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Wm Morrison says traded well through Christmas period

In a pre-close update ahead of its financial year end on 31 January 2010, Wm Morrison Supermarkets (LSE: MRW) said it traded well through the Christmas period, continuing the strong momentum already reported. In the 6 weeks to 3 January, total sales excluding fuel were up by 11.2% and like-for-like sales excluding fuel grew by 6.5% compared with the same period a year earlier.

"Morrisons has had another strong Christmas," said chairman Sir Ian Gibson, “This has enabled Morrisons to finish the year strongly and although we remain cautious on the economic environment and consumer spending, we look forward to further progress in the coming year."

The new retail space opened during the financial year and a good like-for-like sales performance enabled the business to outperform the market, it said.

The board's expectations for the full year remain unchanged. "Looking further ahead we remain cautious on the outlook for consumer spending and we expect the market to remain challenging," the group added.

Disclosure: The author holds no positions in the company