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Next reports 3.5% sales hike in H1FY16 trading statement
Jul '15
In its trading statement for the 26 weeks period to July 25, 2015, UK fashion retailer Next reported a 3.5 per cent year over year hike in full price sales.

“Next full price sales for the first half of fiscal 2016 grew 3.5 per cent, of which 1.7 per cent came from the opening of profitable new space,” the retailer said in a statement.

Of this, Next Retail division sales were marginally up by just 0.8 per cent and Next Directory revenue was up 7.5 per cent, both from a fiscal ago periods.

Total sales for the reporting period including markdown sales rose 3.3 per cent year on year, while total stock for the end-of-season sale increased 4.8 per cent over last fiscal.

“Clearance rates were lower than last year but in line with our internal forecasts,” the fashion retailer added in the statement.

According to Next, sales were better than expected and marginally ahead of the 0-3 per cent guidance range it gave in March.

It also informed that the pattern of sales demonstrates the continued volatility of consumer demand and believes the improvements experienced at the end of the season were mainly driven by warmer weather.

Next has revised its profit guidance for the full fiscal and now expects the midpoint of fiscal profit guidance to rise 1.9 per cent from £810 million to £825 million.

The retailer now also expects sales for the full fiscal to climb between 3.5 per cent and 6 per cent over the previous fiscal.

“This increase is as a result of the better sales achieved in the first half of the fiscal and we have not made any change to our second half sales forecast,” Next explained.

During the first half of fiscal 2016, its share price has remained above its buyback price limit of £68.27 per share, so it has not used surplus cash to retire any shares in the period.

So, Next now intends to pay a further special dividend of 60 pence per share on November 2, 2015 to shareholders registered at close of business on October 9, 2015. (AR)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk - India

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