M&S shares take a tumble as sales data released early

<p>Shares in M&S have fallen as the high street giant is forced to release its sales figures for Christmas early.</p>

Marks and Spencer (M&S) has witnessed its share price nosedive on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) this morning (January 10th), after the company released its Christmas sales data earlier than planned.

The high street giant had to publish the report after news outlets began reporting leaked information last night. The trading statement had been anticipated to be released later today.

Its sales figures show that like-for-like sales in the UK, excluding new store openings, in the 13 weeks to December 29th fell by 1.8 per cent on the same period a year earlier, while like-for-like food sales increased by just 0.3 per cent.

Sales of general merchandise declined by 3.8 per cent over the crucial Christmas shopping period.

M&S chief executive Marc Bolland told BBC News: "Our general merchandise performance is not yet satisfactory but we are confident that the steps being taken by the new management team will address this."

At 10:15 GMT, M&S shares fell by 3.6 per cent on the LSE to 357.60p per unit.

Learn all about CFD trading strategies and major individual shares at City Index.

Join our live webinars for the latest analysis and trading ideas. Register now

GAIN Capital UK Limited (trading as “City Index”) is an execution-only service provider. This material, whether or not it states any opinions, is for general information purposes only and it does not take into account your personal circumstances or objectives. This material has been prepared using the thoughts and opinions of the author and these may change. However, City Index does not plan to provide further updates to any material once published and it is not under any obligation to keep this material up to date. This material is short term in nature and may only relate to facts and circumstances existing at a specific time or day. Nothing in this material is (or should be considered to be) financial, investment, legal, tax or other advice and no reliance should be placed on it.

No opinion given in this material constitutes a recommendation by City Index or the author that any particular investment, security, transaction or investment strategy is suitable for any specific person. The material has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research. Although City Index is not specifically prevented from dealing before providing this material, City Index does not seek to take advantage of the material prior to its dissemination. This material is not intended for distribution to, or use by, any person in any country or jurisdiction where such distribution or use would be contrary to local law or regulation.

For further details see our full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.