Sainsbury’s reveals jump in half-year profits despite falling recent sales

Sainsbury’s has revealed a jump in half-year profits despite falling recent sales after its Argos business was knocked by supply chain challenges and a post-lockdown easing of demand.

The supermarket giant reported a 23% hike in underlying pre-tax profits to £371 million for the 28 weeks to September 18.

On a statutory basis, it swung to a £541 million pre-tax profit from losses of £137 million a year earlier.

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Like-for-like group sales rose 0.3% overall in the first half, but slipped 1.4% in the second quarter after general merchandise sales tumbled.

Sainsbury’s has revealed a jump in half-year profits despite falling recent sales after its Argos business was knocked by supply chain challenges and a post-lockdown easing of demand.

Argos sales slumped 12% year-on-year in the second quarter, with the group blaming “supply challenges, unseasonal weather and lower demand for home office equipment and technology” in the second quarter.

The group insisted it was “well placed” to cope with the mounting supply chain issues and labour shortages.

Simon Roberts, chief executive of Sainsbury’s, said: “Our industry faces labour and supply chain challenges.

“However our scale, advanced cost-saving programme, logistics operations and strong supplier relationships put us in a good position as we head into Christmas.”

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