The discounters won the Christmas battle in terms of pure sales growth. However, both Aldi and Lidl owed their respective festive sales boost to increased store numbers rather than any significant like-for-like growth.
Upmarket grocers also outperformed mainstream rivals. Waitrose like-for-like sales were up 0.4% over Christmas mainly due to online, while M&S sales were up 1.4%.
Sainsbury’s had a 0.4% rise in like-for-like third-quarter.
Tesco had UK like-for-like sales up 0.1% in the six weeks to 4 January. Hargreaves Lansdown’s put this down to: “being bailed out by a strong performance from wholesale arm Booker.”
Morrisons saw a 1.7% drop in sales in the 22 weeks ending 5 January driven by falling retail sales as wholesale revenues came in flat. This was still better than the 2%-plus sales drop analysts had expected.