Sainsbury's and ITV weigh down the FTSE

Sainsbury's share price Underlying FY profit before tax dips 1

Sainsbury's share price Underlying FY profit before tax dips 1

A boost from Argos helped group sales at the United Kingdom retailer jump 12.7% to £29,112 million, but like-for-likes were down by 0.6% and underlying profit before tax was hit, falling 1% to £581 million, down from £587 million previous year. The FTSE 100 group, however, saw its sales rise, helped by last year's acquisition of Argos owner Home Retail Group.

Chris Beauchamp, chief market analyst at IG, pointed out that Sainsbury's shares "touched a 52-week high yesterday, so the weakness today makes sense when viewed in the light of profit-taking and worries about a tougher environment in the months ahead".

The supermarket said that Argos had boosted sales, but many analysts were anxious that it has lost sight of its core mission - selling food.

J. Sainsbury's Plc (JSAIY) posted modestly stronger full year earnings Wednesday even as sales rose by more than 12% in the country's fiercely competitive grocery store market thanks to sales at its Argos discount retailing division.

Sainsbury's, which trails market leader Tesco in annual sales, also cautioned that it saw no let-up in the intensely competitive United Kingdom market any time soon.

Sainsbury's has opened 59 Argos Digital stores in its supermarkets to date, and is now accelerating its plan to open a total of 250 stores.

Bread Furst Baker Mark Furstenburg Wins a James Beard Award
Zahav's pastry chef, Camille Cogswell, lost to Zachary Engel of Shaya in New Orleans for the Rising Star Chef of the Year award. For a complete list of winners, head over to the James Beard Foundation website . "Us commoners we're just trying to keep up".

The chain said the squeeze on household spending was impacting general merchandise and clothing sales growth as Brexit-fuelled inflation outstrips wage increases.

United Kingdom retailer Sainsbury's said its clothing business outperformed a challenging market in its last fiscal year amid a fall in pre-tax profit during the period.

Sainsbury's CEO Mike Coupe warned on Wednesday that the supermarket sector remains a "challenging market" as the grocer delivered its full-year results.

Across Europe, the French Cac 40 fell 0.0.6% while the German Dax rose 0.16%.

However, much of the strong performance was attributed to the timing of Easter this year.

Some analysts believe Sainsbury's is vulnerable to further price cuts by Tesco and a recovering Asda and the supermarket's Chief Financial Officer Kevin O'Byrne said he was comfortable with an average profit forecast of 573 million pounds for 2017-18, meaning a drop for yet another year.

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