Morrisons posts best sales figures for 16 years

Morrisons hailed the ‘renaissance of British supermarkets’ as it posted its best sales figures for 16 years.

Gearing up for a full-blown price war with rivals, chief executive Dave Potts said the supermarket had ‘played our full part’ in the coronavirus crisis.

Retail sales at Morrisons in the six months to August 2 were 11.1 per cent higher than in the same period last year as business boomed during lockdown.

Retail sales at Morrisons in the six months to August 2 were 11.1 per cent higher than in the same period last year as business boomed during lockdown

Retail sales at Morrisons in the six months to August 2 were 11.1 per cent higher than in the same period last year as business boomed during lockdown

Retail sales at Morrisons in the six months to August 2 were 11.1 per cent higher than in the same period last year as business boomed during lockdown

But profits at the group fell 25.3 per cent to £148million as £155million of extra Covid-related costs outweighed the £93million it saved through business rates relief.

The firm raised its interim dividend to 2.04p, handing £49million to shareholders, which it said was a sign of its ‘confidence for the future’. Shares fell 4.1 per cent.

The company also took on 46,000 staff in the first half, and will retain at least 13,000 of them on a permanent basis.

The hiring spree helped the supermarket double the number of online weekly orders to 325,000.

Potts also announced its ‘biggest ever price cuts on customer favourites’, adding it needed to ‘compete in recessionary times’.

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