Next Plc raised its profit forecast as hotter weather and a return to formal events encouraged more shoppers to shop for summer clothes, but warned that worsening inflation could hurt consumer sentiment.
According to a statement on Thursday, the British clothing and home goods chain said profit will be £860 million ($1.04 billion) this year through January, up from the previous forecast of £850 million.
However, the retailer said that although sales rose by £50m more than expected in the second quarter as people attended social events, it did not expect that increase to be sustained and warned that inflation would hamper consumer spending in the could dampen second half.
There were fears that clothing retail would be hit hard as consumers grappling with the worst inflation in a decade are prioritizing spending on essentials like food and fuel rather than clothing. Next lowered its earnings and sales guidance in March as the war in Ukraine and higher inflation in the UK weighed on its outlook. The company is often credited with pioneering the health of Britain’s high streets.
Next has around 500 stores in the UK and Ireland and a large national and international online division selling its own fashion range as well as third party brands. It also uses its infrastructure network to help competing brands sell their wares online.
The stock is down 16 percent so far this year.
https://www.independent.ie/business/world/next-raises-profit-forecast-as-hot-weather-spurs-fashion-buying-41889073.html Next raises earnings forecast as hot weather spurs fashion buying