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Christmas trading: Can we really learn anything this year?

“Pattern recognition… is the fundamental capability of the human brain. We can’t think fast enough to logically analyse situations quickly, so we rely on our powers of pattern recognition.” Ray Kurzweil, author, inventor and director of engineering at Google, believes that the human brain is built on from a hierarchy of pattern recognisers that are responsible for most aspects of human thought

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Carpetright shares plunge 47% after another profit warning

Carpetright shares have taken a hit after a significant drop in sales during the weeks after Christmas prompted the retailer to issue a profit warning. Shares were down by 47 per cent early this morning on the London stock exchange after Carpetright’s quarterly update for the 11 weeks ending January 13 revealed like-for-like sales had fallen 3.6 per cent. Total group sales also dropped 2.3 per cent, with the flooring and furniture retailer blaming it on “reduced consumer confidence” and the “significant deterioration” in UK trade that came after positive start to the third quarter






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M&S hires new food marketing director as part of marketing overhaul

Marks & Spencer has recruited a new marketing director for to help bolster its food business as it seeks to bring the division back on track in light of recent underperformance.






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Primark enjoys “record Christmas” beating expectations

Primark has celebrated record Christmas sales thanks to over 300,000sq ft of added retail space. In the 16 weeks to January 6, the budget fashion retailer, which is owned by Associated British Foods (ABF), saw retail sales rise seven per cent year-on-year on a constant currency basis, while the group reported a revenue rise of four per cent. UK sales were reportedly strong during the period, thanks to a ramping up of retail space






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Outcry prompts Tesco to delay Clubcard changes

An outcry from customers has prompted Tesco to delay the changes to its Clubcard rewards scheme which came with little to no warning. The UK’s biggest retailer wrote the 16 million active Clubcard customers earlier this week to say it had “simplified” the scheme – which came in effect from January 15 – to make it more straightforward






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The Works hails record Christmas sales for 7th year running

The Works has revealed record-breaking Christmas sales for the 17th consecutive year as it pushes ahead with ambitious expansion plans.






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Walmart appoints former Asda executive as international chief

Walmart has reportedly appointed Judith McKenna to head up its international unit, of which UK grocery chain Asda is a part. According to Reuters , McKenna is to be promoted from her current role as chief operating officer of Walmart’s domestic operations in the US and will succeed David Cheesewright as international chief from February 1. READ MORE:  Asda beats Big 4 in Christmas sales battle  Asda starts new year with more head office job cuts Asda’s turnaround continues with second consecutive quarter of sales growth  McKenna herself is a UK citizen and a veteran of Asda, where she served as both chief operating officer and finance chief before crossing the pond in 2014 to work at the headquarters of parent company Walmart.






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Celebrity-endorsed perfumes spur on The Fragrance Shop’s Christmas trading

The Fragrance Shop has enjoyed a bumper Christmas after gift sets and celebrity-endorsed luxury scents drove a rise in like-for-like sales during the crucial trading period.






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Retailers buy over £250,000 in own shares after dismal Christmas trading

Retailers have spent hundreds of thousands of pounds buying up their own shares after dismal Christmas trading updates sent share prices tumbling. Debenhams, Card Factory and Mothercare have spent a collective £274,713 on their own stock in the wake of the release of anaemic financial figures, according to The Telegraph






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BHS.com sales surge 43%

The online-only revival of collapsed department store chain BHS has gone from strength to strength after it recorded a surge in sales in its final quarter. The retailer, now known as BHS.com and owned by the Al Mana Group of Qatar, said total sales increased 43 per cent in the last three months of last year, which covered the Christmas trading period






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