LEICESTER: Topps Tiles stuck by profit forecasts today after a robust end to its financial year. The company's sales are expected to increase by 3.7% on a like-for-like basis in the quarter to Saturday, resulting in a decline of 1% for the full 52 weeks.

The company, which has 325 UK stores following the opening of 13 shops and closure and relocation of eight sites in the year, is comfortable with City forecasts for profits of between £12.7m and £14m.

It made a surplus of £13.9m last year as it grappled with difficult trading conditions and increasedÊ competition from rivals such as B&Q.

Panmure Gordon analyst Philip Dorgan described the fourth quarter performance by Topps as decent, helped by softer comparisons with a year earlier.

However, he cut his forecast for the next financial year by 10% to £13.8m and removed his buy rating after shares reached his target price of 50p. The stock was down 3% 47.5p yesterday.