Christmas sales surge boosts Next.
Sales in the run up to Christmas were better than expected and were markedly stronger in the final two weeks as the weather turned colder.
Sales for the 22 weeks from 26 July to Christmas Eve jumped 4.6 per cent at Next Retail and by 3.2 per cent on a like for like basis, including direct sales, and by 1.6 per cent excluding them. Next Directory upped sales by 6.8%.
The group now predicts profits for the year to 31 January 2010 to be between £490m and £500m, better than the £472m it forecast in November. It includes about £7m of additional profit due to the year being 53 weeks.
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