Sainsbury’s (LSE: SBRY) 3Q19 Trading Update: Lower Holiday Promotions Weigh on Top Line

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Key Points

  • UK grocery retailer Sainsbury’s reported a 1.1% decline in comparable sales for 3Q19,below the consensus of 0.3%.
  • The company grew total grocery sales by 4%, with online groceries up 6.0% and convenience store sales up 3.0%.
  • Total general merchandise sales, which includes Argos, declined 2.3%. Clothing sales fell2%.

Despite the declines, CEO Mike Coupe believes grocery was “solid,” general merchandise outperformed the market and that clothing “performed well” in the quarter. General merchandise sales grew “strongly” over the “key Christmas weeks” (unspecified) and outperformed the market over the quarter — but sales declined in the quarter due to cautious spending by consumers and the company’s decision to reduce promotional activity around Black Friday.

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