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Thursday,13 January 2022 at 16:56

Marks & Spencer generated its best Christmas sales on record, with growth across all its divisions, including clothing and homeware, often being a source of woe.

In the 13 weeks leading up to January 1, group sales grew 8.6 per cent on pre-pandemic levels and were 18.5 per cent higher than a year ago, reaching £3.27 billion.

Food sales increased 12.4 per cent compared to before the Covid crisis and were 10 per cent higher than last year as people spent more on luxury items such as champagne and smoked salmon for smaller family festive gatherings.

UK and European stocks closed lower as global markets faltered following the latest U.S. inflation reading showing consumer prices rose once again in December.

U.S. stocks were mixed as investors considered a fresh read on weekly unemployment claims and wholesale price inflation out of Washington.

Oil prices slipped amid uncertainty over near-term demand as cases of the highly contagious omicron variant of the coronavirus surge around the globe.

Gold prices held a tight range as investors waited for more economic cues and clarity on the Federal Reserve’s interest rate hike trajectory, but a retreat in the dollar kept bullion close to a one-week peak hit in the last session. 

Markets
At the close
FTSE 100 7,563 +0.16%
FTSE 250 22,958 (-0.38%)
DAX 16,012 +0.01%
At 16:50
Dow Jones 36,479 +0.52%
S&P 500 4,724 (-0.04%)
NASDAQ 15,105 (-0.55%)
Fixed Income
UK 10-YR YIELD 1.105
Exchange Rates
GBP/USD 1.372
GBP/EUR 1.197
Commodities
Gold $1,818 (-0.40%)
Brent $84.84 +0.02%
Important - No news or research item should be construed as a recommendation to trade. The inclusion of securities within this report does not necessarily imply their suitability for individual portfolios or situations in respect of which further advice should be sought. Information contained in this report has been compiled from sources believed to be reliable but is not warranted to be accurate or complete.

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