Profits at DIY group Kingfisher fell by six per cent in the third quarter to £257m, due to a tough sales environment in the UK and France.
The owner of the B&Q chain saw UK and Ireland sales fall by 3.8 per cent on a like-for-like basis. The firm is badly affected by the stagnating housing market.
Chief executive Ian Cheshire said: "Following a particularly tough first half, I am pleased that our teams' hard work has delivered a solid profit performance in our third quarter, one of our most significant trading periods in the year."
Retail profit was also affected by substantial foreign exchange charges as the firm translated euro and Polish zloty profits into sterling.