July 3, 2019 / 6:08 AM / 2 months ago

Sales at UK's Sainsbury's fall for third straight quarter

LONDON, July 3 (Reuters) - British supermarket group Sainsbury’s reported a third consecutive quarter of declining underlying sales, particularly hurt by weak clothing and general merchandise markets.

The group, which had its 7.3 billion pound ($9.2 billion)takeover of rival Asda blocked by the UK competition regulator in April, said on Wednesday its like-for-like sales, excluding fuel, fell 1.6% in the 16 weeks to June 29, its fiscal first quarter.

The outcome compares with analysts’ forecasts in a range of down 1.1% to down 2% and a fall of 0.9% in the previous quarter.

“Retail markets remain highly competitive and promotional and the consumer outlook continues to be uncertain,” Sainsbury’s said.

Reporting by James Davey; editing by Kate Holton

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