ANALYST VIEWS: CAN M&S BUILD ON ITS UNEXPECTED SALES LIFT?

MATTHEW MCEACHRAN | SINGER CAPITAL MARKETS

This update is slightly better than feared, albeit we believe advertising and promotional costs would have been slightly higher to achieve this. Nevertheless, consensus forecasts should be achieved depending on the final staff bonus costs, we think the shares might see a small relief bounce.

MAUREEN HINTON | VERDICT RESEARCH

As inflation becomes more evident in clothing, shoppers are looking for quality and value to justify paying higher prices and M&S’ strengths lie in quality, value and innovation, which it is highlighting in its marketing. Indeed it is seeing customers trading up to their premium ranges rather than trading down.

SAM HART | CHARLES STANLEY

The shares have been derated in recent months, along with the whole general retail sector, on growing concerns over the consumer outlook and higher cotton prices. The current valuation, however, suggests that a lot of bad news is already discounted. Our recommendation stays at ‘accumulate’.