UK-based supermarket chain Sainsbury’s has reported that its like-for-like (LFL) sales, excluding fuel, fell by 4% in the first quarter (Q1) of the fiscal year 2022/23 compared with the previous year.
The retailer’s LFL quarter sales, including fuel, rose by 2.9% in the quarter, while its total retail sales growth was 2.5%.
During the sixteen weeks to 25 June, Sainsbury’s total general merchandise (GM) sales dropped by 11.2%.
The company’s GM sales declined by 5% in the last 11 weeks of Q1 and were down by 30% in the first five weeks.
Sales of its Argos brand declined by 7% in the last 11 weeks of the quarter and by 19% in the first five weeks.
Sainsbury’s clothing sales were down by 2% in the last 11 weeks and 26% in the first five weeks, while its grocery sales also dropped by 2.4% against last year.
Sainsbury’s chief executive Simon Roberts said: “I would like to thank my colleagues for their brilliant efforts this quarter.
“We are proud to be the first major supermarket to pay the living wage to all colleagues, regardless of where they live – and to have increased Sainsbury’s colleague pay by 25% and Argos by 39% over the past five years.
“The pressure on household budgets will only intensify over the remainder of the year and I am very clear that doing the right thing for our customers and colleagues will remain at the very top of our agenda.”
Sainsbury’s has kept its full-year outlook unchanged and expects an underlying profit before tax of between £630m and £690m.
During the quarter, the company closed six Argos standalone stores and opened five Argos stores inside Sainsbury’s supermarkets.
In April this year, Sainsbury’s reported that its retail sales for the fiscal year 2022 (FY22), including sales of fuel, increased by 3.4% year-on-year.