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Next sees Q3 rise in full-price sales, online ops hit double-digit gains again, but growth slows

Short, but perhaps not completely sweet, as the latest quarter has seen a slower performance than Q1 and Q2. That’s the trading update from UK fashion retail giant Next this morning. Full-price Q3 sales to October 27 rose 2% year-on-year, down from 3.7% in the year to date, but in line with expectations.

Total retail store sales for the quarter fell 8% on-year, against a 6.3% dip in the nine-month period.

Online ops continued to lead the way, with sales up 12.7% on-year in the latest quarter, but the year-to-date figure was better 14.8%.

And there was no profit warning, which is good news even if that slowdown can’t be ignored. Instead, the retailer said: “We are maintaining the full year sales and profit guidance that we set out five weeks’ ago in our half-year results.”

That calls for total full-price sales to rise 3% on-year, group pre-tax profit to hit £727m, up 0.1% on a year ago and EPS growth of 5% on 2017/18.

Expect its next trading update for sales to December 24 on January 3.

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