Dixons sales fall as shoppers cut back

 
City A.M. Reporter
Dixons , Europe's second-biggest electricals retailer, has posted a drop in first-quarter underlying sales and profit margins as shoppers reined in spending on discretionary items amid rising prices and austerity measures.

The group, which owns the Currys and PC World chains, has said sales at stores open at least a year fell seven per cent in the 12 weeks to July 23, including a ten per cent decline in the UK.

The falls were broadly in line with expectations and exaggerated by a strong performance the same time last year, when sales of televisions surged ahead of the soccer World Cup and Apple's popular iPad was launched.

Gross profit margins dropped a larger-than-expected one per cent due to steps to gain market share abroad, Dixons said.

The group said it had identified an extra £10m of cost savings and would limit capital spending, adding it was thus on track to meet full-year expectations for the business.