LONDON, June 13 (Reuters) - Home Retail, Britain's biggest household goods retailer, posted higher quarterly underlying sales both at Argos and its DIY chain Homebase, helped by demand for electronics and big ticket purchases.
The firm said on Thursday sales at Argos stores open over a year rose 1.9 percent in the 13 weeks to June 1, its fiscal first quarter, as sales of tablet computers and TVs offset declines in video gaming and audio.
That compared however with analysts' consensus forecast of growth of 3 percent, according to a company poll of 16, and followed a 5.2 percent rise in the final eight week trading period of the 2012-13 year.
At Homebase, Britain's second largest home improvement firm after Kingfisher's B&Q, like-for-like sales grew 1.4 percent, slightly less than the company expected, which it blamed on the unfavourable weather.
It was better than analysts expected, however. They forecast a 1.4 percent fall, following four quarters of decline in 2012-13.