Wm Morrison has declared victory in the annual Christmas trolley wars, after enticing shoppers away from more expensive rivals Marks and Spencer and Waitrose as well as Tesco, its more conventional competitor.

Britain’s fourth-biggest supermarket delivered an industry-leading 8.2% rise in underlying sales in the six weeks to 4 January.

Total sales, excluding fuel, rose 9.4%. Bigger rival Tesco managed only a 2.5% uplift during a six-week period, while J Sainsbury delivered year-on-year growth of 4.5% over the festive quarter.

But while the City was pleased with Morrison’s sales performance, analysts were disappointed there was no upgrade to profit guidance on the back of better-than-expected trading.

Financial Times, Daily Telegraph