StockMarketWire.com - Clothing retailer Next has increased its full year profit guidance as full price sales over the Christmas trading period were 1.1% better than its internal forecast.

In a trading statement, the retailer reported that in the fourth quarter, full price sales to 28 December are up 5.2%, while in the year-to-date 27 January to 28 December, full price sales are up 3.9% on the previous year.

Next said its full year profit guidance has now increased by £2m to £272m, representing a 0.6% increase on last year and earnings per share growth of 5.4% to 458.7p.

The retailer attributed the sales performance boost to a 'much colder November' than last year and improved stock availability in both its retail stores and online.

Next's guidance for full price sales growth for the year ahead is 3%, which at that level of sales growth means group profit would be £734m, up 1% on the current financial year.



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