Financial News

  • 8 May 2014, 21:58

Morrisons Reports 7.1% Plunge In Sales

Morrisons has reported a huge fall in sales - a day after its share price took a hit of more than 5% on the FTSE 100.

Like-for-like sales excluding fuel tumbled 7.1% in the 13 weeks to May 4.

The fall extended to 8.2% when fuel sales were included.

Total sales were down 4.2%.

The performance sparked further declines in its market value when the FTSE 100 opened though it later recovered some of the ground it had lost over the past 24 hours.

The supermarket chain recently embarked on aggressive price cuts of £1bn over three years to take on the flight to discounters, which has affected sales at the so-called "big four" chains.

Its market share - along with that of Tesco and Sainsbury's - was measured on Wednesday to have fallen further while the likes of Aldi and Lidl continued to build business at their expense.

Morrisons was said to have had 11% of the grocery market at the end of April and Kantar Worldpanel, which compiles the figures, concluded the chain was the biggest loser among major grocers in terms of market share.

Upmarket operators Waitrose and Marks & Spencer have been gaining share too.

Chief executive Dalton Philips said: "The plans we set out at our results in March are on track.

"The reaction of our customers to the 1,200 'I'm Cheaper' price cuts we announced last week has been very positive.

"Although it will take time for their full impact to be felt, we are confident that these meaningful and permanent reductions in our prices will enable our clear points of difference to resonate strongly with consumers."

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