M&S and Tesco prepare to join the list of festive season Losers

M&S and Tesco prepare to join the list of festive season LosersThe British arm of U. S. grocer Wal-Mart Stores, Asda, said it enjoyed a good performance at Christmas both in its store and online.

Yesterday, the boss of Asda warned that shopkeepers suffered a difficult Christmas as Marks & Spencer and Tesco were among the ones to join the list of festive losers.

Andy Clarke, the Chief executive said `a very tough December' forced some stores to `hit the panic button early' and cut prices.

Figures from BDO the accountancy firm revealed that High Street sales fell 2.2 per cent in December in an `underwhelming' Christmas.

The report said, `Many retailers will have been left disappointed by a month of lacklustre consumer demand in the crucial Christmas trading period.' All eyes will be on the sector this week as M&S, Tesco and Sainsbury publish figures for the festive period.

It is expected that M&S, the country's biggest clothing retailer, on Thursday will reveal that sales of general merchandise dropped 1.5 per cent in the 13 weeks to December 28.

Phil Clarke, Tesco's, chief executive will also be in the spotlight on Thursday with analysts expecting sales to have gone down by between 0.5 per cent and 2.5 per cent in the six weeks to January 4.

That would be adequate to put Britain's biggest supermarket chain steadily on the losers' list.