Homebase sales flat

Published:  09 September, 2010

MILTON KEYNES: Homebase, the UK's second-largest DIY retailer after Kingfisher's B&Q, reported underlying sales flat and gross margins down 75 basis points.

Homebase owner Home Retail, Britain's largest household goods retailer forecast a 20 to 25 percent reduction in its first-half profit, with sales at its Argos stores continuing to fall as low-income shoppers cut back on spending,

Home Retail said today that it expected to make underlying pre-tax profit of between £250m and 275m in the year to end-February 2011, in line with the bottom half of the current analyst range.

Shares in Home Retail have lost 32% of their value over the last year, lagging a 3% rise in the general retailers' index. The stock, which this week lost its place in Britain's FTSE 100 index of leading companies, closed yesterday at 222.5 pence valuing the business at £1.85b.

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