May 9, 2019 / 6:14 AM / 6 months ago

Sales growth at UK's Morrisons slows in first quarter

LONDON, May 9 (Reuters) - Morrisons, Britain’s fourth-biggest supermarket group, on Thursday reported a rise in first-quarter underlying sales, though its rate of growth slowed from the previous quarter.

The group, which trails market leader Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Walmart’s Asda in annual sales, said its like-for-like sales, excluding fuel, rose 2.3 percent in the 13 weeks to May 5, its fiscal first quarter.

That was slightly below analysts’ average forecast for growth of 2.5 percent, and below growth of 3.8 percent in the previous quarter.

Morrisons said political and economic uncertainty was continuing to impact consumer confidence and cautioned that comparative numbers are tough in its second quarter as it follows last year’s favourable summer weather and the soccer World Cup. (Reporting by James Davey; editing by Kate Holton)

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