Tesco emerge as a festive winner among the ‘big four’ major players so far after both Morrisons and Sainsbury’s posted falling sales over the Christmas season in recent days.
Shares rose 0.9 per cent, or 2.3p, to 253.3p. The stock has risen 21 per cent over the last year with Lewis declaring in September the company’s recovery was complete.
He took Tesco from a £6.4billion loss in 2015, one of the largest in British corporate history, to an expected profit of close to £2billion this year.
The group remains under enormous pressure from Lidl, which will report Christmas trading figures today, and Aldi, which continue to grow sales and grab market share.
Richard Hunter, head of markets at Interactive Investor, said: ‘While Tesco may not have shot the lights out, this update makes for rather stronger reading than those of its competitors.’
* The video games retailer bought by Sports Direct tycoon Mike Ashley has announced it will close 40 stores, in yet another blow to the High Street.
Game said it had served notice on 27 of its 540 UK sites so far. It said 14 of these were predominantly owned by property giants Intu and New River.
The closures come less than six months after Ashley, 55, bought Game in a deal valuing the company at £52million.