January 17, 2019 / 6:40 AM / in 6 months

Metro reports solid Christmas and slows decline in Russia

BERLIN, Jan 17 (Reuters) - German wholesaler Metro reported its strongest like-for-like sales rise for six quarters in the important Christmas period on Thursday and said it managed to slow the decline in its struggling Russian business.

Metro said sales in the first-quarter of its 2018/19 fiscal year fell 0.6 percent to 8 billion euros ($9.11 billion), but rose 2.3 percent on a like-for-like basis after stripping out store closures and currency fluctuations.

In Russia, where it has been restructuring its business since poor performance forced it to issue a profit warning in April, like-for-like sales fell 2.4 percent, an improvement on the 8.9 percent decline a year ago. ($1 = 0.8781 euros) (Reporting by Emma Thomasson, editing by Riham Alkousaa)

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