Signet reports UK sales drop due to bad weather

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Chief Executive reports fall in sales during bad winter weather

The Signet group, owners of UK high street jewellery stores H Samuel, Ernest Jones and Leslie Davies Jewellery, has reported a fall of 4.2 per cent in like-for-like sales in the nine weeks to January 1.

Despite the expected busier Christmas period, the bad weather experienced across the UK in December has been linked to the dip in sales. Signet chief executive Terry Burman suggested sales in the UK were "negatively impacted" by the snow storms and widespread delays in postage, however charm bracelets and gold rings "performed well".

Signet’s overall sales rose more than 8 per cent during the Christmas period due to strong sales in the group’s US division. In the 48 weeks to January 1, Signet’s like-for-like UK sales dropped 1.7 per cent. Burman added, however, that Signet is "well positioned" for the 2011-12 financial year, and praised Signet’s UK divisional management for maintaining "very good control of gross merchandise margin and costs" during the December sales period. 

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