Argos sales falls more-than-expected; shares tumble

Home Retail Group reported worse-than-expected drop in sales at its catalogue-based Argos stores for the quarter ended May 29th, in a move that dragged shares down by 4.08 per cent or 9.7 pence to 228.3 pence-a-share. Like-for-like sales at Argos slipped 8.1 per cent over the 13-week period, leading to a 5.2 per cent fall in revenue. Total sales slipped 5.2 per cent to settle at £889 million.

Home Retail Group also announced that its Homebase chain suffered a fall of 1.4 per cent in sales over the same period.

Home Retail Group blamed weaker demand for video games and televisions for the drop in sales. Video games and console sales dropped by around 30 per cent. According to the parent company, Argos became victim of economic downturn and cut-throat competition.

Speaking on the poor results, Home Retail Group’s CEO Terry Duddy said, “Economic conditions remain both challenging and uncertain, with this quarter proving difficult in terms of consumers' willingness to spend.”

However, Terry Duddy said that good world cup promotions would help them experience improved trading in the first part of second quarter.