British consumers failed to increase their spending in December for a record fifth month in a row, adding to signs of a weakening economy that might prompt the Bank of England to cut interest rates this month.
Sainsbury's retail and operations director Simon Roberts has emerged as the internal favourite to succeed Mike Coupe as chief executive if the supermarket group opts to promote from within, reports said.
There was good news and bad from UK supermarkets giant Sainsbury's on Wednesday as the company’s third-quarter trading statement (the 15 weeks to January 4) showed weak sales, although fashion was stronger.
Britain's retail sector was boosted by Boris Johnson's general election victory on Friday, as investors factored in expectations of a step-up in consumer sentiment and spending in the key holiday season period.
M&S is reportedly planning to downsize the space it controls in around 20 of its largest retail locations with under-used upper floors potentially being converted into offices or even residential space.
With harsh lessons learnt from past Black Fridays, British retailers are stretching promotions over several weeks, aiming to smooth out consumer demand and reduce the pressure on supply and distribution networks.
Tesco has pledged to remove one billion pieces of plastic packaging from products in its UK stores by the end of 2020, seeking to reduce its environmental impact and meet growing consumer demand for less waste.