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JD Sports shares rise on strong Christmas trading

JD Sports shares were up over 4% this morning after the group said that its profits will be ahead of market expectations.

The retailer released a trading update for the Christmas period, where it said it expects pre-tax profits to come in at around £400m – this is much higher than the average forecasts of £295m.

Total revenues for the 22-week period to 2 January 2021 were more than 5% ahead of the prior year as consumers “readily switched between physical and digital channels.”

Looking ahead, JD Sports has said that the effects of the pandemic are continuing to present challenges.

“Whilst we are confident that we have the proposition to continue to attract consumers throughout this period, the process to scale down activity in stores and scale up the digital channels, often at extremely short notice, presents significant challenges. We are indebted to all of our colleagues in our different territories who have had to adopt new ways of working,” said the retailer in a statement.

JD Sports said that because of the ongoing uncertain outlook and UK stores likely to be closed until at least Easter, its current best estimate is for 5%-10% growth in headline pre-tax profit.

Last month, shares in the retailer surged as it bought sportswear brand Shoe Palace in a deal worth $325m (£243.7m).

The deal means that JD Sports is extending presence in California and other US states including Texas, Florida and Nevada. The deal was all in cash and the owner of the retailer, Genesis, will then have 100% of both Shoe Palace shares.

JD sports shares are trading 4.68% higher at 890,60 (0850GMT).

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