Tesco shrugs off ‘subdued’ market to see festive sales edge higher

Supermarket Tesco has said it eked out a 0.1% rise in UK sales over the key Christmas trading weeks despite “challenging” trading conditions.

The UK’s biggest grocery chain said it outperformed a “subdued” market, delivering its fifth Christmas in a row of sales growth.

But while UK same-store sales grew in the six weeks to January 4, it saw a 0.2% drop in the 19 weeks covering both the third quarter and festive period.

Departing Tesco boss Dave Lewis
Departing Tesco chief Dave Lewis (Joe Giddens/PA)

Outgoing chief executive Dave Lewis, who recently announced plans to step down in the summer, said: “In a subdued UK market we performed well, delivering our fifth consecutive Christmas of growth.

“In our centenary year, our customer proposition was compelling, our product offering very competitive and thanks to the outstanding contribution of our colleagues, our operational performance was the best of the last six years.

“As a result, this Christmas we had the biggest-ever day of UK food sales in our history.”

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