JD Sports reports bullish profit forecast

Fashion and sports retailer JD Sports has delivered a bullish forecast of full-year profits, following strong sales during the Christmas period. Like-for-like sales rose 2.8% in the five weeks to January 3.

The retailer, which has 430 stores, also saw sales rise 3.8% in the 48 weeks to January 3.

The company says: “The board now believes that current market expectations for profit before tax and exceptional items for the year to end-January 2009 will be marginally exceeded.”

The strong result coincides with camera chain Jessops reporting sales growth during Christmas. Like-for-like sales rose 3.1% in the five weeks to January 5, although the company says its profit margin had been hit. Its sales in the 14-weeks to January 5 was also down 5.6%.

The stronger results follow sales rises reported by Sainsbury’s and Waitrose. In contrast, retailers that reported falls in sales have included Marks & Spencer, Next and Debenhams.

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