Asda has reported a slowdown in sales amid its fourth quarter results despite enjoying a surprise boost over the Christmas period.
The retailer reported a 0.5 per cent rise in like-for-like sales in the quarter to December 31, marking a sharp slowdown from the 1.1 per cent rise seen in the prior quarter.
According to Brett Briggs, chief financial officer of Asda’s parent company Walmart, the grocer also saw a two per cent rise in net sales over the period.
Though sales have slowed, this will still come as a relief to Walmart following a difficult few years for the grocer which has struggled to compete with its rivals.
In 2016 it was the worst performing Big 4 grocer, seeing sales drop 2.9 per cent in the last three months of the year.
“In the UK, Asda delivered positive comp sales again this quarter with particular strength during the Christmas period,” chief executive Doug McMillon said.
“We’re pleased to see customers responding to our investments in the value proposition through improved in-store experience scores and the strengthening of our private brand and online grocery offerings.
“We know we have more work to do in the UK, however we are encouraged by recent results in key areas of our business.”