Kingfisher's first quarter sales decline

Kingfisher reported a 0.4 per cent fall in first quarter sales to 2.6bn pounds as a result of weak consumer confidence and unseasonably cold weather in March and early April.

Kingfisher reported a 0.4 per cent fall in first quarter sales to 2.6bn pounds as a result of weak consumer confidence and unseasonably cold weather in March and early April.

The home improvement retailer's sales in France dropped by 3.8% to £1.08m, reflecting fewer trading days compared to the first quarter last year.

Gross margins were up 10 basis points driven by on-going self-help initiatives and tight cost control, including lower levels of variable pay. Retail profit came to £66m, compared to the previous year's £78m.

In the UK and Ireland, sales declined by 3.4% to £1.07bn in a slow market affected by weak consumer confidence and an early Easter coupled with record cold weather, through March and early April.

Retail profit fell to £50m from £74m in UK and Ireland.

Gross margins were broadly flat as benefits from on-going self-help initiatives were offset by investment in pricing. A strong focus on operating cost efficiencies continued across both businesses.

Other international sales increased by 5.6% to £476m, boosted by like-for-like growth in Russia and China and new store openings. Three net new stores opened, two in Poland and one in Spain, adding around 5.0% new space.

"Market conditions have remained challenging in the first quarter compounded by the effects of an early Easter and unseasonably cold weather across Europe," said Chief Executive Ian Cheshire.

"However, our performance towards the end of the quarter was encouraging following a return to more normal weather patterns.

"Looking ahead, we still have our key summer season to come and we are ready to capitalise on any improvement in conditions during this peak trading period. We will continue to focus hard on our margin and cost initiatives helping us to reinforce our value credentials with customers during these challenging times."

Shares fell 2.07% to 321p at 08:24 Thursday.

RD

Recommended

How to find the best dividend stocks
Income investing

How to find the best dividend stocks

Stocks that pay dividends tend to outperform the market over the long run - as well as providing an income. Here, Rupert Hargreaves explains the best …
28 Jun 2022
Director dealings w/e 24 June: what company insiders are buying and selling
Stocks and shares

Director dealings w/e 24 June: what company insiders are buying and selling

Directors’ share dealings can often give investors an insight into the sentiment of company insiders. Here are some of the biggest deals by company di…
27 Jun 2022
Britain’s ten most-hated shares – w/e 24 June
Stocks and shares

Britain’s ten most-hated shares – w/e 24 June

Rupert Hargreaves looks at Britain's ten most-hated shares, and what short-sellers are looking at now.
27 Jun 2022
Britain’s most-bought shares w/e 24 June
Stocks and shares

Britain’s most-bought shares w/e 24 June

A look at Britain’s most-bought shares in the week ending 24 June, providing an insight into how investors are thinking and where opportunities may li…
27 Jun 2022

Most Popular

Market crash: have we hit bottom or is there worse to come?
Stockmarkets

Market crash: have we hit bottom or is there worse to come?

For a little while, markets looked like they were about to embark on a full-on crash. And that could still happen, says Dominic Frisby. Today, he look…
27 Jun 2022
Interest rates are rising, here are the best savings accounts on the market
Savings

Interest rates are rising, here are the best savings accounts on the market

With inflation at more than 9%, your savings are not going to keep pace with the rising cost of living. But you can at least slow the rate at which yo…
24 Jun 2022
Why a recession will do us good
UK Economy

Why a recession will do us good

A period of slimming down is always painful, but it leaves us healthier for the long run, says Matthew Lynn.
26 Jun 2022